Thursday, March 21, 2019

How Will You Make the World More Beautiful

We read one of my all-time favorite stories:

I think this is just a beautiful story! Miss Rumphius makes a promise to herself when she is young that she will one day visit faraway lands, live by the shore and do something to make the world more beautiful. She plants seeds and has a whole land of lupines grow.

I asked my students to write about what they will do when they grow up to make the world more beautiful. I LOVED some of the answers they came up with:

Just look at this illustration. He's going to give people what they wish for in packages.

I never thought about the fact that by reading kids' stories I am making the world more beautiful! <3 nbsp="" p="">

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Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Comparing Perspectives

We use Multiple Perspectives in different ways throughout the year. One of my favorite ways is to compare perspectives. Our class has been learning about plants so I asked them to think about how it would feel, what they would say, what they would wish if they were the flower and if they were the roots.

This is my favorite time of year because I see the power of doing activities regularly that make my kiddos think. They came up with some creative answers!

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Sunday, March 10, 2019

Put Your Ideas Out There

So I have a confession to make-I feel like I am a complete failure as a teacher at some point every single day. This year has been particularly difficult for me. When my students do something they know better than to do in front of an administrator. When a lesson just completely bombs. When I assess my students and they are not where they should be. When I feel like I am not keeping my students safe from the other students. When we are in a meeting and just hear about all the things we are doing wrong. And I'm an experienced teacher, I can just imagine how new teachers feel.

I say all this because even though I feel that way most days, I also feel like I have ideas that I can share. I started at a new campus last year after working at the same school for 13 years. It is strange to see how priorities are emphasized differently. I came from a campus where higher level thinking skills were the norm, were expected. At my new campus it's more an emphasis on social-emotional skills. So we have an incredible culture at our campus-but I'm not sure the students are being challenged they way they could be. There are a lot of TPT packets and cute cut-and-paste activities.

I was asked by my administrators to present ideas on how to incorporate higher level skills to the various grade levels. It was nerve-racking for me because I didn't know if the teachers would be open to the ideas. But they were. And I had such a great moment this week-I walked past a Pre-K teachers wall and it was covered with activities for critical thinking like the ones I presented. She told me that she was using them in class and could see improvement in her students' thinking. I have a colleague in Kinder that said the same thing. I gave them a tutorial on Depth and Complexity in the beginning of the year and she is using those activities daily with her kids.

All that is to say that I think EVERYONE has something to offer, ideas to share. Whether it's presenting or blogging or even sharing on Twitter--get your ideas out there. You never know who you will inspire. :) 

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Friday, March 8, 2019

If I Lived in a Dr. Seuss Book

I asked my students to think about not only what they learned about Dr. Seuss stories but also to see things from a different perspective. The students painted with watercolor what that world would look like and then completed a sentence in that perspective. What if you woke up one morning in a Dr. Seuss book? How would you feel? What would you see?

Here's what they came up with:

I would feel scared.

I would jump on the bed.

I would feel different.

                                                       I am happy. It is fun.

I would see colorful trees.

I would be jealous because I want to be in a princess book.

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Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Applying Dr. Seuss Rules to a New Story

We have been reading Dr. Seuss books this week. We talked about the "Rules" when it comes to his books-what is always true about them. They are funny, colorful. The characters are make-believe, they have made up names.

My class loves the story Chicka Chicka Boom Boom-so I asked them to tell me how the story would be different if Dr. Seuss wrote it. I know this was challenging for them, but I thought some came up with good answers.

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Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Green Eggs and Ham Persuasion

We did this activity with Green Eggs and Ham. Then I read a tweet that made me think twice about doing it in the future. It talked about how no means no and he told him he didn't want it, they shouldn't keep asking. I don't eat meat and it's exactly how I feel when people ask me to eat something, I say "no thank you" and then it becomes a big deal because I won't eat it. Food for thought (no pun intended). :)

We wrote about how we would persuade someone to eat Green Eggs and Ham. 

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