Thursday, September 19, 2019

Writer's Workshop, Units of Study

Table Teams Writing Folders

How about trying to add labels?

Our field trip yesterday to a forest habitat in Acadia National Park, made this poster an ideal model for labels.

Some writers added to their words today.

Some writers started a new piece.

This book on tools is all about the labels.

Making plans for writing.

On the field trip we saw a Garter Snake and I told the kids to "Put that story in your pocket for writer's workshop." With the help of the poster model, it was a serendipitous moment for a writer who was working on a narrative about the field trip.

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Kindergarten Writer's Workshop

The writers made a plan.

Three pages stapled together. Big box and one line.

They brought a lot of knowledge to the paper.

I have 6 table teams of 2-4 writers.

I start day one of kindergarten. Happy kids.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Economic Inequality in Picture Books

Children can develop, change, strengthen, and question their bias and perceptions through the portal of the picture book. They unearth understandings about themselves, their communities, and the larger world they share. They deepen insight about the known, while peeking at the unknown, as meaning gets created. Children better understand their sense of self through messages of validation. And they lose confidence when they are absent from the narratives read to them. Access and exposure to diverse narratives in picture books offer children opportunities to both learn about their familiar communities, and those unexplored.  Words and illustrations on the pages invite the reader to participate. The exposed and personal experiences unravel off the pages offering a transaction with the reader, and meaning served.  Thus, there is a great need for a variety of representations of family, school, and life, as children seek to deepen their own sense of self and others, through the portrayals they connect too.  Bishop said:

Books are sometimes windows, offering views of worlds that may be real or imagined, familiar or strange.  These windows are also sliding glass doors, and readers have only to walk through in imagination to become part of whatever world has been created and recreated by the author.  When lighting conditions are just right, however a window can be a mirror. (1990, as cited by Harris, 2007, p.153)

Words from A Shelter in Our Car... Mama opens our little ice chest and makes peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. We drank some leftover orange soda. It's sweet but flat.

Early next morning, Mama wakes me up and reminds me, "let's use the restroom in the park before it gets to crowded." It's chilly there, and I shiver as I put on my school clothes. Then I splash water on my face from the faucet.

Words from Getting through Thursday...
And the next day, my family and I grit all we got toward getting' through Thursday. That's because payday at Mama's school where she's a lunch lady doesn't come till Friday.

Words from Those Shoes...
"Grandma, I want them." "There's no room for 'want' around here- just 'need," Grandma says. "And what you need are new boots for winter."


Please note and consider, I do not necessarily recommend all the books shown here. These books have content that leads to economic inequality discourse, but in isolation of that use they could be problematic as single stories.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Science Read Aloud

Summer Green To Autumn Gold Uncovering Leaves Hidden Colors by Mia Posada #SummerGreenToAutumnGold #NetGalley
This vibrant cut tissue paper collage illustrated informational text explaining why and how leaves change color, belongs in every pre-k through grade 2 New England classroom, ready to be read aloud to children every fall. An accessible explanation given through fluent facts written in clear sentences about the mysterious and interesting transition changing leaves experience. 

The use of labels, the font and placement of the text, the use of bold color words (deep purple) and interesting verbs, the glossary, and the seamless transitions of change throughout the seasons, are some of the highlights of this beautiful presentation of the life cycle of a leaf.

STEM to STEAM to STREAM. We need more science read alouds in our classrooms.