Do you expect a classroom to be noisy or quiet? Do you expect students to be sitting politely and waiting for the teacher to direct the instruction? If you visit my classroom, and I hope you do, you will find out very quickly that my classroom is a noisy and active place most of the time. It may look messy and be louder than you are accustomed to, but that is learning in action!
In my roles as teacher, employee, boss, daughter, wife, mom, gramma, or friend, I realized that I don’t have all the answers and needed to ask questions, lots of questions. Shouldn’t we expect students to have the same need? Of, course! So I structure every lesson to include many opportunities for students to talk. By encouraging my students to practice putting words together to communicate their ideas, they are building strong relationships with me and their classmates. When my students feel safe and connected and valued, they are then free to explore deeper and make better learning connections. They practice collaborative strategies and learn to negotiate with and listen to others just like they will have to do in their future careers.
So now you know a bit about why my classroom is a noisy place. Learning thrives when relationships develop. I hope you’ll stop by soon and practice learning with us.
I found these resources recently. I’d like to know what you think, so please leave a comment, too.
Atlanta Speech School
Thirty Million Word Initiative
The Promise from Atlanta Speech School on Vimeo.
I was so surprised by the many thoughtful gifts you brought to school on Friday. Note cards, photo album, scarf/gloves, coffee mugs and oh so much chocolate! I’m thinking of opening a seasonal chocolate store. I sincerely appreciate the generous Amazon and Apple Store gift cards. I will be using them to add more technology to our classroom very soon. Thank you for investing in 21st century learning!
Oh my goodness! The first Carroll Elementary Art Showcase was a stunning event. The MP room was transformed into a very special art gallery. There were watercolors, finger-painting, mixed media, charcoal drawings, tissue-paper collages, wire sculpture and yarn sculpture. Over 1,100 pieces of art were displayed. Ms. Haley Hauder, Mr. Hauder’s daughter, was able to design, organize, and provide age-appropriate art lessons to every student in our school with remarkable results. Special thanks go to the group of teachers that set-up the exhibition because that was quite an undertaking in itself. Thanks also to the Student Leadership Team that provided refreshments for visitors for such a low cost.
You can see a few photos of the event in our Twitter feed. Eventually, I will add them to our Shutterfly account.
Mother Nature has been reminding us of the change of seasons. Even though winter weather is here, some students haven’t changed to cold-weather coats yet. We go outside everyday for recess and a few students have regretted their choice of clothing. Unless it is raining at recess time, we’ll be spending part of our day getting some fresh air. This is the season to practice using zippers, snaps and buttons. We have already had several lessons on how to fix sleeves that get pulled inside out. Maybe we’ll be able to tackle the intricacies of tying shoes soon?
Please come to our very first art show on Thursday, December 10th. You will see art work from every student at Carroll Elementary. The MP room will become our art gallery. It will be open from 5:30 PM until 7:30 PM. We hope to see you there!