I know what you’re thinking. Rhythm? What does she mean? When it is report card writing time, assessments seem to take over your classroom for a while. I know it’s important to know where your students are to help them grow. We view it as assessment for learning not just of learning. The past week we’ve gotten back into our rhythm. You know what I mean, our grove. Reader’s workshop and math workshop groups are in full swing. We’re back! 🙂
Since our last post our school has had a Remembrance Day assembly to honour the Canadian military both past and present. Explaining what this day means and represents can be tricky. The concept of war, defending our country, being peacekeepers, and Canada’s role in the world, is a huge concept for 6-7 year olds to understand. I like to take it from a playground approach. The world is like a big playground. Some countries get along and others don’t. Canada’s job is to help other countries talk out their problems. Sometimes this works and sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes we have to help a country who is being hurt or mistreated by another. Remembrance Day is a day to say thank you. Thank you for doing this really hard job. Thank you to veterans and current military personal who decided to represent our country and stand up for what is right. The Super Kids think that the leaders of the countries of the world should come back to elementary school and learn how to play on a playground together. I know…you have to just love the minds and hearts of kids. If only…
To help explain this we watched the Canadian Legion commercial below. It has no words just music. We first watched it fully and then we watched it again. I paused it throughout to asked questions. I asked them to infer. What was happening? Why was she doing it? What do you think the girl was thinking? What do you think the man thought and felt at the end?
The first time we watched it the kids missed the point. The second time with the pauses really helped and they really got it! One student yelled “STOP the video Mrs. Didyk! Flander’s Field is the name of that poem the Canadian soldier wrote. You mean she had a poppy sent from there! That was so nice!” 🙂
In the afternoon we learned about an artist named Georgia O’Keeffe. Some of my students from last year remembered we talked about her around Mother’s Day. We read a book about her life, looked at many of her close up flowers, and focussed on her poppy art. We looked at lots of her flower art pieces and noticed that it was like we were bugs on the flower.
Then it was our turn to create our own flower art with pastels. Students were given the option to make a poppy or another flower to show their understanding.
Our nocturnal animal projects has been researched with jot notes and typed using “book writing”. The Super Kids were then asked to sketch out a plan for their animal diorama. The diorama needed to have their nocturnal animal, a food source, a water source, and a habitat. Our 5/6 buddies helped us create our plan. Plasticine can be a tricky media!
This past Friday we had a full classroom day until the last period when we had music. What could we do on a Friday afternoon that was fun, engaging, and help us develop a new skill? Stop motion video with our dioramas was the answer. My daughter created a stop motion video for a project for school last year and I thought I could do that with my students. I’ve never done it before in my classroom and the app at school was different from the one we have at home. I was still going to give it a try. I ran into our teacher librarian Mme. Meg in the photocopier room and asked if she had a minute to show me the app. She offered to come to our classroom for a few minutes in the afternoon and show the class how to use the app before she had to go to another classroom. Perfect!
The kids loved it! I called them over two at a time and they helped each other create their own stop motion movie!
We had a viewing party during our afternoon snack. Check out a few of our videos below. The Super Kids can’t wait to share them with their families on conference night.
This week is the 50th day of school! How can that be! We plan to celebrate with all 5 grade1 / 2 classes with a 50s celebration. We can’t wait to share the excitement with you in our next post.