Each day during March, I am participating in the Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life Story Challenge (SOLSC). All participants are writing about one moment, one part of their day, every day for thirty-one days. My slices will be primarily about teaching preschoolers. Check out the Two Writing Teachers website for lots more reflections on teaching. Thanks especially to Stacey, Tara, Anna, Beth, Dana, and Betsy for hosting this writing challenge.
A professional development day,
following our hugely successful Learning Showcase event on Thursday night,
yesterday was one of those days when I felt that I was riding a roller coaster,
up and down,
up and down,
up and down.
I had my notebook out all day long, always in pursuit of the proverbial slice, and I think what unfolds is fascinating. Here are snippets of the roller coaster:
Joy. Touring the classrooms, extraordinary work by students - third grade poetry books, kindergarten portraits, preschool mobile, middle school camping trip reports, second grade habitat, first grade persuasive letters, pre-k journals, fourth grade artwork, more. Student voice is stronger than teacher's. How to capture what we are doing in our classrooms? How we do it? School blog?
Tense discussion. Let's agree we do not all know everything. Let's trust in one another, communicate openly, have confidence we're doing good things.
Deliciousness. Lunch provided by families. Need recipes for chana masala and chocolate chip cake....
Wrestling with scheduling. Think about children. We ask children to answer to a lot of people every day.
New goal. Paired readings - coupling a non-fiction with a fiction; example, Eric Carle's The Very Hungry Caterpillar with a science book about butterflies. So many possibilities.
Heartbreak. The story can display taken down hurriedly by someone overnight, and all the children's precious found objects swept into, mixed up into, a few cans, all the lids mixed up, a puzzle for teachers to solve. How did they miss the import of these small treasures?
Insightful mentoring. Quietness is both a strength and a curse. Which children are most challenging? Don't retreat. Move towards the one who is so difficult and challenging, build that relationship.