September 13, 2016

When I met ya in the summer...

It's so hard to believe we all only just met five days ago!  We walked to Mass today like pros and it's just the sweetest thing ever to share in these special times together. Special thanks to Mrs. Angerilli, who walked with our class.  I lead the way and Mrs. A kept track of the kids at the end of the line.  We make a great team Mrs. A! 

We all returned to school pooped and hungry and ready to take on the afternoon...which ended up being equally sweet.  

I had such big plans for the afternoon, but by the time we had a leisurely lunch and then "Morning Message" it was time for our Student of the Day to do her 2:00 presentation and then it was recess all over again!  It's an older blog post, but you can learn more about Morning Message here.  

After recess, we have DEAR time (drop everything and read) and it's a non-negotiable. I don't mess around with DEAR. It's just the nicest and most special time of our day.  We're quiet, we lounge, listen to our quiet music and then devour books.  

After DEAR, we have Evening Meeting and that's also a special time. We gather together at the carpet, share songs, laugh a bit, hand out Brag Tags and then read from our novel.  

We're currently reading There's a Boy in the Girls Bathroom by Louis Sachar. I think I've read it as our first novel for the last 15 years.  It brings the class together.  It's a very age-appropriate emotional journey. At first we can't understand why Bradley treats others the way he does, then he gets really honest with himself and makes changes.  The process is both warm and funny.  In the end, well, I won't give it away, but Bradley becomes a bit of a classroom hero for us.  In the past, we would refer back to him constantly throughout the duration of the year.    

Today, I asked the boys and girls to do what good readers do and to think of a question they'd ask Bradley if he were to visit the classroom.  This was an excellent opportunity to gauge whether or not the boys and girls are keeping track of and understanding what we're reading.  The questions were outstanding!  They were thoughtful, critical and get this: they were the same questions I bet you'd ask! 

This week's TOTW (text of the week) is another great way for kids to think about questions they have for characters, authors or about the text in general.  We're going to have our weekly Text of the Week test this Friday. We'll write this one together as a class so the boys and girls know what to expect each week. We can also use this as an opportunity to revisit expectations for independent work such as tests and quizzes.  

Please check in tomorrow for more information about the TOTW tests.  


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