Tuesday, September 16, 2008

First week

Our first week went really well - introduced the journals, and the kids really got into them. We also got the flower pots finished, and started planting them this week.

Hard at work

Yesterday I had them do their journal time, then copy three new words into their journals, vocabulary we'll be using this week in our projects. I had taped up some huge sheets of paper to the walls, and we are treating that as our 'word wall', so whenever we introduce a new word, one of the students gets to write it up there along with the definition, something they were way excited about. I also showed them a cool book called What It Is, by Lynda Barry to give them ideas for their journals.

I let each group pick out their plant today - I had brought in some basil and mint, some succulents, and some venus fly traps, which, needless to say, were quite popular. The deal was they had to decide as a team what they wanted, practicing both empathy and compromise. A few near melt downs, but all it all it went pretty smoothly. Once they picked their plant, I asked them to imaging what their plant would turn into if it could be anything, if it could get as big as it wanted - their drawings were pretty cool, I'll post some of them later on this week. This in turn will lead to their next project, asking them to write from the perspective of the plant on the windowsill of our classroom.

The journals are turning out super cool. I think I have them work in them as much for their benefit as for the fact that I love looking at them.

Student work from journal

'Sad Worm' Student work from journal

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