Slice of Life #24
Another full day, the last before Spring Break. I will feel like I’m really on vacation when I escort my mom to the car and we roll out the driveway, hopefully by noon.
I had early morning yard duty. The kids playing basketball have become quite adroit. There’s one short guy who is just fantastically fast. He ducks and zooms in and takes the ball away from whoever has it (on the other team, of course.) I lobbied for the three basket balls to be added to the 4 tether balls allowed at before school recess. I am proud of what good sports and what practiced players these fourth and fifth graders have become.
Then I met with my first reading group. We are in the end of a unit and so reading a chapter book aka historical fiction novel. Nicely finished with a read aloud of the final chapter after some close reading in the previous one. Students wrote a reflection on their reading since we’re wrapping up this level. Four out of the five had started by letting me know they dislike reading. We’ll see if there’s any change and I suspect there is.
Next group loved a book I thought was so so and did a quick reread and got a new book, but elected not to take it home over the week off. I secretly let the kid who was outvoted take his home. He needs more time with texts.
Yesterday I’d had a break so I put consonant cluster words, first grade words, into plastic eggs and hid them around the room. The first graders came in after recess and chose an animal to help them. The game was find one egg, read the word, show it to me and read it and I put a little chocolate orange stick in the student’s bag. The wildly fun part was romping around my room finding the eggs. If a word was too tricky, I’d say, “Try again,” which meant go hide that egg and get another. My most unpracticed and therefore most reluctant reader started having some bumps midway, with the “I can’t” stuff, but she persisted and got 9 treats.
Then my next group, whittled down by students moving to two, got to fast forward to the chapter book which we started and they will read over the break. It has a ridiculous hook at the beginning.
Two kindergarten groups later and ready for my leftover pizza at late lunch, I realized my final group would be doing marble parties and holiday stuff, so I worked on adding to units. That gave me leeway to go over to the neighbor school earlier, before the parent rush traffic.
I hauled three cases of HonestKid juices, several cartons of granola bars and fruit treats and my certificates for the five after school writing club teachers. I supervised the set up of the community center and the kids came rolling in with their writing notebooks and journals. About a dozen parents, maybe more. The principal brought in a color banner and taped it up on the board. Sweet!
After the opening ceremony we got treats and did a read around the room, sitting down to read and posting a positive comment on a sticky note. The student enjoyed the lavish treats and the freedom to move around and sit where they wanted. They really didn’t know how to respond to writing, but they knew how to lavish praise. The excited ones forgot to sign their names, but it was fine.
I would so have loved to go home after the writing celebration but my school open house was this evening, so I went back and analyzed reading records and filed them in student folders until my eyeballs wanted to drop out. At least we had some music in the pod and parents came. Not many to my room, but there was a nice hum.
I left a few minutes early, picking up take out at CreAsian so that my mom and I could have late dinner without messing up the kitchen. The trick now, leaving for SF and Ashland, is to clean our way out of the house.
I went to the store for a few items house guests would appreciate in the fridge and then watched two episodes from Season 5 of The Good Wife. And then I realized that the schedule of this day did not allow my usual come home after school and write routine.
It is kind of hammered out like a list, or a this happened, then that, but that’s it. Post.
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