What Are You Saying??

Leave a comment

peanuts_veil-e1274891657170With 15 days of school left, we got a new student in our class.  Not only is it hard moving to a new school so close to the end of the school year, but she also came from Mexico and does not speak English! It’s like being in a Peanuts classroom all day long-all you hear is “wah wah wah wah!”  Luckily we have a couple ELL students who speak fluent Spanish, and one girl quickly became her buddy.

The first day she walked into the classroom, she was shaking with nerves.  All the students were great-very welcoming and friendly.  They greeted her with Hola!  The really wanted to include her and be her friend.  We told them to give her some time to adjust and not overwhelm her; the best thing they could do was to show her with their actions what to be doing in the classroom.  And on the playground, they could definitely all play together!

It has been fun watching her relax and begin to participate.  She can complete some assignments by copying and practicing English words.  She is able to do basic math.  We found a couple Spanish-English apps on the iPad, and she can listen to Spanish books on TumbleBooks.  While she isn’t talking verbally in the classroom (she has spoken to a friend and small group with the ELL teacher), she does smile and want to be included.

This goes to show when you have a strong classroom community, the children are very supportive of each other and their differences.  And that is extremely rewarding to watch.

New Year’s Resolutions in the Classroom

Leave a comment


Coming back to school from Winter Break was a bit adventurous since we had an extra two days off due to extremely cold temperatures.  We decided to start the New Year off on the right foot and have the students write resolutions.  Not only are resolutions important for students to think about, but this also gave them the chance to write complete sentences using details.

First we read Squirrel’s New Year’s Resolution and a New Year’s poem to discuss what is a resolution and brainstorm some ideas.  Resolutions are a hard concept to understand, and we emphasized that they are something you want to do better, not something you do already.

Then, students were given 4 Post-it notes to write 4 resolutions.  I helped some students brainstorm ideas if they were having trouble; knowing about the students academically and their personal interests helped me think of ideas that targeted their needs.  When they finished, we edited the resolutions for grammar and spelling, so students could neatly rewrite and create their final product.  They loved adding glitter as a finishing touch!

The students did a great job creating resolutions.  Some were school-related: I resolve to read chapter books better, I promise to turn in my homework, I want to always try my best.  Others were related to home: I want to eat healthy food, I resolve to clean my room, I promise to help my mom and dad.  I was proud of the students’ work, and we have a great bulletin board to start off the year.  Hopefully the students will be reminded and encouraged to work on their resolutions the rest of the school year!

IMG_0349 IMG_0350 IMG_0351
IMG_0352 IMG_0353