Our volunteer architects have spent the last two weeks teaching us about the different ways that they plan. One way is by drawing a birds eye view of what they will build. Children had the opportunity to practice a small scale birds eye drawing by examining their material boxes and drawing a birds eye view plan of what they look like. What features would help someone understand the design? Talk to your child about the shape of the objects, the lines drawn to represent dividers, their use of colors, and the addition of labels.
Encourage your child to try and draw something else from a birds eye view! Simpler ideas include anything your child can look down on: silverwear trays, sock drawers, tabletops, place settings, etc. More difficult ideas include larger spaces or spaces that a child cannot physically look down on from above: their room, their house, the classroom, etc.
Use the links below to check out student work! Unfortunately, the files were too big to fit in one document so you may have to click around a bit.
CLICK TO SEE THE STUDENTS’ PLANS (Pt. 1)
CLICK TO SEE THE STUDENTS’ PLANS (Pt. 2)
CLICK TO SEE THE STUDENTS’ PLANS (Pt. 3)
The Great Fluency Challenge!
1. Each Monday your child will come home with a short reading passage.
2. Video your child on Monday as they read the passage for the first time on their own. Tell them to do their best and that they will OF COURSE make little mistakes because it is their first time reading it. How fun will it be to look back on that video at the end of the week to see how much they have grown 🙂 If they get stuck on a word or need help, jump right in and help them! After they read it through the first time, turn off the camera and help them practice all of the tricky words in the same passage. They may need help sounding out words or, if the words aren’t decodable, they may need you to just tell them what it is! If they seem to have them all at the beginning, challenge them by pointing to words in isolation or ask them to read the passage backwards.
3. On Tuesday, revisit the passage with the goal of noticing all of the punctuation marks. Make a point to have them pause at commas and stop at periods/exclamation points. When a sentence is split between two lines, it can be especially tricky for early readers!
4. On Wednesday, practice reading the same passage with expression or, as I tell them, like you are a movie star! Are you scared? Excited? Is there dialogue? If so, does your character have a special voice you create?
5. On Thursdays, help your child notice the scooped lines that are drawn in. These scoops help children read the words in phrases that aid comprehension and match the author’s voice. We often tell children to “read it so that it sounds like a book” or so that “it sounds like the way we talk”.
6. TGIF! They have been working hard! They know this passage inside and out. Whip that phone back out and video them again. Go back and watch their first cold read and compare it to their Friday performance! Give compliments, give tips, celebrate their hard work, and get ready for the next Monday… when a new passage will come home!
Arena Stage taught us to…
“Work with our body, work with our voice, work with our imagination, and work with each other!”
After singing, dancing, and acting out the story of A House for Hermit Crab, we decorated our own hermit crabs to thank them for all the hard work they put in to teach us about literacy and theatre. Click on the picture of the front cover below to watch the book read aloud on youtube!
Black History Month Connections
We were inspired by Langston Hughes’ poems, Dreams and Snail. Click the link to look at the student work produced after reading Dreams: Our Poems!
There are tons of recommendations for further readings you can do at home to celebrate Black History Month. Here are several you may want to explore: