It's here! Friday! And it's a lovely day in the neighborhood! Hooray!
A couple of years ago, a colleague of mine told a story about making a display out side her classroom to inspire students. At the time she was a Consumer Sciences teacher (what some people may still refer to an Home Ec). She had a ton of empty spools. In the display she made a pile of the spools and posted a sign saying, "What could YOU make out of these items?" Her intention was to make things over time with the spools so that the pile diminished and creations came to be. The school year got in the way though, and she laughed telling me how the pile of spools just stayed.
After I finished laughing along and rolling my eyes about my own attempts at genius that failed miserably, I started thinking about those spools! What could you make with them? (To be honest, All I could come up with was a doll thing, but I tried!) When I picked our book for Reader's Workshop today, I was reminded of this story and I wanted the students to think about what they might do with too many things, positively or negatively. I want to see if they'll think along the lines of what we've talked about this week and the past three weeks about being a good leader and solving problems.
Writer's Workshop: I think today's book, Sparky! goes perfectly with yesterday's Prudence Wants a Pet. They're both about girls who try to make pets out of things that aren't pets, which result in hilarity. Sparky is a sloth. He doesn't act like a normal pet because he isn't a normal pet, but the girl in the story loves him anyway. It's cute! I picked it to show the students another example of humor and to compare it to yesterday's book. And just because.
Reader's Workshop: I read this book initially because it's illustrated by Jon Klassen and it's pretty clear that I have an unhealthy obsession with his work. It's a story about a girl who find a box of yarn that's never ending (i.e., Extra Yarn) and knits sweaters for everyone and everything. Someone steals the box, but the magic doesn't work for him. Annabelle doesn't really view the yarn as a problem, but I liked how she was always doing things for others in this story and I thought that could relate to our theme this week and transition us to next week when we'll be talking about trust and putting others first.
I just love the magic of this story. Jon Klassen's illustrations perfectly capture knitted yarn. My favorite part in when Annabelle knits sweaters for all the buildings in town! There is a subtle message that her knitting is bringing color and life to the town. All the scenes without yarn are dark and moody and when she started knitting everything becomes colorful and fun.
What Miss Bolte is Reading: I finished the vocabulary book and immediately wanted to re-vamp my whole plan for instruction next year. I'm considering interactive notebooks for next year but I'm nervous because GLUE. And SCISSORS. I think I might work on that during our writing time today. Great book! Check it out! Today I'll read The Book Thief during reading time. I have to read to page 122 by next Wednesday for tutoring. No prob, Bob!