On Monday, the barista handed me a red Starbucks cup. And it made me smile. But on my ride to work, I felt a sense of panic.
The holidays are here.
And this is my Saturday conclusion: we must care for our joyful selves. It’s our job as teachers to channel the joy towards learning. Every day. But especially now. With all the mandates, standards, and good intentions pressing on us, teachers need to filter and deliver what students need to learn with a sense of joy.
Rewinding the week, consider where we are as learners in the world of informational text. Very few students responded well to the request to “Briefly summarize the main idea(s) in a text.” Many were flummoxed by the words “briefly summarize.” Others reported on what interested them, what they thought mattered. Not unusual. And if you think about it, it’s a natural thing. We respond to what resonates in our heart and mind. Not necessarily the author’s main idea.
These results are typical. Students understand the concept of main idea they just need a refresher and practice in the work. The challenge. and I believe the key to success, is to do the learning joyfully.
We started with these ingredients:
Minilesson featuring a “1-2-3” chunking strategy
Time for independent work
Time for group work
Scissors, glue, markers, and pens
Time for presentation of ideas
Main ideas, details and renaming of sections showed they understood the main idea and could put it in their own words. But the biggest accomplishment:
“That was fun!”
Something to celebrate this week and to shoot for every week. Thank you, Ruth Ayers, for your Celebrate This Week link up. Click here to read more celebrations!