Sunday, 12 January 2014

OLW project and Book Walk

So last week back ...
It was hard.
I must say, it was nice to be back on a schedule, but waking up and trying to sustain energy levels all day was tiring.
My resolution or OLW (as seems to be the trend I'm seeing at the moment) for this year is ORGANISE. I found that to be especially hard. I like to pass by clothes that need to be put away, I like to pretend lunch doesn't need to be made, I like to sift through my closet to find something that is not needing to be ironed...So trying to get on top of that, as well as school, has worn me out!
I tried soooooo hard to plan my weeks lessons before school started, but my mind hasn't quite wanted to adopt that was of thinking. Is there anyone else out there who struggled to get the school brain on?
I'm just so thankful for all those amazing bloggers out there who managed to suggest ideas and create products during their break, because they helped me in a major way.
I opted out of doing Guided Reading this week because 1)I was changing my groups, 2)We started on Tuesday and that was going to throw my rotation out 3)I forgot to bring any books home!
I got this great foldable off The Tattooed Teacher during a FB blog hop, that had 2014 printed on it. Under each number the children wrote:
2 ways they could be better students, 0 was something they wanted to stop doing, 1 person they'd like to get to know better in the class, 4 books they'd like to read this year.
It was the 4 that inspired me to do something a bit different this week...a Book Walk.
On Tuesday I discussed with the students about what made them choose a book. I recorded their ideas on the board. This lead me to talk about IPICK, being able to choose an appropriate book to read, which some of them struggle with. They were then told to bring in their favourite book(s) to school the next day for our walk.
On Wednesday, we discussed why we might recommend a book to someone. They came up with great ideas: reading other books from the same author, funny, not being able to put the book down because it's exciting, illustrations.
I modelled how I wanted them to write their recommendations and set them free. We put their books around the room and everyone was given a half sheet of paper. I gave them 10-15 minutes to walk around the room, read the recommendations and jot down some books they were interested in.
On Thursday we used the foldable and students were able to write down from their list, 4 books they'd like to read.
It was good for me as well to see what the kids are loving. Diary of a Wimpy Kid, although still popular, seems to be overshadowed this year by David Walliam's books. I may have secretly ordered 5 for my classroom after this activity...

It seemed that everyone this year was obsessed with One Little Word (OLW) because it was EVERYWHERE on the blogosphere. Jennifer Laffin, over at Mrs Laffin's Laughings, made a handy video and explained about doing this project in her room. I snatched this idea up and ended up spending a whole afternoon on this, the kids were loving it!
We started by discussing what a resolution is, which led to picking one word for the year. I thought I would have to spend loads of time getting the students to think of a word, but after my intro many of them already had a word. I showed the video from Mrs Laffin's site to show them some more ideas and how they might decorate their word. Afterwards the kiddos discussed their ideas on their tables and why they were going to choose the word. They then wrote a few sentences about their word and drew it on a piece of card. I was so impressed with how on task they were and loved seeing the children discussing their ideas with each other.

Hurray for an instant display! Some children spent another day finishing of their words, so the board is actually complete now.
All-in-all, a good first week back...although the Organise thing is still needing to be worked on.


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