One Sunflower

mini lesson

on October 16, 2009

There is a large piece of easel paper hanging on one of my cupboard doors this evening.  On it is a large head drawn by my youngest student with a face created by one of my oldest students.  Another student tentatively drew a small circle for a body and I encouraged her to draw it bigger.  Our person looks like it has a bib on.  My most non-verbal student added the arms and a few fingers after some coaching and another shy student drew two legs with little tiny balls at the end for feet.  A collaborative effort to be sure and my mini lesson for the day – drawing people.

Their journal entries are a mixed bag of responses to this lesson.  I’ve reviewed them all but haven’t really summarized the results.  I think 5 students drew people today with the detail I was hoping for.  Three other students added some details to their pictures to indicate a story event involving their figure, and a few other students were able to tell me exactly what they were trying to illustrate but their drawings don’t include identifiable illustrations.

I was most pleased by the fact that I had about 10 students clamoring to show me their entries and tell me about what their marks meant to them.  I took some time to chat with each child one at a time and was pleased that all of them were able to remember and retell their ideas – despite the fact that I often couldn’t tell what they had intended with their drawings at all.   I think that is fantastic!   But I’ve realized that  I need to create a  system for small group work with the journals so I can do a better job of working with each of  my students in the beginning of the writing process.  I see that they need more support in identifying their story content so I can help provide the anchor details which will increase their ability to retell with complete sentences.

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