One Sunflower

glimpse – March 25

on March 25, 2011

It’s been a year long process and in a month it will be done.  Every class in our school is creating a banner for our back hallway that captures the essence of a children’s book and the way it portrays a “habit of mind.” I’m sort of the coordinator of this project and as such, I’m the only one really aware of all the work going on around the school.

In February, we were invited to hang our banners in the local children’s museum as part of a children’s art walk during the month of May.  The invitation adds a bit to my anxiety about the time-line but I’m really pleased and am excited to honor the request!

I’ve been so busy helping everyone with their art work that I forgot about my own class draft!  We have been focusing on the habit of mind of “responding with empathy.”  I’ve found animal books are great tools for developing this understanding in preschoolers.

We’ve read A Mama for Owen and Alborough’s wonderful books, Yes and Hug. We are using The Lion and the Mouse by Jerry Pinkney as the focus of our banner. Last week, some of the students worked with their parents and families to make pictures.  Today, I decided to partner the children up to work on drafts.

I purposely mixed boys and girls, 4 year olds with 5 year olds, children who struggle with fine motor skills with those who don’t, children with great oral language with those who have less vocabulary.  It was a fantastic activity.  The partners picked up their big paper, spread it on the floor, went to get crayons independently and began talking to each other about how to execute their plans.  I encouraged them to help each other, to look at the work of other teams and to keep working until they were pleased with their drawings. I witnessed a lot of stamina in this work – isn’t that a habit of mind too?

Now I’ve got to go through the drafts and figure out our next steps.  Other classes have voted on peer art, the components and arrangement.  Maybe we will try to do the same.

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6 responses to “glimpse – March 25

  1. Christy says:

    I have been tossing around making a move to primary grades for next year. Your post is filled with the reasons why I know I would enjoy such a move. Thanks for sharing! I love the idea of “habits of mind.” I hope you will share more photos when they are all done!

  2. Sue says:

    What a great project and connected to such great mentor texts! There is so much meaningful collaboration going on even with these young children. Your photos make the project come alive for me!

  3. becky says:

    What fun and work on a meaningful project. Your description and photos made me realize I need to ditch all this state test prep and we work together on a writing project.

  4. I love that you have created mixed-ability groups of young children who would probably rather not have to be in groups! But they all look SO busy! Can I bring my LilyBell to your class when she starts kindergarten next year??? (Okay, it would involve a move on my part, but still….!)

    😉
    Stephanie
    http://boxofchocolates29.wordpress.com

  5. MaryHelen says:

    I love that the children were working together. They talked about their work. How fun. You have created a wonderful working environment. Love the pictures. Thanks for sharing.

  6. What a wonderful project! I love the glimpses you give of your students and your school. Happy Slicing!

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