The first nine days of school for the multiage students of room 233 were about getting to know each other, the classroom, and the school. We follow the Responsive Classroom approach, so the beginning of the year is focused on intentionally working with students to open the classroom together to prepare for our year as a classroom community. A lot of materials are introduced and classmates practice independently using and caring for each classroom tool. I am a believer that if we go slow at the beginning of the year then we can accomplish more during the year, as there is a clear understanding of the expectations for classmates, materials, routines, and procedures. It's been a great start, and I'm excited to see the growth and relationships that develop over the year!
Dory Day is all about community building. Classmates worked together in a variety of activities where they had to communicate and work together to accomplish the goal. We gathered for an assembly in the beginning of the day to review our core values: kindness, responsibility, self control and grit, and then spent the rest of the morning participating in three activities. Grit was the focus for the day, and they worked together to support and not give up. I had many comments, from other teachers, about what great thinkers we have and the collaborative spirit did not go unnoticed!
During the first few weeks in the classroom, we are working hard on learning the routines and structures of both our classroom and school, and building a strong classroom community foundation for us to work from for the entire year. Our olders and middles are hard at work modeling and showing new students all of our different procedures throughout the day. The picture collage above shows what our literacy time is currently looking like. Lots of shared reading and word work!
This post is a little late, but I wanted to share the hard work and excitement around one of our Fall harvests. Before Open House, we spent some time in the garden, as there was lots to see for new and returning classmates!
'This week we are working on transitioning our learning around plants and seeds out to our school garden. Today we talked about similarities and differences between our outdoor and indoor learning spaces. We identified and gathered classroom materials we would need for our work outside and packed it all in baskets and bins for travel. We separated into two groups: a planting group and a 'clipboard' group. They are independently navigating the indoor classroom for the their needs, and yesterday we worked on making the some connection to the outdoor classroom. We plan on spending quite of bit of our afternoon time outside planting and observing for the remainder of the year.
Our last theme of the year is in full swing. The first part of this unit has been about bringing our school garden back to life. Our school garden laid dormant last year, and it has required some extra TLC to revive it. This project would not be possible without the help of Greg. He is digging out a portion of the old soil with the tractor and repairing the garden beds to make it ready for our seeds and seedlings.
When the rain stopped this afternoon, we were able to get outside for afternoon recess. SO. MANY. WORMS. covered the pavement in the middle of our playground area. Multiage students felt passionate about saving these worms from the soles of their peers' shoes and began to gather them into a bucket. On our way to specials, we made a detour to the garden to relocate the worms to their new home-our garden!
More of the Garden Revival Journey will be documented on our School Garden Facebook Page if you are interested in following: