Saturday, October 12, 2013

October 12th...I'm now 50 and 1 day old

I must admit I had fun celebrating my milestone birthday with my group of 4th graders!! Using Google, I discovered LOTS of things, other than me, that have been around for 50 years. Apparently, Captain Crunch, Chip Ahoy cookies, and Poptarts all came into being in 1963. So as the kids arrived on Friday, they could get a "50 year old treat" and READ. My research showed that The Snowy Day won the 1963 Caldecott and that Peggy Parrish wrote her 1st Amelia Bedelia book that same year. So Thursday night I stopped at the library and checked out 30 Amelia Bedelia books and a dozen Ezra Jack Keats books. I placed a poster up as we could add a TALLY MARK after each book we read and asked the kids to read. "Let's see how long it takes us to read 50 books!!" I was amazed at how the novelty and the snacks got all on task and within 15 minutes, 50 books were collectively read and we were on to the 2nd fifty!

In math, we creatively thought of ALL the ways to make 50. I need to add the photo here of the 50 poster we made.

Then in Reading, we went off in groups of 6 and performed our Readers Theater play of Where the Wild Things Are (another 50 year old story!) On Wednesday, I wasn't sure if this was going to work. During our rehearsals, I had some on a team who couldn't control themselves and acted too wild and then others on a team in tears because their team wasn't doing it right. I called my drama-major daughter at college after school in a panic and asked for some drama team-building games. She suggested a few related to miming to help each "actor" focus and then a clapping circle game to help all work together as a team. I tried these on Thursday and we seemed more settled and focused! After more rehearsals on Thursday, we were ready! And I'm so glad I persevered. It was fun on Friday to see all working in their teams. All of our Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade audiences loved our short play! Mostly, I loved seeing that we CAN hold it together and work as a team!!

Now I get a 3-day weekend to continue celebrating my birthday.

And I need to spend MAJOR time writing up sub plans. I am taking next Friday off to travel to NYC for the TCRWP Reunion Saturday workshops. I am worried about leaving these 27 friends with a sub. I picked a retired teacher who used to work at my school and who I am friends with. I hope after next Friday, we're still friends!!

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