Sunday, January 13, 2013

Highlights from the first week of 2013

The theme for January is Global Citizenship.  We started the unit by looking at where we come from.  All the first and second graders collected information about where they, their parents and their grandparents were born.  On Friday, we used stickers to indicate the birth places on United States and the World maps.  The children learn about their own roots as well as becoming more familiar with maps.  

The results were very interesting.  We learned that all the children were born in the United States, with most of them born in Michigan.  The older generations spread out through out the United States and the World.  All continents were represented except Australia.

It was great to see how excited children and parents were to examine the maps at the end of the day.  If you didn't get a chance to look at them on Friday, don't worry, the maps will be up all month.

In December, the children wrote "Yummy Yucky" books based on a book  
by Leslie Patricelli of the same name. 

This week the children worked together on a book, inspired by two stories in which characters fall into fortunate and unfortunate situations. (Fortunately by Remy Charlip and Fortunately, Unfortunately by Michael Foreman)
In this project the goal was collaboration.  One child started the story by telling me a fortunate and unfortunate  episode.  The next child had to listen to the previous  ideas and continue the story from where it left off.  After everyone had a turn the story needed to come around full circle to the first child's idea.  The class loved working on this assignment.  After I printed the text of the book,  the children illustrated their pages.  An unplanned collaboration sprung up  as children began checking with each other so that there would be consistency in the illustrations.  

The "Poem of the Week" is back after a short hiatus in December.  The poems we will read this month will all be cinquains. Cinquain poems follow this pattern:

Line 1:one word
(subject or noun)
Line 2:two words
(adjectives) that describe line 1
Line 3:three words
(action verbs) that relate to line 1
Line 4:four words
(feelings or a complete sentence) that relates to line 1
Line 5:one word
(synonym of line 1 or a word that sums it up)

Cinquain poems are a fun way to learn about grammar as well as discover the art of simplification.  At the end of the month the children will try their hand at writing cinquain poems.

This week's poem was about friendship which lead to some poignant discussions about what it means to be a friend.  

A Friend/ Word Cinquain By David Kulczyk
Kind, helpful
Cheering, instructing, caring
Always there for you

1 comment:

C. Jason DePasquale said...

I love the map project, Elaine! I've admired it every time I've found myself in that hallway. It's really cool!