Monday, December 26, 2016


Projects in our classrooms can take a variety of forms.  Projects are designed to help the children use their skills and knowledge to gain deeper understanding of a variety of topics.

Over the past couple months, our class has been working on a long term project: "Exploring Our School". This project started with a tour of the school. The children went through the whole school excluding a couple of locked closets. They toured classrooms, offices, and mysterious unknown places, like the attic.  

Next, the class looked at the blue prints for Summers Knoll.  In investigating the pages the children learned how the building was transformed into a school. They discovered the outside of the building remained the same but inside walls were taken down and new walls were erected. They also noticed that changes had been made to the school from the original blue prints. For instance, in the original plans the Art room was designated as the Music room.  
Exploring the school's blue prints

The next part of the project required the children to make sketches and take notes.  To make this task easier, each child made their own satchels just big enough to carry a notebook and pencil as they journeyed around the building. 
Satchels to carry a notebook and pencil
The children went into a few areas of the school and choose things to sketch.  While they sketched, they noticed attributes and details of rooms that they had previously overlooked.
Making sketces in the Library

Sketching in the Coat room
Study of the physical space was just one part of the exploration of the school.  It was  also important to learn how the space was being used. The children went out to interview some of the people in the Summers Knoll community.  They were put in groups, drew names of people to interview, and thought of questions to ask the interviewees.  Listening carefully and writing down notes, the children came back with new knowledge about Summers Knoll.  

They dictated their findings as I typed.  I read back what they said and they edited and added to the document.  The results of their interviews are posted on the wall outside our classroom. 

Roxanne and Lila interview Jason

Billy and Esh learn more about Kim's work

Daniel and Thomas ask Spencer about
her classroom
The final step of the project was to acknowledge the people who helped them with their project.  Each child wrote thank you notes to the people they interviewed, along with giving them a small thank you gift, for taking time out of their busy days to be interviewed.

Eli, Thomas, and Edison wrote
thank you notes to Karen and
picked out a plant for her to keep
in her office
Spencer received muffins and thank you
notes from Daniel and Thomas


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