I received this email and photo from my friend Sam Williams who is a FANTASTIC teacher in Tampa! They are into the Common Core BIG time, but Sam continues to find ways to teach creatively while meeting the rigorous demands. This has the writing standards all over it!!!
I wanted to send you this picture. I am doing a different take on reading 'buddies" this year. I have a super hero theme in my classroom. We have paired up with a 4th grade class and we call them our Super Friends. I have always done reading buddies, but this year the 4th graders interviewed my kids and then my kids interviewed them. The idea is for them to build a connection and understand their Super Friend’s likes, family, friends, etc. So at our next meeting we are going to the library and the 4th graders will teach our kids how to find books that they are interested in. Believe it or not, I am planning (later in the year) to do a research project with both classes so they will work together on this project and go to the computer lab and library to do research.
I can already see the benefit with my kids. They have really opened up. It also helps that my non-English speakers are paired up with a bilingual 4th grader. The picture I am forwarding is of a student who did not talk for the first several days of school. (Mom and Dad do not speak any English.) She is already asking questions, saying a few words, and today on her own counted to 5 and put the numbers in order. YEAH! I just wanted to share one of my little successes with you.