Yes, I’m back to work — back to school! Monday was the first “teacher day” and today I welcomed my 20th group of homeroom students into Room 138. Where does the time go? One of the first questions I ask students on the first day of school is, “Who likes to read?” Today, I saw a bunch of hands shoot straight up, excitedly reporting the data. Yes! We like to read! I’m so happy to start the year with people with whom I can share my passion. Passion is Powerful! (That’s Lucy Calkins’ phrase that I carry with me everywhere.)
After introducing myself I gave a quick tour of the fairly empty room. My OLW, LEAN, works at school, too. I cleaned the clutter and the room is squeaky clean and quite bare at this time. Over the course of the next few days, my students and I will unpack boxes and discover the joys of new and old titles, of new and worn books. The magazine subscriptions will start coming in the mailbox. The charts and student work will hang on the bulletin boards. This is the most exciting time of the year — the discovery days that will move us forward.
In our meeting area on the rug, I read aloud BIG PLANS by Bob Shea and Lane Smith. Those two authors crack me up! The students listened intently as I shared my big plans with them. Reading! Writing! Learning! “I have BIG PLANS, Big Plans, I say!”
After reading, we wrote “about the tiger.” My school’s mascot is the Tigers, so I chose the large stuffed animal in the room to help me — allowing students to show me their writing style. I said, “Write about the tiger.” I will learn about their writing style, conventions knowledge, and stamina for writing time. I am happy with the work that students did today. We had a great day.
I apparently did not reveal enough details about my BIG PLANS, however. When I asked if there were any questions I could answer, a young inquiring mind from each class section asked me, “When do we go to the library?”
I love this group!
August 18, 2015 at 9:44 PM
So wonderful, that “passion is powerful”. Love that you have those readers. What a great year it will be, Jennifer!
August 18, 2015 at 9:48 PM
I bet your heart sang a happy tune when some said they liked reading. 🙂 What a fun year you will have!
August 18, 2015 at 11:07 PM
Love this work on the first day of school! Big Plans sounds like a book I would love to use tomorrow! And the idea of writing about an accessible idea to get a feel for their writing strengths. Happy first day!
August 19, 2015 at 12:29 AM
Love that question that was asked by each section. What a fun writing prompt to let them write about the tiger. You’ll get great snapshots of your writers from this writing piece. Congrats on a great first day! Enjoy those readers!