#sol- November 1, 2016
In this week bookended by exciting celebrations (Halloween Monday, Diwali celebration at school Friday) we also had an author visit scheduled for today. The author was scheduled to end our day, but yesterday we learned she was going to be at school for the morning, so she became our “opening act” right at 8:05. This meant that our “daily routine” was thrown off. Once we got back from the author visit we continued our Morning Meeting. Because the day was going to be mixed up anyway I decided to let the students determine the order of our day, so we voted to make a few changes. Reader Workshop had to remain at the same time as usual because our EAL teacher works with some of the beginning English learners at that time. Since the author ended early we had just over 20 “extra” minutes before Reader Workshop, so we did what we love to do whenever we have some spare time- we paused for a read aloud. Today we snuck in two! We started with A Child of Books (by Oliver Jeffers and Sam Winston) and it was great to have students notice familiar stories and “get” the messages in the book. We had some great discussion about what the key was! Next we changed genres and read Giant Squid (by Candace Fleming and Eric Rohmann). As we are reading and writing nonfiction this book was one I really wanted to share. The students were absolutely captivated and shared eagerly what they knew and wondered about giant squids. Partway through the reading the EAL teacher came to get two of the students. Imagine my surprise when I later walked over to where they were working and I looked at their jointly constructed notes. The have been working on being teachers as we read and learn from nonfiction and H. had been sharing about what he had learned about giant squids. He even remembered details like how many of me would be about the same length as one tentacle (almost 6 of me). It has been so rewarding to see this class really evolve as readers. It often surprises me what these students new to English can really take in. Once we finished the book back in the classroom I reminded the group that today we would start narrative nonfiction reading in the form of biographies and a cheer went up! They could hardly wait to get their hands on more books! Is it any wonder that I was dressed as Super Reader yesterday- we really are being formed by stories.