We All Saw a Cat


#sol- December 6, 2016

It is that most wonderous time of year! No, not the days after report cards are finished and everyone can feel an upcoming break in the air, but time for the annual Mock Caldecott! This might be my fourth year doing this and it just gets better and better each year. I will admit that I rely heavily on John Schumaker and Colby Sharp’s list  (this year I am going to add a few, but have not added them to my Padlet yet). This year it is also super fun because my virtual friend, Sally, is joining in from Virginia, as are my two colleagues, Ellen and Jamie. Here in Kuala Lumpur, I have bought all of the books and we are shuttling them back and forth amongst the classrooms, while Sally has borrowed many from her library.

We started last week with an introduction to the criteria, the system, and some previous winners. This week we started reading and I am already so excited. I like to read all of the books aloud, and leave the books around so the students can reread them after. We are recording our thinking on shared Padlets as we read, so when we finish reading them all we have something to look back on. I am blown away by the students’ thinking, even in these early days.

Today we read They All Saw a Cat. I will admit, that when I first read the book I liked it, but this time, reading it with kids, I LOVED it. I was so impressed by the level of thinking. These kids are used to me and my book crazy ways. They love to watch the undressing of the book, they are eager to smell the book, they ogle the end pages. Before we even read the first page they were abuzz, making predictions, noticing details in the pictures. As we read they commented on so many things that they saw and felt. We had a great conversation about the different perceptions of the different animals- they remarked on the changes in styles, how the readers’ vision changed on each page. I could not help but make connections in my own mind, thinking about how quickly I can jump to a conclusion based on my perceptions and how easily these can be biased, based on my previous experiences and what I think I already “know”. This is definitely a conversation that will continue.

I love how this unit develops our community and can’t wait to see what the weeks until the announcement of the winners (in our class and beyond) bring. I know we have lots more great discussions ahead.

4 thoughts on “We All Saw a Cat

  1. languageacquisitiontwicethework

    The anticipation and the ongoing excitement is evident in all the children. They are receiving a powerful message as a community of readers. This experience seems to be promoting feelings of connectedness and helping all the children to discuss topics from their own perspectives. I wish I had a teacher like you when I was in third grade!


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