I had to share what's going on with the box project outside my classroom. It's very cool to see them being made in other environments. This summer, I ran a workshop in Minneapolis where ONE person showed up. But that one person was the one who was supposed to be there. The one who showed up is Dr. Nicole Muth, Elementary/Middle School Department Chair at Concordia University. Nicole also runs their student teacher program. Nicole and I took a selfie together at the end of our one-on-one workshop, because it was so serendipitous that she was the one who showed up. That photo is below.
Nicole recently sent me some photos of the work her student teachers are doing with the box project in their placement schools. How cool is that to see the project happening in other schools? That's my goal for students. Photos are shown below too.
I'm speaking about the box project at a conference in Ohio this Friday - supposed to be 27 people signed up...I'll take a selfie of that too! And hopefully the box project will get into more schools.
Throwing in a cool song too.
Besides the obvious advantage of seeing kids learn from my teaching, there is also the advantage of being with 9-10 year olds all day. You see and hear lots of things that can make you laugh. You can just imagine. Some are captured by photos, including a kid pulling tape from his hair that he put on for a short speech, bedhead from a sleepover, the leftover plate from the brownies given to me last week, a gift given the night before school started or maybe a fun drawing a kid might make. There's also the cool gifts given and the evidence of kids' learning too. So, here you go, a few photos to tell the story of what can happen in a classroom, beyond the teaching and learning.
Well, my fourth grade students starting giving speeches this week, something I'm glad my fourth grade teachers didn't make us do!
I want them to learn they can share with a crowd what they know just off the top of their heads without needing note cards. And of course to be okay standing in front of crowd.
I use to hate it myself. But for them, since teachers tell students to be quiet a lot of times, I tell them it's a time for them to talk and be listened to for a short amount of time.
We start with 30 second speeches and go from there during the year. Each student picks a card out of a basket of things they probably know how to do (like make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, how to paddle a canoe or how to play ping-pong). They have ten minutes to think about what they want to say and make a prop if they think it will help.
I am always very proud of them, and I think they are proud of themselves.
The next one is 45 seconds and they get to pick the topic the night before.
Keep it up fourth graders!
© 2015 Peter J. Wilson
Peter Wilson teaches fourth grade at University Lake School, in Hartland, WI.