Whew what a crazy time in the land of the littles it has been these past two weeks!!! When I say crazy I really do mean CRAZY! My class was hit hard by the flu which affected all but 2 of my students and my assistant. Any time there is a new face in my room it sets us into a whirl wind. Then this week we have had 2, two hour delays and sickness still running its course in our room. We would finally appear to be out of the woods and then out of no where “clean up In room 421”! The nurse got her fair share of us for Year all in the last two weeks.
With all of that being said we had a very busy and active time writing. Our focus has been on paying attention to details in writing and drawing, making the connections between the two, and creating a theme for writing. I had high hopes to get more accomplished including a board to display work, but things don’t always go as planned.
When things don’t go as expected you have to back up and try something else. This is exactly where I found myself this week. Reality didn’t allow for my expectations and that was ok, in fact I found that it was better than ok. We had a great time celebrating Dr. Seuss’ birthday and St. Patrick’s Day, as a tribute to these events our writing was centered around ideas focused on a similar theme.
My students embraced writing in new and exciting ways this week. With paper under the tables and writing materials spread around they were encouraged to lay on their backs and write under the tables. They were also prompted to lay on the floor and write collaboratively on one large piece of paper. While this sounds like a normal day in preschool it would be except they were encouraged to write words telling about their drawings. They were also prompted to include more details in their pictures after telling me what they were drawing/writing about. They were inspired by all the writing we were down and I noticed them doing new things with words that I hadn’t observed before. I found two girls working in the writing center with the keyboards typing letters. They were sounding out words like cat and typing them. Preslie: “lets type about cats! Cat /c/, that’s C! /a/, that’s A! And /t/, that’s t!.” She proceeded to find the corresponding letters on the keyboard saying, “there now we have a title, cat”. It’s such a wonderful feeling when hard work is shown through the prof of growth in your students!
I wrapped things up feeling a little bit like a teacher that had planned above the ability of my kids. They were encouraged to write on the prompt of “wishes granted by a leprechaun”. They had 6 pieces of paper and had to write out 6 wishes that they would request if they caught a leprechaun. I remember saying to myTA as we were working on this activity, “this really is probably over their heads”. After two weeks of craziness in my classroom, just being honest for a minute I was tired, and really just didn’t think about the skill level of the activity.
My kids always blow me out of the water at the most unexpected times. This activity was no different!!! Webster doesn’t even have the words to express the excitement and pride I found in the writing of my students this week!!! I found prof that our focus on their writing has really paid off and I couldn’t be more proud of them! They wrote words that made sense and they were able to sound them out by themselves. They were also able to sound out their words to read them back to me for dictation. I looked at this activity, that I expected to be a flop, with tears in my eyes as I was astonished by their growth in such a short amount of time. Things don’t always go as planned, but the plan that’s meant to be still works out!