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!


3 thoughts on “Excitement in the Unexpected

  1. Brandi,
    I know exactly what you have been going through. I feel like I have not accomplished anything the past couple of weeks. Some how I am still trucking on and finishing my third nine week report cards! The time flies! I am really intrigued by the writing under the tables, what an interesting thought. Do you do this often? The first graders at my school did the rainbow activity that you did this week as well. I enjoyed reading what your class wrote even more though, they really know some sounds and have great imaginations. I love how they wrote as they know how write, right now.


  2. I hope you used lots of Lysol! You deserve a medal for dodging all the sickness going around in your class! Hats off to you for being able to roll with the punches and go with plan B when things didn’t work out as planned.

    You always have the most interesting ideas with regards to writing! I love the old keyboards the two girls are using in the picture to spell words. Do you have them write the words down after they “type” them? I also love the idea of paper under the tables. This is such a wonderful way to get any reluctant writers to join the fun. I love the fact that you were encouraging them to add more details to their drawings. This will help set them up for success in kindergarten and beyond.

    I am guilty too of planning something I thought might be a little over their heads, but they always see to rise to the occasion. By adding 6 strips of paper, you automatically set up a writing activity that requires volume giving them even more experience with writing. The kindergarten teachers are going to thank you!


  3. I agree, it has been an unusual two weeks of school. I am always encouraged when I view your posts and see the potential and excitement for learning. Young children remind the teacher voice inside of all of us of why we became teachers – to share the joy of learning. Students naturally want to learn new concepts. They want to learn about their world. They want to imagine and experiment. I love that you are given your students opportunities to write and share their imagination.


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