Saturday, March 26, 2011

America Unit

We learned more about American Symbols this week. I bought the Unit from Deanna Jump's TPT store. The children really enjoyed it, and I was so impressed by their work. They really got into the drawing of the symbols, as well as the writing.

After reading a book about each symbol, we added facts to our tree map. Then, I would attempt to draw the symbol first, by looking at the different "shapes" I could see in it. I have been trying this a lot lately. I often have students who don't like to draw, or think that they don't draw well, and tend to avoid it as much as possible. When I model drawing, I break the image up into different shapes and use that as my "base picture". Then I add details to the drawing wherever needed (eyes, noses, beaks, what have you). The kids think I'm Picasso. I get all kinds of "ooohs" and "aaahs" as I make my attempt. Every now and again I'll be, heckled, as I like to call it. I have a few hecklers this year. Let me tell you, 6 and 7-year-olds are VERY observant! The second you mess something up, they are all over you. Huh, I wish they were that focused on the lesson!

Yesterday, we made paper eagles by tracing our hands and one foot. They had such a great time making them. They were all helping each other out by tracing hands and feet for each other. There was tons of giggling as feet were traced.

But I have to tell you one of the funniest things that happened...

I had made a model of the eagle earlier in the day and showed them what we were going to be doing after we finished the last page of the symbol book. As I went to sit down (eagle in hand) to explain "HOW" we would go about creating the eagle an antsy friend started babbling loudly, "An EAGLE? How are we supposed to make an EAGLE? I can't make an EAGLE. That's too hard. How can we do that???" Heh, considering it was close to the end of the day, and this was one of that student's umpteenth outburst, I turned to the child (eagle STILL in hand) and said in my most patient teacher voice, "Well, if you would let me sit down and speak, I will tell you all how to make the eagle; however, if you continue to yell out like that I am going to say "Clip Down" which will land you on Teacher's Choice, and my choice will be for you to sit out. Do you understand?" The student looked at me, and nodded yes. As I went to address the whole class, one of my other friends at the rug added, "Yeah, and the eagle's looking at you, too."

I almost lost it.

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