June 19

Treasure maps from an old atlas

Students showed their learning about pirates by creating treasure maps using pages from a discarded atlas. We examined old maps, tore the edges, decorated the pages and then aged them with tea soaked paper towels. Next time I would use more teabags and let the tea soak overnight. Some students crumpled the pages as they dried. We focused on celebrating our accomplishments and using positive language to congratulate peers.

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June 9

Marble Run Challenge

Students challenged each other by designing Marble Runs for their classmates to solve. We used LEGO which worked really well. A standard marble is a perfect fit for a double space between bricks.

Students became very creative with their ideas and are working on time management and using the allotted time wisely.

 

June 9

Designing Pirate Ships

Students worked in groups to show their learning about pirate ship design using KEVA wood planks.

Our goals were to cooperate in a group, to share our ideas and to listen to the ideas of others. Students realized that it was easier to create a single design when they were respectful of the ideas of their peers and thoughtfully communicated their own thinking.

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April 28

Words and Your Heart by Kate Jane Neal

This week primary classes enjoyed this wonderful book by Kate Jane Neal.  Words and Your Heart is a great book to spark discussion about the power words can have, both positive and negative. We shared the story and then worked in groups to build structures whilst at the same time ‘building each other up’ with kind words. After clean-up, we reflected on our collaborative work and how the powerful words made us feel.

March 16

Indigenous Resource: I Help by Caitlin Dale Nicholson

This simple story,  I Help by Caitlin Dale Nicholson touches on a number of core competencies including helping others and caring for the environment and well as the principles of respect for family and learning traditional knowledge from elders. Wonderful illustrations brought up lots of discussion. Kindergarten students created lego berry baskets complete with red rosehips. Our library also has the companion book I Wait.

January 22

Reach for the Stars with Books

Check out our latest bulletin board display. The Cat in the Hat is enjoying some of the new books that reflect the latest direction in the development of the library.

These titles are helping us to create a collection that honours diversity and respects the individual. The focus is on building a collection, in both French and English, that helps students understand the importance of Social Emotional Learning and offers staff some great titles to share as discussion starters with students.

December 21

Focused discussions on Each Kindness

This month all of the classes, K – 4/5 spent one period in the Learning Commons focusing on Jacqueine Woodson’s wonderful book Each Kindness. Beautiful illustrations by E.B. Lewis. Students were engrossed in the story and keen to discuss so many threads the plot introduced including poverty, peer dynamics, cliques and the unintended consequences of inaction. What seemed to have so much impact with the students was that, unlike so many stories they read, there was no happy and satisfying resolution to Each Kindness. They hoped for a sequel or asked me to check that there wasn’t one more page in the book.

Jacqueline Woodson and E.B. Lewis

The message of the book is to never miss a chance to be kind. Why waste it? Although another opportunity might come, that chance for kindness will be ‘more and more forever gone.’ Students commented that the book, ‘made you think, even after you finished the story.’ Yes!

We shared our activity and Jacqueline Woodson liked our tweet!