Showing posts from July, 2011

Press Here

A week or so ago Mary Lee at A Year of Reading reviewed the book Press Here by Herve Tullet.  I was immediately drawn to the book and the imagining it inspired.  I ordered the book with some Boarders gift cards that needed to be used up and I was more impressed in person.  Each page has a task "causes" a reaction on the next page.  I found myself getting excited to see what would happen to the dots next.  The text is simple but the creativity is powerful.  I can't wait to see my kindergartners faces as the pages change.

Conferring Part III Reflection: It's time to start ploughing

Thanks again to Cathy Mere, Laura Komos, and Jill Fisch for hosting this wonderful book chat.  This is some of the best professional development I've participated in.  If you are interested in the entire conversation visit Cathy's Jog where she has brilliantly compiled all of the posts.

Part III of Patrick Allen's book Conferring: The Keystone of Reader's Workshop was a bittersweet ending for me.  I am so excited about everything that I have learned but also sad to see it end.  Patrick's writing made me feel like we were sitting together and he was slowly and methodically explaining me to why and how I could confer with my own students.  Like the conferences in his classroom he nudged me along, showing me real conferences, showing me his notes and then explaining how that would translate in my own room.  Unlike his classroom, he did all of the talking and I did a whole lot of listening.  He anticipated my questions and answered them promptly.  He addressed my co…

Conferring Part II Reflection

I just finished Part II of Conferring: The Keystone of Reader's Workshop by Patrick Allen.  Thank you to Cathy Mere, Laura Komos, and Jill Fisch for hosting this wonderful book chat.  I probably wouldn't have read this book had I not seen all the talk about it on Twitter.
I started this a little late so my first post came after most everyone had posted their second post.  I wonder what you were thinking as I grappled with the idea of conferring in kindergarten.  You already knew what I'd discover when I read the second part. The first part didn't have me convinced that I could do this in K.  What would it look like? What do I say?  Thankfully Part II cleared a lot of things up for me.

In this part of the book Patrick gets into the nuts and bolts of conferring.  The first thing he talks about is his RIP model for conferring.  This makes so much sense to me!  I like that there is a structure for every conference.  Kindergartners need structure and need to know what to …

Conferring Reflection Part I: Changing Misconceptions

This summer I joined Twitter as a way to interact and learn from other people who care about the education of children as much as I do.  I had no idea how much I would learn from these amazing people, but that is for another post. A couple of weeks ago Cathy Mere,Laura Komos, and Jill Fisch decided to host #cyberPD.  It was going to be an online book club about Patrick Allen's  book Conferring: The Keystone of Reader's Workshop.  I saw post after post about it and thought about the stack of books I already wanted to read, my vacation would interfere with 2 scheduled posting days and for heaven's sake I teach kindergarten how is this going to apply to me.  My curiosity won and even though I joined late I'm reading and posting about my thinking that went along with Part 1 of this book.

I teach kindergarten and this year we are changing our schedule, I will see my students 5 full days over two weeks time.  I think there are lots of good things that come from this and also…

Red-Eyed Tree Frog

I'm always on the lookout for new and interesting non-fiction books to add to my classroom library.  Kindergartners love anything with photos, especially with animals.  I picked up Red Eyed Tree Frog by Joy Cowley on a recent trip to Cover to Cover.  The photographs in this book are bright and colorful; very visually appealing.  Joy Cowley starts the story when the frog is waking up and takes you through a day in the life of this frog.  She does a great job of introducing other animals living in the same habitat.  Joy Cowley uses interesting words but keeps the text simple enough for some Kindergartners and first graders to read themselves.

Perfect Square

I found the book perfect square by Michael Hall, while I was shopping at Cover to Cover recently.  The cover popped and I couldn't wait to see what was inside.  This is the story of a square that is "perfectly happy".  Each day the square is altered in some way but instead of being sad about the changes the square decided to make the most of the situation.  The text is simple yet powerful; the illustrations are beautiful. I can see using this story when the kids are learning about shapes, as a mentor for writing and also in an imagination center.