I hope this school year finds you well. I've been super busy hangin' out with stars (well, stars if you are a teacher who LOVES the book Growing Readers and Reading For Real) because last weekend was spent with the incredible Kathy Collins.
alright, I'll quit braggin- but we just love her so much!
She's so smart and inspiring!
On to other news: Math. We are really trying to take these Common Core Standards for what they are. It seems like the go-to solution to Common Core (or so we've noticed) is to take what you're already doing and "make it fit" to what you are already doing. We don't really feel like that'll get the job done. The CC verbage (which is PLENTIFUL) makes me feel like we'll educate kids who can think for themselves- period. I love how they are clear that certain standards should be hit really hard so that these kiddos leave kindergarten super comfortable with how numbers work.
But- the diffucult part for us is...we don't want to just take what we've always done and make it fit. For example:
Take this new CC Standard:
Describe objects in the environment using names of shapes, and describe the relative positions of these objects using terms such as above, below, beside, in front of, behind, and next to.
Seems simple enough- but when I read a document that further unpacks the meaning I got the idea that this needed to be done with objects around their world (classroom and school) many times before they should transfer it to paper/pencil. So I came up with the following activity- in an effort to actually teach these standards they way they were meant to be taught- but man, it's a bit scary! This is just one tiny worksheet that I'm going to try tomorrow so we'll see how it goes.
The plan is to ask my students to locate these shapes in our classroom with a partner- and actually use positional words to describe it. (The clock is a circle and it is above the table.) Then they will be asked to draw the object they found in the box.
Let me know if any of you try it in class! I'd love to hear how it went!