Levi is our super hero this week and what a super hero he is! He can be seen being responsible, respectful and safe throughout the school, and he almost always has a smile on his face. Thanks Levi for presenting your poster to both classes at once!
This week we have been practicing to be an OWL when we read, as a previous post explains. Today we got our creative juices flowing and created owls to hang up as a reminder to Observe, Wonder, and Link as we read. What a classroom full of artists! I love how all the owls look so different. Enjoy!
In reading we have discussed being an O.W.L. when we read. When we read, we should be Observing the pictures, Wondering and asking questions, and Linking the story to our lives or to other books. We will read two amazing books called Adopted by an Owl- the True Story of Jackson the Owl and Owl Moon. While reading these books, we practiced observing, wondering and linking.
It is my hope that students continue to do these things while reading in their own books during readers workshop.
Below is a link to the home video we watched of Jackson the Owl. It is so cool!
Super Hero Lily is the craftiest hero I know! She is always working on a craft project and always has a smile on her face and a positive attitude! Thanks, Lily for being you!
Jonah is our super hero this week and what a super hero he is! Besides seeing him with his cape billowing out behind him, you can catch Jonah being a great friend to others and being a great listener. Thanks, Jonah!
Today we started our study of the signpost Contrasts & Contradictions. Basically, authors have spots in their writing where we need to stop and consider why. Today students were on the look out for times when a character says or does something that is opposite or contradicts what he or she has been saying and doing all along. When they get to a spot where that happens, they need to think, "why is the character doing that?"
We practiced this many times throughout the short story "Thank You, M'am" written by Langston Hughes. We read it aloud together, stopping to notice and note as a class, with elbow partners, and then finally by ourselves on a sticky note. Students were told that they not only need to stop and recognize when a character is acting in a way that surprises them, but they also need to answer the question "why is the character doing that?" That is the question that will push the students' thinking more deeply about the characters, plot, and conflict.
If you read aloud to your child, or if they read aloud to you, and you get to a point where a character does something that surprises you, talk about it with your child and ask "why do you think the character did that?"
Here is the chart we talked about today and some of the sticky notes that were put on our "Jot Lot." We have some great thinkers in here!
I attached their sticky note to a quick feedback form. If both boxes are checked, then the student hit both learning targets for reading today. Hooray! Some students didn't explain their thoughts on the big question- Why is the character doing that?- and they will have one box checked. Very few students didn't follow the example and write about a part where the character surprised them and why the character did that. They will have no boxes checked. This is just a quick check to see how they are doing with it. Take a peek at your child's when it comes home to see if the learning targets were hit.
In writing we have been looking at mentor texts of other authors and discussing how they paint such a detailed picture in our heads with their words. One way they do this is with a lot of detail, but another way is with their word choice. We discussed the importance of using strong verbs in our writing. My reader gets a much more detailed picture in their head with the words "screamed," "demanded," "shouted, "yelled," "whined," or "whispered" than they do with the word "said." Next, we will search through our writing for weak verbs that we can replace with stronger ones.
For a fun project on Friday, I wanted to see the strong verbs that the kids could come up with, so they made super ACTION heroes.
Saige almost always has a smile on her face, except of course when she broke her arm. Ouch! She is super, indeed!
Today in reading we discussed how to have a SUPER conversation. This is such an essential skill for these third graders to learn. They will use it their entire lives. We talked about that to have those deep and meaningful conversations about books, ones that get you thinking in new ways, you have to be a good listener. You can't be thinking about what you are going to say while the other person is talking. All too often, students just take turns talking about their idea, instead of RESPONDING to what the other person said with a comment or a question. There are many adults that still struggle with this. After discussing it and modeling it, students were paired up to have a conversation about who they are as a reader so far this year. Students could share their reading logs (which has all the books they've started this year, along with their genre), how their reading homework is going at home, or a book they are currently reading. After they had a conversation for a bit, students reflected on how they did on today's learning target. It looks like students still felt like they really needed to work on asking follow up questions.
We are going to be practicing having super conversations throughout the year because they are going to need it for the rest of their lives.
Mrs. Ellis's Class
Learning & laughing our way through third grade.