I’m so excited to share with you all some of the incredible celebrations our classes have been finishing up their nonfiction units with! Most recently, our third grade teachers and students put together an expert fair. It was comprised of the information chapter books that students wrote, tri-fold boards where students taught visitors to the fair about something, and their multicultural presentations about their families’ heritages.
I was SO impressed by how professional students behaved while they presented their information to their families and friends. I also found myself learning about new topics such as Dairy Cows and computer programming! To me, it exemplifies the power of student choice because you are not only motivating the child by allowing them to research something they care about, but you are also opening up learning experiences for others that they may otherwise never have taken the time to learn about.
I also could not have been happier to see all the different text structures that teachers taught into and that students decided to use. We had everything from timelines to bold and highlighted print all the way to maps and text boxes. It was clear that the students had been exposed to the different ways that nonfiction can be written and made intentional structural decisions as the writers of their own pieces.
Our first graders also recently celebrated by putting together an Informational Gallery. Mrs. Castrogiovanni, our art teacher, was so kind to use her time with the students to make portraits of the different animals that each student researched. Then, we hung our art for display and invited families in to tour our gallery. Each class added their own flare to the structure (some read the students’ books in the classroom first, some read next to their paintings, etc) and each event was unique and exciting!
It was great to see first graders attaining the Speaking and Listening Standards of the Common Core by standing in front of a small group, reading their piece, and listening to their peers. Talk about courageous!
So a HUGE thank you to the teachers, students and families for taking the time to put these events together, and to make the time in your busy lives to attend!