Our first days together were so great and so busy! Busy enough, in fact, that all the fun wouldn’t fit into just one blog post (or rather it would, but you’d have been sitting for hours and probably wouldn’t have wanted to finish!). So here’s Part 2 of the fun of the First Days of First Grade.
Mrs. Appelbaum, one of my fabulous teaching partners this year, was kind enough to share a great book that she uses during her first days to help encourage collaboration and cooperation, David’s Drawings by Cathryn Falwell.
We read the story together one morning and loved it! The big idea of the story is that David, the main character, is drawing a picture, which starts with just plain trees. As times goes on, his friends come and ask to add different details to his drawings that can help tell a story. The important part is that his friends don’t just ADD their details, they ask him first, as well as explain their thinking to him as they draw. The end product is a picture that everyone has made together, which started from one friend’s great idea.
We had to try it!
After specials, kiddos came back to find 4 very plain white pieces of paper with just the outline of a tree in the center. Once we got into table groups, we got to work. They were invited to, although no one did, to draw on as many pictures as they wanted. The important part–as with David’s Drawings–was that they talked about their additions as they drew them and made sure their partners knew what they were putting in the picture. As with most everything else we do, I was so impressed with how beautifully they cooperated for this activity!
We were finished, each group picked one person to be the spokesperson and tell us the story of their group picture–again allowing us to work on becoming good speakers and listeners!
What a great job, Rm. 202 kiddos! Now our creations hang where we can see (and admire!) them, with a reminder that “David’s class worked together to create a drawing, and so did we!” What a great example of how more heads make for a more creative picture! Goes with our theme for the year: LEARN. CREATE. COLLABORATE. Love it. 🙂
Keep up the great work, Rm. 202!