I HANDED OUT OUR NEW READING JOURNALS TODAY, and my students were stoked. I had written their names in block letters on the outside. SIDE NOTE: I’m freakishly capable when it comes to block-lettering. I learned how to do it in 8th grade woods hop at Silverado Middle School. Why the wood shop teacher taught us this, I have no idea, and why it has stuck with me for so long — ALSO NO IDEA. I’m using the notebooks to teach them about sketchnoting which is basically adding illustrations to your notes.
I used to “doodle” in my notes all the time in school, and got in trouble for it MORE THAN ONCE. Here’s the thing, though, I was also a really good test taker. MAYBE IT WAS BECAUSE I USED PICTURES TO HELP UNDERSTAND THE INFORMATION . . . Anywho, I’ve lived long enough to feel vindicated, as studies show that using images can really help unlock understanding. Now, everyone in the teaching world is embracing SKETCHNOTES.
I had to jet out after school to make it to a meeting at the district office. The district office is in the building that used to be the local high school. It is where my parents went to school. It is an old, beautiful building, but its air conditioning could use some improvements. Whenever we have meetings there, I always think, “How do the people who work here manage it EVERY DAY. I was relieved that our meeting wasn’t upstairs becaus that’s where it gets pretty hot.
I should mention we had a lock-down drill today. It is always fun talking to your students about all the places they can hide if someone “mean” came on campus. It was during my 4th/5th reading class and they did a great job being quiet. I’ve got an awesome teaching buddy, Priscilla, in the room in the mornings. We discussed how if we needed to get out the room quickly, we’d knock out a window so all the kids could escape out the back, while Ms Priscilla and I used our ninja moves to protect them. It’s a HUGE bummer to deal with lock down drills, and to talk about escape routes. However, I’m HECKA old, and am pretty sure that of the two us, Priscilla is more like a ninja.
As Mondays go, today was pretty great. My reading students worked really hard, I got to hang out with 4th grade for math, and my tech students are finishing up their first big project. Plus, it was only in the high 80s today. Life is pretty good.
Keep moving forward,