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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

First Days of School: Tangents

I had the lesson well planned for today, but when I arrived, I noticed a number of issues that we had to attend to first. Issues such as the following:
  • Tracking down missing/lost field trip slips and checks.
  • Helping students who don't attend to independent reading find good books or use tech to access reading in a better way.
  • Having a discussion about what makes a healthy snack--the kind of snack that feeds the brain and supports good learning.
While teachers almost everywhere have tight curriculum guides, the truth is that if we're going to bridge the opportunity gap in schools we need to spend time providing students with access to the learning experiences, access that includes helping a child organize his/her desk, contacting families to help out with field trip and other form processes, teaching about healthy snacks, finding just right books, and more. 

Often the curriculum efforts that matter most are not written in any guide, but are instead the tangental and responsive actions and words that support students' opportunity to learn.