Thursday, June 07, 2018

Teaching Well: Final Days of the School Year

Yesterday marked yet another turning point in the year as students completed their deep study of global change makers. The project requires substantial reading, research, writing, editing, and presentation. The most difficult part of the project is done and now it's time to finesse--the finesse will naturally happen as children cheer each other on to complete portraits, prepare costumes, and practice acting in character. Similar to the play students performed a few weeks ago, I'm sure they'll rise to this occasion too as they portray global change makers throughout time in a human time line.

The completion of this project will mark the start of the next project which is the Global Cardboard Challenge. We've done this project for several years, and every year it gets better. our project efforts are clearly outlined in the presentation below:

Our afternoons will include our day-by-day "Changing Bodies" introduction which introduces children to puberty and the reproductive system with the focus on the fact that our bodies are amazing machines and the more we know about our bodies, the better we can take care of them.

The final week of school will find us engaged in river/wetland studies with a couple of field trips and in depth study of The Wild and Scenic River in our school's environment, The Sudbury River. We'll take a look at what it means for a river to become part of The Wild and Scenic River System as well as what it means to be a naturalist who safely and knowledgeably explores and takes care of river and wetland habitats. The field trips will engage students in stewardship, exploration, and learning. Successful completion of three river studies packets, one connected to the Massachusetts Life Science standards, one connected to the Sudbury, Assabet, and Concord Rivers, and one connected to our field studies will result in students earning a Jr. River Ranger badge at a grade-level ceremony.

On the last day of school students will have a day-long celebration including special events and acknowledgement of their elementary school years.

Professionally these final days find me completing progress reports, ordering, administrative paperwork, and classroom clean-up. I also want to make sure that I enjoy these final days with the students and colleagues I've worked with all year--overall it's been a terrific year of teaching and learning for all of us--one that deserves good celebration and cheer. Onward.