My husband Phil and I have been involved in this great program called Cool Little Kids. It’s Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for young children (3-6) that are experience signs of anxious behaviour. It’s a parent program to learn strategies to help your children overcome anxieties. We’ve only attended 2 sessions so far we’ve already learned so much to help our daughter Keelyn.
Something that I’ve taken away both session is the question “what do you think will happen if you do x”. It’s a great way to start conversation with children and allow them to express how they feel.
I used this idea with my class this week during a math lesson. I gave them the open-ended task for perimeter “How many figures can you create with a perimeter of 16cm?” Many were up for the challenge and problem solved a bunch of creative solutions. A couple were frustrated and expressed “I can’t do it” and one didn’t even try. I asked those kids “what do you think will happen if you make a mistake”. You could see their thoughts turning and one student said “I’ll get a bad mark on my report card” and another said “I’ll look dumb” and another said “I’ll feel frustrated”. Finally a fourth student said “I think that if we keep making mistakes we will still learn about perimeter.” When I inquired what do you mean? He said, “well if you keep drawing figures and counting the perimeter you are learning how to figure it out”. I smiled for this answer was perfect and really profound for a 9 year old.
We brought the question back to the whole class as a discussion and talked about how taking a chance and trying out something even if it isn’t something we are comfortable with and even if we make a mistake has a ton of value and a ton of learning. I feel like my students really got it. In fact the next day we did a perimeter/minecraft art activity where the kids did block letters for their names or initials like text in minecraft (I was quickly corrected that it was pixels not blocks) and had to calculate the perimeter. My most reluctant student happily created his letters and even calculated the perimeter without the normal worry lines on his face. Maybe it was pairing the activity with the name “minecraft” that made him give it a shot – but I like to think it was the pep talk about making mistakes. I guess time will tell!
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So proud of my York TC -Loreta Lombardi and the growth and dedication she has shown in her time with us. I am sad that she is almost done
Day 66, Loreta Lombardi, Teacher Candidate (York University).
I’ve had the opportunity to connect with many #Peel21st educators and other members of my twitter PLN to discuss 21st century teaching and learning and what it means to us. When the #Peel21st Blog Hop was presented I was excited to share as I missed out on the first round. Read on to learn what I think about the meaning of 21st century learning and then check out the other blog posts listed at the bottom of my post.
When @jrichea presented the #peel21st Blog Hop I was excited to participate. I was even more excited that the topic was 21st Century Learning and what it means to me. I’m having difficulty articulating it. Images of BYOD, Twitter, #geniushour and inquiry float around. While I certainly feel that those are elements to successful 21st Century learning I don’t think they define it. When I think about my own two children Keelyn and William I can’t help but hope for an education system that embraces their interests, quirks and nurtures their passions. That doesn’t make them feel self conscious or embarrassed when they don’t “fit in the box”. That’s what 21st Century learning means to me.
Keelyn and William – 21st Century Learners!
Blog Hop Participants
*Disclaimer – this isn’t a school/teaching related post. It’s a mom/family related post. I try to stick to my professional side but sometimes the two are woven or sometimes I’m just so excited about something from my family life I have to share. This is one of those times.
I have a 5 year old daughter. Halloween is coming up and as you can probably guess she’s decided to be Elsa for Halloween. She decided in June that she was going to be a My Little Pony and I was excited because I found the cutest costume online to make her. The Party City Halloween costume flyer came to the house the first week of October and she changed her mind… in October… I knew finding a dress to fit her would prove to be difficult. I was right. Good thing my husband’s Nana is a great seamstress and she made Keelyn the perfect dress. Keelyn has a short bob and she’s been insisting that her hair isn’t right for Elsa. We tried the wig but it was too messy for Keelyn’s likes. We decided to repurpose one of her play tiara’s into an Elsa tiara and hair.
Keelyn chose the tiara and from our winter craft stuff she chose glittery winter things to decorate it with. We also used light yellow yarn and braided it to cover the arms of the tiara and glued it into place. We added more yarn to make the bottom thicker and braided it into the two smaller braids. If I could do it again I’d make the length more consistent as it looks a bit sloppy at the end where the yarn lengths taper. It was Keelyn’s idea to glue in some sparkly things on the braid. She’s pretty proud of it and I’m happy because I got to contribute to her costume as well!
Super easy Elsa braid. Use yarn, an existing tiara, hot blue, and winter glittery things :)
I think she likes it!
Today students were not at school and while it was eerily quiet there was certainly a buzz of learning happening. As a staff we were engaged in Professional Development or Learning as I like to call it. Our focus was numeracy and we used EQAO and diagnostic assessment data to look at our areas of need. While I am not going to give a full recount of our day I wanted to highlight that I was really proud of the people I work with and myself. I feel like we pulled together and highlighted our strengths and needs and have drafted a plan that we can focus on and move our students forward. Sometimes I leave Professional Learning feel overwhelmed but I feel inspired and fired up to work together on our numeracy goals.