Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Taking a risk

Photosynthesis. The subject studied today in class with my fifth grade practicum students. As I get the opportunity to teach my first lessons I get the opportunity to experiment and learn. As I sat down to plan my lesson I started to think of ways to help the students have fun with the content. I wanted my students to enjoy learning about photosynthesis. How was I going to make this lesson fun for them? I decided to implement a music video about photosynthesis. My fears about showing this video crept in. What if the student’s don’t like it? What if it this video doesn’t provide them with the knowledge I thought it would?

            It was time to start my lesson. We discuss the importance of the sun in a food chain. Students are being engaging in the discussion and are showing knowledge towards the topic. Photosynthesis comes up in our discussion. It was time to make the decision. I chose yes to the video. The students’ curiosity arose as I clicked on the video. The song began and I saw unsure faces. The faces of children who think that they may be “too cool”  for this. I saw faces turn to their peers looking for assurance and acceptance of the video. The song kept playing and I hear a random shout come from the back of the classroom “PHOTO- Synthesis”. Then smiles started to break from the students and I started noticing head bobs to the catchy tune. By the end of the video the class was singing with the video! They were loving it! At the end of the day all I could hear was the singing of this song. “Photo-synthesis, photosynthesis, sing it with me now, photo-synthesis, photosynthesis.” Sometimes taking a risk is well worth it. The joy that came from this piece in my lesson really helped the students to get into the topic. I couldn’t stop smiling. =) I did it. I helped students learn.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Power of a Smile

BUZZZZ! The yelling of my alarm clock wakes me up at 6 o’clock in the morning. I just fell asleep, I thought to myself as I frantically reached for my phone to shut off the obnoxious noise. My eyes were heavy and my body was still half asleep. My uncombed hair was a great indicator that my sleep was a little rough last night, as it was jutting out in all directions due to the rolling around I was doing in attempt to get comfortable. The million things on my mind must have had something to do with my struggle to relax. It was definitely effecting my morning because it took me twice the amount of time to get ready than normal. The struggle to pick out an outfit was ridiculous. I couldn’t make a decision to save my life. Finally I grabbed some pants and a shirt and called it good. I jumped once I took a looked in the mirror. The bags under my eyes were uncoverable. It was time to head out the door. I had to go to class like this?! I was a complete mess. How was I going to get myself together before the students saw me? I tried thinking of solutions to this problem. Then it hit me! The one thing I forgot to do this morning was smile. I began to allow myself to smile and things instantly changed. My face lit up and my attitude had changed. My day was flipped from upside down to right side up just through the power of a smile.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

you CAN do it

“I can’t do it!” she said, as she vigorously erased the sheet of paper that sat in front of her on top of her desk. Frustration began to invade her face as she tried to draw a Bengal Tiger for her science biome poster. She dropped her pencil in attempt to give up and looked up at me with her brown, irritated eyes. Then I noticed her face instantly shift to a helpless face. “Could you please draw it for me? She pleaded as she placed the pencil into my hand. She was so polite, and so hopeless I almost considered sitting down and drawing it for her because I was beginning to feel bad for her. She was upset, which was upsetting to me, and naturally I just wanted to make her happy again. Instead, I kneeled down by her side and simply told her that she could do it. We sat for a few minutes talking about strategies that might work to help her draw this tiger. “Draw it as you see it”, I told her. She decided to give this tiger one more shot. She began to carefully draw the tiger just as she had seen it in the book. She was still unsure about it, but I could tell that she was becoming more confident in her work. The second she finished the outline of her drawing she turned around and looked at me with a smile. I knew exactly what she was smiling about and this made my heart smile. Her tiger was beautiful and she was very proud of it. She couldn’t stop showing it to her classmates around her table. Today this girl learned the lesson on the joys of not giving up. It was quite a wonderful thing to experience.