The sunny side of the street

18 Nov


I’ve had almost three months together with the stream-of-consiousness-impulsive-puppies that are my 4th grade class. They are coming along nicely and I have learned how to work with them. Some days, I do a better job than others, but we are mostly have good days. Yes, they still start talking when I inhale, but they are quicker to stop when asked. That’s progress, right?!

As a school, we are focusing on student-talk, and that is one of my professional goals as well. My task isn’t so much getting them to talk as helping them learn how to make their talk more academic and focused.

I had an epiphany during a recent author visit when I noticed that, of all the 4th and 5th grade classes present, my class had the most hands up when questions were asked or volunteers requested.

Yes, my class loves to talk, but they also love to participate. If there is an opportunity to do something, my class jumps right in. This is the sunny side of the street we live on. When they have to share in table groups, they do. If someone doesn’t, the rest of the group is pretty good at encouraging that person to talk. They are kind-hearted and enthusiastic and that helps make the constant chatter bearable.



7 Responses to “The sunny side of the street”

  1. djtsmith November 18, 2014 at 6:26 am #

    They sound like a wonderful class! When you get them focused on a task it seems they have an incredible amount of positive energy. Yes, they will have to tone down the outbursts, but it is a much harder job to a spark a fire with dampened logs, than to control a nice, blazing fire in a woodstove. Ah, those hands and hearts! You are in for a spectacular year!

  2. Kathy Douglas November 18, 2014 at 7:13 am #

    What a nice reflection of your class. It is always good to take a breath and see the positive side. Thanks for sharing.

  3. joann hulquist November 18, 2014 at 8:00 am #

    Love it! : )

    Joann Hulquist Principal, William Walker Elem. School 503-672-3605 (W) 503-803-3621 (C) ________________________________

  4. Terje November 18, 2014 at 9:30 am #

    Yes, focus on the positive, on the growth. I can relate to having an energetic and talkative class. We are working on how to choose when to talk and how to listen besides just sharing our thinking. I love having many perspectives in the discussions and the creative ideas that they produce. Slowly, slowly they are starting to build on each other’s ideas.

  5. anita November 18, 2014 at 4:24 pm #

    I love your description of your students…like puppies….I called my first graders amoebas the other day…..but puppies would work too…The image of a puppy is somehow happier!

  6. arjeha November 18, 2014 at 4:45 pm #

    Your description of your students made me smile. Students are so much like pets who have to be trained. When that training takes hold…magic.

  7. K. Renae P. November 18, 2014 at 6:20 pm #

    “Yes, they still start talking when I inhale…” Hehehehe. One of the reasons I love kids even when they are driving me bonkers.

    I love how you talked about your kiddos. It sounds like you guys have a great relationship. I am a BIG fan of student chatter –> appropriate chatter I mean. I think it is awesome that is a focus for your school and professional goal for you. Keep up the awesome work!

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