After studying different solid materials and their properties, First Graders used their knowledge to design and build towers this week. Each cooperative group received rubber bands, wires, tinfoil, craft sticks, wooden cylinders, plastic straws, and cardboard squares. Using only these materials, their job was to build a tower. Students worked together on the design process and learned a lot about the importance of communication. Their towers were strikingly different in design and it was a lot of fun to observe all the hard work of the groups.
At the end of the final week of our Ezra Jack Keats author study, we had the chance to read our favorite Ezra Jack Keats books to the second graders. It wasn’t too long ago that the second graders were completing the same project, so they immediately recognized some of their favorites like The Snowy Day, Whistle for Willie, Pet Show, and Goggles. We had a wonderful time studying this incredibly talented author/illustrator. What fun project could possibly follow such a fun unit…? Stay tuned!
This week students tackled the problem of tattling in a remarkable way. During a whole-class brainstorming session, students agreed that it was a whole class problem and they came up with some fantastic ideas to try and curb it from here on out. They suggested that they could do a better job of giving friends 2nd chances, ignoring distracting behavior, taking a break if you start to feel “hot,” saying sorry and forgiving more often, and only using Mr. Noah and the Peace Table for big problems. Giving students the agency to come up with solutions to authentic problems builds community, responsibility, and self-esteem.