Thursday, October 10, 2013

Community Field Trips

I'm finally feeling caught up.  I'm sure that will change soon.  (It always seems to work that way.)  Part of feeling caught up is the arrival of these new bins and new found organization!  I love the continuity the bins give and that they hide a lot of clutter.  Now that they are all labeled, I am working on teaching my students to keep them organized.
I know I'm behind on blogging.  Last week was a crazy busy week.  We had field trips on Thursday and Friday!  On Thursday we went to an urban farm.  It was fun to go on a walking field trip.  We walked about 13 blocks.  It was a long walk for my Kindergarteners, but it was great practice learning appropriate behaviors out in their community.  As we walked, we searched for letters and numbers.  These basic skills are much more fun to build in the real world.

One of my students found a dead grasshopper.  We took the grasshopper back to school to study.  A week later, my students are still talking about the grasshopper.  I've had a number of parents enquire, saying that their child said they just had to see what we found at the farm!  Our trip was a huge success!  We learned some academics, but more importantly we learned to take care of one another and respect nature.

Think that was enough for one week?  Nope!  We took a field trip on Friday too!  We had a great opportunity to meet some senior citizens in our community last Friday.  I was amazed at how my students quickly got to know their senior partner.  Although many of my students were shy at first, by the end of our 45 minute visit they did not want to leave!  The seniors really enjoyed meeting my little ones and encouraging them in their learning.
The worst part was the bus ride.  After such a successful walking trip the day before, it was frustrating that my students just would not sit still on the bus.  On the way to the senior center, we tried songs and searching for letters and numbers.  None of that was really successful or engaging for all students.  On the way back, I whipped out some picture books I had brought along.  I had enough for each pair of students to read.  They sat still and read for the whole ride!  As pairs finished reading one book, they swapped books with another pair.  What a great way to get some reading in since we were missing our reading workshop time that day!  Note for future planning: pack a bag of books for every bus trip.
I hope you had a great week!

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