Dawn’s Blog

December 15, 2008

Thank you

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 2:55 am

Thanks to everyone for the kind comments regarding my multi-genre project.  I enjoyed our class time together and loved working on my project and learning about Barbara Mandrell.  It was a long drive for me, but I’m with Sarah and Sharon, it was well worth the drive.  Thank you Dr. Frye for your help with my blog and all you taught us.  I wish everyone the best as you complete your master’s degree.


December 14, 2008

The Boy Who Finger-pointed Wordless Books

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 7:52 pm

Sarah wanted me to post about the boy in my kindergarten reading group who wanted some words to finger-point in wordless picture books.  I mentioned this briefly in one of my other posts but it is a cute story.  I started this group with wordless books and taught them how to read the pictures.  When I began working with the children in September they were not reading level A books at the time so we considered them Early Emergent.  I had this one little boy who would read the pictures but he tracked at the bottom of the page using his finger as if there were words there.  He finally asked me why we did not have words.  I believe these books greatly benefited the students in their reading.  They have come a long way with some of them now reading on a  Level A and one child on a Level B.

November 18, 2008

Best Practices – Chapter 3

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 4:10 am

This chapter was helpful in showing how skills build on each other.  Having the examples of the students’  stories helped you see the different developmental levels.  As you can see teachers should use “developmentally appropriate scaffolding techniques” so children can progress with their writing.

Owly and Graphic Novels

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 3:56 am

I did not really enjoy the reading of “Owly” but as it stated in the article one child did.  If graphic novels are of interest to some students and they help them with reading and comprehension, I say by all means use them.  After immersing students in graphic novels, I like the idea of having them create their own as stated in the article.  I think this is something they would learn from and be interested in.

Story development using wordless picture books by Reese

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 3:45 am

I like the idea of having the children describe the picture and then write a sentence to go along with it.  What better way to promote language and creativity.  This would definitely improve writing.  I liked how the children got into pairs and used sticky notes and wrote their stories.  Also, when they got together with their visitors the questions asked seemed to give the child wonderful feedback to see if he wrote a story that matched to the pictures.  I definitely want to try this at some point in my teaching.  I believe this would produce great writers.

Wordless Books by Cassady

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 3:34 am

I agree with Cassady that “wordless books enhance creativity, vocabulary, and language development for readers of all ages, at all stages of cognitive development, and in all content areas.”  I have used wordless books with my kindergartners.  Even for kinders it is a new experience.  They are used to me reading text or words from the book.  They may not know how to read the words but they think words should be on the page.  When we read a wordless picture book, I try to get them started as I begin telling the story and then they catch on.  Several weeks ago, I was working with one of my small reading groups and I chose a book for my guided reading that was a wordless picture book.  One little boy said, “There are no words.”  He finally was able to tell the story but wanted to point at the bottom of the page as if he were reading words.  This group is my struggling readers.  They were not currently reading on a Level A so I decided to begin with some picture books.  I believe this encouraged them.  They were able to read the pictures and were successful.  I even heard one child putting some expression into her reading as she read the pictures.  I can see how these books would benefit all ages. 

I liked the idea of Robert reading the story into a tape recorder and then typing it and then pasting the sentences on the story. 

I am glad the article listed some wordless books.  I am familiar with “Pancakes for Breakfast” and “The Snowman.”

November 4, 2008

Finding Memorable Moments

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 6:01 pm

I agree with this article that classrooms need to have the voices of teachers’ and children’s stories.  I thought it was cute when the boy told the new student that  he can tell his own stories in their classroom and you did not have to copy them from the board.  I liked the idea of “exploding a moment” where they acted it out.  They needed something for the English as a second language learners to understand.  I believe this “crafting technique” would work well with all students.

to dance

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 5:09 am

I enjoyed reading to dance by Siena Siegel. I wasn’t sure I would enjoy the style of the graphic novel at first when I just flipped through some pages.  As I began reading, I enjoyed the story and read it fairly quickly.  I enjoyed reading how she got started in ballet and met these famous people.  I also learned some things about ballet that I did not know.  What a wonderful way to tell her story!

A Study of Memoir

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 4:34 am

This was an excellent article explaining memoir.  I enjoyed reading how Arnberg taught memoir.  I thought it was wonderful how she let the students search for the meaning of memoir as she had them gather books.  She immersed them in great memoirs as they were discovering what a memoir is.  This reminded me how Dr. Frye told us to immerse or marinate our students, for example, in I Poetry. I believe this is the key to student’s understanding – to immerse them in whatever it is.   They were able to differentiate between an autobiography and memoir eventually after searching. The students discovered that a memoir needs memory as well as the author’s feelings about the memory.  Next, she conferred with the students and taught mini-lessons throughout.  It was helpful to read how she handles embellishment and voice.  I like how the students chose their own mentors to help them in their writing of memoir.  As time went on, Arnberg took her students through writing memoir as poetry, letter writing and picture book.

Memoir Picture Books

Filed under: Uncategorized — by dt78830 @ 3:16 am

Shortcut by Donald Crews

I enjoyed this memoir.  A lady at a workshop had read this to us so I had heard it before and I actually bought it after she introduced it to us.  I liked how the story was written along with the illustrations.  It built excitement when when he yelled, “Get off the tracks!”  This story reminded me of the train tracks above my grandparent’s house.  When I was a little girl my grandmother and I would run outside when we heard the train coming to watch it go by.  The closer I got to it the better.  We would also take walks on the train track when a train was not near by.

My Rotten Redheaded Older Brother by Patricia Polacco

I always enjoy reading Patricia Polacco’s books.  I enjoyed this story, too.  It really bothered Tricia that her brother could do everything better than she could.  After making a wish, things changed.  This story has such a sweet ending.  The illustrations are wonderful, too.

Family Pictures by Carmen Lomas Garza

This is a nice memoir where the author has told a story on each page using the pictures.  The pictures are memories from when she grew up in Texas.  It shares her Latino culture.  I like how the book is written in English and also in Spanish.  If studying memoir in the class, this would be one that I would use with my younger students because I believe they could eventually publish something similar.  They would be able to tell about a memory and have a picture to go with it.  I would begin by reading only a few pages with younger students.

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