Day 3: Common Core, Object piece, Important poem

Today was another wonderful day at UCI.  We spent most of the morning talking about the Common Core standards and where our country ranks worldwide in different areas (ouch).  We had some great discussions and got some time to explore the standards and how to use/interpret them.  We also got to pick a professional book to take home (of course I bought one too) and spent the last half of the day watching a sample writing group meeting and getting ideas for out next pieces.

Common Core

This is definitely a hot topic right now and something we all have in mind for the upcoming year.  What do they look like?  What are the changes?  Where do I fall into all of this? 

What I like about them: they are much more specific in terms of what is expected, they require more higher-level thinking and problem-solving, and they are purposefully linked to an Anchor Standard that illustrates the ultimate goal.  I love seeing the kindergarten standard and more in-depth College Readiness standard all in the same place.  It tells me where I am going with this and why.

The easiest way for me to access the standards is with my iPad and the free app.  I shared it in class and will definitely revisit it again and again!


Object Piece

As a warm-up activity and introduction to this project, the leaders of our groups did a mock writing group meeting to model the different ways a piece can be written and how to respond to them in groups.  The assignment is to pick an object with some importance to you and write about it.  Each person brings in the object and the members of the group take turns trying to guess which belongs to whom.  As objects are chosen, the members read the corresponding pieces to explain the significance.  It's a great getting-to-know-you activity that can be done in many ways.

After an author reads a piece aloud (the other members each have a copy as well), the others take notes and give positive feedback on what they liked, what resonated with them, what they noticed, and so on.  Then the author can respond and is next to choose an object.  What I found most interesting after hearing the four pieces today, was that each of the authors chose an object that was significant in a way that was related to a relationship with someone else.  Two of the leaders wrote about objects that related to their husbands and the development of those relationships.  Another leader wrote about an object that tied in his relationship with his father.  The last wrote about an object that she shared with her grandmother.  While none of the pieces were meant to focus on the relationships, it was definitely a recurring, underlining theme.  The objects were representations of these important people in their lives, and subsequently became significant as well.  This discovery was a relief to me because it gave me inspiration about what I could choose as my object.

Important Poem

We were introduced to a wonderful book as inspiration for a piece due tomorrow.  The Important Book has several poems/explanations about how things work and what is important about them.  It has a wonderfully simple format that lends itself nicely to primary writing.  Below are sample poems.  The rest follow the same format: beginning and ending with the same simple line, and giving the most interesting details in the middle.  It's clever and well done, and I am excited to get started on mine.  The assignment tonight is to write a poem like those in the book, about a another Fellow in the project.  We were given about 20-30 mins to interview a partner to gather information to use.  The questions were focused on teaching, hobbies, reading, and writing, but any interviewing questions would suffice.  I love this idea and certainly plan to use it.  After we submit our poems, someone from the program will compile them with photographs to create a book for us to keep.  To top it off,  we will gather all our poems and create a tagxedo for the front cover.  Brillant!

1 comment:

  1. I love the idea of the object piece.

    We use all about me bags at the beginning of the year. Later, the kiddos can use one of those important items to write a story about in Writing Workshop. Having the objects always helps.

    I like what you learned and shared too....I'll have to think how I can add more to our lesson.

    Thank you for sharing. =)

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