They call it 'Holidays' but it's really more like 'non contact time' (for me at least). These holidays I had 2 multitouch books projects that I am working on to complete and publish on the iTunes Store (which I can tick off which is great cause it's only Wednesday). At the end of the 'holidays' I am presenting two Keynotes at 'Early Years' conferences in Australia so I have the presentations to do for that and then a week lately are presenting at a Leadership conference in Auckland so I have the slides to have ready for that by the end of next week too. I have to say though I absolutely love my job and the 'change of routine' is in fact a holiday, waking up and not having to get straight out of bed (because you still wake up when your alarm would usually goes off anyway, of course) and being able to go for a walk when its daylight. I managed to grab a couple of hours yesterday to browse a local bookstore (which had a buy one get one half price - bonus) so came home armed with gorgeous picture books to support next terms Maker space rotations.
Happy Holidays everyone.
Inspired by all of the Easter Bunny (Teacher Starter template) sharing on the NZ Facebook page I added a Zentangle choice to our "I am an Artist" station for our Year 3's this week. This team had been doing the 'Under the Ocean' inquiry. I encouraged learners to 'make their sea creatures jump off the page' so many chose the vibrant background as well as not glueing all of their creature down. We had flapping tails, snapping nippers and graceful floating fins. While our "Engineers" designed and built and our "Developers" coded Robots it was interesting to see how many were still super excited with what appeared on the surface to be a very simple task. In actuality we had students sharing mathematical language discussing angles, geometry and patterning and reflecting on all the learning from the past few weeks. In our Makerspace it's not just about the 'toys and the technology' it's about allowing our students choice and opportunity to follow their passions.
This week is the second round of sessions for our Year 3 team . They are focusing on 'under the Ocean' as a learning theme so I used the picture book "The Snail and the Whale" as an igniter with half of the challenges being focused on the book eg An Animation retell, junk construction building a Whale, Sea creature Zentangles and the other challenges coding and robotics focused e.g. Blue Bots, DASH and Osmo coding. It's interesting watching the choices that different classes make and how our students are now using a common language when sharing and discussing our skills and attitudes. Perseverance and problem solving is definitely playing a major role in the Makerspace!
The bargain of the day goes to Paper Plus 3 for $20.....they're paperbacks but I strengthen the edges and spines (harks back to many moons ago when I did a 'librarians' style research paper which included book mending!). I'm going to use them in the Maker space with 3 strongly supporting 'values' based lessons e.g. "Friendly Day", with its gorgeously detailed illustrations by Charles Fuge, which also support our schools skills and attitudes and the other 3 for challenge based learning e.g. "Penguins can't fly" fits with a team which has an 'In the Air' inquiry topic. As much as I am and always will be a strong advocate for all things digital I still believe nurturing a love of books and basing lessons around the experience of sharing a story together is the best way to set students up for success in the early years.
I wonder what the kids will call me, today one said "I'm looking for the Apple Teacher"......and another said "Are you Mrs Maker?" ......funny.