Sorry for the departure from the blog world....but having a student teacher is a lot of work! I love working with her and she is great! I have a lot more "free time at work" with her teaching, but imagine that something always pops up and my time is filled.... Pretty much when she is teaching I work like a para, as my kiddos this year can benefit from the extra pair of hands. So I'm going to try and blog once a week about something from the classroom world...so here is my first post back---
As part of Responsive Classroom, we work a lot on community and friendship at the beginning of the year.
My general rule for the students is this; We are a family in room 12. You do not have to be best friends with everyone in the room. You may not enjoy everyone in this room. You do not have to love them, but you MUST be respectful and kind to them.
I happen to see this video clip on CBS Sunday morning...which is one of my favorite programs. Anyways we start out by talking how a dog and elephant are alike and different we make a list on the Smartboard. We actual use the Venn digram to do it. The kids look at me like I'm a nut elephants and dogs....but once they see the video they get it really quickly (and they love it). I print out the Venn diagram and post in the room all year, so we can refer back to it as needed.
Then I ask students do you think a dog and elephant can be friends in real life? and most students say no. Then we watch this video clip...
It is a great lesson in looking past our differences to become friends, and of course a good animal story and what kid (and sappy teacher) doesn't love that? What do techniques/stories do you use to promote friendship in your classroom!