Sunday, March 9, 2008

Glass Slipper, Gold Sandal Bridges Cultures and Tales from Around the World

My class has recently enjoyed welcoming our wonderful student teacher to our classroom as a full-time fixture to our learning lives until mid-May. One of the things that I feel any student teacher needs the most practice in implementing is interactive read aloud (IRA.) I admit that it's the hardest thing for me to hand over to let anyone else teach but me, because I obviously love sharing the wonder and appreciation of children's literature, and it is always a special bonding time of the day with my students. She is doing a very nice job of developing the sophisticated skills that IRA requires of an instructor, and I know practice, practice, practice allows any developing teacher grow with experience and techniques. I still feel that way about myself after over 15 years of educating children! I am a firm believer that I am a life time learner, and that I challenge myself on a daily basis to become more knowledgeable in life.

I had my student teacher do an featured author study of Demi recently to coincide with our Ancient China studies, and we are transitioning into folk tales and legends from around the world. I had the opportunity to do interactive read aloud on Friday. I have missed it so! It's such a special bonding time of our lives. Well, I read Glass Slipper, Gold Sandal to be a perfect bridge from our previous genre study of fairy tales and Chinese influenced writing, to the "journey" around the world with various folk tales and legends. I was tickled pink to see that our school media center had acquired two copies of this Paul Fleischman book, and I wanted to have the perfect opportunity to read it. It just seemed to lend itself as a great book to bridge and expand connectively to other texts with. I placed the book in the read aloud basket for over a week as a purposeful teaser, and I had told the kids that I would get to read it to them. Well, they asked about it everyday - "Is today the day we are going to read that?" ;) They connected the wood block type of illustrating to Snowflake Bentley, and to international variations of stories, like similar concepts explored with our China studies. They got it! :) I had the kids help me label the "places" we traveled on the class globe, and sat the globe next to the book. The book indeed bridged thinking amongst genres, and I look forward to traveling the globe with the students with our upcoming folk tales and legends from around the world!

No comments: