Saturday, 11 August 2012

Is your classroom calling your name???

I hate to admit it but I always hear my classroom calling my name during the month of August begging me to come in and polish her up.  Truth is, it's one of my favourite things about the beginning of the school year approaching; those freshly waxed floors, sharp pencils, new labels, decorations and the glimmer of a new school year full of excitement.  With the rain drizzling down around here the last few days, I have ventured into my classroom to start pulling things together.  (Don't tell anyone but I may have been a few times during July as well).   I have my tables placed where I like them, I've put frogs labels on our classroom supplies, I even made a giant tissue paper flower for the chalk board.  But now I am starting to feel the pull to start planning lessons, roughly map out my long range plans and take some of those great Pinterest ideas

So when I start mapping out my school year my brain starts firing off : inquiry based, project based, instruction in French not always of French, cross curricular, technologically enhanced, paperless, creative, engaging, motivating......and on and on and on.  My solution is to get my pens, pencils, markers out and start mind mapping and see where I end up.  Mind mapping really comes from my need to calm the chaos within my brain when I become overwhelmed with ideas that are not quite connected.  Out of the chaos within though comes an external clarity when all those ideas are there on paper for me to see.

Now when I look at the mind map that contains all my random thoughts I can't help but think about AUTHENTIC learning experiences for my students.  I see my desire to teach them through activities they already enjoy such as games, sports and the arts while imparting on them the knowledge of my French culture through things such as Carnaval.  Furthermore, I notice immediate that my focus will be on oral communcation and reading with this age group.  Starting naturally with oral and moving them into reading simple texts as the year progresses.    Well that's where my thoughts took me today anyway, I am sure I will be revisiting this mind map frequently in the next few weeks.

So, is your classroom calling your name?   I know mine is!

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