Monday, September 15, 2014

Defining Expectations

I was searching for a book at the library and stumbled upon these books by Julia Cook:
My Mouth is a Volcano!
A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue

Great stories for teaching expectations in the classroom! I read ideas from other educators on Pinterest then molded them to make our own expectations for our Digital Classroom. 

We started with My Mouth is a Volcano. The teacher in me enjoyed this books since it addresses the issue of shouting out without respecting the speaker. It also gives a life skill to help use self-control and wait for your turn to speak. We read the book and enjoyed lots of laughs. We then had a wonderful conversation about how to control our own 'Volcano Mouths'. We decided to create a product on our iPads to show what we learned from reading this book. Students took pictures of themselves with open mouths in Educreations (one of my FAVORITE apps!) then drew the lava flowing from their mouths (much like the cover of the book). 
Working Together to Take a Great Photo
Students recorded their voices on the first page telling how they sometimes have 'Volcano Mouth' when they have something they want to say and struggle to remember to wait. On the second page in Educreations, they took another picture of themselves sitting quietly using the skill/s they learned to have self-control while waiting to share (some had their mouths closed, hand raised, showed 'peace and quiet', etc). It was fun to see and hear how they connected with the text. They shared their products with each other then shared on Kidblog. 

Showing 'Volcano Mouth' using Educreations
The next day we reviewed what we learned from My Mouth is a Volcano and I showed them the cover of A Case of Tattle Tongue. We were so excited to read another funny book we could relate to! This book defines how to know when to tell information about a person or not. We all could think of a time when we needed to share the information to keep someone safe, needed to work it out ourselves or just "Mind Your Own Beeswax". I was sure to be clear about telling an adult if you aren't sure in order to learn the difference. There is not much worse to me than hearing a child didn't think they could tell the teacher. Absolutely tell us - that is our job to keep everyone safe and learn how to exist together peacefully. To show our connection with 'Tattle Tongue' students took a picture of themselves and drew a 'Tattle Tongue' in Doodle Buddy.
Using Doodle Buddy to Design a Tattle Tongue
Next, students imported the photo to ChatterPix Kids. Students LOVE letting their pictures do the talking - they told their most important take-away from 'A Case of Tattle Tongue'.
ChatterPix Kids allows students to add voice to their creations.
We enjoyed both books so much! They are completely entertaining and my students were entirely engaged, waiting to hear what happened next. We could make connections to both books and were able to remember skills we had learned before, and some of us learned something new! : ) Now students tell me they forgot to 'control their volcano mouth' and remind themselves to listen until it is their turn to speak. They are more clear on when to 'MYOB' and to share information when necessary. Life-long lessons that are building and strengthening our classroom community.

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