Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Welcome to the Detectives Room

Entry into my Classroom

I think that when you open the door to your classroom that it should be a welcoming environment for the teacher, parent, visitors, and students. This is one of the elements in a Reggio Inspired classroom that should be your first decision. How do you want it to look and what does it say. I want my parents to have a place to get information and feel that they are a part of our  classroom. Since, I'm in a public school setting it is crucial that you have elements about objectives that you are meeting in the classroom. Parents and administrators know that I am prepared and put thought into what is planned. One of the drawbacks about following the Reggio Emilia philosophy is that many people are not knowledgeable about what the children are learning. They portray your  environment, materials, centers, and lessons  that the children are just playing, that the classroom is not structured, or it does not have enough rigor. To counteract that view, I have objectives on the wall for the parents and administrators to see as they walk in the room. Information is on the walls for the parents to read. Communication about what is happening in your room can make the difference in parents believing in what you are teaching their children.  I am a big believer in quotes. I place them around the objectives so that parents can read what theorist in Early Childhood Education , famous artist, inventors, and scientist say about education. My objectives are made using frames (seen on pinterest). I placed stickers on the outside of the glass saying: Objectives of the Day, Math, Language Arts, Literacy, Social Studies, and Science. I write the common core statements with a sharpie on the glass. They are mounted to the wall with Command Stripes. I wipe the marker off with alcohol wipes.The left side of the wall displays my students, teachers, and families hopes an goals for their children. I believe this is important for everyone in the classroom to have a conversation about during the beginning of the year. It is one of the ideas incorporated in Reggio Emilia philosophy that parents and families are part of their child's education. I have created several boards but I saw this idea in another teachers room at Rosa Parks. I wrote a ribbon for each child and read it to each child and wove it into the loom. Next the children wrote their goals on a ribbon and the families wrote their goals on a ribbon.Finally, during Back to School night they wove their ribbons though the loom together. The children and parents saw that I had put time and thought into each of their children and what I wanted for their year. The conversations that happened during this activity was a wonderful site. I took pictures and wrote some of the conversations down. I created documentation about the event that will stay up for the whole year. When parents walk into our room they know that their voice is listened to and respected. This developed a relationship with the families and my students.

The loom is made out of four branches. I placed them on the ground and took jut and did a figure eight around the branches. Sometimes it is hard to get the jut tight enough, you can take a small nail and hammer it through the two branches. Do not use a nail that is to short or to long. Then wrap the branches with the jut. As you get better at putting them together you will not need to use the nails.


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