We had a very busy day! We took another test on the Chromebooks this morning. This was a reading test, and the kids did a good job listening to instructions and taking the test. The data will be used to guide our instruction, not as a grade. We took a break after our test and had independent reading and a brain break.
In the afternoon we studied a wordless picture book called Thunderstorm, by Arthur Geisert. The only words in the book are the date and time on the bottom of the pages to show the storm coming and going. There is a tornado in the book that causes damage. The illustrations have a lot of detail in them, and we talked about what a setting was and how to put one in our own illustrations. We made big pictures of our favorite kind of weather. We talked about putting in details and coloring the whole page. We didn't get to talk about these today because shortly after that we had a Shelter in Place and Lockdown drill.
The Shelter in Place drill is really very simple. Our instruction continues and we just limit students going into the hall. For a Lockdown, the children go to the corner of the room that is on the same wall as our entry door from the hallway. That is our housekeeping area. The sit without talking or making any noise. Today we had some trouble with that. We had some kids smiling real big at others, kicking against a chair making noise, a big loud sigh, and some kids looking at each other which seemed like it might lead to laughter. It's so important that we try to get the children to take it very seriously and yet not frighten them. I talked to them after the drill and told them one thing I do is visualize a happy place in my head when I have to wait quietly. We had talked a little about visualizing in reading, so I talked to them more about that. I also suggested that if anyone was ever afraid, to just hold the person's hand who is sitting next to them. We also talked about listening in case we needed to move into the closet or leave the building. They seemed fine with all that, so we discussed a couple other drills that will be coming up. We will be having a weather drill and an earthquake drill. We just talked briefly about how we would go into the hall and sit against the wall as the upstairs students come down and fill in the hallway. Our earthquake drill is simple, just going under the tables. That's a lot for one day I think! Testing and drills! One of our little friends said, "oh, I get what a drill is. I hear it outside." Building services had started to cut the grass outside and it was a lawn mower, not a drill. I told the kids they did a great job listening, following our directions, and being quiet. We will do even better next time!
We did have some fun, so the day wasn't all tests and drills! We read the book We Don't Eat Our Classmates, by Ryan T. Higgins. Yesterday we read another book by Higgins called Mother Bruce. Both books are really funny, but the kids voted and Mother Bruce is their favorite of the two! In the story We Don't Eat Our Classmates, Penelope Rex is a little nervous about going to school for the first time. She eats her classmates, but spits them back out after the teacher tells her to. She has a hard time making friends because of some of the things she does. But then, something happens that makes her empathetic toward the other students. Ask me to tell you what happens when Penelope tries to make friends with the fish.
Hmmmm, I'm looking through this post and I see testing, thunderstorm book with a tornado in it, more math testing and two emergency drills. I really didn't plan the day that way! I did talk to the kids yesterday about Shelter in Place and Lockdown drills, but I didn't know we would have one today. Tuesday will be a much lighter day I promise!
Have a great weekend!
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Miss Juliet Wolfe