Wednesday, June 26, 2013

To say it's been too long is an understatement!

Well, like I am sure most teachers do, I got so caught up in the end of the school year and making sure my kids were ready for the 4th grade I totally lost track of everything else. We, just in the knick of time, finished The Borrowers and  my kids made "Borrower homes."

I intended for them to take these home themselves and keep them as a memory, but instead they kicked me outside the door one day and devised a plan. They each made a certain room in a house and connected them to make a Borrowers mansion. After awards, some parents decided to check their children out and they would leave reminding each other of the plan. My last two finished the home and though it does not look like any mansion I have ever seen, it is the best in my opinion!!

Then came summer! After a beach trip with my best teacher friends, it was time to get back to business (well, a more relaxed way of business)!

My district had an awesome Professional Development program. Partnered with businesses in the community, they offered teachers the opportunity to learn the game of chess and learn how to integrate it to promote the kind of critical thinking needed for common core. For a week, Jerry Nash, the Director of Educational Research and training for the United States Chess Federation, led this workshop to help teachers learn the game and see how it promotes students' critical thinking.

I am so excited to teach this game to my students, even though I am still working at teaching myself. I know their minds will soak it up and I can not wait to see what that is like!!

Today, I will be attending another workshop on using the Smithsonian Institute in Teaching, more on that when I learn what it is all about!

Happy Summer To All!

Happy Planning, 
Alyssa Winter

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