Learning from the ProsPosted by Megan Kirk
It was a very special day in kindergarten performing arts! The students were visited by some of the members of this year’s spring musical, The Wizard of Oz! Since we are working on our own little play in kindergarten, the 8th graders helped coach the kindergarteners in their roles in The Day The Crayons Quit. The students worked so well with one another! The 8th graders gave great tips and helped the kindergarten class with their characterization skills. The kindergarten students were extremely excited to work with these actors and hung on every word they had to say! What a great class!
What Color is Music?Posted by Megan Kirk
Today the PreK-3 students and 8th graders came together for a special music class. We started the class with eighth grade students reading the book, My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss, to the younger students. The three-year-olds loved how the 8th graders made the book interesting with their dramatic reading! After reading the book, the 8th graders prompted the PreK-3 students with questions about colors and feelings. “How do you think the author of the book was feeling when he had a brown day?” “How was he feeling when his day was orange?” The 8th graders shared their color feelings with the class as well. Then we listened to four different pieces of music. Some were upbeat and energetic, and some were quiet and slow. The 8th graders worked alongside the PreK-3 students to choose colors and shapes to show how they felt while listening to the music. It was a wonderful way for the students to reflect on how music can make you feel so many different ways!
That’s What Friends are ForPosted by Faith Barbuto
Our kindergarten thespians have been learning about friendship. We have been reading and writing stories about being good friends and learning how to navigate sometimes difficult interactions with friends. The kindergarteners were thrilled to visit the PreK-3 and PreK-4 classes and demonstrate what they have learned. We performed several skits modeling what good friends do. The scenarios involved sharing, taking turns, helping, working cooperatively and even standing up for a friend. It’s hard to tell who enjoyed the show more – the audience or the actors!
Welcome Progressive Education Lab Fellows!Posted by Alice Desgranges
The Progressive Education Lab (PEL) is a two year fellowship (a training year followed by an internship) designed to give young people who wish to become teachers an understanding of the fundamentals of progressive theory while learning from their experiences at four different progressive schools. PEL’s mission is to prepare new teachers to become powerful educators and agents of change in the profession. This year’s cohort of PEL Fellows arrived at our school the last week of October and will be with us until winter break.
I’m pleased to introduce you to the fellows, from left to right:
Kyle Gouchoe-Hanas is joining Krissy Ponden in the Art Department. She is a recent graduate of Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts where she fulfilled a double major in Studio Art and Education. Her concentrations were in painting and adolescent education respectively. Look for Kyle out on the field as well – she is interested in adding coaching skills to her teaching portfolio while enrolled in PEL.
Emma Timbers loves thinking about education as the practice of freedom, and the classroom as a site of joy and radical possibility. She is excited to be joining Michelle Lamb’s fifth grade class during her time at Unquowa. She studied English and creative writing at Bates College in Maine and most recently taught Preschool at a small progressive school in Portland, Oregon.
Jeff Adams received his undergraduate degree from Binghamton University, where he majored in Human Development and minored in Education, while also dabbling in studies of Women, Gender, & Sexuality, and Health & Wellness. Jeff is interested in providing educational experiences to youth that combine developmental psychology, health and wellness, and social justice studies so is working with Debbie Leidlein in the Humanities Department.
Caleb Teachey will be working with Lloyd Mitchell in Math. His background is in biology and chemistry, and as an educator, Caleb strives to understand the developmental and psychological underpinnings of best teaching practices. Prior to PEL, he most recently was a science teacher and behavioral interventionist at Kindle Farm School in Newfane, Vermont
We are excited to have the fellows here – please join us in welcoming them to the Unquowa Community!
Con La Ayuda de Nuestros Amigos GrandesPosted by Jamie Bartels
Some time ago Sra. Brenna’s sixth grade class visited PreK-4 to give a lesson on prepositions with materials they had prepared themselves. It went well, but don’t take my word for it!
Debajo de Un BotónPosted by Katie Brenna
Perhaps you wouldn’t guess this, but the week before spring break is the perfect time to try something new and different in the classroom. Sixth graders recently completed artful depictions of eight prepositions of place (on top of, under, in front of, behind). The projects came out so beautifully that I thought it would be a crime to simply hang them on the wall, so instead, I challenged them to find or create live props to make their projects come to life. Once they had their props in hand, I taught them a multi-step way to teach the concepts to others. For several classes they practiced the strategies on each other. As a testament to their ability, sixth graders worked with first graders to share their projects, props and strategies. To top it all off, we decided we could also master and choreograph a popular children’s song Debajo de un botón (Under a button) to make our time with first grade even more special. And yes, all of this happened the week before spring break! Who knew?