The Morning Meeting is an important and vital part of our educational day at PNA, and rightfully so. It starts of each day in a positive and engaging way. It encourages community, fosters peer relationships and develops our social skills.
A part of the day that is not as often discussed, but is just as important, is our closing circle. As a class we come together at the end of school to recap and explore the events of the day as well as discuss any issues or future events we may be having. Another vital part of our closing circle is our sharing time or show and tell time. There is a lot of research out the and it overwhelmingly supports show and tell as a positive learning experience for children.
One of the main benefits of show and tell is its aid in the development of language skills; it is “language learning made easy” (Dailey, 1997). Show and tell requires that the speaker elaborate to communicate an experience or describe on object, maintain continuity about a topic, and sequence information, it serves as a potent educational tool (Edwards, 1995). Show and tell is so powerful because it provides an opportunity got children to learn new knowledge and extend their knowledge as they share. It helps students’ expressive language develop as they learn to create and construct language (Dailey, 1997). Show and tell also encourages the development of oral narrative, which plays a crucial role in our thinking and language development (Cusworth, 1995). Accordingly, “the oral language and thinking abilities that are developed during show and tell enhance success in reading.” Formulating and presenting ideas during show and tell provides students with the necessary practice to help build continuity of thought and extension of concepts. All of these skills are essential components for successful reading.
One of the most obvious advantages of show and tell is the presence of an audience. Feedback is vital to any language development and at the same time students also gain listening skills through show and tell. It provides the teacher with a window into children’s thoughts and feelings. As a teacher, I can notice any special interests of my students and incorporate them into the classroom and discuss them with my students to show that I care about them and that I am interested in them. Knowing students’ interests can also help teachers prompt writing when children become stuck and do not know what to write about for a story. Teachers can also use show and tell as an opportunity to informally assess students’ language abilities.
Research also states that show and tell is also a good way to draw children together during the day as a group to talk, which results in better work time at other times during the day. This also helps develop a sense of community throughout the school year.
Finally, show and tell helps link home and school, and any school home connections play a large and positive role in a child’s education (Spangler, 1997). This then helps enhance the self concept of the speaker. “As they (children) share something of themselves with one another, they gain confidence in becoming the focus of the group’s attention… they find out that others are interested in them, they discover that there are things they know about, and they feel good about themselves doing it…” (qtd. in Cusworth, 1995). At its best, show and tell can provide an opportunity for students to seek and construct meaningful communication as they attempt to make sense of their world, and represent their learning through spoken language (Dailey, 1997). Egovi
The needs of children are countless and encompass all areas. One very important need children have, is to have people around who are concerned enough to listen to them and answer their questions. Sharing time is, at least, one time when children can feel that they have the undivided attention of the teacher and classmates.
Cusworth, Robyn Ann (1995). “The Framing of Educational Knowledge Through ‘Show and Tell’ in Elementary Classrooms.” University of Sydney. American Educational Research Association.
Dailey, Kathleen (1997). “Sharing Centers: An Alternative Approach to Show and Tell.” Early Childhood Education. Vol. 24., No. 4. 223-227. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ549496)
Edwards, Patricia A. (1996). “Creating Sharing Time Conversations: Parents & Teachers Work Together.” Language Arts. Vol. 73. 334-349. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. EJ537435).
Spangler, Carol (1996). “The Sharing Circle: Themes for Home and School Involvement.” Fearon Teacher Aids. 3-8. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED400045).
After a fun and very busy week last week, it is nice to settle back into our routines and a normal schedule. In math we continue working on finding patterns in numbers and how they slot and fit together. We have pretty much got our number bonds to 10 mastered and have found that we can use number bonds to help us solve addition and subtraction problems. Our next challenge is mastering number bonds to 20! We have also been exploring how sums can be written either horizontally or vertically, and, that when written in a formal vertical way we can use our knowledge of place value to break the sums down into smaller easier parts. Allowing us to solve trickier problems with larger numbers.
This week in writing we have been working hard at improving by learning about and exploring adjectives and how we can use them in our sentences. By using adjectives we can bring our stories and work to life by creating description. Our sentences grow from examples of; 'The monster lived in the swamp.' To 'The slimey monster lived in the dark, murky swamp.' This not only expands our writing, so we are physically writing more, but also creates a more vivid and imaginative picture in the readers head.
We have been planning and creating settings and characters for our writing and narratives making sure to include lots of description and adjectives to bring them to life.
At PNA we our mission statement is that; "We educate students to be exceptional learners and independent thinkers of vision, courage, and integrity." As part of our Teal Pumpkin Project we discussed and decided that one way to raise awareness of Teal Pumpkins in our school is to go and present to the other classes and inform them of the Teal Pumpkin Project and invite them to participate in a competition to win their own Teal Pumpkin.
Now, personally, like many others, I dread public speaking. Stick me in front of a class of 30 kids, no problem. 100 kids during an assembly? Easy. But in front of a group of peers? No thank you.
So for our small class of 1st Graders to not only speak to their peers in Kindergarten and 2nd Grade about the Teal Pumpkin Project and what we had learned. But also to present and answer questions to 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th 7th and the 'Big Kids' in 8th grade. Is a big step and a job well done. Public speaking and presenting is not easy, but it is an important skill to practise and learn and 1st Grade demonstrated a lot of courage and self belief in their presentations.
Wednesday was Halloween and there were some fantastic costumes on display. Instead of our usual morning meeting in the class we instead took part in a whole school morning meeting in the gym, where we did a greet and an activity getting everyone involved. In class we created our own game to play for the day. Class vs Teacher. 'The No Name Game' instead of calling each other our normal names we tried to call each other our spooky halloween names instead. It is a lot trickier than it sounds. and going to park. Suffice to say the class won.
On Thursday it was the grand opening of the Middle School park project. As a school we walked along to the park to witness the ribbon cutting and to try out the obstacles that had been built. The middle school did a fantastic job of leading the school in the activities as well as telling us about their park project. It was a little bit cold but luckily we had cookies and hot chocolate waiting for us when we got back to school!
Finally, to round off our busy week, we had another trip to the Library. This was to return the books we had previously borrowed and to choose 3 more books each to lend and bring back to our classroom library for us to use and explore together. It's great to see how excited each child gets about their new books, showing them off in the car and then reading them together in the class. Hopefully this continues and each child develops a lifelong love of reading and books.
I love the outdoors, reading, art, gardening, and sharing my love of learning!