March 7

Noticing and Wondering

We consistently hear that students should be doing “real-world” assignments and applying what they learn to “real-world problems or situations.”  We know that real-world math problems and science inquiries are everywhere. Are we asking intriguing questions which require that students invest and take ownership in their own learning?

Annie Fetter (“Annie Fetter at NCTM Ignite.” YouTube. YouTube, 02 May 2011. Web. 13 Feb. 2014.) suggests utilizing a strategy of noticing and wondering.  Post a diagram, a picture, a blueprint, a sketch, etc. on the screen and ask students to jot down what they notice.  Make a list of the things they notice which pertain to math or science.  Next, ask them if they could expound upon that.  Take some time to discuss what they notice.  Then, ask them what they wonder.  Take five minutes to watch Annie’s video and see if she doesn’t inspire you to utilize this strategy as well!

March 2

Read Across America!

In celebration of Dr. Seuss’s birthday, today is Read Across America Day.  Is there a person who doesn’t have a favorite Seussical book reference?

When I was prepping to write this post, I discovered Seussville where there are links to Seuss”s biography, video clips, activities and printables for lessons, and lots, lots more!  Someday I’d love to take my grandchildren to the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden at the Springfield Museum where they truly have made Theodor Seuss Geisel a place for hands-on and feed-the-eyes interaction with the genius and his imagination.  There is so much to learn about this literary genius!  For example, most people don’t realize that early in his career he was an illustrator who created “fantastical political cartoons in the early years of World War II,” or how he took on Hitler.

As an educator, a reading specialist, and a lover of the written word, I encourage you to honor Read Across America Day today and read aloud to somebody – anybody!

Do a little reading…

Out there things can happen
and frequently do
to people as brainy
and footsy as you.
And then things start to happen,
don’t worry. Don’t stew.
Just go right along.
You’ll start happening too.

Oh!

The places you’ll go!

(From The Places You’ll Go!)