Wednesday, September 23, 2015

imagination, self assessment and creativity

Yesterday my first, second and third grade students began making t-rex dinosaur models from wood. It is a project that takes a lot of sawing, and so the kids began noticing sawdust on the bench and on the floor, and decided that the pile of sawdust that came from their cuts belonged to them, and that it could be used as "pixey dust". With my students becoming distracted by imaginative play, the project may take a day longer than planned. But they also began sweeping and cleaning the shop, as the collecting of sawdust became an important mission for each child.

It is interesting to adults to see my students clean shop. The process is rewarding to them because the broom sweeps up enough volume of shavings and dust to give the child a sense of accomplishment. The children can be very possessive about their sawdust, and yesterday was not the first time I've heard my students claim, "This is my pile of sawdust." Would they make similar claims about their standardized test scores?

It has been a very quiet week so far on the Clear Spring School campus, as most of our students have been at ESSA, taking classes in painting, pottery and jewelry making. I've begun trying to affix feathers to arrows that I might stay one small step ahead of my upper level students as they will be doing the same thing next week.

Make, fix, create, and insist that others be given the opportunity to learn likewise.

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