February 2, 2014

Bright Ideas Blog Hop...Chit Chatting About Our Learning!!

Hi there sweet friends!  I am so stinkin' excited to join up with a few {actually A LOT} of my fav bloggie friends for the "Bright Ideas Blog Hop"!! 
Let me start by saying that my "Bright Idea" is nothing new or ingenious!  It is however a topic that I was super scared to approach with my sweet little kinders. 
I honestly had no idea how I was possibly going to get my these little guys to "Accountably Talk" about what they were learning.  Seriously...they are just babies...how is this possibly going to happen????
But it did and it is ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!  Let me tell you...my class can "chit chat" about their learning with the best of 'em!!  I learned quickly that a loud classroom is a learning classroom!!
We started out simple with learning how to talk to an elbow buddy about our thinking.  I didn't limit them or restrict what they said as long as it was on topic with our conversation.  Once they learned how to express their thoughts about what they were learning, we began to learn our accountable talk stems.
{I used the large poster to hold up as I was demonstrating...
I'll explain the smaller versions in just a sec!!}
Using my document camera, I read the students a story.  Throughout the story I stopped and demonstrated how to use the stem "I like this part because..." and "I don't like this part because...".  I had two objectives for teaching my sweeties accountable talk.  One...I wanted them to be able to use the stem when they began their talk and two...I wanted them to give an in-depth detailed answer.  I explained to them that their answer should be exact.  A non-example would be "I liked this part because it was funny".  A more detailed answer would be "I liked this part because the character in the story made me laugh when he...".
Next I played a Tumble Book on my ENO Board.  Our public library has a subscription that we can use for free and its amazing!  There are a bazillion books available that you can project that are animated and read aloud to the students while highlighting the words read.  My sweeties love TumbleBook Tuesday and Thursday! 
Before playing the story, I put the class into partners and gave each group two stem cards...
"I like this part because..." and "I don't like this part because"
{the smaller version of the one I used to demonstrate}
I paused the story at various points and had the kids use their stem cards to chit chat "accountably" with their partner.  I circulated listening to their conversations and they absolutely blew me out of the water!!  Each time, I chose one group to share their response.  I could not believe how much they loved chit chatting about what they were learning and how detailed their responses were!!
Each time we learn a new stem, I had it to a ring so that they are easily accessible for my sweeties to grab during small group or daily five rotations.  I can't believe I ever doubted their ability with this skill!!  They absolutely never cease to amaze me!!  Reason #10258 I love teaching kindergarten!!
Thanks for stopping by!!  Be sure to "hop" on over to Swimming into Second to check out her amazing "Bright Idea" about using ReadWorks for reading instruction.  Enjoy sweet friends!!