My favorite activity this week was spending time outside with my students exploring nature. There was not a learning target, lesson, or expected “goal”. That has been one of the big changes in my classroom this year. I am spending less time “teaching” and more time guiding their learning. In the past I would have told the kids exactly what to do before we went outside instead of letting their actions, questions and thoughts guide what needed to be discussed. I asked a lot of questions and answered their questions with even more questions.
Here are some of the conversations….
student – “WE FOUND ANTS”
me- ” How many legs do they have?” I wonder why there are so many together?” ”I wonder what they eat?”
student- “We found roots”
me – “What are roots?” “What do they do?” “I wonder why we can see the roots of this tree but not that one over there?”
student – “Look at all the clover”
me- ”I wonder what it feels like to lay in it?” “Why is the clover so green but most of the grass is still yellow?” “What does the clover smell like?”
students- “It is prickly” ”It is spiky” ” It is rough”
student- “We can’t find any bugs”
me- “Why?” “What other words can you use to describe it”
“Is the bark on this tree the same as that tree over there?”