POV #sol18

plaza-new-york-city-lobby-2POV #sol18

January 23, 2018

For the past week  I have been conducting benchmark assessments.  During the course of these assessments,  I try to take a minute or two to have a little chat with each child that I am assessing.  I hope that it puts them at ease and adds humanity or a personal touch to each encounter.  Much of the time,  the pleasure is all mine.

Today, I encountered a young first grader who had missed school on Monday.  I inquired after her absence saying that I hoped that she wasn’t feeling ill yesterday.  In a hushed tone and with all seriousness she told me that she had been in New York… and stayed in a hotel.  I asked,  what can you tell me about your trip?  Her reply will light up my memory for many days. They had cookies.  What else can you tell me about this wonderful trip?  I had my own room, and my own bed, and it was ON THE NINETH FLOOR!  There were fourteen floors in the hotel.   Wow!,  I replied, that sounds marvelous.  There were chandeliers, she said.

I proceeded to tell her that there was a book I knew she would love,  Eloise!  When I returned her to her teacher,  the teacher hadn’t heard that part of the story,  she had heard about cousin’s at the Olympic Gymnastics trials.

So all of this made me think of that parable of the Blind Mice and the Elephant,  we all see the place we get exposed too.  There is so much more in another instance,  under the surface,  outside of our purview.  In this case,  it was all a lovely, happy story.  All the roads lead back to noticing.  Taking the time, making a connection, being present.

I’m searching for my copy of Eloise, but I’m also hoping that the next time the opportunity presents itself, a take another moment to make a connection.  If we want to think about this with a curricular eye,  she summarized,  determined importance, made a connection to literature, and I’m fairly certain, knew her audience.  When I think about this student in the future,  it won’t be about that score on the assessment.

Screen Shot 2017-02-28 at 9.10.00 PM  Thank you today  to two writing teachers and the slice of life community.  Read more amazing thought here.


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