Tuesday, May 24, 2011

"The Important Book"

One of my favorite authors of books for children is Margaret Wise Brown.  She is known for her classics, The Runaway Bunny, The Big Red BarnThe Golden Egg Book, and Goodnight Moon.

Every year I read Goodnight Moon to my Kinders on the last day of school.  Afterwards we take turns to tell someone or something in the classroom goodbye.  It is a gentle, soothing way to make the transition into summer break and the new learning adventures that are ahead of us.  This activity has become a tradition in my classroom and I look forward to it every year, even though it does bring about a tear or two.

Another book that I love is The Important Book.  I have found that it is a terrific source to use when teaching details in writing.  Recently I used it as a focus book for a week during my Language Arts instruction. We read the book each day to build familiarity with it. Next, we brainstormed together to think of details about common objects in the classrooom including a door, a window, and a block. When I felt the kids were ready, a gave them each a word wall card with a picture of an object on it.  They used a preprinted graphic organizer to brainstorm four details about their object.  They shared their organizers with the class and chose the detail they felt was the most important.  The next day they created a page to be included in our own Important Book that featured their object.  This was one of the best writing activities I have ever facilitated in my classroom and I can't wait to teach it again next year.


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