Friday, December 2, 2011

An Education Professional at Work-Part One of Two

"Puzzle" by Grace Goad*

For Education Friday I'm thrilled to introduce a new voice, one of the professionals from my boy's team who has given me permission to excerpt some of her email updates on his progress. You may remember, the goal with my kid is trying to get him to get a sense of the story. He reads the words, but it's almost like light passing through a window. We're trying to get paint on canvas.
This post may seem to be about writing rather than 
reading, but at this point all we are looking for when he 
writes is, does he remember and understand what he read? 
"Well, here we go, with countless five paragraph essays in his future.  He chose to write about the theme of the benefits of teamwork for his Freak the Mighty essay. 
We created a story map in Inspiration** to get started. I offered character analysis and other choices, but he always chose theme as his topic. I also created a tree map template in Inspiration so we can start out by filling in the squares in the future and won’t have to create the map each time. We also made a map for his “best Thanksgiving”. He is on a roll with putting things in parentheses (I prefer quotation marks myself!).  I don’t know why, maybe you do. J
I am giving heavy support at this point with the graphic organizer maps, but I am seeing progress as he takes my ideas and makes them his with his own choice of words. I am asking him to be more independent with saving documents himself and he is doing well with that. He did a nice group activity today using a white board with a partner to identify adjective-nouns about Thanksgiving, “buttered rolls” and “green bean casserole” (his contributions). He paired up with two other classmates to think of metaphors and similes around the Thanksgiving theme also, which was much harder for everyone, me included!"

-Spectrum Mom

*Read more about this beautiful painting and Grace Goad, the wonderful young artist who created it,
at Leisa Hammett (GraceArt in SOHO! October 21, 2011).

** Inspiration is a software program that lets you make thinking maps-a way to generate and organize 
thoughts before you write.

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