Story Challenge Day 4: More Dispatches from the Classroom

It was another good day.
Yes, I had a lesson plan.
Yes, I had objectives for the day.
Yes, we pretty much did them.
And my students, as always, brought so very much more to the table.

We discovered that when ideas stretch across multiple texts, we call those universal themes:
-Greed stinks, gives you tunnel vision
-Adults are sightless, kids can change the world (but kids BECOME grown-ups)
-People fear change

Students revealed found other moments of truth:
-if kids disagree with what their parents say, do, or believe, that can be scary
-but it’s necessary, if we want change in the world
-kids don’t really get enough credit for what they know
-orphan stories let us see kids without grown-up interference
-my “signature smiley” is actually made up of my initials

And? My very favorite moment of wisdom and cleverness from the day?
When one banana eats another, it’s called bananabalism.
If that doesn’t deserve a mic drop, I don’t know what would.

Published by Lainie Levin

Mom of two, full-time teacher, wife, daughter, sister, friend, and holder of a very full plate

10 thoughts on “Story Challenge Day 4: More Dispatches from the Classroom

  1. “bananabalism” – love this! It is amazing what our students can and do bring to the table if we let them. Unfortunately, I have known too many teachers who were so concerned with getting their lesson of the day in and homework assigned that there was little time for student discussion and exploration of topics. Your students are extremely lucky to have you guiding their way through their school year.

    1. Yes! Isn’t it amazing what kids do when they have a bit of space? I have to say that I can’t completely blame teachers for not allowing exploration. So many folks over the years have had to force-march students through a scope and sequence in the name of consistency and accountability. It’s a TOUGH GO.

  2. Now I have a joke to share with my own kids that they will most likely roll their eyes about at first and then repeat to someone else later. I would love to be a fly on the wall of your classroom. You seem to be passionate and responsive-two marks of an exceptional teacher. The best teachers have lessons and objectives but let their students initiate learning. Kudos.

    1. Thanks, Annalee! I think at the heart of it is that I love learning, and I want my kids to do the same. As for sharing the joke, share away! For us in our classroom, it led to the conversation of, how do you take a joke that you want to incorporate, and do it in a way that doesn’t seem contrived? THAT is a SKILL.

  3. “bananabalism” Oh how I do adore puns! Give that kid an extra star! All the stars! There’s a reason the phrase ‘out of the mouths of babes” those unexpected pearls of wisdom, and sometimes woe, are not to ignored. Bravo on another off the rails day that was still right on track..

    1. Right? I hope this kid remembers this pun when he’s 80. Reminds me of the first time I ever stumped my dad in a pun-off. It’s etched in my brain!

    1. Right? I mean, it literally stopped the whole class to the point of no recovery. You don’t cleverness like that every day!

    1. Right? I still chuckle at the word.

      And…yes. When kids start talking, they share some amazing and insightful things. They really don’t have as much credit as they deserve.

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