Today’s word is HAPPINESS. It happens to be on the day that I taught my favorite Kindergarten lesson. I wrote about it a few years ago. I have taught it for years and it never fails to make an impact on the kids. It always brings me happiness when I teach it.
After showing the kids a brown egg and a white one, we talk about the differences on the outside. Then we crack them open and talk about how they are the same inside. It didn’t take more than a few seconds for them to realize – just like people.
It is a lesson that works every time. Here are some photos and responses from today.
(Translation: “The outside’s different. The same on the inside.”)
(Translation: “They’re different on the outside but they’re the same on the inside.”)
This year, when I decided to continue writing my blog, I chose to approach it a little differently. I had found a Photo Challenge and since I had just gotten my new camera, I thought it would be a great way to incorporate the photography and blog into one. I wasn’t sure if I liked it…and to be honest, some of the prompts were tough! It has definitely forced me to take at least one photo a day though!
On January 1st I said I would stick it out for the month and make a decision on the 31st whether or not I’d stick to the photo part of the blog. I realized, that it was very easy to keep writing because the prompts are really open ended. I got “stuck” way less often when unsure about to write about. Even Drew and Dave got curious about the prompt for the day.
February’s list is up. I am up for another month of the photo challenge. As long as I can keep thinking of things to relate the prompts to, I will keep on doing it!!
The idea behind the photos, for “real photographers” is to learn more and become more creative. For me, I am taking it a bit differently. For example, #22 last month was Color Blocking which I learned was a type of creative way of shooting photos. I used it differently and wrote about Martin Luther King and Kindergarten.
I have already looked ahead and seen some of February’s prompts and some of them look tough. We will see how it goes. Today’s prompt was One Done. One month down. It was fun.
Following along with yesterday’s blog about MLK and our white egg/brown egg experiment, today, my class met with their 4th grade reading buddies. Once a week we meet and the children read to each other. This week we changed things up a bit and I read a book to the two classes about Martin Luther King and then they worked with their buddies to come up with a way that they could create something great in our world. Every pair of buddies came up with wonderful answers, but this one made my heart melt.
“Even though there’s darkness in the world, light can overcome it.”
It really could not be more clear. If only everyone could think the way children do. The world could be a pretty amazing place.
As soon as I read this, I knew it would be my blog for today. The photo prompt was “On the Third.” The only way I can relate the topic to my blog is this…today is the 3rd Friday of January. There was no way I was skipping this beautiful message so it will have to do 🙂
This is one of my favorite weeks of teaching as a Kindergarten teacher. We focus all week on Martin Luther King Jr. Many of the students don’t know much about him and when they learn that there was a time that we could not all be together because of the color of our skin, they are shocked. This is something most of them cannot comprehend because they know of no other way. To hear that they could not go to school with children who are different colors than they are is bewildering.
I spend days talking about MLK, reading about him and just talking about tolerance. Today’s photo prompt, Trio worked perfectly in today’s lesson. Three “flesh” colored markers and an innocent drawing from one little girl in my class says it all – in her very own “kindergarten spelling,” with three children who are different colors…
“Be nice to everyone”
If only everyone could think like a five year old. ❤
As I sit and listen to all this nonsense, (in my opinion) about “allowing” homosexuals the same rights as heterosexuals, I find myself shaking my head in disbelief. I mentioned to my sons today that I feel like we are witnessing history as it is happening. We are living in a time that years from now, people will be writing about and saying, “I can’t believe that ever happened.” When I teach my students about segregation and about amazing people like Martin Luther King Jr. and Ruby Bridges they look at me with amazement because they can’t imagine not being in a school with children of all races and ethnicities.
Maybe in a few years down the road, it will be the same regarding same sex couples . How wonderful would it be if children can grow up in a world where they can think, “I can’t believe that every happened…”
I have written several times about the amazing town that I live in. Maplewood, NJ is a special place. Steven Goldstein of Garden State Equality, once called Maplewood, “the ‘peak’ of the state’s most gay-friendly residential ‘corridor,’ stretching through a swath of western Essex County.” Here in Maplewood, we are already on the right path. With such diversity in our town, our students don’t even realize there is anything unusual about each another. It is just the norm – and that is the way it should be.
Every year around Martin Luther King Day, I do the “Brown Egg, White Egg Experiment” with my students. I have done it for as long as I remember and it is truly one of my favorite lessons to teach. We talk about the differences between the two eggs and how they are not alike. Then, I crack them into a clear bowl and the kids all realize that inside that shell, they are exactly the same. It amazes me every year, but the kids totally “get it.” It is so visual and right to the point. We talk about how on the outside none of us look like each other but inside we are exactly alike.
This year, I also read them the book, “Martin’s Big Words, The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.” This Caldecott winning book, written by Doreen Rappaport, was new to me, but will now be added to my library to read every year. The illustrations were stunning and my students were captivated by them. The words were taken directly from quotes of his own but geared towards children and told in words that they would understand. The message was clear. Martin used words instead of violence. He felt that kindness could overpower hatred.
I knew that the lesson had been learned when one of my students prompted a group of children to write a “kindness note,” (his words) to a child in another class who had not been treating others nicely. They came up with a note, that was made up of kind things about her. He told me that he was going to “be like Martin” and use kindness because if enough people were nice to her, maybe she’d see how great it was and then she’d be nice to everyone else.
If only everyone could think like a Kindergartener!! The innocence of children….it is truly a beautiful thing!
Today is the third Monday in January and so we celebrate the life of Martin Luther King Jr. As a parent and teacher, I feel that is my responsibility to promote and teach his dream. This is the first national holiday that honors a black American, an amazing man who helped to change America. His leadership and power of speech gave people courage and faith to work peacefully. Today I felt the need to share some of his most poignant and inspirational words:
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is what are you doing for others?”
“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
“The difference between a dreamer and a visionary is that a dreamer has his eyes closed and a visionary has his eyes open”
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”
“I have a dream that one day little black boys and girls will be holding hands with little white boys and girls.”
“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”