Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Australian ABCs - A Great Place to Start

Our Aussie adventure is being driven by a book called, "Australia ABCs: A Book About the People and Places of Australia", by Sarah Heiman. On the first day of school, we jumped ahead to the "B" for Boomerang. The children learned about the history of the boomerang and had the opportunity to design one and take it home. Yesterday, the second day, we visited the letter "A" for Aborigine. Aborigines are Australia's indigenous people. Recent government statistics counted approximately 400,000 aboriginal people, or about 2% of Australia's total population. The hallmark of Aborignal culture is 'oneness with nature.' Their paintings usually consist of paint using earthly colors.
Students were shown samples of Aboriginal art and then created their own paintings. These paintings will be displayed year round in our hallway. They will be backed with a clip to hold student's writings and drawings throughout the year. We also plan to make an "Australian Word Wall" that will include the words from the Australia ABCs book for students to easily reference when needed.
Another important part of our day was when we discussed the "Class Promise". Students were asked for their thoughts as to "good ideas" that will help the class run smoothly. Their suggestions, such as "not running" or "not hurt others feelings," and "share with friends" are some of their ideas. Our class promise will be posted in front of the room and read everyday. Afterwards, students decorated a blank face to their likeness and we will post these faces around the promise chart.
Other happenings on our second day of school included a school wide fire drill and tornado drill; all went smoothly. Another chapter of "Junie B- First Grader" was read and because of the rain, we had free-centers inside. This included white boards, pattern blocks, cubes, drawing and free play. The second day was not second rate in our was a beaut (fantastic)!!

1 comment:

dayle timmons said...

Love the idea of an Australian word wall! Can't wait to see how the kids use the new words in their writing.