Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Smith / Willett Sentence-Phrase-Word with Leaf Creatures and Sensory Word Exploration

Smith / Willett        2nd Grade
Thinking Routine:   Sentence-Phrase-Word Using Leaf-Creatures and Sensory Words
Connect:  “Sentence-Phrase-Word,” is a routine that is text based and used for capturing the essence of the reading as well as identifying themes.  Kids were deeply involved in sensory word exploration and how to use words to enhance their writing.  I took an activity that was initially just a creative experience and took it to a new level with adding in the Sentence-Phrase-Word routine established with the Non-Fiction project.  It was a great synthesis idea as well as extension to meet my own best practices.  In studying Making Thinking Visible, we were taught to tweak the routines to make it meaningful for your methodology.  I took that to heart this time and had a great turnout.
What I did:
Kids were given a blue sensory words sheet that showed through icons and lists words that meet the categories of see, taste, touch, hear, and smell.  Kids were also given a variety of leaves in differing color, shape, size, and texture to investigate using scientific investigative language taught in both Literacy and Science content areas.  Kids made a list of words that applied to each set of leaves.  Then kids were given a creative opportunity to create a picture of a living creature using only the leaves.  Kids worked independently on this activity and each created a living creature by gluing the leaves onto paper and using some extra tissue paper and markers to help complete the picture.  Then kids were asked to use the blue sensory word sheet and their list from the earlier investigation to create Sentence-Phrase-Word collages on the art created.  Words chosen should be representative of the creature created. 

Once kids finished the activity and labeling work, I laminated the art to keep the leaves in place.  The kids were given the laminated art and were able to share among their table mates and discuss their creature, their words, their sentences, and their phrases and what they learned in the process. 

I think using the Sentence-Phrase-Word routine was a great way to incorporate language exploration in a fun art activity that involved an extreme level of deeper thought and planning.  Kids had to make conscious choices the entire length of the activity and had a good amount of ownership in the product and word choice.  I would love to have kids challenge this activity in the future by putting a star next to words or phrases that really jumped out to them as an important part of the creature.
This student was new to English language learning and was just developing his speaking, listening, and writing skills.  This project was a great way to help him with language development.

1 comment:

  1. Loved this idea. Your teaching really brings out the creativity in our students. I always think about how your excellent teaching of literacy benefits me when I am presenting science and social studies units. Increasing students schema with knowledge about words and text features helps them become more well rounded learners in all content areas.
    Your teammate