Today we had our second day of our second round of state-mandated testing. This test is called I-READ and it's designed as an assessment that will show that our 3rd graders are reading and comprehending on grade level. This test is comprised of phonics and comprehension portions.
This test was NOT our best hour—although my students all read at or above grade level, and they seemed to take their time while testing, reading carefully and searching for text evidence in the various passages.
No, our BEST HOUR was the first hour in our day today. We didn't test right away and were able to spend the first hour working on some projects we started yesterday on day one of our testing. Today we took time to write, color, cut, glue, and create.
It was absolutely a wonderfully calm and productive start to our day. The students talked in groups while they worked, giving me insight to little slices of their day or week or thinking. Honestly, I wish I had videoed them, it was that sweet.
Why don't we take time for this on a regular basis? (Oh, yes, refer to paragraph one....)
Why do we generally save this for the end of the day when they are antsy little clock-watchers, putting to use their elapsed time skills as they try to determine how much of the school day is left before they should "remind" me that it's time to pack up?
Creating, conversing—and yes, even coloring, cutting and gluing—this is a slice I want to repeat! I sat to the side and answered questions when needed, laughed with them when they came to show me something clever they'd written, located specific colors of markers or a lost glue stick lid, spelled the occasional word, and just soaked it in...relishing in the way they helped each other, basking in the glow of their sweet conversations, wanting it to never end!
A wife, mom, daughter, sister, friend, lifelong learner, educator