Saturday, August 22, 2015

Creating our "Ish" Selves

Last week, I posted our "Ish" lesson from the STEAM classrooms I am coaching this year.  Part two of our lesson was to create our "Ish" selves:

I saw these picture collages when I attended the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) conference in San Diego, CA way back in 1996 (wow! 19 years ago...)  I have had my students make these collages of themselves every year I was in the classroom since then.  The past two years I have not had a classroom so it was a gift to do this in/with the classrooms I am coaching.  Here is a quick how to:

  • Have the students stand with their legs apart and their hands out (palms facing me, fingers spread)
  • I take two shots:
    •  one from the bottom of their hands up to their heads zoomed in so that the student fills the entire frame. 
    • one from the feet up to wherever the frame is full of the student.
  • Order/Make/Print two copies of each photo so the students have 4 photos to work with
  • Have the students cut each picture into horizontal strips
  • Students create their collages by placing their strips onto construction paper
  • No gluing until they have played with the layout of their strips

As Chelsea (Mrs. Atkinson) and I watched the students cut and place and play and share and collaborate and talk and laugh and create and... 

We were taken aback and at the same time she asked me "this noise is okay, right?"  I assured her that this was the noise of creativity, engagement, and discovery and I also assured her that it would get louder before it got quieter.  The students were making sure that everyone in the room saw their "Ish" selves.  

After finishing our 8th day of school, I am so thankful that I get to spend time in classrooms with teachers and their students.  

As a coach I will defer to a twitter post by Michael Niehoff 
"Sometimes you have to believe in someone else's belief in you until your own belief sets in..." - Manny Scott

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