I finally did it. I became a cart teacher. I have pushed against the idea of using a cart for so many reasons. Mainly, I didn’t want the students to have the visual of me struggling to get into the class, so, instead, I’ve been using a bag that my dear grandmother made me over a decade ago. I loved this bag—and I still do—however, I realized it was just making me look disorganized, messy, and flustered all. of. the. time.
So I tricked out a cart. I’ll add some photos of the cart later today because this post is really about the awesome class I just had with one of my mixed 4/5 grade classes.
I walk in and I heard more than one kid say “Yessssss it’s time for Spanish!” while the classroom teacher was finishing up her class discussion (sorry, not sorry!). Once they finished up, I pulled in Carl, my new escritório en ruedas. I let the Middle Schoolers name it. Goodness, I hope there isn’t some awful meme connected to it… but I digress…
“WHOAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!!” they all exclaimed upon seeing Carl.
“No es sólo un escritório en rudedas,” I declared…. it’s also A “BIBLIOTECA EN RUEDAS!”
I showed off some of the books in my new lending library and the kids were SQUEELING. They couldn’t WAIT to check out some of these books. I told them that if there was time at the end of class, they’d have an opportunity to take a look at the books, but we had to talk about our February Breaks first!
And so I kicked off class with a discussion about m fantastic trip to Home Depot over vacation where I bought way too many plants. I wrote about it in Spanish. I used hand motions. I used silly questions to energize them. “Did I buy six plants or 10,000 plants?”
“¡SEIS PLANTAS!” they laughed in response. Of course a few said “DIEZ MIL PLANTAS!” but again, I don’t care if they’re being goofy. They’re DEMONSTRATING COMPREHENSION!
I then passed out some notecards and had them spend some time drawing pictures about what they did over break. I had them write a sentence or two using the structures I had left on the board (they even figured out possessive pronouns (mis vs. tus) on their own!!!!) and then I had planned on having them share a bit about what they did.
And then they declared it was time for Señor Wooly.
Allllllrigghhhhhhttttt. They had listened well. They were participating PERFECTLY. They were so on point and working hard. They deserved a video break.
We watched Billy la Bufanda…. then we watched ¿Puedo ir al baño? (their favorite).
Then they wanted to do the Rocola game (it’s like karaoke where they have to choose the missing words in the karaoke lyrics!) and I had so much fun listening to them read, sing, and yell out the words that were missing. They get SOO energized just by playing this game.
…and then class was over! We had run out of time. We didn’t have time to look at the library! OH NOOOO!
“Profe, what about the books?” one student asked.
“Yes…. I wanted to take out a book!” said another.
I got permission from the classroom teacher to zoom back in with Carl DURING RECESS so the kids could get a chance to look at the books and select a book to take out for the week. The kids jumped for joy. Again, just to reiterate, they were EXCITED to lose RECESS TIME to look through a LIBRARY OF BOOKS in SPANISH.
While I know I’m going to lose books, I’d rather lose books and have kids excited than to not lose books and not give them this opportunity to try and read in Spanish!
So here’s to trying something new. Here’s to trying out a lending library. I actually think that I could start doing FCR, or Free Choice Reading, with my 4/5 Graders… and maybe even with my 3rd Graders too! Their excitement reminded me to just embrace this experience and have fun!