5,6,7,8!

First of all I must say I have an amazing group of kids. They are as diverse as they could be but they are so well behaved. As expected, the natural behaviour of the children is starting to come out more as they get to know Kelsey and I. There has been more problems today then before but they are a wonderful group of kids to be around.

Today Kelsey and I taught a line dance to the song 5,6,7,8. You can see the link to the video we learned from, here. We immediately spit the kids up into two groups as they trickled in from the change rooms. They sat down on the gym floor and we talked about how counting in a song works, there are consecutive bars of 8 counts. We played the song that we would be dancing too and I asked them to do what I was doing. I began to count to eight over and over to the beats of the song as we clapped whole notes, followed by half notes and then quarter notes. After, Kelsey and I then went to our opposite sides of the gym and taught them a basic line dance.

My side had two children who you might consider “difficult” as they have behavioural problems and are on the autistic scales. The lesson though, seemed to go well for them although I had to reign in their behaviour a few times.  We went through the steps slowly and I was sure to repeat them until I heard unity in their stomps and clapping. Two girls after class even said that they appreciated how I repeated things until everyone got them and they said I was very easy to follow. After Kelsey and I had successfully taught the groups the line dance we brought them together and put the dance to the music. They loved dancing and had a lot of fun doing so. After we did the dance many times during the song we went back to our separate groups to add “flare” to the basic dance. My group was adding turns, claps and jumps and they were very excited about creating their own line dance. After Kelsey’s group had finished their line dance we turned on the music so each group could try their altered version to the music. My group quickly learned that our version was too hard for the music that was going so fast. I decided to abandon ship on that one and retreat back to the original dance, I wanted them to end on a successful note. Our students were begging us to do our line dance again sometime, and I am sure we will do so.

It was a great time to be silly with them. There was still a level of respect there but when there was four jumps in a row I would spin while I jumped and they soon followed because it was fun. I danced the whole time with them and they loved counting along out loud and laughing at me when I messed up, what a success. Don’t worry Mrs. Sawatzky, there is a video to come, we wouldn’t want you to miss out on a good laugh!

After the gym we went back to the classroom to finish our lesson on explorers. It had been two weeks since we originally did that lesson and there was definitely a train wreck to start. The first group to go forgot how they were presenting and they began to fight at the front. Once that was dealt with the lesson went much better, but I was having to make a few too many reminders while they were answering questions that it was “an individual assignment”. After that they worked in silence until the bell. How wonderful!

A male teacher who I do not know came in and talked to our cooperating teacher. I overheard him say how our line dancing was the “talk of the staff room”! Apparently the teachers, secretary and principle were peaking through the window! It was great to hear that other teachers who were observing thought that it was successful too.

We found out today that in two weeks, the superintendent of the Catholic School division is coming in to observe our cooperating teacher on the afternoon where we are asked to be teaching. She told him that we would be there, and he replied saying that he would like to come and watch anyway! PRESSURE! We will be teaching for a superintendent! What an opportunity to show him what this education program has been teaching us and that we are leading the way in changing the face of learning.

Sounds like a job interview to me! 🙂

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3 responses to “5,6,7,8!

  1. Great post, Randi. I love your excitement and reflection on your time with the kids. I’m pretty sure you’re ready for that interview – I’d hire you in second! Keep up the great work.

  2. I could just catch the excitement in that post, and I wish I had been there! Laughing (and dancing) with the kids was definitely not only a learning experience but also a bonding time. I can hear them saying, “I can’t wait until she comes back!”
    Don’t worry too much about the beginning of the explorers lesson – but do think, “Is there anything I would have done differently as we got started?” There may not be, but it’s always a good question to consider.
    How exciting to be in a place where others (beyond your cooperating teacher) appreciate your efforts and acknowledge you. That makes me both happy and proud! I love the fact that you are looking forward (with some normal nervousness) to the visit of the superintendent. You will show what quality students are all about, and how your university experience is developing you into a well-rounded, thoughtful, and authentic teacher.

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