Only two more days of the 2009-2010 school year remain. 3rd grade teachers began asking if they could meet some of my students who will be in their classrooms next year and it got me thinking. I wanted to meet my own incoming students. Except I couldn’t just stop by and say hello. I got my students in on it too.
This year we have been using The Daily 5 in our classroom during our Literacy Block. Word Work is a large part of it because 2nd graders struggle with spelling and vocabulary in general (especially with a classroom full of ELL students). We have been given numerous word activities and games that my students love. I thought what better way to introduce the incoming students to part of their routine by having the current 2nd graders teach them how to play some Word Work games.
Two ambassadors were sent to the 1st grade classrooms to pick up the students at 9:30. They all got to sit at our tables and have a 2nd grade buddy stand behind them. We introduced ourselves and let the games begin. We rotated four times to ensure that each student got to play the various games to get the general idea of how to play. My students helped them through the game, taught them the rules, helped them read the cards if they couldn’t, and overall were great teachers.
As our time finished, I gathered the 1st graders around me and had each one of my students offer advice. I heard the gamut, but it was all GREAT advice! “Be respectful, listen to Mrs. Peters the first time, be safe, keep your hands to yourself, worry about you, be responsible, always do your homework, do your take-home books, be nice to the people at your table.” I asked my students if we get to have fun and they all said yes. I asked them if we worked hard and they said yes. All of the students were reminded to read, read, read this summer! With that, the 1st graders were walked back to their rooms by the ambassadors.
Today I witnessed 16 students who have made me laugh, smile, cry, and frustrated me like crazy be leaders. They were the best teachers I could have had in the room to teach my new 2nd graders. It was one of those moments that you don’t want to end. It was one of those moments that make you remember why you started teaching in the first place. It was the moment of passing the torch and letting your little ones go on to do bigger and better.