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Reflections from Katie: January 12, 2017

Our 3rd annual Curriculum Celebration night is just around the corner, and I wanted to take a moment to share with you the importance of this event.

For the past two years, we have come together for an evening of celebrating learning in January. Children come to see this event as something they can look forward to all year. For these past two years, the Curriculum Celebration has been the event that has the greatest turn out of any event. The way the evening is structured, it is critical for all children to come and to have a family member or adult special friend with them.

In his book, Leaders of Their Own Learning, Ron Berger writes, “Celebrations of learning are more than a display of student work and more than a party at the end of the year. The events compel students to reflect on and articulate what they have learned, how they learned, questions they answered, research they conducted, and areas of strength and struggles. They are powerful opportunities to make learning public.”

In order for us to accomplish these lofty goals set forth by Berger, we need you as our audience. I also invite you to consider whom you might bring from your larger family or community networks. A local artist who may be interested in hearing about how children talk about their artistic process when learning how to draw a butterfly? A local scientist who might be able to ask deep questions about student science experiments that help children deepen their own understanding? A poet interested in hearing the range of topics and styles in fourth grade poems?

When children have the opportunity to talk about their work and share their learning with adults they don’t know already, they tend to blossom, to beam with pride. It is not always easy at first. They may be nervous to talk at first. But we support and nurture them through this challenge because time and time again we see that when they are done, they are incredibly proud.

Most importantly, come to the curriculum celebration to honor your child’s hard work. This will mean so much to your children, and will help keep them invested in their work in the years to come.

The timing for the whole event is 6-7pm on Thursday, January 19th. We will have a staggered start, with JK-2nd grade classrooms being open from 6:00-6:30 and 3rd-5th grade classrooms open from 6:15-7:00pm. If you have an older child, I encourage you to stop by a younger grade classroom at 6:00pm to give these children additional opportunities to share their work. If you have a younger child, I encourage you visit some upper grade classrooms when you’re done in your child’s classroom.

I look forward to seeing you all next Thursday!