Last month we visited Anamaria Ralph and Kathryn Powell's classroom at Maurice Cody P.S. (TDSB). Our #CTInquiry network had yet another inspiring experience, with many ideas to think about and perhaps try in our own contexts. As I walked around the school to find the main entrance, I was completely captivated by the architecture. When I think of schools, this is what I envision them to look like!
Here is the snapchat story that I created that night in the moment:
We held our discussion within the library, and I discovered that in previous years it had been used as a Kindergarten room. Such a large space with many windows, archways, and wooden details - a place where dreams come true! That is also how I would describe the special learning environment that enchanted us all. Anamaria and Kathryn have done an exceptional job at creating exploration areas and provocations to draw upon their students' natural curiosity.
Coincidentally enough, we were reading a short section of the resource Natural Curiosity: "The Early Years: Carol's Story Focus of Inquiry Trees, Plants, Roots Starting the Environmental Inquiry Process from pg. 63-73." In small groups, participants spoke about the reading and also studied documentation from one of their inquiry projects.
Here is a glimpse into their incredible space:
Are you Reggio-inspired?
Would you like your classroom to be featured on my blog?
If we cannot make a network meeting at your school or program, my son and I have begun visiting rich learning environments on Fridays. We would love to visit you and your students!
Tomorrow (Wednesday, June 8th, 2016) we will be meeting in Trista Dutt and Rose Marcelli classroom at Moraine Hills P.S. of the York Region District School Board (YRDSB). Our meeting will be from 6:00-8:00 p.m., and we will be reading "Reggio Emilia as cultural activity theory in practice by Rebecca S. New" by Rebecca S. New. I will be arriving a little bit late, as my summer PhD course begins this week and I am in lecture until 5:30 p.m. at York University. We will therefore, begin with the classroom tour and our discussion will ensue.
At our last session, we agreed upon bringing a piece of documentation from our inquiry work to study together. This could be a photograph, transcription of student talk, video clip, work sample, etc.
Be sure to follow along using the #CTInquiry hashtag on Twitter and Instagram, as well as, joannebabalis on Snapchat for a live tour!
If you are attending future events and would like to help with any of the following:
- hosting a future session
- providing snacks
- arriving earlier to guide participants to our meeting room
- donating a book or gift for the classroom we visit
- co-facilitating the discussion in person or during our Twitterchats
- setting up a provocation using something you tried in your own context (optional: with documentation)
- presenting a project or strategy that you are proud of or that you feel the group would benefit from
- sharing a new professional resource
- recommending articles that are available online for us to read at future meetings
- offering other ideas, events, locations, etc. for #CTInquiry
This is our network, so please consider getting involved! You may let me know via email (email@example.com) and we can make arrangements!
A huge thank you is extended to our inspiring hosts, Anamaria and Kathryn. I hope to return in the Fall to your classroom for a visit with my son!
For information regarding future #CTInquiry meetings, online chats, or to download all the readings ahead of time, please click here.
Please note that our July 27th date is a special Summer social. I have rented a space within an art room of a community centre and will be collaborating with Crayola for a creative adult colouring experience. The spaces will be limited to 30 participants, and a RSVP will be required. A separate blog post will include all of the details.
It is important to explicitly ask children to share their questions.
They need to know that we want to know their questions.
They need to know that they can wonder out loud.
-Carol Stephenson, SK Teacher