17 April 2016

Inspiring Leaders with Leadergram! (Leader in Me Bulletin Board)

Update 8-13-2016: I just made my Leadergram Bulletin Board resource available for download here.  It will be sure to add plenty of leadership swag to your class!
In addition to the Leadergram board set, you'll also be able to decorate with banners like me! 

* Original Post * 
 This is my 4th year teaching at a Leader in Me school.  Yet, this was the first year I've really embraced and explicitly taught Habit 8: Find Your Voice, and Inspire Others to Find Theirs.

While working on growing students' inner voices, I had an epiphany to connect our study of "Leaders of Change" with student artwork and/or photos displayed in an Instagram-style.   POOF!  Leadergram was born!!

 To prep, all I did was gather tagboard (the only cardstock I had on hand in the classroom) and then I cut them into squares.  Since my tagboard was only 9 inches wide, I had to cut 4.5x4.5 squares.
 Next, I posed the question to students:  What do you think "Leaders of Change" look like?  I emphasized there is no one "right" or "wrong" response because our earlier discussions have solidified the idea that anyone can be a leader.
 Some students drew ordinary kids helping out.  The student above connected to the text we're currently reading, The Hope Chest.  This story focuses on the issue of women not having an equal right to vote in America until 1920, so my artistically-talented student drew a Suffragist in action.
 Others took a traditional approach and represented an American hero as a "Leader of Change!"  Two weeks later, the students and I were ready to update our Leadergram board with a new post.  This time they had to illustrate a motivational quote that would inspire them to become a "Leader of Change."
 First, we watched a couple of Kid President videos calling the world into action.  Kid President is hilarious and my class just loves him! Then, we brainstormed a list of quotes that sparked a desire to make a positive change.  I shared how Mahatma Gandhi's quote, "Be the change you wish to see in this world," really resonated with me because it puts the purpose of life in perspective for me.
For our second post, I experimented with lined notebook paper because I find drawings made by children look really endearing on lined paper for whatever reason.  And I figured, lines couldn't hurt if they would need to write inspirational quotes, anyway!.

02 April 2016

Happy April!

Join Farley for her April "CURRENTLY" throwback to the Comic Sans font and simple black & white formatting in this month's layout!  
listening: I'm getting caught up with my DVR and the "Latin Night" episode of Monday's Dancing with the Stars is playing in the background, I'm loving that Manya from Boyz II Men is workin' it this season!
loving: being born in April makes me biased to this month because of all the happy memories it brings along with the happiness of spring!
thinking: Good Riddance, State Testing is OVER!! (and school's not over until May 21st - that means I have time to teach units because they're fun and interesting, not because I have to!  Just this week before our last day of testing, one of the classroom dad's came in and taught us about electric voltages and we tested the power in various-sized batteries using multimeters.. Then, we got the electricity flowing through our bodies with the Van de Graaff generator!  Apparently, long, thin and straight hair works the best, as seen in the image below!

If you're interested in learning more about how the Nacho Party motivated my students to show up and do their best during testing week, check out my previous post!  We had a blast gearing up before Field Day yesterday!