Monday, February 10, 2014

In Their Words: Hearing Student Voice in Their Writing

For the last several weeks, students in second grade enrichment classes have been creating books.  These books have an authentic audience.....they will be reading and then giving them to a new friend in kindergarten.  Students have been working really hard to produce stories and share their ideas.  I have really enjoyed watching the excitement and engagement with which they write.  Having students write in a relatively free form has also provided me with an amazing opportunity to hear their voices! Students have a lot of amazing things to say about issues that challenge us all.  I cannot share all the stories in one post...although after reading these, I am sure you will want to read more and more!  But I can give you a glimpse into what some of our incredible second grade students are thinking and writing about.   I have put my take on the theme in purple, but of course you must read below and decide for yourself their message!

Struggles to be different:

Pixy Fairy by L
Once upon a time there was a little fairy and her name was Olivia. She was the smallest fairy in Pixy Hollow. She didn’t like being the smallest fairy. Other fairies teased her. The queen fairy told her to forget about the other fairies teasing her and be grateful for who she already is.  But she knew better than that.

One day she got mad and said to the fairies: you are being mean and that makes me feel sad so I just want to say I hate you. Then she felt normal and flew away and cried.

The queen fairy came over and said that was a mean thing to say. They didn’t mean to hurt your feelings.  The little fairy looked up and then she went out and said I’m sorry. The fairies came out and said we’re sorry for teasing you. And they finally became friends and the little fairy said I think I’m lucky to be small. And they lived happily ever after.  

The End.

 A Twist! (that I did not see coming).  Conversation can turn things around!
Batman by JL
Once there was a man called Batman. He was the best superhero in the city.  When there was trouble he was there.  He lived in a giant mansion.

He had a lot of suits. He had 6 suits! After he quit somebody snuck into Batman’s house.

The man found a passage that led into a chamber that led to all the Batman stuff. The man tried on a suit and started to fly around the city.

While he was flying the old Batman shut off the suit. The man was falling and smacked on the ground. Batman punished the man.

They talked for a while. Then they agreed that the man can be Batman.

So from then on Batman was back and Gotham City was safe thanks to Batman.
The End.

Even tough Ninja Monsters need their family in the end! 

Ninja Monsters by RP and OA
Once there were two little Ninjas.   They were going to a forest. They were walking in a forest.

They noticed this tree.  One wanted to go right, one wanted to go left. So one went right and one went left.  

And then all of a sudden they were falling down these giant dark holes.Two snakes bit them and poisoned them.

They fainted into two beds. When they awoken after their nap, they figured they would go out for a walk.  It looked  like they were in a mad scientist lair. So they got up and went to do their stuff and then they could not get out and then they saw the mad scientist.  

He said NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, how dare you, get back down or I won’t turn you into the bad evil super ninja monsters. You guys could save the world, if you only listen.  Please help me. You are my only hope. This is why my snakes bit you.

And then before those ninjas knew it...zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...they were fast asleep.  When they awoke they had big teeth, they had wings, they had four feet, they were ninja monsters, they had super powers!  And then they got out and they flew out of the cave.

They had to fight skeletons. The first fight was hard.

The second battle was harder. The third battle was even harder they didn’t know what they were doing.  They had to fight zombies and ghosts.  They had victory. 

Then they went out of the forest.  They tried to get away, they found their mom and their dad.  The story ends here, tune in next time for more ninja monsters!

Identifying things that are important!
All About Hearts by Z
Hearts mean family.

Hearts mean caring for other people.

Hearts mean caring for your pets.

Hearts mean caring for friends and family and animals.

And there were other stories about mountain bike races and dinosaurs and art.....each with the voice of the writer--I cannot wait until they share these stories with the kindergarteners!

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