Friday, March 23, 2012

I Had To Tell About This Book - More Ways To Tell Your Story -#24

The March Slice of Life Challenge is hosted by Stacey and Ruth at their blog,

Seven Days To Go!


This past Thursday and Friday parent-student-teacher conferences were held at school.  Those of us who are not core teachers had some time to do some planning and meet informally if we wished.  As explained before, students at my school study individual units and are supported in their studies by their core teachers.  An additional component is that we have a group of teachers whose job is to take the students on individual field trips that focus on the unit topic.  My colleague who writes the blog Prose Cents is one of those teachers.  The experiential trips may involve small groups that have similar unit topics, but sometimes only one student can also go on a trip.  These teachers are amazing and creative and energetic, dedicated to their work with students, finding resources all over the city to help students learn about their topics ‘in the field’.  Trips might be interviews with experts, trips to local museums, airports, restaurants, and businesses.  The list of possibilities is endless.




This brings me to a conversation I had with this group about different challenges in literacy because one of them has discovered a new book she’s so excited about.  One challenge with all students is to help them improve the capturing of their experiences in their field journals—how to take notes, sketch for visual information needed, i.e. to “tell the story of the trip.”  We often have discussed new ways to question, how to question, how to organize on a page, etc.  Students practice within their classrooms and on trips.
Looking for new ideas to use for inspiration is a constant.  This time, excitement reigned over this book, titled Personal Geographies-Explorations in Mixed-Media Mapmaking, by Jill K. Berry.  The introduction explains-We will explore making maps in three areas:  maps of your physical self, maps of your experiences and dimensional projects with a cartographic theme.  They speak of going on a journey of self, with further explorations that are derived from one’s curiosity.  I am reminded of Georgia Heard’s heart mapping, written and explained here by Ruth Ayres. This post contains extra links of information. 
The book is filled with journeys called mixed-media map projects that give instructions for artistic techniques, explanations of traditional and contemporary maps for inspiring personal map-making, and tons of contributed personal maps.  In the introduction, there is a list of Things To Map that sounds like a list for Slices of Lifea day with your child, a dog’s life, an island you would like to own, your future, a running trail, a grocery store, a special place, etc.  
I wish I had time to try this now and take a picture for you, but I don’t.  I have family in town and my time is short, but I couldn’t wait to share this wonderful book with you.

28 comments:

  1. I JUST bought that book. I love art, maps, writing, and geography. This book seemed to have it all. However it has left me feeling a bit intimidated after reading it. I am not that great of an artist. Hope I can still try some of these maps. Please share if YOU try them!

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  2. Linda, thank you for sharing this information. It's a rich vein you have tapped here. There is an excitement in your words that shines through in describing the work of your colleagues and your enthusiasm for this book. It reminds me of a book I already own called 'How To Be An Explorer Of The World' by Keri Smith in which she encourages the reader to develop what she calls a life museum. I shall endeavour to obtain my own copy of the book you mention. This is what happens when readers and writers are part of a community. Great stuff!
    Alan

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  3. Ooo! Sounds good. Just added it to my list of books to check out this summer. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. Wow, I can't wait to get a copy of that book. I'm so glad I just clicked here Linda.
    THANK YOU!

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  5. The book does sound fabulous! I love the idea of exploring self and creative ways to do that. No worries - you have 7 more posts (and more really) to try it out. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. Your excitement is contagious. I checked out the link you provided. The book promises growth for anyone who reads it and follows it's directions.
    I am still intrigued by the way your school works. I know my school has some similarities but I wish I could come to visit. We have many parents who doubt that what we do is right. If you hear that over and over you start doubting yourself.
    Looking forward to seeing what you create based on the new book. (when you have more time)
    Terje

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  7. Wow...this sounds like something I need to read. I could totally see a use for it in the PYP curriculum, especially with Exhibition. Thanks for sharing!

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  8. I saw this on your goodreads update - looks interesting, a good season of life process perhaps!

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  9. That looks like an amazing book! Thank you for sharing. Your excitement bubbles through with your words. That excitement is caught by those of us reading. All ends of the earth are now looking for this book. Well done!

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  10. Had to click o your link right away; the title was so intriguing! It will definitely go on my wish list!

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  11. I continue to gather ideas for my teaching and writing life. I am intrigued by your school. I teach gifted in public school, and we travel from school to school and pull out, not an ideal situation. We wish for a school for our kids. Thanks for the enthusiasm for teaching and learning. This book will go on my wish list.

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  12. Thank you for sharing the book title! Your school sounds so wonderfully unique.

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  13. Love, love, love the concept of student doing individual studies. Will have to go back and read more of what you wrote on this topic. The book title is amazing. Ordering it on the road home from vacation. :)

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  14. I'm going right on and getting this to use with my class I teach this summer...I know they will appreciate it...because we all are goin' slicing ! Thanks so much

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  15. I can't wait to see if this would be a nice gift for my daughter. She is a budding artist exploring mixed media.

    I also am teaching a unit after spring break with a history and mapping focus. I want to find a way to integrate more artwork into my student projects. This has some serious possibilities.

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  16. I have an Amazon certificate. I know what I'm buying! Thanks so much!

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  17. ut oh there goes my Amazon bill again. Thank you so much I have the perfect idea for this. Enjoy your family today, and I hope everything is going ok.
    Hugs
    Tammy

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  18. This must be my day. This is the second book recommendation of the day. The whole process, and reason for your recommendation are intriguing. Thanks for sharing.

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  19. Love this book's premise. Will have to look into it. Thanks for the recommendation!

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  20. Wow, that sounds really neat! I love the idea of using these different kinds of "maps" as a pre-writing exercise or even an alternative to writing -- very cool!

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  21. Yes! Yes! I'm so glad you posted about this book Linda! I'm getting a copy of my own as well to play with at home!

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  23. I love it! I will be teaming next year with a teacher - I will do literacy. He will have social studies and we will share science. This looks like a great idea for the students to use as a connecting thread through out the year. - I am excited to look at it and see what can develop from it.

    Thanks for sharing.

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  24. This sounds fascinating. I want to get it and share it with my son. I think he would be very intrigued.
    So glad you shared this today!

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  25. Thanks so much for sharing! I'm going to take a look at this.

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  26. I will have to get the book. Sounds interesting. Thanks for sharing.

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  27. Sounds awesome. Thanks for sharing the idea. Your school, colleagues, students sound so interesting. How fun!

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  28. Another book for my never-ending request list. I never have time to read all the books I request, but I like to say that I've caressed its pages before I have to return it to the library. This may be one I'll have to buy - sounds intriguing!

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Having a conversation is a good thing!