Monday, October 31, 2016

Thinking of November



       I'm slicing with the Two Writing Teachers community today. It's always a pleasure to read what everyone writes about their lives.

Happy November!

        Here are a few of my favorite November things:






NOVEMBER NIGHT  - Adelaide Crapsey, inventor of the cinquainListen…
With faint dry sound,
Like steps of passing ghosts,
The leaves, frost-crisp'd, break from the trees
And fall.

          She may have titled it November, and I am thankful, but it describes our recent nights.

In November - picture book by Cynthia Ry.ant and Jill Kastner
             It's time to re-visit this beautiful book, today on November 1st. Rylant reminds us of the beauty of November. Don't miss finding and reading or re-reading.



        When I taught, one of the traditions in my class was to "dress the turkey". It had to have a theme, and there was a collage box with paper and fabric, beads and so on to use. The kids were creative and now this is something I can do with the grand-girls since they're older. If you want a .doc sent, let me know.


        In addition to the humorous side of this November holiday, I am aware that not all Americans celebrate Thanksgiving, and I shared different writings that I found on the site of the Plimoth Plantation, which not only celebrates pilgrims but the local Native Americans, the Wampanoag. Part of their story that is often omitted in our history is here. My class visited there a long time ago on a trip to the Boston area. It was a marvelous visit filled with new learning.  Here is one essay that my students and I read and discussed. Scroll down to the one titled "An Introduction From A Teacher", by a teacher named Chuck Larsen.  

         My class of students did share how they personally  celebrated Thanksgiving with many traditions and not always eating turkey, pumpkin pie, and cranberry sauce. One thing we did to prepare for that holiday was that each of us created a thank you to someone who would be at our table for the day. It was a nice thing to share what was created that day right before our break.

         This change of months and my memories of teaching struck me yesterday. Traditions in schools and/or classrooms are wonderful things. I hope you have a November full of your own fun and interesting activities, and most of all are thankful for who you are and what you do.

26 comments:

  1. It is interesting how a month can be so different depending on the culture. I love the idea of thankfulness in Thanksgiving. The commercial side and the history are a bit more complicated to comprehend. In Estonia November is a dark quiet month.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Our latest forecast continues to be sunny and warm, really different from the usual, Terje. I understand that commercial side you see must be confusing. It is for us sometimes, too. Mostly it is a quiet month, but gets busy later!

      Delete
  2. I'm so ready to charge into November and elect the first female !
    Bonnie K

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me, too, Bonnie. This election has certainly been one for history making. Crossing my fingers for a week from today!

      Delete
  3. I love the focus on gratitude in November. November is my dad's month. He was born on Thanksgiving. It was our favorite holiday. I miss him a lot this month. Thank you for sharing your fun activities!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're welcome, Mihcelle. My daughter and my sister-in-law share the same birthday this month, and it holds my husband's birthday, too. I'm glad to hear how special it is to you!

      Delete
  4. What fascinating (the essay) and fun (dress the turkey) traditions you had in your classroom. I particularly love the idea of thanking a person who will be with you at Thanksgiving table.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Julieanne. I'm glad you enjoyed reading about those things we valued.

      Delete
  5. Love these traditions, Linda - that turkey's face made me smile. He looks like quite a character! I am so looking forward to Thanksgiving...glad it's November.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I hope you'll have your family with you this Thanksgiving. It's such a nice, relaxing day even with all the cooking! Thanks, Tara.

      Delete
  6. I love the dress the turkey idea, Linda. I have always found it interesting to read and hear about the traditions of others. They are part of what makes us who we are.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love hearing about them too, Bob. One thing we used to do on Thanksgiving was set out a jigsaw puzzle. Each person seemed to spend some time at that table, visiting with others. Enjoy your November!

      Delete
  7. Love the poem you shared -- that one is new to me. Great to pair with Rylant's book. I will share it with teachers. Thank you
    Clare

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad to hear that you enjoyed it and it's new to you, Clare, and I'm glad you will share it! Thanks!

      Delete
  8. I was born in November and my husband--the day after. So this is a month that is bittersweet. Your post reminds me of the many things I love, beginning with that poem. The last week has been cold/cool here int he northeast (US) and that poem captured it.

    I appreciated also the link to the essay. Understanding perspectives--especially ones that may feel distant is a large part of teaching (well). Thanks for that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My husband, daughter and sister-in-law all have birthdays this month too, Mary Ann. And my parents' anniversary is sometimes on Thanksgiving! It's a month of being grateful. I'm glad you liked that article. It meant a lot to me hearing his perspective. Thank you!

      Delete
  9. Nothing says 'tradition' to me quite like the month of November. That's one of the things that I love about this month. It is so comforting to return to the old and familiar. I hope your November is full of fun traditions as well!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think so, too, Jennifer. It's a sweet month, isn't it?

      Delete
  10. I loved that you talked about all aspects of the Thanksgiving holiday. So important to not only teach one side of history.

    Have a wonderful week, and happy reading! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Kellee. It's great that you appreciate it, too.

      Delete
  11. I really like the idea of creating a thank you for someone at your day on Thanksgiving Day. I love the book, In November and must grab it for tomorrow. Thanks for sharing so many ideas to jumpstart this month.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're welcome, Mandy. It was both a fun and a serious month of celebrating.

      Delete
  12. Your students were so lucky to have you guiding them, Linda. Your inclusion of different perspectives on the Pilgrims and the first Thanksgiving is a rare thing, but clearly we could all benefit from learning more about the origins of this holiday.
    In November is such a beautiful book! I used to use it as a mentor text for writing pattern books with my first graders (in November!). When I taught third grade, we read Tomie dePaola's Popcorn Book the week before Thanksgiving and did several activities related to that book. So many opportunities for learning!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Catherine, I love hearing about some things you did when you taught. I've forgotten about The Popcorn Book. Tomie dePaola is another author whose books continue to be gems for the classroom.

      Delete
  13. We used to write a Thankful essay (10 things I'm thankful for) that I encouraged my students to share with family at some point during the Thanksgiving holiday. It was great fun hearing back from parents and seeing the creative ways that my students approached this assignment. Love the turkey, ready for dressing. I'm copying this for my files since it might come in handy down the road with my grandkids. I pulled my copy of In November to reread, special meaning for us this year in these words: "...to give thanks for their many blessings - for the food on their tables and the babies in their arms." It will be Teddy's first visit to our house! And we'll give thanks for that other grandson who will be joining us in February!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think we would have had quite a wonderful time teaching together, Ramona! Your 'ten things' essay sounds lovely. And it is quite exciting to hear about Teddy's visit! Happy times always!

      Delete

Having a conversation is a good thing!