I wanted to take a moment to recognize the importance of collaboration and its ability to give deeper meaning to learning. Through the collaborative efforts of Boston Latin School and the P.A. Shaw, an engaging and interactive partnership took place! Seniors from Boston Latin School visited with our K1 and K2 classes. The visit was the culmination of Blake Barich's existentialism unit for her 12th grade English classes. Her students spent weeks analyzing works by existential thinkers and then compared those with a children's picture book. The 12 graders ultimately wrote an essay arguing whether or not their picture book of choice was existential. The visit to the Shaw was an opportunity to read to a young child and see how the book was interpreted. It was also a chance to simply enjoy a book together. Over 160 students from both schools participated.
For our own students at the Shaw, the visit was an opportunity to practice our hosting skills, show off our school and get to know older students. Everyone got to hone their critical thinking and writing skills while completing book reviews. It was amazing to see such camaraderie develop. Many of our students have asked when their “reading buddy” is coming back to visit! All of the students were engaged.
The visit was mutually beneficial for both schools and highlighted on Boston Public Schools social media. This visit goes to show that when schools work together to support learning, everyone benefits!
At the Shaw, we want all of our students thinking like scientists, no matter what grade. Yes, that means we do research in Kindergarten! In collaboration with the K2 team, I worked with K2 students to complete an animal research project. Each student chose their own animal to research using curated non-fiction resources. The students spent time in the library using online databases to do research and gather facts about the animal of their choice. Students loved listening to audio clips of the sounds their animals made. Our amazing art teacher Ms. Farmer took the books I collected and helped students to design a cover for their animal research books based off of the photographs of animals in the books. The students made books about their animals that included their own illustrations and sentences. Knowledge building, information navigation skills, and database skills were accessible and mastered by all.
Research involves reading, comprehension, vocabulary, and writing. That is a huge task for kindergartners, and I am so proud of our K2 students for taking on such a challenging project!
Mrs. Keohane is the School Librarian at the P.A. Shaw. She loves hockey, going to the beach, and reading (obviously!)