Today was the first day of school and I. Am. EXHAUSTED! I have 21 little bunnies this year, and I already know they will be a great group! Don't get me wrong; I think I already figured out who is going to push the boundaries and who is going to need a little extra TLC from me, but deep down, I can tell that every single one of them has a good heart. And that always makes a world of difference. I'll take the challenging student with a good heart any day over the good one with an "I don't care" attitude.

Anyway. Have you ever taught a lesson where you can totally feel that Teachable Moment taking over and really hitting home? I'm sure you all have. That happened to me today. And when my principal was in the room! BONUS!!

I wanted to read the book Chrysanthemum. I'm pretty sure everyone and their uncle reads this book in the first week of school. Or at least in my school we do! Knowing that my students have probably heard the book before, I wanted to add a little something to the lesson. I found this on Pinterest a few weeks ago and decided to merge the two.

I used the die cut machine to cut out a bunch of paper hearts and gave each student a heart. Before I read the book, we talked about being kind (one of our classroom/school rules), and how mean words and name calling hurts people's hearts. I said that for every time they heard somebody saying or doing something mean to Chrysanthemum, they need to add a wrinkle or a tear to the heart. 

It was so cute to hear all the crinkles and ripping sounds while I was reading... and to hear some kids following along when they heard their classmates. Guess who the kiddos were that had the super wrinkled/torn hearts? Yep, the ones who needed this lesson the most! Here's how some of their hearts turned out:

So after we read the story, we talked about how they all became friends in the end... except, look at your heart. "It's still wrinkly and torn, isn't it? OK, now I need you to fix it. Make it look exactly like new." They just stared at me like I was crazy. "Umm... Mrs. Nerby? It's ripped. I can't fix it." Some asked for staples and tape. I said no. The new one didn't have staples or tape; theirs can't either. Then we had a great discussion about how, even though everyone made up and they're all friends again, Chrysanthemum still has wrinkles in her heart. How words leave long-lasting impressions. This activity was super easy, and the visual of the wrinkled heart made an abstract concept more concrete. I am going to make a giant heart and write the poem from the pin and use it as a follow up lesson tomorrow.

OK Pretty People... I am ONE follower away from 50! And I have an awesome giveaway in mind! So help me out with that last person and MAKE IT HAPPEN!! Have a great night! :)


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