|Bilbo Baggins, Angelina Ballerina, and Fancy Nancy made a visit to Reading Day|
I was very nervous about Reading Day. Reading Day is a five-hour school day during which there are lots of activities that have to do with reading and during which there are no other regular subjects taught. Also, everyone dresses as a book character. So, I was nervous, remembering how my 6th graders used to act any time they were out of dress code and knowing my team teacher would not be there that day.
We had Gwen's costume taken care of a while back. We had everything but the ears, which I made. I also made Brian's hobbit vest (which was only crooked after having been worn all day--my sewing's not that bad) out of a shirt we bought in the market. I was Fancy Nancy--lowest budget and time consumer of the three, worst outcome. You can't tell I'm wearing heels in the picture, but my feet have not yet recovered.
But, coming to the point, Reading Day was WONDERFUL! First we gathered our kids and talked about who they were dressed to be. Then we had a pre-school-6th grade parade around the campus while the older students watched. Almost all teachers participated in the dressing up. We ended up in the pavilion, where Brian emceed a time of story telling, a brief skit featuring some of us teachers, and the announcements of costume winners. (Samuel came for this part dressed in his Peter Pan outfit). After that we had our regular snack and recess time. We then went to our classes for other activities. I read Going on a Lion Hunt then had them draw themselves with the lion. The 3rd graders came to read to them, then two parents read. We finished the day with a lively pretend "Lion Hunt" outside and settled down finishing of The Lorax.
The older students had a regular day, but teachers were encouraged to go along with the reading theme. Brian read about Eustace being "un-dragoned" from The Voyage of the Dawn Treader in his Bible class. One student was encouraged to go back and re-read the Chronicles of Narnia.
And, it was not chaotic. It was fun. My students were so excited about their costumes, the extra snacks parents sent, the books we read, the skit the teachers did. I had already reminded myself of what the day was supposed to be, so it was hard not to be excited with them, especially since they were so delighted with everything and only got a bit unruly once and were quickly set to rights. For next year we're going to plan costumes this summer, so we don't have to be up late the night before. (You know me). I've also been pretty gratified that Gwen's worn the mouse ears part of most days since then. I love that girl.