Friday, December 6, 2013

I've never had to teach a child what a smile is before.....

The lead EC teacher at my school recently approached me with a problem. She introduced two of our younger students to Reading Mastery. For those of you who are not familiar with this name, it is a highly structured reading program that mixes decoding skills with vocabulary, basic comprehension, following directions, and a little inferencing for fun.  One of the early stories has a picture of children who are smiling and the child is supposed to state how they know the children are happy. Neither student knew what a smile was......I've never had to teach a child about smiling (and frowning, crying, etc) before even though I have done lessons on emotions before to teach respect for each other.

So I thought about it for an evening.......

I knew that I would have to incorporate The Way I Feel into the lesson. Honestly, it's one of my best resources for emotions and the students love it. My typical method is to read the book using my best funny voices for each page. My students get to practice making faces in a mirror for the second reading. 

The angry page is always the fan favorite. It's probably because they get to stomp their feet and growl at each other.  

As great as this book is for teaching emotional vocabulary, I also needed something to reinforce the concepts in an even more basic way. It ended up being my second attempt at writing a social story. The concept of my "Feelings all over my face" is really simple. It focuses on the parts of our face and what our face does when we feel a certain way. The final sheets of the book are meant to help them write it so I could involve multiple senses. It also includes a link to a cute youtube song on feelings. You can grab your copy here