A small miracle occurred last week…
It was spring conferences at my elementary school and I had only a handful to attend (praise the Lord!) . So I wrote a to-list list ( gasp! ) and checked off several items from the list ( double gasp!) . Several hours of sorting, dusting, recycling, and refiling led to a tidier room and a happier me. Unfortunately, the untrained eye would not notice the slightest difference. 🙁
So it is with a feeling of camaraderie that I discuss Mrs. McBloom, Clean Up Your Classroom!
Mrs. McBloom is a 50 year veteran teacher ( her students are obviously nothing like mine! ) and getting ready to retire in a week. But… her classroom is a historic monument of a half-decades worth of papers, lunches, science experiments, plants and memories. She asks her students to “use their noggins” and determine a plan to help clean-up the room. A whippersnapper of a student comes up with a brilliant plan that accomplishes two tasks: cleaning up the room AND honoring Mrs. McBloom.
Speech Therapy Ideas:
1. This story has “Where’s Waldo” level of illustrative detail. It is perfect for children to “find” items, describe where items are, describe pictures, and talk about details.
2. Many of the pages contain two adorable rodents (hamsters?) hidden on the page. Find the animals and describe what they are doing using descriptive sentences.
3. Practice /k, g/ sounds throughout the story, including: McBloom, lickety, abracadabra, clean, Pumpernickel, class, noggin, cruise.
4. Predict the meanings of less-familiar phrases based on context: “use your noggin”, “lickety-split”, “whippersnaper”, “mighty fine”, “nipper”, “pint-sized”, “fancy-shmancy”, “higgly-piggly”, “bon voyage”.
5. Answer higher-level questions: Why is Mrs. McBloom’s classroom so messy? Why does Mrs. McBloom choose Georgia’s idea and not the other students’ ideas? How does the town raise money to honor Mrs. McBloom? Why is there an apple tree growing in the classroom? Do you think Miss Bumblesprout will also have a messy classroom? Why or why not?