The adventures of a fourth grade teacher in East Central Illinois.

Lots and Lots of Snow

It snowed last night. Quite a bit, in fact. Not as much as it did in Kansas City a few days earlier, but definitely more than we’ve had at one time in this area in a long time. There was enough snowfall and ice that a lot of folks were hoping for a snow day. (For those who aren’t familiar with the concept, a snow day is when school is cancelled on account of snow.)

Alas, such was not to be. I got an email from our district’s central office in the morning, sent to all staff, that school would be in session, but there would not be bus services available in the rural parts of the district. So some students would be excused if they couldn’t get in, but otherwise it would be business as usual.

Today was anything but usual for my class! After a few minutes in the morning of students complaining about having to be at school, I pointed out that the roads were clear, it is Friday, and it was not a holiday, and so we were at school. Most of the students seemed okay with this concept and we got to work.

The first order of business for the day was watching a video for science. The movie covered the fundamental concepts of the different kinds of energy: potential, kinetic, heat, mechanical, and chemical. It also discussed the principles of energy, such as waves, transfer, reflection, refraction, conduction, convection, and radiation. My plan was to have the class watch the video, take notes, and then discuss it until it was time for art.

And then things changed. The high school’s African-American Chorus had been scheduled for a special presentation today, which caught all of us by surprise. We went to the assembly and had a great time listening to some fantastic music. I loved that some of the songs they performed were ones our students recognised, such as Lift Every Voice and Sing and We Shall Overcome.

We ended up finishing the movie after art, then we learned more about the metric system, this time focusing on volume. This took us all the way through lunch, and then our afternoon was fairly typical: I met with a reading group, we practiced our vocabulary words and then the students took a test on them, and then we completed our day with our weekly Read, Write, Think! time for preferred activities.

So even though it was cold, snowy, and icy, and even though most nearly everyone would have rather been at home than at school, we carried on and got our work done! I’m looking forward to the weekend to recharge before we come back on Monday for our final push toward ISATs the first week of March!

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