On to Day 11 . . . What is your favorite part of the teaching day and why?
This varies from day to day. Sometimes I like the quiet reflection time I have just before the bell rings and 350 students come bounding up the stairs. Other times I like watching students in the hallway and greeting them. I usually enjoy having students come to my room for lunch. And what teacher wouldn’t say that the “ah-ha” moment on a student’s face when he finally “gets it” is not their favorite?
After further reflection, however, I realized there is one part of the day the I nearly always love: read aloud. I enjoy watching my seventh graders sit on the floor and get lost in the book I am reading. I love seeing the kids who say they hate reading suddenly get caught up in the read aloud and finally admit that there is at least one book they like. It’s always fun to laugh out loud with the students at the funny parts, and share in the more serious emotions of the book. Read aloud also gives us a shared experience that we refer to throughout the year and beyond.
Just last week, when eighth graders were visiting during homeroom, they noticed my current read aloud (Harris and Me by Gary Paulsen), and immediately began reminiscing about the crazy antics of Harris. One boy even said his brother, who is a junior in high school, still talks about the book. Read aloud gives us an opportunity to experience the power of literature. That’s why I love read aloud.
cc image by Daniel Go