Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Soaring Like an Eagle With Synchronicity

"Synchronicity" is when 2 (or more) events come together in perfect harmony.  We had a moment of exactly that--synchronicity--yesterday in 3rd grade. 

Fly, Eagle, Fly: An African TaleThis week we have been reading the story "Fly, Eagle Fly" by Christopher Gregorowski.  In it, an eaglet is found, and raised as as a chicken, with chickens.  A friend of the farmer is insistent that the eagle, as it grows, should be allowed to fly as it is one with the sky--an eagle.  Meanwhile, the farmer is insistent that since the eaglet was raised as a chicken--it essentially IS a chicken.  My students were drawn to the story, and found truth in the theme that one should always be themselves.  Being from "Eagle" Cove School our conversation turned more and more to eagles, and my students were able to learn a lot about them as raptors, as predators, as our national symbol, and as a symbol for the environment--going from being on the endangered species list due to DDT and now back again. 

I structured one part of our reading activity around writing an "Eagle Poem." With this, I had my students imagine what it might be like, being an eagle.  I wanted them to write from that perspective.  The poem need not rhyme, but rather it started with beginning phrases such as "It sees... It hears... It feels... etc."  

About the time we started talking about this in class, the sun started peeking through the January sky in a rather unseasonal way.  In fact, the 50 degree weather was more than rare for a January.  Given we have eagles on the island just across the Magothy River from us (and we have the name "Eagle" in our Eagle Cove School name), it seemed only right to go OUTSIDE and imagine what we might hear, see, feel, etc.  With clipboards in hand, out we went.  The rhyme-less poems my students created were down right amazing.  Outside seemed to make all the difference!!
In case there was any question...I am a big proponent of Richard Louv and "No Child Left Inside."

Looking out on the water, knowing an eagle or 2 live on the island across the adjacent river, the kids could imagine what it would feel like to personify an eagle flying overhead. 

Based on the end product, my students clearly consulted their inner eagle, and were most certainly inspired by the great outdoors!  Makes me completely love teaching... especially on a day like this!!
Fly, Eagle, Fly pic from; other pics from my camera!!

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