Sunday, April 26, 2009

East Meets West

A bilingual one of a kind standards-based bulletin board.

The Kindergarten co-teach duo, Michelle Ellis and Debbie Cothern, have done it again and produced a one of a kind standards-based bulletin board. In 2001, as part of the America's Choice School Design, we were taught to compare student work against standards, and make our students' work visible. At first, we simply stuck to the template they gave us, but gradually the CCE teachers embraced the boards and began to push themselves each month to think outside the box. The boards, especially Debbie and Michelle's, morphed into not only posting student work, standards, and teacher commentary, but began to transform and capture the true essence of what was occurring inside the classroom. Also, early in the design, we learned to post student work over time. Generally, the last board of the year showcases a student's academic progress throughout one school year.

So, how was this particular board born? Earlier this month, Debbie was reading Eric Carle's, Where Are You Going? To See My Friend!, to her students when one of her young learners, A., politely corrected her pronunciation of a Japanese word. The correction began a conversation between the teachers, A., and A.'s mom. They discovered not only was A. eagerly learning how to read and write in English during the school day, but in the evening she was learning to read and write in Japanese! Debbie and Michelle asked to see A.'s work over time, and the idea for their one of a kind, over the top, April standards board was born!



Kindergarten Reading Performance Standards

Kindergarten Writing Performance Standards


Growth in Kindergarten


Listen to A. Read in English and in Japanese


Japanese Skills Block



Japanese Writers' Workshop

Samples of Work Over Time





Japanese Readers' Workshop


English Skills Block


English Writers' Workshop



Writers' Workshop Work Over Time

Beginning of Kindergarten Sample


September 29, 2008

Mid-Year Sample

January 28, 2009



End of the Year Sample



April 16, 2009








Making Connections Between Japanese and English Stories

1 comment:

Debby Cothern said...

Suzanne,
Thanks so much for highlighting our board. We too are amazed with this student. She is exactly what an ESOL student should look like. It is important to honor all languages spoken in the home. Because A's family supports the English instruction in our classroom she continues to show growth. It is impresive to watch A. Each day in Writer's Workshop she is on task, some days she writes in English and some days she writes in Japanese - It is a sight to see.