Being safe is about being seen and heard and allowed to be who you are and to speak your truth.
Rachel Naomi Remen
“I see you, Dominique,” Dana Murphy says to her fifth-grade student. She gazes around the room and acknowledges the next student. “I see you, Gemma.”
Dana is doing the same thing that teachers around the globe do each morning. She’s checking her lunch count.
“I see you, Jordan.”
“I see you, Alejandra.”
Dana’s eyes flick from her list to the room, acknowledging each student whose hand is raised.
I’m struck by the significance of her three words—I see you.
In a world where loneliness is on the rise, these words make a difference. A recent study in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships revealed that more young people are reporting loneliness than at any other time studied. In addition, the research found that youngsters are more likely to be lonely than the elderly. We have all heard concerns about the way social media use increases feelings of isolation, as well as the reality that young children are joining social media platforms in droves.
I’m not suggesting that three words have the power to eradicate loneliness, but I can’t help but wonder if they will make a difference.
“I see you, Destiny.” Dana’s sincerity warms my heart, because I am sure being seen makes a difference.
This week we look at visual learning and graphic novels in classrooms. Plus more as always—enjoy!
Lead Contributor, Choice Literacy
Heather Fisher finds the key to independence for many first graders is lots of visual reminders in classrooms.
Gretchen Schroeder discovers visual essays are a fun option for her high school students to present what they have learned in a new way.
Sarah Fitzhenry and Megan Grant give a detailed plan for how to host an after-school club for students who love graphic novels.
New members-only content is added each week to the Choice Literacy website. If you’re not yet a member, click here to explore membership options.
Christy Rush-Levine finds her middle school students need more support and scaffolds to understand authors’ craft in graphic novels.
In this week’s video, Christy confers with Nia over the graphic novel she is reading. They discuss the choices characters make.
Mark Levine has his middle school students “closely read” paired videos and texts to ponder the value and accuracy of different historical sources.
In a bonus video, Linda Karamatic works with a student who is reading the Stink series as he tries out a new tool for documenting inferences as he reads.
Lead Literacy now has a new home as the Leaders Lounge at Choice Literacy. We’ll be posting the new content updates here in the Leaders Lounge section of the Big Fresh newsletter.
The starting point for assisting any teacher with a struggling learner is to observe and question. Stella Villalba shares her process, including what she focuses on in observations and how she uses what she sees as a springboard to conversations.
Clare Landrigan leads a small-group demonstration lesson with second graders who are having trouble sustaining their reading. The strategy she teaches is visualizing as a way to help the children hold key details from the story. The lesson includes prebrief and debrief sessions with the teacher.
Stephanie Affinito shares her favorite pairings of children’s and young adult literature with graphic novels.
Deep in their roots all flowers keep their light.
That’s all for this week!