Friday, February 29, 2008

"Use Your Mouth and Use Your Manners"

These wise words belong to Lester Laminack, who I so happily spent the day watching in action. Lester has many catch phrases I picked up last week as I watched him interact with a group of primary and intermediate learners. For me this phrase use your mouth and use your manners will help with the speaking traffic that happens as my kids think out loud. I've been waiting for guidance in my own classroom for how to manage "thinking voices." He explained that using your mouth to ask questions, speak thoughts, agree, disagree or connect to others thinking is big for kids. I agree that it is one of these reasons my kids are engaged during group time. He also balanced this thought with an analogy of cars on road. He explained to us and the kids that drivers in cars take turns, wave to each other and stop when another is moving. Lester reminded the kids that as learners we do this in conversation with each other. He practiced a conversation collision with a student to show another how we can say..."oh excuse me, finish your idea." I needed this. I also needed his advice for making sure that our quieter voices are heard in the classroom. He suggested reminding our strong "out loud" thinkers to give a turn to those who hadn't been heard. He is amazing with the kids!!



Other Lesterisms that I left thinking about...


" Reading is breathing in and writing is breathing out."

"We are teaching out of our knowledge base as we are guided by our hearts."


Books he recommended for reading:



Why We Teach by Linda Alston



Push by Saffire



A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J.Gaines

5 comments:

Mary Lee said...

"Reading is breathing in and writing is breathing out." Oh, man. I'm going to have to frame that for my classroom!

Susan said...

I love that!! I just bought his craft lessons book and think it is FANTASTIC!!

Susan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jen Barney said...

I LOVE WATCHING LESTER! After a session with him I am amped up to go back with a complete full tank! He has a way about him that just pulls you in- whether he is just talking or man- if he reads a story, it is ALLLL over for me. I am in another world.

I have Reading Across the Curriculum from him and it is a gread book!

Take care- Jen

Jen Barney said...

I LOVE WATCHING LESTER! After a session with him I am amped up to go back with a complete full tank! He has a way about him that just pulls you in- whether he is just talking or man- if he reads a story, it is ALLLL over for me. I am in another world.

I have Reading Across the Curriculum from him and it is a gread book!

Take care- Jen