Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Talk About a Teachable Moment

We've been reading Charlotte's Web (insert sigh here as it is one of my favorites).

This week our focus in Treasures in on nonfiction texts.

Add those together and throw in a bit of "it's October" for good measure and you have the perfect recipe for a mini-unit on spiders.

I kicked it off by completing the "Our Schema" section of our map.

And then I began reading a book chock full of spider facts and amazing photographs.

At one point I looked out at my friends before me and I laughed. I laughed hard.

It was one of those moments where I wished I had a snapshot of what I saw because every single one of my 21 students was staring at the book I was holding and every single one of them had a look that showed their true feelings. Boys were salivating at the cool factor of creatures that turn their prey's insides to liquid and drink it while the girls had looks of disgust. Some did that thing I do at a scary movie where I watch it through a screen that I make with my own hands. It was hysterical.

After reading about the above dining habits of spiders, we revisited the chapter titled, "Charlotte." E.B. White describes the same process through Charlotte's own words. We discussed how he must have done some research prior to writing his fiction story. There were many light bulbs that went off.

And then it happened.

As if on cue.

As I sat in front of my friends with 100% of their attention focused upon me and the two books in my lap, a spider descended from above on a line of silk and hung just to the left of my head.

And the crowd went wild.


I'm quite certain that each of them believes that I did in fact plan my real life Miss Muffett moment. Pure magic.

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