My students need a class set of engaging current events reading resources to make them more aware of the world around them, as well as highlighters and pens so they can interact with the text.
The students in my classroom come from quite a diverse group of backgrounds and academic abilities. Ninety-percent of our student body receives free and reduced price breakfast/lunch. Many students come from time-poor families, meaning their parents or guardians are unable to spend much quality time with them to help them with their homework. Over years of being in this situation, the achievement gap between them and their higher SES peers widens.
Despite the high poverty level and the obstacles that face them, my students come to school ready to learn and work hard.
What they lack in grade level academic achievement, they make up for in heart and character. Our school has a hyphenated name because we are a hyphenated community. Half of our building is composed of general education K-4 classrooms, while the other half consists of self-contained classrooms for students with various disabilities. My students participate in a program called "Project Unify" in which they take turns going to eat lunch and play with students in the special education building. I could not be more proud to teach in a school that values empathy as being equally as important as academics.
Students at the upper elementary age are usually well aware of current events but are often misinformed. Whether students' minds are confined to the opinions that their parents or social media bestow upon them, they deserve the right to well-written, objective reporting of the news.
"The mind is like a parachute; it doesn't work unless it's open." I believe in the importance of awareness and open-mindedness.
Low-income students very often have not had the same exposure or experiences in life as their middle class counterparts. These kinds of resources encourage classroom discussions and divergent thinking that might not otherwise have occurred. If we had these magazines, I would be able to have the students read and answer the questions in small groups; then we could come back together as a class to discuss our opinions about what we learned. The pens and highlighters would allow the students to annotate the text and work on the skill of locating the most important information in a passage. We are also in desperate need of more dry erase markers; each student in my room has an individual whiteboard that they love to draw graphic organizers on to help them make sense of the issues and advances we read about.
I have found that being well informed and knowledgeable about what is going on in the world not only educates young people, but also inspires feelings of empathy and the desire to be an involved global and local citizen. I want my students to grow up not being apathetic or oblivious, but rather to grow up being seekers of justice and vehicles of change in our society. These "Time for Kids" magazines and writing utensils would be an instrumental resource used to develop the concept of citizenship in my classroom.
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|TIME For Kids - 3-4 COMBO Bundle - 28 issues / Minimum of 10 subscriptions • TIME for Kids||$4.50||30||$135.00|
|EXPO 1921062 Low-Odor Dry Erase Markers, Fine Tip, Black, 36-Count • Amazon Business||$20.87||1||$20.87|
|Sharpie Highlighters Special Combo Pack, Includes 2 Sizes, 27 Count • Amazon Business||$13.99||1||$13.99|
|BIC Gel-ocity Retractable Gel Pen, Medium Point (0.7 mm), Black, 24-Count • Amazon Business||$13.04||1||$13.04|
|Whiteboard Eraser Small Magnetic Whiteboard Dry Erasers Random Color 24Pcs by AUCHEN • Amazon Business||$11.49||1||$11.49|
|EXPO 80699 Low-Odor Dry Erase Markers, Chisel Tip, Assorted Colors, 12-Count • Amazon Business||$7.50||1||$7.50|
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