Getting to Know You with Melvin Bubble
By: Mary Kienstra on: September 8, 2016 in: #tlap, beginning of the year, Engagement, engagement
In the beginning of the school year, the main focus iin my classroom is “getting to know you.” I’ve done all the regular things that teachers do, but this year, I tried something different. In the spirit of the picture book, Who is Melvin Bubble? students introduced themselves to the class from the perspective of someone else in their life.
In the book, Who is Melvin Bubble? a series of characters in Melvin’s life tell a story about him. By hearing those stories, the reader makes inferences about Melvin and gets to know him in a fun and interesting way. Meeting Melvin this way is creative and fun, with illustrations that match.
So this year, my students chose someone or something that knows them well and wrote about themselves from that perspective. For example, we learned about kids from their pets, their stuffed animals, their soccer balls, their sister, and their friends. It was a fun way to learn a bit about their classmates and it was a nice way for me to learn a bit about them as writers! (That was the added benefit!)
I will definitely do this again next year. Their writing was creative and much better than typical on the first day of school. Their presentations were fresh and engaging, much better than each kid standing up and telling us an interesting fact about themselves.