Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Grinch

Every year, since I became a kindergarten teacher in 1990, I have shared one of my favorite books of all time just before the winter holiday, Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas. This means I have shared this story for possibly 17 years with a couple thousand children or so.

I think that I became struck with the story when I was a child watching the Chuck Jones adaptation of the story. I love the book because it shows that even if you make a mistake in life there is a chance at redemption. It is also a reminder to me that Christmas really is more than shopping, and getting stuff. It is more about the joy of being with people that you love and showing kindness to those you don't even know- just because it is the right thing to do.

Now that I am a computer resource teacher in an elementary school, I share the story with around 22 classes every year (K-2 grade). I have created a lesson around the Grinch, and I would like to share it.

First, I read the story.
video
I read this story to a group of kindergartners today. I thought it was appropriate considering where I began this tradition.

After the story, I explain to the children how they can use tools in the program Kid Pix to create their own picture of the Grinch, or another character from the story.
video
The tools in Kid Pix allow the children a chance to be creative in expressing their own vision of the story with some pretty good graphics tools. I have created slide shows in the past of student's pictures and they generally turn out to be pretty good for pictures made by young people with only 15 minutes or so to make one. I will try to add a slide show tomorrow...

It seems like such a small thing to do, but it is my way of sharing something that I truly love with students that I work with at my school. It is a pretty lame Christmas present to get, but it has a lot of meaning for me when I share the Grinch with children. I hope the web enjoys it, too.

Merry Christmas!
:-)
Al

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