Thursday, March 14, 2013

B's School Report

When I was in seventh grade, we wrote reports.  I wrote mine on Labrador Retrievers.  Mr. Hunter taught us how to take short notes on index cards from several sources, arrange them, then write our report. 

Last week and this week, I did the same with my second grader.  His assignment was to write a biography on Susan B. Anthony.  His mother is a former English teacher who was going to help him complete the project the "right way."

We began by reading a short digital book I ordered from Books A Million.  After each section, we recalled facts and he wrote each on an index card.  I could tell when he was wearing down because one of his cards said, "second child blah blah blah blah blah."  After a giggle, he erased it and rewrote the fact correctly. 

 After reading three books on Susan B. Anthony, B organized his facts "like a timeline".  G got in on the act with his own "notes". 

 Before writing, I had B reread the assignment sheet.  "Wait, I can TYPE it?" he asked.  B's handwriting, as you can see from above, is atrocious, and he knew he'd have to rewrite.  He typed a paragraph or two each night.  While I was brushing G's teeth, B learned the wonder of autocorrect.  "Mama!  I spelled she with a little s and it was the first word and when I hit the period and space, the computer changed it to a BIG S!"

 B was supposed to include headings on his report.  We decided he'd only type a section or two each night.  As you can see from the beginning of his sentence under "The Mill" section, he was in need of a break again. 


By the end of the report, he was worn down and silly.  I had consumed a half gallon of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream.  Still, we'd spent quite some time together and had a lot of laughs.  We belly laughed over the word duty.  "Doodie!"  we giggled over and over for way too long.  We'd tackled a big project a bit at a time, and he felt good about getting to type and print.  

Tonight he illustrated the final copy, as the assignment asked.  Thank goodness we'd printed two copies.  As soon as we turned around, G added a purple streak to B's masterpiece.  

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