by Lily Burgess, 1st and 2nd Grade Teacher
Earlier this fall my class began discussions on an engaging topic: Show and Share. As a first and second grade teacher people are often surprised that this elementary staple isn’t a given each year. While we constantly have opportunities to share with the larger group, Show and Share in particular has always been left as an element for kids to advocate for in their schedule. This year the conversation began as it typically does, enthusiasm built and kids were eager to begin voting to ensure the practice would be incorporated into our schedule. With guidance we took pause; what was actually important about Show and Share? Why did we think it deserved time in the day?
Student hands reached into the sky offering sound reasoning. “Every show and share you do people know a little bit more about you. ” As heads nod in agreement, the conversation turns to the next step: what to bring. “It’s important to make sure it’s not too big so you can’t carry it to school,” a voice adds with concern. “But not too small either. You could lose it!” another responds. “How about something like the size of your face?” a student clarifies.
With sound reasoning for including this event, and clarification on dimensions, the class was invested in the newest addition to our day. With a sign up hanging in the back of the classroom, students carefully add their name and schedule a time to bring in a precious item from home. Whether well-loved rocks or art making machines, each student who volunteers shares not only their object but insight into life beyond the classroom. With generosity, students share their objects and delight in answering questions and receiving compliments. But they also share something else. From start to finish they demonstrate what sharing an idea can do! From it’s infancy during class meeting, to its full-fledgling state, each student who shares knows that they also shared in shaping the schedule and creating space for their beloved Show and Share time. Now that’s something to show off!