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Zooming with Renée Watson!


Jenni Walker, 3-4 Teacher

This past March the UCDS community had the opportunity to attend a webinar-style zoom call with author Renée Watson. 

The 3rd and 4th graders read her book Ways to Make Sunshine, the first book in the Ryan Hart series, and the 5th graders read Some Places More than Others. Having Renée Watson visit with us was an exciting experience and we were delighted to make many connections with her. 

Renée Watson opened up with an “I am From” poem. This type of poem highlights how family and home make you, well, you! Last fall as a part of our Literature groups, the 3-4s created their own “I am From” poem. When Renée Watson shared hers with us, it was neat to make the connection that we too, had gone through the process of reflecting and thinking about how the things around us help make up our identity. 

Here is a compilation of some “I am From” poems!

I am from… historical fiction from World War II (L. V.)
I am from Mission Impossible and top  gear (M. D.)
I am from sushi, Popsicles, and Lemonade (O. W.)
I am from playing chess to staying active (T. S.)
I am from The Magic Tree House and Kirby’s Return to Dreamland (N. C.)
I am from football player, writer, artist and runner (A. G.) 

We were also reminded of how meticulous the writing process is. At the time of our meeting with Renée Watson, the 3-4s were wrapping up our “Bridge Builder Stories”. Excited for publishing, it was hard to remain patient through the final editing process. Renée Watson shared similar experiences in her own process as a writer and encouraged us to lean into those moments.