Saturday, April 11, 2015

The Measure of Intelligence

The Measure of Intelligence lies in one's ability to see patterns where others see only randomness...

Upon coming across the ie-Secret (as in the word cookie) in guided reading, these first graders were transformed into "mini-analysts/ diagnosticians" as they patterned-out all of the SECRETS™ they knew about Superhero i in order to account for (i.e. "diagnose") what they see as an "obsessive cycle" of sound-behavior!

If your kids know the 'grown-up' reading & writing SECRETS™, they will love this clip.... and so will you!!!

This 'learner-driven' environment naturally emerges when learners know all of the letters' SECRETS™.... transforming phonics skill instruction into a virtual playground for critical thinking, and creating not just amazing readers and writers, but amazing thinkers! 
If your kids use the SECRET STORIES®, they will love this clip!

And they will also love this one!  
Watch these first graders think like "word doctors" as this mini-lesson on phonics skills is transformed into a creative and student-driven exercise in critical thinking and diagnostic problem-solving! And even more importantly, notice how learners' "need-to-know" is the driving force behind their instruction!

Learners' palpable excitement over the sounds letters make (or don't make!) in different text scenarios is the result of their personal connection with them, just like those with fellow students in the classroom!

Kids (okay, all of us!) are naturally fascinated in "who did what to who and why," and it's in this way that learners who know all the SECRETS™ about the letters can easily predict their "behaviors" (i.e. sounds!).

The SECRET STORIES® provide learners with logical explanations for letter/sound behaviors where there would otherwise be none! They explain WHY letters do what they do (or don't!) in different text scenarios. And because letter behaviors are based on 'social-emotive' connections already familiar to early grade learners, they are easily predictable, as are their sounds!

In this way, learners become instantly connected to what would otherwise be perceived as just "random symbols and sounds." They become naturally curious and thus, intrinsically motivated to critically analyze their behaviors, so as to predict their most-likely and next most-likely sounds.


And just in case you haven't been following the SECRET STORIES® FaceBook Page over the past couple of weeks, here are some highlights that you definitely won't want to miss!

While I wish that I could, it's just not possible for me to repost here all of the interesting comments, questions, and lengthy teacher discussions related to these (and other) posts. For this reason, I would really encourage you to visit the FaceBook page directly, or click on the links next to each of the video posts below to read the related comments and discussion and chime-in! 
Click here for the full-length presentation

And finally, the following picture and post is from first grade teacher, Aimee Meyer, from Baton Rouge, Louisiana.....


Katie,
I just wanted to share our latest first grade classwork at St. Thomas More in Baton Rouge.
My students made up their own "Secret Story" poster...
"Drop the 'y' to add 'ed' and 'es'


We adore our Secret Stories! .....I'd feel so lost without it!
My school sent me to New Orleans a couple of years ago where I met you. I purchased the set as soon as could!

Thank you so much.
You don't know how many little lives you've changed.

Aimee Meyer
(Every K through 4 classroom in America needs to implement Secret Stories!)
And in addition to all of the FaceBook highlights above, there were also some wonderful questions posted about the SECRETS™, and answered not only by me, but by lots of other teachers, as well! 
So head on over to the FaceBook Page and check it out!
Warmest Regards!

PS For all those asking about these on Pinterest
you can download the freebie pack here
or you can print them out directly from the pictures below.



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