In Their Own Words with Book Creator

Storytelling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today.-Robert McKee

Lessons from PeteChildren love to listen to stories.  They are also pretty adept at retelling them.  Often, the re-telling is far more interesting than the original.

One of our Common Core standards in kindergarten is that the child will retell a familiar story, including key details.  This week in our shared reading, we read Pete the Cat by Eric Litwin. There are many lessons to be learned from Pete and the children have enjoyed reading and re-reading this story.  They’ve loved singing his song along with him. We made the Lessons From Pete anchor chart yesterday.

Today, the children decided to make a book about Pete the Cat and creating pic collagehis new white shoes as a retelling.  They used a planning grid to map out their stories.  In Book Creator, they designed the cover and wrote their re-telling.  They illustrated their book by drawing in Doodle Buddy.  Once they finished their entire book, they went back and recorded themselves reading the story (and singing Pete’s song.) Here is a link to Eva’s Pete the Cat retelling.  I love her use of expression as she reads.

This activity was initiated by the kids and planned out by them.  They spent most of the day, off and on working on this project.  They were delighted with the fact that they came up with “the lesson” and were in charge of carrying it out.  The Pic Collage above shows them in their creative process.  They were spread out and deep in thought. From the collaborative work and rich conversations during their time working on the planning sheets, to the creation of their book and recording their own voice to retell the story, it was an amazing activity and not a bad way to end our week with Pete.

I could have had the children sit and retell me a story easily enough.  But it was so much more meaningful by having them do this in their own way.  Voice and Choice…the school work of champions…and as Pete says, “It’s all good.”

Today, we will do exciting new things.  Let’s get to it!