Monday, September 5, 2011

Leave Your Mark

Dear Parents,

Some teachers have a new theme every year. Sometimes the theme is centered around classroom decorations and bulletin boards. Sometimes it involves a project or two. Whether it's a nautical theme, a cooking theme, a Hollywood theme, a travel theme, etc, it can be a nice way of decorating a room and creating an engaging, exciting classroom environment.

I tried the theme thing last year for the first time ever, and I think it was a huge success. In typical Mr. Curran fashion, though, my theme didn't really involve a lot of cute decorations. Last year's theme, "Going Global," was more about a mission...a mission to connect with as many classrooms across the globe as possible. And we did it. We worked with students as close as Flint and Anchor Bay and as far away as Turkey, Taiwan, Russia, and Kuwait. It was awesome.

If something works once, I believe you should try it again. So I've chosen a new theme for the 2011-12 school year. Take a look at some pictures of my room and see if you can figure out the theme:

What? You can't tell? You don't see anything? Don't worry. It's not your eyes. You don't see anything because there's nothing to see. The room is completely bare. That's because our theme this year will be...drum roll please... "Leave Your Mark."

What I mean by this is that because this is their last year of elementary school, I want to spend the entire year with their legacies in mind. Much like a President in the last year of his or her term, I want my students to look to the future. How will they be remembered? How can they be sure to make a lasting impression on their classroom, their floor, their school, and their community? What will they leave behind? What will their legacy be?

We'll start with goal setting. I'll be asking the students "What's Your Sentence?" In other words, "What's one sentence that captures who you are? What's one sentence that captures all that you want to accomplish this year?" (Check out the video I'll be showing them as a model by clicking HERE.)

After that, we'll be leaving our mark on the classroom. We'll begin right away to leave our marks by decorating it together. From there, we'll move forward quickly, keeping in mind how special the fifth grade year is (for both students and teacher alike). And as we accomplish great things, we'll share our progress with you and with the world.

Stay tuned for an amazing year. I'm glad to be a part of it. And I'm glad you're here with me.

All my best,


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