Why is it important to look closely at your identity? (good critical thinking question)

Who are you?  I mean, who are you really?  What is important to you?  What is special about you?  What makes you unique?  What is your identity?

On Monday, you learned about my identity as a teacher-principal, a soccer mom, an artist, a traveller, a family member of Scottish heritage, a language-learner, a proud Canadian, and more.  You started to create your own identity web.  But really give this some thought…think critically.  Your identity is not just your ‘likes, but what groups you belong to, what talents and passions you have, and what you do to develop an interest.  We talked about Mr. Couros’ identity as a principal, a basketball ref, a techie, and a family member of Greek heritage. 

So, give it some thought.  Why do you think it is important to examine your identity?

Racial Discrimination

We are very lucky to live in a country like Canada.  Today, Canada welcomes many new Canadians from all over the world.  BUT, our government didn’t always think like that.

At many times in history, our government tried to keep certain people out, or they discriminated against them for some of their cultural traditions.  Do you remember our talks about the Potlatch?  Do you remember the head tax for Chinese workers?  Do you remember the treatment of the Japanese during World War II?

What are your thoughts on racial discrimination?

What are your goals?

You know, we are all good at something.  In fact, many of you are good at a lot of things.  Some of you are great at sports, others are so artistic, and many of you are real avid readers.  Knowing yourself is part of growing up.  Knowing that you have strengths and that you have things you can get better at, that’s part of being a healthy human being.

What are your goals?  Goals need to be meaningful, but realistic.  Your goals at school might be different than your goals at home.  You might have social goals (friends, classmates), academic goals (reading, writing, math, studying, etc), homework goals,  emotional goals (controlling anger, etc.) or physical goals (running laps, throwing, etc.).

It feels really cool when you reach a goal.  That’s why you need to be realistic…goals aren’t like wishes, don’t say “My goal is to win a million dollars.” because there is nothing significant you can do about that.  Sure, it would be cool, but it’s luck, not effort that would get you there.  Also, don’t say “I am going to get 100% on every spelling test” if you are getting 40% every week now…be realistic, set your goal to “Over the next 3 months, I am going to get 70% or more on all spelling tests.”  Now, that’s more more reachable.  Eventually you can work up to the 100%…

And don’t make your goals TOO easy.  Your goal should be meaningful, significant enough or you won’t feel that sense of satisfaction when you reach it.  For instance, if you are already a very fast runner, you might not want to say “My goal is to be the fastest runner in the class.”   Choose something that will balance out your life, that will be a challenge, and that might surprise others.

Reward yourself.  It feels great to reach a goal.  Life is much more interesting if we have a balance between work and play.  If your goal is to read more at home, set your timer for 30 minutes…and read.  Then reward yourself with some time with your video games.  Try to do this regularly…at first, it may be tough, but eventually it becomes routine.

What if you don’t reach a goal?  Nothing to be ashamed of,  just adjust the goal.  Maybe the goal was too big.  Maybe something got in your way, and you couldn’t complete it.  But don’t give up, just change the goal.

Want to hear about a few of my goals at school this year?  1) I want to get to know the names of all stafff and most kids at Forest Green School by June.     2) I want to learn as much as I can about Special Needs over the next 2 years.    3) I want to learn about blogging before April.   4) I want to help kids set their own goals in LA.

So, what are your goals?

The Group of Seven

What do you know about the Group of Seven?  How does their art make you feel? 

Did you know that the Group of Seven painters were once rejected and ridiculed…their art was too modern, too different from any landscape art in Canada at the time (1920s).  One of my favourite paintings is Franklin Carmichael’s Mirror Lake from 1929.  It is peaceful, colourful, and there is a sense of movement and grace in the hills. 

 Mirror Lake

You’ve explored some of their paintings.  What are your thoughts?

Hi staff!

Welcome to our Grade 5 Blog. What do you think?  So far, we have only had a few kids go to the Smartboard and comment.  It has been a group thing.  Now, we’d like to have each of us in Grade 5 log on separately and comment, step #2.