Friday, April 24, 2009

New Pork City

I can't make this stuff up.

Today we went to the girls' "Student-Led Conferences".

[Aside] I don't know if this is universal, or common - it sure didn't happen when I went to school. Rather than traditional parent-teacher interviews, the spring interview is the student showing what they've been up to so far in the year - it's really quite a set up. And awesome to see the pride with which they lead you around the room and demonstrate their skills.

Also, if I haven't mentioned it before, Norah & Pepper are in the same classroom - a Grades 1/2/3 blend class. And Nenette's LAM is in there too. That's important in a moment.

The girls - separately, they're in different grades and at different levels - guided us through their binders and read to us and showed us some "self-assessments". Really cool stuff. All kinds of parent-chest-busting-pride moments.

The coolest though, was a project that they've been buzzing about all spring session. We'd heard all kinds of tell of it. They were building a pig town (I believe it was an extension of the Three Little Pigs module of Learning. No really.)

Ladies & Gentlemen, I give you... New Pork City:

The power lines! The trees! (Notice that the four seasons are depicted.)

Somewhere in the distant past I recall talking about building the houses. Can't recall if it was here, Twitter, Facebook [problem much?] or possibly even Nen that mentioned it, but each kid was to build one from whatever material they wanted (I think LAM's was granola bars. Yum) and discuss the pros & cons of what they chose.

Our pros consisted of "Mom had this crap lying around the house". It was also the cons.

Here is Norah's house. It is made of match sticks from a "Build Crap With Matchsticks" kit. I don't know why we had that, but it has been on a shelf for years.

I apologize for the quality (I use the term loosely) of the photo. It was my camera phone. I guess I moved. You'll have to trust me when I say that the sign above the door says "Please Wipe Your Feet", in proportionally really large letters!

Here is Pepper's house. It was made of raffia. And a crap-load of glue. And a milk carton. I confess, I ran out and bought raffia. I didn't know how much we'd need for a pig house, so we now have a giant bag of raffia that I'll never use again.

Those are little terracotta pots with raffia crammed in them. I think Pepper had gone off to play Wii by this point.

OK, so there was one kind of creepy late addition to New Pork City [Did I mention that the kids came up with the name? They voted and everything. Very clever]. The kids decided to add a zoo. Except that because this is a pig city, the residents of the zoo would be people. And the kids made themselves up as said residents.
By some aligning of the planets, LAM & Pepper's appointments were at the same time. And the only two at that time (Norah's slot, for comparison, had four). So Nen, Roomie, LAM & Mini were there at the same time as our entire family.

Ensue numerous variations of "bend over and check out New Pork City!". I even heard "Pork... The One You Love!" and so on [does anyone not get that yet?]

Our sweet teacher who loves our kids dearly, well first she chuckled at us, then the giggles became a little more nervous. Then she left the classroom.

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  1. LOVE IT!!! :D
    Just tickled that you captured Roomie and me all a-sprawl! As you can see he enjoyed being on top during the porking... ;)

    It's fun walking into a room for a totally disjoint purpose and seeing your buddies. It's like universes colliding, but in a good way. :)

  2. Now THIS is how child led conferencing should go. I think our school has become SO lax or maybe it's, my son's teacher,that it's just us sitting at a table with our kids and having us watch them do school work? The teacher seems to sit at her desk reading magazines?

  3. Nen -- "captured"? I was sure you saw me scrambling over the tables to ensure I didn't miss it!

    And yes, having us all there was pretty cool. Although it was difficult to shake the "why do I feel like I need a beer?" sensation! ;-)

    kyooty -- Since there were up to four students & their parents in the room at the same time (most don't tend to bring the whole families!) our teacher also just stands back & lets the student run through everything. I think she steps in if the student/parent combination doesn't really go anywhere (like if the kid doesn't step up and the parent doesn't nudge them - there's a checklist on the board).

    But for the time we were there, she sat at her table and, um, could have been reading magazines. I chose to believe she was marking something!

    The fall meeting is a parent only one. There's another opportunity in early spring that's optional. Plus if there were any specific problem I'd be all over her ass!

  4. So creative! Wish we'd done stuff like that when I was in school.

  5. musingwoman -- yeah, I went to the Here's-Some-Macaroni-And-Some-Gold-Paint-Knock-Yourself-Out School too. I don't remember you there. Is it possible there were two of them? :-S

  6. Student-led conferences = teh cuteness!

  7. I think we need to move into your school division. I am dreading this week's parent-teacher-student-student lead conferences. The teacher always looks shocked when I throw humour into the mix. It makes me want to tell him to lighten up its only grade 6.

    Maybe now, I will suggest a New Pork City and see how that goes over.