Reading Around the Planet with Wales

One of my schools had conflicts with the scheduled Read Around the Planet dates this year, so I helped them find partners later in March. Our first connections were this week, and more are scheduled next week.

Today’s session is one of three that we scheduled with Wales. We’ve been working on several collaborations with Wales.

Our class is first grade, and their students are close to the equivalent to 3rd and 4th grade students.

08-03-14wales.jpgOur class started with a song about sounds and words that have those sounds. Then the students shared a story called Lazy Mary. The class read the story together and two students acted it out.

The class in Wales had different groups talk about various components of Welsh culture.

Their students asked our students, “Where is Wales?” our kids said, England! One of the things that I’ve learned as we do more connections with the United Kingdom is that there is a perception in the U.S. that the UK is the same as England. Whereas people from Wales and Scotland really don’t appreciate that! I’m not sure that this misconception actually got cleared up in the session today. I don’t know what it would take to clear this up, but I think probably when we connect to schools in Wales and Scotland we need a map and an explanation of where England is compared to where they are. When I first started to understand this confusion, I had to look it up online to get a grasp of the situation. It’s certainly confusing on this side of the Atlantic!

Here are some examples of the questions the students asked each other.

  • 08-03-14wales2.jpgAre you actually by Lake Michigan?
  • What is the weather there?
  • What time is it there?
  • Do you have uniforms?
  • What subjects do you learn?
  • How many students are in your school?
  • What’s the coolest thing about your culture?
  • What TV shows and movies do you like? Simpsons and SpongeBob on both sides of the Atlantic!
  • What kinds of foods do you eat?

It was a great connection and hopefully we’ll continue our collaboration with Wales.

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