Take a look outside your window. What do you see? Imagine the views from windows around the world. How is the landscape different? How is it the same? Author Linda Ashman transports readers to different parts of the world with her book Outside My Window. Her creative storyline will appeal to young readers as they make global connections with rhyming text and watercolor illustrations. Use this book to broaden learners’ thinking about the world around them. Try the following lesson ideas that align with the AASL Standards Framework for Learners.
AASL Inquire Shared Foundation
Learners display curiosity and initiative by recalling prior and background knowledge as context for new meaning.
- Introduce the picture book Outside My Window by Linda Ashman. Explain that this beautiful book invites readers to look through different windows from around the world. Ask learners to think about what they see from their windows. Point out that as they read the book, their job is to pay close attention to the different landscapes.
- Ask what they noticed about the scenes in the book. How do the places compare to their neighborhood? Direct learners to create a Venn diagram. Compare and contrast a scene from the book with their neighborhood.
Learners engage with new knowledge by following a process that includes using evidence to investigate questions.
- Connect learners with a class from a different part of the world. Empatico will help make this happen. This free website fosters collaborative learning with video conferencing. This AASL Best Website for Teaching and Learning offers support throughout the process to guarantee success.
- Prepare learners for their first video conference by generating questions. Gather books with images of children from different parts of the world. Ask learners to look closely at the images. What do they notice? What do they wonder? Write questions on chart paper.
- Invite learners to journal about their learning experience. Direct them to include questions they want to explore.
Learners adapt, communicate, and exchange learning products with others in a cycle that includes sharing products with an authentic audience.
- Consider presenting your global work at the next board of education meeting. Learners can share their journals to showcase the great work that happens in your school library. Encourage learners to describe the databases and books they used to explore different countries. Administrators, board members, and parents love to hear about resources that make a difference.
- Allow children to voice their experience with available resources. Did they find answers to their questions? Were the resources suitable? Does the school library need updated books? It is beneficial to get feedback from learners. Read how Michelle Lindsey uses patron feedback to improve her school library.
Learners participate in an ongoing inquiry-based process by continually seeking knowledge.
- Invite learners to explore the questions generated in their journals. Here are some great resources to enrich their global learning experiences:
- “Making Global Connections at Your School Library #AASLslm #slm18″ This Knowledge Quest blog post by Hattie Garrow and Shannon Desantis offers more ideas to connect with the world. Allow learners to explore the resources and make note of interesting ideas.
- “A Big List of Options for Connecting Globally” by Joyce Valenza. Give learners time to check out the great resources on this list. I guarantee they’ll be inspired to make global connections on their own!
- The Way to School by Rosemary McCarney. This fascinating book explores the dangerous journeys some children take to get to school. For a complete lesson guide for this book, check out my book, Lessons Inspired by Picture Books for Primary Grades. I cowrote this book with Rebecca Granatini, a curriculum specialist in Connecticut. The unit contains four lessons, each lesson focusing on one Domain from the AASL Standards Framework for Learners. Each lesson has worksheets, an anchor chart, assessments, rubrics and connections, to the AASL Standards.
How do you make global connections in your library? Please share in the comment box below!
Author: Maureen Schlosser
Author: Lessons Inspired by Picture Books for Primary Grades published by ALA Editions