The Walking Classroom has been an incredible addition to my instructional repertoire! Since kicking off the program at our school, students have been SO excited to walk, listen and learn.
Even in our first weeks of implementation, we ventured out quite a bit, by going for nine brisk outdoor walks and one indoor walk in the first several weeks. In EVERY group of students that I have used The Walking Classroom with, there has been an overwhelmingly positive response. I have heard everything from, “Wow!! I learned so much!” to “Can we do this EVERY day??”
Students have been engaged and actively listening throughout our walks. While listening to the podcasts, we have learned about The Great Depression (Complete-#116, 5-#87), First and Secondhand Accounts (Complete-#21, 4-#46), Learning in Context (Complete-#11, 4-#21) and Point of View (Complete-#7, 5-#70).
Incredibly, every student has been on task, on pace, and on point with each walk and follow-up discussion. The companion Teacher’s Guide with lesson information and follow-up quizzes has already proven to be an incredible resource. With it, it is easy to build conceptual understanding and hold students accountable for active listening.
My fifth graders have been reading historical fiction novels — many of which are set during the late 1920’s and 30’s. Thus, having them listen to the podcast about The Great Depression was a perfect way to build their background knowledge and equip them with a better understanding of the time period.
This has helped them to build theories about the characters in their books and understand the complexities of life during this time in our history. Meanwhile, my third and fourth graders have been listening to the literacy-based podcasts that align with their vocabulary word work and writing.
I have been telling everyone I know about this incredible program. To see it is to believe it. With ten walks under our belt, my colleagues, students and parents are believers in The Walking Classroom!