A Place for Wonder

I have heard Georgia Heard speak about her passion for teaching poetry to children and it inspired me to write some poetry of my own. When I heard she had written a new book with Jennifer McDonough, I was intrigued. I began reading it the day I received it in the mail.

A Place for Wonder, Reading and Writing Nonfiction in the Primary Grades, explores the importance of classrooms that encourage curiosity and discovery. What seems like such a simple thing can be easily overlooked if teachers don't consciously provide a place for exploration and wonder as well as integrating habitudes of curiosity into their curriculum.

What I liked about this book, was that it wasn't simply a "how-to" recipe for teaching nonfiction. Don't get me wrong, the lessons, directions and artifact photos are there for you to use and implement in your own classroom, but there is also a lot of thoughts between Georgia and Jennifer about how they came to their ideas and decisions. Reading their after-lesson reflections was what made their work even more powerful. It really helped me understand and visualize their classroom work.

Curiosity and wonder seems like a natural fit for science lessons, but I really would like to see more of it infused in lessons across the curriculum and through the grades. Georgia and Jennifer aren't the only ones talking about teaching curiosity. A recent blog post by Angela Maiers shows her conversation with literacy coaches about looking for evidence of curiosity in classrooms.

Do you have a classroom environment that supports curiosity? What kinds of things do you do?


I just ordered my copy today! Georgia is extraordinary and has practically and brilliantly pulled together the essence of a 21st Century Classroom.

Classrooms that are full of wonder and inspired by the world and one another is far more crucial to 21st Century success than classrooms that are filled with Smartboards.

KK Cherney said...

thanks for sharing your opinion of the book..it makes us all what to know more