Monica Evon (bottom right) and author Jena Ball (top right)
celebrate the CritterKin Kindness Quilt created by third graders as part of their summer reading program at Bellevue Elementary School in Nebraska
Listen to Interviews with the Creators of the Project
KIOS interview with Monica Evon Monica is the third grade teacher at Bellevue Elementary School:
The CritterKin Kindness Quilts are part of an exhibition of 100 quilts at the Sarpy County Museum in Bellevue Nebraska. There will be a celebration of the project on August 9, 2014 at 11:00 am EST. The event will include a live reading from Lead with Your Heart by Jena Ball, a drawing exercise, and a chance for audience members meet the author and teachers involved in making the project happen.
Daisy Marino is the first to admit that certain things terrify her – public speaking, being pushed to try new things, and interviews with TV news anchors. Fortunately, fear has never stopped Daisy from jumping feet first into new challenges. Better yet, she is willing to share the ups and downs of her process, thereby serving as a role model and inspiration for others. Her secret? Don’t let fear stop you and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
We love that Daisy once said that she would NEVER ( yes all in caps) get a Twitter account. She should have known that the moment she said “never” the universe would conspire to make sure the opposite happened. Her school superintendent, Brad McEachern, created an account for her, pushed her to start tweeting, and the rest is history. Some other things Daisy never thought she’d be doing? Creating augmented reality videos, Skyping with other educators around the world, and signing autographs for her students.
The CritterKin team first met Daisy and her good friend and colleague Angela Moses in a Twitter chat. It wasn’t long before we were plotting and planning to bring the CritterKin Mutts to Warren, Texas. The story of how the collaboration blossomed from a single reading at Family Reading Night into the “Start with the Heart Kindness Mural,” is chronicled in the slideshow and links below.
Students in pre-K through 5th grade, with help from high school volunteers, contributed to the project, practicing not only kindness but important literacy skills such as reading, writing, vocabulary and math as well. All in all, the project was a great success – teaching students invaluable emotional skills and resulting in a beautiful work of art everyone can be proud of. Bravo!
The CritterKin Mutts got together with Ms. Jenaia to pen a birthday poem and shoot a video for Marty’s 70th birthday. It’s not often a best friend hits such a major milestone. We hope your birthday was full of love, laughter and lots of chocolate Marty. Here’s to another equally wonderful 70 years! Happy HAPPY Birthday dear friend!
If you’d like to wish Marty a very happy birthday, you know where to find him:
Did you miss the “Critters, Kids and Kindness” presentation at RSCON 5? Not to worry, you can still watch the presentation, which includes the chat log. Click the image above to be taken to the Blackboard Collaborate page, then click on the purple circle with the two arrows to be taken to the archive :
Here is the slide deck we used in our presentation for the 2014 Reform Symposium Conference. It tells the story of the CritterKin “Quilting for Kindness” program with third graders at Bellevue Elementary School, Nebraska. Not only is is a celebration of the kids, their teachers and the amazing work they did, but is the perfect example of the power of project based learning to engage, inspire and give kids the chance to acquire and practice emotional as well as intellectual skills. Enjoy!
Interested in Creating A CritterKin PBL Program at Your School?
CritterKin’s “Quilting for Kindness” project is creating a wonderful buzz amongst educators, parents, quilters, museum curators and those intrigued by the confluence of education and technology. The three-week project was part of the third grade summer reading program at Bellevue Elementary School in Nebraska where 43 third graders not only read, discussed and blogged about Lead With Your Heart, the CritterKin book about overcoming prejudice and fear with kindness, but embarked on an incredible creative journey as well. The goal of the project was to give students the opportunity to experience and express kindness while also strengthening their core literacy skills.
Get details, read stories by those who participated, and see terrific photos of the final event by visiting the links below:
Watch the video of the final live event in which the kids put on a one-act play for a global audience
Two of the CritterKin Kindness Quilts are now on display at the Sarpy County Museum in Bellevue, Nebraska where they will be part of a special exhibition of more than 100 quilts through August. To learn more about the museum, visit the Web site and Facebook page.
CritterKin’s “Quilting for Kindness” project is officially complete in Bellevue, Nebraska but in many ways it is just getting started. The three quilts the kids produced (fabric, paper and chalk) will now be displayed at the Sarpy Historical Museum, and we are being contacted by other teachers and schools across the country about doing a similar program in their classrooms. To understand what all the excitement is about, it helps to see what these amazing 43 third graders accomplished in just three weeks!
“A wonderful experience for all! Students are learning, creating, & having fun!a’ – Brittany Braasch
“This was such an awesome experience! All of us are still smiling. Lots of great learning and creativity took place! I love how our students were 100% engaged! They had SO much fun reading, writing and drawing! This is learning at its BEST!” - Monica Evon
We hope that you will all watch the video made of the kids performing the play and take a moment to congratulate the wonderful teachers and students involved in the “CritterKin Quilting for Kindness” project by leaving a comment here or on the YouTube page.
Interested in Doing a CritterKin Kindness Quilt at Your School?