Grade 4 – It Takes Two to Tango
There is a common saying that “it takes two to tango”. This is an idiom of sorts I suppose and is most often not meant to be taken literally. Although it may be true that it takes two people to dance the tango, most users of this saying mean that it takes at least two people to have an argument. I would like to go even further and say that on most occasions it also takes at least two people to resolve an argument as well.
In our grade 4 unit, Sharing the Planet, we are exploring the types and causes of conflict and the various strategies that can be utilized to resolve them. Our Central Idea: ‘Reaching a resolution during periods of conflict is influenced by the actions of all involved’ almost seems to directly reference the “it takes two to tango” saying.
As part of our inquiry, students are actively participating in activities such as keeping ‘Peace Journals’ where they are recording conflicts that have happened to them or that they have witnessed and they are conducting surveys with students in grades 1, 2, and 3 to find out what some of the common causes of conflict are at SIS. Students will then explore resolution strategies and apply them to their recorded conflict examples (both personal and from the surveys). Role-playing also provides students with opportunities to practice applying conflict resolution strategies and to receive positive and constructive feedback. Reflecting on activities and the consequences of conflict resolution (or lack of resolution) is also an important component of our unit. In addition, while there are certainly instances where adult intervention is necessary (which we discuss), another important theme of this unit is to help prepare students to successfully resolve conflicts on their own.
Resolving many conflicts may not be easy even for adults. However, grade 4 is taking a big first step in the conflict resolution process. It is my firm belief and hope that, with the strategies learned from this unit, students will be more confident and better equipped when confronted with conflict. “It takes two to tango” may then really just be about dancing.
The Learning Support Services respect each child’s unique personality, experiences, interests, strengths, and areas of development. The Learning Support Services seeks to maximize the skills of all students in order for them to realize their individual potential. In order to provide the optimal learning environment, we assist classroom teachers with differentiation, creating Learning Support Plans, utilize instructional strategies and materials that support different learning styles, as well as provide appropriate accommodations, interventions, and modifications.
Make It a Habit: Schedule time to have your child read for 20 minutes every day.
Support the Effort: Supporting the effort your child puts in reading will encourage them to continue reading even when it becomes more challenging.
Look for Thing to Read: Reading throughout your day is essential to increase vocabulary and comprehension. Encourage your child to read many different things throughout the day. (For example, labels in stores, restaurant menus, products within your house, etc.)
Talk about It: Talking with your child about what they have read helps develop their reading comprehension as well as develop their vocabulary. Things to talk about: what happened in the story, making connections to real life situations and/or other stories, and their opinions about the story.
Communicate: Please keep your child’s teacher informed with any reading struggles or reading accomplishments because at SIS we support home to school communication.
For more reading resources:
Reading Rockets for Parents – http://www.readingrockets.org/audience/parents