Monsters 2008

How Do You Do it in Your classroom?


Please tell us your professional thoughts as an educator examining the process of learning.

Teachers - What did you and your class do to arrive at your Monster adjectives? Do you have any curriculum connections or learning process connections? Does your class see the Monster as a boy or a girl? How do you do get started actually building the Monster? Does anyone have parent helpers on this project? For standards-perspective-folks, can you see your state standards in this Monstering mayhem? What add-on lessons do you do? Where will your Monster be displayed in your school? What does your principal think about Monsters in school?

Mrs. Magdos First Grade Class- Webster, Texas

Well we just finished our monster and what a day it was! It is always a blast, but very tiring as well. We started by reading all the descriptions out loud again. Then we brainstormed what body parts we should start with and why. Then what should be made after that and so on. We made a list on chart paper adn crossed them off as we finished each part. When I divide up a few parts as we get started, that is the CRAZIEST time of the whole project... Well unless you count the loads of glitter on our floor:-). But after they are working in groups, it seems to go well. Of course there is alwasy the question of "how do we make it slimy, or squishy?" I always say, "that does sound like a problem, what are you going to do? What do you know that is slimy, squishy? Can we make it with that or like that? " They always find a way and the room always goes back to looking like normal by Monday morning when we will begin charting and voting on a name to submit. For you new teachers....let go and let them have some fun. Push them to decide...if they get stuck, do and say what you would in any other them to something that will help, but let them figure it out. That is the best part about this entire project. I mean if the Superintendent of schools walks in your room and sees this going on and is impressed (like mine did)...then things are alright with the world. your students thinking and conversations with each other is what is fun to listen too. Good luck to the rest of you! Our pics are in a movie on our wikispace

Ms.Duygu's class of 4th grade- Malatya,Turkey


We have been studying " Body Parts " and " Colors " in English Lesson. While teaching the parts of body I wanted my students to imagine the parts of body that does not exist in fact. For instance, while learning 'the eye' we tried to form the imaginative eye of our monster. Besides this, in order to choose the color of our monster's parts we used the colors topic and while doing that they have learnt the topics ( Body Parts and Colors ) and also visualized our monster. Each of the students ( individually or as a group ) had chosen their own part then designed it on the paper. After this section they began to form their model monster and each of them evaluated and criticized the positive and negative outlooks of the monster. As a result their evaluation came to the point that their monster would be a girl. During the building process of the monster my students did not get any help from their parents. Because of the reason that they are living in an environment in which their life standards are limited while creating the monster they benefited from the sources that they could find in their daily lives. For instance, the reason that they live in a village while creating the legs of the monster they put wood shavings into the socks. As a technique and method in our teaching class we tried to set up brainstorming functions . Now we are about to choose the name of the monster by brainstorming technique. It is not certain but as a decision of our group most probably it will be " Monster Lisa ". We displayed our monster in the lab in order not to get harmed by the other students. Our principal supports this project for the improvements of the students' skills. My students experienced such kind of study for the first time so they see this participation not only as a model project but also as an experience of culture. They have been willing to be participated in this project and they got the ability of studying in a cooperation.

Mr. Smith's 4th - Hannibal, Missouri
We have distributed the parts to all students and have started working on the individual designs, to think about what each part might look like before actually creating it. After doing the small designs, we tried a rough sketch of how the parts might come together. Kids are beginning to talk about having meetings to talk about sizes and placement.

Mrs Lowe and Area 11, Year 4, Western Australia
Before we went on our mid-semester break we had fun thinking of adjectives to describe the Monster's fingers - the body part we were assigned.
At the start of our final term for 2008 I was in China with a group of Year 7 from our school so I left the next part of the project to the relief (substitute) teacher.
Last week Mrs Fowler and our EA Mrs Bruynel had a monster week.
Each student or pair of students was assigned a body part and the students brought in materials from home to share. There was discussion about the need to collaborate with others whose body parts might be affected by what they did. Mrs Fowler and Mrs Bruynel thern had the mammoth task of helping put all the parts together. There was a great deal of mess, a great deal of discussion and lots of creativity!
During last week the students wrote acrostic poems about Monsters and they can be found on our class wiki.
Yesterday we brainstormed ideas for the Monster's name but we haven't made a decision yet.
Today we started our group monster stories and once they are finished you will be able to find them on the wiki too.
Isaac brought in a book of Monster Jokes and we had a joke telling session. You can find some of our favourite monster jokes here.
Later this week and into next week we have decided to watch "Monsters Inc." and we will be involved in activities about the movie.

Mrs Jane Lowe 21/10/08

P.S. Monster photos coming soon!

Miss Knight and the Livewires, Year 3 & 4, New Zealand
We were working on descriptive writing at the time we described the Monster belt so the children generated lots of adjectives. The hard part was selecting a maximum of 12 words for our part. A couple of ideas stood out that made voting easier - the red, black and yellow stripes are the colours of our region, the Waikato, and the skull buckle was considered appropriate for a monster. The main thing that my students found challenging in reading descriptions provided by other classes were the measurements - feet and inches. We use the metric system in NZ and there was initially some confusion about the monster having multiple feet in odd parts of his body! We are now in the midst of monster making. There is a huge (but creative) mess in the classroom. The children are working in pairs and each pair has two body parts to make. The main challenges are using the available materials to meet the descriptive criteria yet also be creative, and coordinating with each other so the body parts will fit together. It is really making them think! 15.10.08

Mrs. Black's class of fourth grade monsters, Naches, WA
Isn't this a great way to kick off October? Our class has been working through the parts of speech and grammar since the first of the year, and guess which one we're on right now? ADJECTIVES! The Monster Project comes at the perfect time every year. After reading all of your WONDERFUL monster part descriptions, I think that we know our adjectives quite well-thanks! 10-1-08

Mr. Lee - Oklahoma City, Oklahoma - 4th grade - We are excited about working with classes from many places on this monster project! It is our first time to participate, and we are anxious to see how it goes. The students had fun deciding how to describe the arms. We have all had a good time looking at the pictures of the other classes. 9-29-08
Here are some photos of our students working on the monster. 10-17-08

Mrs. Magdos - Webster, Texas - First Grade -
We are off to a slow start since Hurricane Ike has visited our town. My kids and I will take our class picture next week and describe our body part when we are allowed back to school. We will also vote on what type of technology project we want to do along with this project. The kids have always been excited to participate in this project. It will be a great distraction from everything that has happened this past week. 9-18-09

Mr. Ferguson and the Fantastic Fifteen - Lafayette Regional School
For the past two months the students have working on building a monster. The movie below highlights the process the students used to build our monster.