Saturday, September 10, 2011

Beginning of Year: Shoe Poem and Graphing Idea

I love it when I can make a Reading to Math connection and you all know how much I love teaching through poetry. So when I found: "Choosing Shoes" by Frida Wolfe I knew I wanted my kids to have it in their poetry anthologies. This one is great for the beginning of the year because most kids have just experienced shopping for new shoes and can make a self-to-text connection about the process. I love the chanting sound of this poem read aloud. It's fun to read so kids want to reread it multiple times. Great for fluency practice! How about all those adjectives! Many teaching points to cover through this one! Here it is below: Choosing Shoes

After enjoying the poem, we then connected it to our study of data collection and creating pictographs. I wish I had taken pictures of the kids doing this, but didn't so here is the process I used. I had everyone sit in a huge circle and take off one shoe and set it in the middle so all could see the collection. Then I asked kids to try to find ways we could sort/classify the shoes. Many suggestions emerged: by color, by type, etc. etc. etc. There was no lack of ideas. Then we settled on the categories of: slip ons / laces/ buckles/ I wrote those on index cards and then we made the "object" graph with the actual shoes on the floor. We analyzed our findings and made observations like: "Most people wore shoes with laces today." We practiced counting them by twos. I gave the students the graphing paper below and they transferred that information to a tally chart and then to a pictograph. If you give it a try, let me know how it goes!

Graphing Shoe Type


  1. This is wonderful, and it would be a great tie-in to the "shoe lesson" I do during the first week of school anyway. I use everyone's different shoes (and some others I brought from home) as an intro to the Daily 5 and choosing a good fit book (shoe size - reading level; shoe style - reading purpose, genre choice). Your poem and graphing ideas will be a terrific addition! Thanks!

  2. I love the word closet idea do u have a sample of the categories of words that u created?