Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Dia de los Muertos & Inferencing

I cannot believe it's November! So many things going on this month: my husband is growing a mustache for Movember (it's a serious thing in the fire department, y'all, so I'm going along with it), Mocking Jay Part 2 comes out (OHMYGOSHOHMYGOSH) and most importantly: THANKSGIVING BREEEEAAAK!

November also means Dia de los Muertos, one of my favorite holidays to teach my students about. This year we started our Day of the Dead learning with (drum roll please) INFERENCING! Have you caught on that we're working on inferencing BIG TIME in my classroom??


Y'all. I had the best dad in the whole world. I know a lot of people think that about their dad, so you can understand where I'm coming from. He was SO kind, wise, funny, UNIQUE and my number one fan. And I miss him LIKE CRAZY. He passed away last year and not a day goes by I don't think about him. I wanted to share his memory with my students, so for this Dia de los Muertos, I made an altar honoring my sweet daddy.


I included pictures of my dad and his brothers as children (wearing cowboy hats), a few pictures of my family at our family ranch from my childhood (my dad was holding a cowboy hat in one and a baby longhorn in the other) and a recent photo of the whole fam.

My food offering included Oreos, M&Ms, and all the leftover chocolate Halloween candy I could find in my house!

I decorated the altar with battery operated candles, sugar skulls, mini paper picadors and yellow daisies. The finished product made me so happy. I enjoyed creating this tribute to my dad and only cried twice!

I took the altar to school on Monday and let my students know they'd be making inferences about my dad's life based on what I included on the alter. I gave my students a graphic organizer that had them write down three observations from which they would draw one inference. We focused on the photos and the food.

For the photos, I asked them to write down who they saw in the photographs (family), the setting (outside, on a farm, by a barn), and the other items they saw (horses, cowboy hats, fence, cow).
Can you guess what their inference was? They inferred my dad was a COWBOY! And gosh, they were right! My dad raised Texas Longhorns. He had a passion for the business and had a beautiful herd. Check out his hard work on his website, AssadTexasLonghorns.com!


For the food, I asked my students to write down three different types of food they saw. Answers included Oreos, M&Ms, Almond Joy's, Whoppers, and Reeses. The students inferred my dad liked CHOCOLATE!!! And boy did he! I shared how my pops would always sneak a tiny corner out of the cake at family get togethers because he just couldn't wait until we cut the dessert! He definitely could have been the poster child for choco-holics!


Guys - my students were SO into this lesson and when I told them it was in honor of my dad, they had so many sweet questions and connections. I was so impressed with their maturity and respect for my memories and feelings. Have I mentioned how awesome my class is??

Do you celebrate Day of the Dead in your classroom? I'd love to hear about your activities! Comment below! 


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