Yesterday we hosted Mrs. Almada's 5th grade class of 25 students from the Emma G. Whiteknact School in East Providence and when we say what a wonderful time was had by all, we really mean it.
They visited us as a reward as a culmination of a lesson on natural disasters and how animals and their families are affected when a disaster strikes. Students became familiar with The PETS Act that mandates that in order to collect funds from FEMA, states must have a plan in place to protect animals if a disaster strikes, much like the gas outage that affected Newport some months ago.
After a lot of researching and several passionate conversations, the students were challenged to create their own animal shelter. During this project, students had to come up with a mission statement, procedures, a budget, advertisement, and pet profiles for their shelter. They also had to brainstorm solutions to common challenges that shelters often face.
A big reading focus for them had been reading fluency and each student was assigned a children’s book about shelter animals. They practiced using our fluency rules and strategies with these books for 5 weeks. In fifth grade, it is often challenging to get students excited to read aloud so when Mrs. Almada's students found out that they would be reading their book to a special animal at the shelter, the enthusiasm kicked in immediately!
And so yesterday they had the chance to show-off their reading fluency to some very special animals while learning all about the crucial role that shelters play in caring for and protecting animals and we can not tell you what an amazing group of students they were! We hope they had a great time because we sure as heck know our animals did!