Reflecting on Their Reflections

Sylvia, my co-teacher, and I, had the children reflect back on their learning for the year. We had studied trees, birds, stars and space, flowers, and octopuses, along with the artists Henry Moore (“Bird and Egg”), Vincent van Gogh (“Starry Night”), John Hoyland (“Space Warriors”), Beatrix Potter, and Georgia O’Keeffe (“Red Poppy”). Here are some of their reflections regarding artist studies:

Henry Moore (2)

Although their statements may seem concrete and basic, the children are accurately applying new vocabulary that they learned this year (abstract, fiction).  They are also visually expressing their learning through their illustrations, which they all created first, before writing their statements. They are showing that they understand the “big picture” of each artist.

Some children wrote about other areas of their learning:

Birds use their tails to balanceHummingbirdsLeaves make food


It is interesting for us to see which facts “stuck out” for the children. We also had the children reflect on the things that they will miss about our class.

We also asked what they WON’T miss:

won't miss so much writing (1)

We were sad to see that “messy art” and “so much writing” were in this set of reflections. Ah, the realities of teaching your passion…


2 thoughts on “Reflecting on Their Reflections

  1. It is so beautiful to see the year in this visual way! Reflection is so important, and looking at what kids really have to say through their journals is far more enlightening than the data we often collect through tests and other assessments. It is also a way for students to join in the reflection process in a meaningful way. We should be doing this through grade 12 and beyond. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thanks, Darcy…I completely agree. The standardized assessments are relatively meaningless as compared to genuine expressions of learning. The children each drew before they wrote their comments. I even tried (just in the essence of time) to get kids to write, mid-stream through their drawings, but they couldn’t. “I’m not done, yet!”

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