Day Eight – Not as planned, but not bad.

I had a pretty good plan for today, at least it looked good on paper. There wasn’t any huge disaster or things that went horribly wrong, things just didn’t go as planned. As a teacher you have to be okay with that. What was bothersome about today though is that what we didn’t get to or that was truncated was the more meaty parts of the day. The discussions I wanted to have after SSR (I asked Franklin to pick out interesting or challenging words, and Adam was going to focus on the purpose/message/theme of his book) didn’t really happen the way I wanted. Franklin didn’t pick any words (I should have borrowed it and found some, it isn’t too late for that), Adam wasn’t real sure about what I was asking so I talked about theme, what it is and some examples. That went over okay, Adam did pick a theme, Loneliness (one of the examples). The creative writing went well, we each read from our paper, though Adam elaborated extemporaneously after hearing Franklin give lots of details in his writing. Franklin’s enthusiasm for reading and writing I think is starting to have an effect on Adam. (We saw just how much Franklin likes to read when SSR was over and we headed inside, he was walking and reading – he didn’t want to stop!) After we shared I was going to talk about editing the leads but we got talking about Southern food vs Northern food, Franklin was amazed I’d never had collard greens. The discussion was the liveliest I’d seen them all day, and it gave us a good chance to interact more casually – something we’ve not done yet with Franklin. I think community is important, even if it’s just the three of us, and that conversation helped to build community so it had value for me.

In my class room it is harder to have these sorts of conversations that pull in everyone. I always try to include the introverts in smaller groups or 1:1 to at least make an individual connection. Learning their interests can then help guide some of the larger group discussions in a direction that their interest might overcome their shyness.

The small group work today was again very beneficial. Team Awesome pulled through with our strategy share and most were in attendance after class for a Transitional SLD focused discussion during which other great strategies were shared. I thought it was helpful to talk about/define the Transitional student in our own words rather than referring back to the textbook description. I was able to get a better idea in my head about the needs of these students. This is the group that is in the majority in my classroom, being about to get a better grip on what that means will certainly help my instructional planning be more purposeful.


2 responses to this post.

  1. The kids apply and pay to be a part of the program. They come from 9:45 to 12:15 Monday through Thursday for tutoring. We assess where they are and design a program for them. I’m there for large group class at 8:30 and then we usually have 30 min or so to meet in our smaller groups with a coach. On Fridays it is just the adults and we do professional development. It’s pretty intense and awesome and is flying by!


  2. Posted by Tomasen on July 7, 2011 at 7:30 pm

    Sounds like you are doing some intensive work with these kids. Are they kids from school? Are you tutoring? How lucky are they to have you to themselves! Love reading what you are doing and just signed up on your blog!


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