Sunday, 21 February 2016

Writing Centre is Ready to Go!


I'm super excited for Monday tomorrow (said no teacher ever haha!) because I've FINALLY been able to set up my Writing Centre for Work on Writing!

It's been a busy couple of weeks - back to school always is - but I've been feeling it even more since I've taken on the Daily 5. It's a good kind of busy though.

Anyway, here it is!! Check out my Writing Centre:

So I had a little play in IKEA, that's where my lovely shelf, document tray, magazine holders, pen holders and cute little pot plants came from. I should not be allowed in there unsupervised!

On the window to the withdrawal room are Writing Topics Cards which I found on TpT by Teaching with Love and Laughter. Check them out here

The kids' journals are in the magazine holders (larger book for Year 1s, small one Year 2) and the document tray holds their plastic or manilla folders. They'll be used to keep any writing they do on loose paper or templates which are in the grey paper-shelf thing...

My beautiful watercolour pennants and alphabet cards are from the Colour My Classroom theme I bought from SchoolgirlStyle. Omg that website is insane. If you ever want to feel inadequate about your classroom decor, go there. So many beautiful things. I showed serious restraint only leaving with the zip file for the theme. I could have easily spent all of the dollars on trimmings, pompoms, tassels... ugh it was heaven.

Well, we shall see how it holds up against my little writers tomorrow.

Next job - my Listening Centre! I've collected a bunch of old iPhones and am ready to tackle the super fun job of syncing them and making QR codes galore!

See you next time,

Saturday, 13 February 2016

Welcome to 2016

Well, well, well!

New year, new house, new classroom, new kids, new challenges, new adventures!

I have been working my butt off the last few weeks (and will be continuing to do so for the rest of the year!) getting my new classroom up and running. It is nowhere near finished, and I reckon I'll be ready for my 2016 classroom reveal somewhere around October haha!

Anyway, here is a sneak preview of my 2016 classroom:

As I mentioned in a previous post, I am teaching a Year 1/2 composite class this year. They are an absolutely beautiful bunch of kids who are an absolute pleasure to teach because they are just so thirsty to learn. I have to say, I am lucky that I don't have any behaviour management difficulties so far this year. It's safe to say that my only challenge is going to be keeping up with these kids! I'm still getting to know them, figuring out exactly where they are and what they need, as well as trying to decide the best way to deliver my teaching/learning program to a group of kids with more than 24 months age difference between the oldest and youngest students.

This week I launched the first component of The Daily 5: Read to Self!

It wasn't too much of a challenge, really - especially once we started graphing our stamina. On the first try we only got to 1.5 minutes, that's because my youngest student (he's only 5 and a half) flipped through one book, packed himself up and went to put his book box away. He's my 'barometer student', so once he was up and moving I had to pack everyone else away too. His stamina has really improved since that first practice - we can ALL read and maintain concentration for 9 minutes now.
They were actually asking me to do Read to Self so they could 'beat' their previous time. I explained that the reason we were practicing Read to Self was so it would become a part of our daily literacy rotation and that they would be able to do it completely independently while other kids might be doing other Daily 5 activities. I think they got it - they're smart kids - but they're still driven by the competitive side. No matter, I'm happy that they are reading and loving it.

I'm attaching my Foundation Lesson plans for Read to Self. Everything is straight from the 2 Sisters' Daily 5 text (2nd edition), just broken down into separate lessons and steps to make it a little bit more reader-friendly for my program.

I hope that worked... I think that it did... I'm still new to all this blog stuff.

Anyway, thanks for stopping by. My job for this coming week is to get my writing centre up and running so we can do Work on Writing with Read to Self during our Daily 5 practice time. Time is going to be the biggest factor here - this week is full of Dance Info Sessions, Parent Info Night, meetings and on top of that I have some stupid doctors appointments to run off to as soon as the bell rings... so it should be interesting!

I'll be back shortly with an update on my success (hopefully!)

See you next time!