October 30, 2022

What I'm Teaching & Reading in November

After finishing up our whole class novel study, students will write an essay connecting conflict and theme, and choose from 3 creative final projects.

The month of October is leaving me feeling a little frustrated. Too many students are still struggling with classroom routines. It's been more difficult to engage students in independent reading this year. I've done less choice writing than last year instead of more. There is never enough time to catch up students who are behind or need remediation. I could go on.

Instead I'm going to take some deep breaths and think about how to reset for the month of November. I know I  will need to do a review of expectations this week since Halloween was on Monday, students had off on Friday due to parent/teacher conferences, and we had a field trip on Thursday. 

As I plan my lessons for the month of November, I am going to continue to shorten the length of activities, knowing that this year's group of students doesn't have the same stamina as previous years. When we finish our novel unit and resume independent reading, I will use reading sprints to break up the chunk of time at the end of class I have dedicated to independent reading. Finally, I am going to make student behavior my priority and hold myself to having students reflect on their behavior during lunch, make their own phone calls home, etc. even though that means losing time to plan, grade, and create materials during the school day.

October 3, 2022

What I'm Reading & Teaching in October

Classroom routines are falling into place. This month we'll begin our first whole class novel and continue building grammar skills through writing.

Over one month of school is now in the books. I feel good to be back in the classroom and a little more of my enthusiasm for teaching has returned. Overall, I have another good group of students, despite some high energy, chatty students in my last period class. I did think I would be doing a little less material creation this year, now that I'm fully working my way through my curriculum for a third time, but I'm finding that my students' skills are not as developed as they have been in years past and many more students need additional reinforcement of texts and skills. I am finally able to return to working with small groups, so rotations have made a big comeback in my classroom