Showing posts with label Linking Party. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Linking Party. Show all posts

September Show and Tell

 I'm linking up for this month's view into my classroom with"Forever in 5th Grade's" Show and Tell.

Student's have been back for 30 some odd days. Most of our time in small groups has been spent building routines and learning how "Parts to Whole" can help us read and write.

An important thing for student's is they need to show how each of them created meaning strategically of the digraphs. These guys have spend the last couple weeks learning and working with digraphs in reading and writing. The point is to get them to use higher order thinking to demonstrate how they created meaning i.e-how will they remember them as they move on to more complicated reading and phonics work.

Each group has it's own fluency challenge. From letter names to high frequency words a differentiated fluency game based on the same idea. Even with spending most of our time on phonics, spelling and reading have to be a fluency practice. My groups beg, for time to do "Up Against the Wall."  I've put the data on the wall next to the posters using their data binder numbers. My hope is that by working on sight words their grade level oral reading scores will increase. (By this spending less time on them as a whole.)

I have decided to take the big step to move my lesson planning to Google. This is week 3 and I LOVE it. I have Google Slides Lesson Plans for each group. Each week I make a copy of the plan and make my changes. I can take pictures of student work and up-load it to their file. It does help students have binders they keep everything in guided reading books, their data, everything.

 Just because they have been working on phonics doesn't mean they don't real, authentic text. This group is working on putting all their strategies together. They have worked "parts to whole" with sounds and letters to figure out how to break apart words. They are seeing how this strategy is WAY better than guessing.

August Show and Tell Linky

Happy Tuesday!! Today I'm linking up with Stephanie from Forever in 5th grade for this months Show and Tell of my Mild/Moderate Special Education room.  It's hard to believe that I'm beginning my 13th year in special education and the beginning of the year is always just as crazy as the last.
I have at lest unpacked and you can make out all the piles on my teaching table. I spent today between collecting baseline data and calling parents--that pile is on my desk. But as you can see I don't hang things on my walls. Most of what I hang is student created and anchor charts they use. I don't hang things up student don't take the time to reference. I'm starting small groups tomorrow.

This year I have gone back to student binders. I want them to be way more responsible for everything. I don't want to be the holder of any of it. I'm hoping that this idea will help with building on Growth Mindsets, IEP input, and increase student buy-in on IEP goals. My district is huge on student voice and choice and innovation, my hope is that with the Personalized Learning Plans students will demonstrate all that and more. I'm looking forward to taking this idea out of a spin with them. I have shared this idea with my Speech/Language Pathologist and came up with some great ideas to build in a week of finish projects, progress monitoring, finish student choice assessments, and build in student driven next steps. Finger crossed this works.

 I created student snapshot folders for each of my IEP students for their grade level teachers. I'm hoping this way they leave them for guest teachers. I'm also hoping that it will help when it comes to planning and documenting accommodations. The district IEP system prints out the IEP information, I added Avery labels and documentation samples that I have found over the years to give them ideas or they could use their own. Many said they loved having the information in once place, so time will tell if this really does help them out at the end of the day.

I have one bulletin board in my room. I have been trying to get it to be interactive-last year that didn't happen.  So this year, I have tried to tie into our data binders and hope to have them use it on a monthly bases to show how well they meet their IEP goals.  As a building one theme we are focusing on is mindset. This idea ties into the teacher rubric. Last year my students worked on determination and resilience since many just give up. I think it really helped get them to grow as readers and work. I'm looking forward to see what they do with the idea of mindset and create pictures to support what it means to them.  Most of what I have been doing over the summer is working through ideas that would get them to think about what kind of voice and choice they want and creating a space that supports this thinking. 

Happy Tuesday!

Show and Tell-July Linkly

Good Morning, today I'm linking up with Stephanie at "Forever in 5th Grade," to bring you a glimpse into my end of summer planning for my Special Education Resource Room. This year I'll be working with 2nd and 3rd grades. Many of these guys were with me last year. Most of my thinking has been around how I want to strength or change systems I had in place last year like communicating with parents and making it authentic for students.
I have an crazy teacher rubric, this year I'm going to swing to the fences. I have in the past talked about Personalized Learning and how I'm working to use the thinking in s Resource Special Education room. I'm adding a Data Binder this year. 

Each student will have a binder where they will keep their data, Personalized Learning Plan, rubrics, and week reflection plans. This information will be used to info IEP meetings and make it easier for students to crate a video of presentation for their IEP meetings. I also hope I can give students more responsibly like their books, progress monitoring materials, attendance, behavior, and what ever else I want them to hold on to. I chose to make the paper pieces match the divider tabs in the hopes it would help with organization and I could spend less time with missing pieces. 

This summer I had the privilege to be my nephew's nanny. We have spent the summer between the library and playing with water in the backyard. The animals are from the Vancouver aquarium. (I visited Vancouver in early June.)

I miss not sending home monthly newsletters to parents.  The twist I want to add is the students writing something each month that I can add to it as well. This idea will help with two things--increase parent communication and two help students to write to an authentic audience.  I'm looking forward to see what they do. They will also be contributing authors on the classroom website. I'm hoping since we use Google Sites this idea will not be all drama and something everyone will see of high value.

One thing that I added to my Data binders was a way for my students' for reflect on and take control of their learning and a perfect way to use it as a Formative Assessment. Last year to used Robert Marzano's Checking for Understanding. This is one of three versions I have in my Teachers pay Teacher store. Even though I'm keeping the same students just a grade older than last year--this version was perfect for them as first and second graders. This is perfect for students to self assess and reflect on their learning, you can target specific skills they say they are missing or confused or speed up you instruction because they've got it. You can buy it from my store-click on the picture.

New Teacher Support and Giveway

You have your first teaching job, what did you think about? If you’re like most people, you thought about making a difference in children’s lives, about helping them learn, making them think, “touching the future.” You didn’t think about IEPs, disinterested parents, students with behavior problems, or the isolation of being alone in a classroom with thirty students.

You weren’t wrong before you started teaching. Hang onto that idealism. But you may be finding out now that making it a reality is harder than you thought. Hopefully, these ideas will out you out.  The first thing I always do before jumping in head first or tackling a difficult situation I always remember to breathe. A deep yoga breath.

Unfortunately, many of us in the education profession are guilty of exacerbating the difficulties faced by new teachers. Handbooks and websites for beginning teachers often try to reassure you that teaching is simple or straightforward, offering quick solutions for simple problems — if you have this kind of “troublemaker,” deal with him this way; try this handy checklist to “get organized.”

So now what?

Ask your team mate. They will help you find the resources, support, ideas, and advice you need to make your classroom the rewarding, positive learning environment you want it to be.

Keep this in mind

Teaching is hard.

Like anything worth doing, good teaching takes work and experience. You can’t expect to walk into a classroom for the first time and immediately connect with every student, make everything clear to everyone and teach every child everything he or she needs to know. What you can do, though, is learn from the experience of successful teachers. Ask questions. Visit others. Ask for help!

You can’t go it alone. (And you don’t have to.)

Are you feeling isolated? Lonely? Many teachers believe that they can — or should — go it alone in the classroom. But you can’t, and you don’t have to. Our resources will help you take advantage of mentoring, learn to communicate more effectively with parents, colleagues, and administrators, and build the support network you need to grow as a teacher (and survive as a human being).

Every classroom is different.

Just as every student is unique, every teacher is unique, too — and every class and classroom is unique. There are no “one size fits all” solutions in teaching, and we don’t try to provide them. Instead, these articles give you the perspectives of real teachers who have faced problems like yours and overcome them. You’ll see how different teachers have used their own talents and teaching styles to be successful in a variety of environments.

Classroom management means solving problems before they occur.

Running your classroom is about more than just discipline. Experienced teachers know that effective classroom management begins before you ever meet your students and carries through every aspect of teaching. It’s about preventing problems, not just cleaning them up after they occur. Instead of looking at student behavior in isolation, our resources for new teachers consider it in the context of classroom design, curriculum, and instructional strategies. It's never perfect and always changes depending on your students. Get to know your students.

Remember to breathe and ask questions. The Colorado Tribe is giving away five meet up bags and five subscriptions to There will be five winners! The photo shows you what's in the meet up bags! Wow!!

Have a great week!

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June's Show and Tell

I'm linking up with Forever in 5th grade for June's Show and Tell to give you a peak into my classroom and summer planning. I've been very fortunate my school district provides summer professional development. In this case it aligns with our rubric--this is nice as I've been thinking of ways to provide more voice and choice within their time with me but still make a year or more growth on their IEP goals. This idea is great but I need to find some way to put it into action.
This idea of students given the opportunity of choice and voice has to be built in. Choice is a huge part of the teacher rubric. I started playing with this idea in May.  This is version three (i think) But it gives choice within how they provide answers to the big essential question. Nor does it provide me with any data to show growth on IEP goals. This is a problem.

Each pathway has the 4Cs (communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity) and a blank for a World Class Outcome (example-create meaning strategically) but I thinking instead of the WCO, it needs to be "Must Do's." Here I could list the the weekly IEP goal monitoring or items I need a student to complete before the end of the week


Showing IEP growth with voice and choice, I think will have to be done with student data binders. With students choosing which IEP goal they want to focus on, they will have to collect the data to match that goal. In looking at my current version students can choose: subject and they will show growth/mastery of the World Class Outcome (example-create meaning strategically) through a 4C (communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity). this idea should already be tied to IEP goals but not always plus there is some rubric scoring that gets done as well. I use Marizono's and have students self score but this idea only touches the tip of the iceberg. I would like to also self score for things like fluency and using comprehension strategies too. My district has rubrics I need to use that are embedded with the 4Cs. (Its not as much work as it seems but yes I'm working on streamlining it to be less and still get everything collected on a weekly basis.)

Creating "I can" statements for IEP goals. In many ways its interesting that my students have similar goals in reading, writing, and math--each with its own twist but basically the same. This will make it easy for me to create "I can" on labels so I don't have to write then and the students don't have to write then. My hope over time as they take ownership of these goals they have an active voice on what their new IEP goals should be. (This is a wild and very new idea for teachers and parents to grasp.)

I'm thinking student data binders will lead to both student graphing and goal tracking and a working portfolio students can use for IEP meetings. This is a new idea that has not been used before. This idea gives students a huge voice in what they have been doing and what directions they want to take their IEPs in.

I like the idea behind each student having a binder. I have done that in the past but I have not done the personalize learning plan tie that to an IEP and then in turn to IEP meetings. WOW!! That's a lot but I think in small groups students will make it their own and that in turn students will make more than a years growth. I see an action research project coming in the near future. Stay turned more details to come.

Have a great week.

May Show and Tell

  This week I'm linking up with Forever in 5th Grade to peek inside my room and what I have my students doing before Summer Break. 

Many of the projects they are working on are ideas for next fall. More district is wanting students to have more control over their learning while still making gains to meet IEP goals. (yes, I do know this idea is nuts-but...) The thing about personalized learning is working smarter not harder.
This was a fluency idea where students read a the photo app on an iPad. When they are done they send it to me by AirDrop, I upload it, and then they get to create the QR code on to add to their fluency data sheet. Each time they assess their learning. I have some that added a SMART goal to their reading fluency on top of their IEP goals--others do this to meet the goal of reading accuracy.

Back to that idea of personalized learning and a very difficult rubric to work with a  special education teacher,students are integrating technology, goal setting, and assessing their own learning.

My teacher rubric highly suggests learning should take place within the 4 Cs-Creativity, Collaboration, Critical Thinking, and Communication. In talking with my evaluator, he would like to see students pick their own IEP goals to focus on as well as make their own goals to meet the IEP goal. Wow! This is a month full and a lot to take on. This is been what several students have been playing with. This is the third version of this idea. The technology was added because of a specific line item on the rubric. This idea was created to kill as many line items from my rubric as possible and not overwhelm me at the same time. 

I had one student who decided she wanted to add reading fluency to her work. Which is the overall goal the district wants all students to do. She gave me the idea to take the fluency video (from above) and connect it to QR codes to track progress and create an artifact that could be shared with parents and administration. This idea as lends itself to having students be more active in IEP meeting even in the grades of kindergarten. It would note be overly difficult to help them create a slide show or some kind of presentation to share. Not sure about this idea but its coming.

I write all of my iPad menus with the app picture from the device. I helps me spend less time being the technology teacher and more time being a special education teacher.

Robert Marzano is someone that I get classroom help from when I'm looking for a way to move my students. The Checking for Understanding posters can be found at my Teacher pays Teacher store (Ocean Theme and K-2 Theme).  I use these to get students to tune into their own learning and help them to internalize the understanding of the learning target.

My summer reading list or should I say pile. Perhaps it's closer to wishful thinking I'll get through all of them.

-How to Plan Rigorous Instruction
-Visible Learning for Literacy
-Intentional Targeted Teaching: A Framework for Teacher Growth and Leadership
-Learning to Choose; Choosing to Learn
-The Art and Science of Teaching
-Conferring with Readers: Supporting Each Students' Growth and Independence
-DIY Literacy: Teaching Tools for Differentiation, Rigor, and Independence

Have a great week! Be sure to check everyone's May Show and Tell Blog Hop for more peeks into classrooms.

About Me

Welcome to my all thing special education blog. I empower busy elementary special education teachers to use best practice strategies to achieve a data and evidence driven classroom community by sharing easy to use, engaging, unique approaches to small group reading and math. Thanks for Hopping By.
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