Monday, January 9, 2012

A Special Monday Morning

This morning was quite special as we welcomed a new friend to our classroom!

We began the reading block by reviewing the expectations for the spelling packet and reading logs. Additionally, we added these assignments to our homework planner. Both the spelling packet and the reading log is due this Friday!

Then we began our unit on test taking strategies. I explained to the students that some adults feel that teaching to tests is not a good thing. While I see their point, I think learning test taking strategies is important because they will take tests for the rest of their lives. I gave examples including teachers needing to take tests in order to receive continuing education credits to keep their teaching licences and mechanics needing to take tests to keep their ASE accreditation.

The strategy we focused on today was monitoring our reading for meaning. We discussed needing to recognize when we are not understanding what we read and then doing something about it. Usually, students will need to go back and reread but sometimes they might need to pay closer attention to punctuation (which effects phrasing), text features and defining unknown words. Then we read and discussed an informational piece called Butterfly of Thailand.

This afternoon, while I meet with reading groups, the students will review their state graphic organizer and put finishing touches on it. They will also complete multiple choice questions that go with Butterfly of Thailand by highlighting the answer in the test BEFORE selecting an answer from the list. After that, the students will complete a WOW worksheet for attire (clothing). Finally, if time permits, they will work on their reading logs.

In math, we practiced solving division word problems by writing a number sentence and drawing a picture to solve it. While the students practiced independently, I pulled a small group to teach finding multiples and factors of numbers, a fourth grade concept. There is a worksheet (division word problems) for homework.

Following music, lunch and outdoor recess the students worked independently while I met with my new reading groups.

A note about READING GROUPS...the students took the MAP-R on Friday. Based on the data I received from this computerized reading assessment, I have made some changes in reading group. Please ask your child in their group has changed. I MAY make a few more changes over the course of this week.

I do have scores for each child and will gladly send you the results, for you child. PLEASE email me ( if you would like your child's results or have any questions or concerns. I look forward to hearing from you!

Reading Groups:
I met with all 3 reading groups BRIEFLY to preview their newest book. We discussed the book's genre and I gave a short summary of each.

Crabs: Anna, Grandpa and the Big Storm
Lions: Stay Away From Simon
Bears: Sarah, Plain and Tall

We ended the day by describing the sound and vibrations produced by rulers at given lengths of 3, 6 and 9 inches.

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