Meet the Teacher


Powered by Blogger.

Glow Day Room Transformation

Classroom transformations are such a powerful way to get our students excited about learning.  Glow Day is no exception to this!  Let me tell you all about this AMAZING day!

10 Effective Strategies for a Chatty Class

Spring is here and we all have spring fever! Energy levels are higher.  Students seem restless.  Behaviors that have never been seen before appear.  And your once quiet class becomes chatty.
Every year I remind myself that this is normal. And to be expected
But that doesn’t mean we can’t remedy the situation.

In this blog post, I will share effective classroom management strategies for taming the talkative class.

Here is my golden rule when it comes to this:  Do not begin teaching until the class is quiet.  If you teach while students are talking, you are telling them that it is acceptable to talk. So stop.  Wait. Don’t continue until they are ready to learn.  Do not worry about the time.  If they take your time, take theirs.  You will only have to do this once or twice and they will get the message.

Fostering Relationships in the Classroom

We all know that research says students need to feel included, loved, and safe in the classroom to learn.  They also need to move.  Team Builders are the best way to incorporate both of these!
Positive relationships with teachers are important in supporting higher levels of self-esteem, higher academic self-efficacy, and more confidence in future employment outcomes (Ryan et al., 1994)

morning meeting activities

Hosting a Reading Restaurant

The Reading Restaurant was open this week and it was a hit! I served up some fabulous books and my first graders were totally engaged.
If you haven’t tried a book tasting yet, I highly recommend you give it a try! It’s easy to do and an inexpensive room transformation. 
All you need is great books, a serving tray, and if you want, a chef’s hat and apron, and tablecloths.

Early Number Sense

Number sense is an absolutely critical math skill.  Without number sense, computing and understanding relationships within numbers is difficult.  We all know students that know algorithms but have little understanding of the math involved. These students don’t know what to do if an algorithm goes wrong.  Some of them can’t even tell if the answer they got makes sense or not. This is why early number sense is critical.

math in first grade, maths, developing number sense

The Importance of Phonological and Phonemic Awareness

Research has shown that phonological and phonemic awareness are the #1 predictor of future reading success.  Being phonologically aware prepares children for later reading instruction in phonics, word analysis, and spelling (Adams, Foorman, Lundberg, & Beeler, 1998; Chard, Simmons, & Kameenui, 1998). But what is phonological and phonemic awareness?

phonological awareness

Making the Most of Small Group Instruction - Part 3: What are the Other Kids Doing?

These are always burning questions: How do I work with small groups of students? What is the rest of the class doing?  How do I create independence with my learners so my guided reading time will be uninterrupted?

guided reading, reading instruction in first grade, readers workshop

Making the Most of Small group Instruction, Part 2

I have said it before, but I truly believe small group time is the most important time of our day. Small groups are the backbone of my instruction because I can meet the needs of all of the learners in my classroom. Combined with whole class instruction and activities, small groups help me ensure my students master the standards and skills in deeper levels. 

My class size ranges from 18-26 students each year.  I usually have 6-8 groups that range from learning to read all the way to already reading so I am switching gears a lot. In my December blog post, I explained the structure of my guided reading groups.   This post is going to explain to you how students arrive to small group while I am maximizing the time we have together.

managing guided reading, managing small groups in first grade

Relatonships Matter! Part 2 Discipline

When trying to build relationships with students, discipline can get in the way.  Behavior programs or clip charts negate any positives you are doing in your classroom.  When you pass through the halls at school and hear "Pull a red ticket" or "You're on yellow now" or “You lost a point on Dojo” you can bet that student forgot every good thing that happened that day.  Hear it enough and it truly affects a child’s self-esteem.  So many times the kids that have trouble are truly not able to control their behavior.  After 23 years of teaching I am convinced that negative consequences, timeouts, and punishment just make bad behavior worse.
no more behavior charts