Saturday, September 13, 2008

One full week down!

We have been in class for 8 full days. (172 to go but, who's counting?) I have a fun and interesting class (read: a class full of challenges). I am so fortunate to have a wonderful assistant in my room all day. She is assigned to one of my students with autism. I am so lucky to have both the student and the para in my room! The student is awesome! I can't wait to get to know him better and learn all the lessons he has to teach me. His para is so helpful and knowledgeable! I am sure I will keep you updated on both of them this year!

We launched Daily 5 this week. We have read to self for three days. On Thursday the class made it to 3 sessions of 5 minutes. My Friday schedule is different and we only squeezed one session in. I LOVE looking out upon a classroom of 1st graders reading around the room.

In my welcome letter this summer I asked each child to bring a Forever Book with them to school. I have to tell you this has been a wonderful beginning to our reading journey! Each day I read one or two of these books. The child shares why the book is a Forever Book. This may include: where they got the book, who reads the book with them, what they like about the book, etc. They are becoming a community of readers. In the library this Friday, I heard at least two students recommend a book they found to another student. In both cases the book was recommended because of something they learned about this child from his/her Forever Book.

"Hey H, did you see this book? I think you would like it because you like books about horses like your Forever Book." (I love it when I try something new and it works!)

I am waiting to get all my computer permission slips turned in. I will then start posting our Forever Books and a quote from each child on why it is a Forever Book on our classroom blog. Yes, I am going to try to blog with the kids this year. It will start by sharing quotes from the kids about their Forever books and shared writing. I hope to also share writing samples and book recommendations. I will experiment as I go. As soon as I get the permission slips and post for the first time, I will add a link to this page.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

fudgsicles and folders

Let me start by saying, that this post is old. I just haven't found the time to post in quite a while. Two weeks ago teachers at our school visited a large trailer park in our district. We went bearing gifts (thus the name of the post).

About 10 teachers donated supplies (folders, crayons, pencils, glue sticks,notebooks,etc) to fill 150 bags. The trailer park advertised free ice cream and school supplies. It was an awesome evening. We had about 20 teachers, including our wonderful principal, and our school counselor attend the event. We gave away all but 2 of the bags.

We gave these bags to kids of all ages. I loved seeing the little ones open their notebooks and start drawing with their new crayons right there on the picnic tables. I also gave a bag to one of my former 5th grade students. He is a freshman this year!

Every time I attend one of these events I am inspired! I remember the reason I became a teacher and I'm reminded of what strong families these children come from. It is too easy to become judgemental when we don't venture out into the community in which we serve.