Saturday, June 23, 2012

Daily 5 Chapter 2!

Chapter 2
From Management to Principled Habits
As we being to take a closer look at the Daily 5, we will be taking a closer look at:


1. Do you trust your students? How do you build this trust? Are you able to trust them and allow them to be independent throughout all aspects of your day? Are you going to be able to stay out of their way?
Taking the time to build trust in any classroom is essential. Actually taking the time to devote enough time to this is critical. Trusting children is the foundation that makes teaching children how to become independent. When children learn how to be truly independent, the teacher is able to focus on instruction. I think the key here is explicit teaching with clear expectations, modeling and understanding that the role of reteaching and modeling is a critical step to teaching children to be independet learners that we trust as they are working independently. For me, this means sometimes I need to slow down. I struggle with slowing down... Also, I feel like young learners and ELL children need plenty of visuals as a reference for expectations when they are working independently.
2. How much choice do you give your students throughout the day? Do you go over your daily schedule with your students or is it just 'posted' in the room?
My daily schedule is posted in the classroom. In the beginning of the year we use it daily. I use it as a visual when we discuss different parts of our day or what we will be doing. At some point in the year this no longer is necessary to use on a daily basis because we all know the progression and parts of the day. If we have a special event or our schedule changes, we refer to the schedule. During the year when new children arrive, we use the schedule again.

I believe that choice can be motivating. I believe in choice within boundaries in kindergarten. My children have choice within the literacy and math blocks and I am working on how to give my children choice within other parts of the day.

3. How are you going to create that sense of community where students will hold each other accountable?
Creating a sense of community is very important to me as a teacher. I really think this is the most important thing for me and it goes along with trust. We all start a year as individuals in a new and fresh environment. We all want to belong and we all have to feel like we belong. I think of it as starting the story of "us." One of my favorite ways to begin to write the story of "us" has been using the How Full is Your Bucket? for kids book. To read my post on our Bucket Filler activity click on the image below.

I have seen different applications when using this book but what worked for me was filling a classroom community bucket. We started small and throughout the year our bucket got larger. We had many many talks about how it would take all of us to fill the bucket and how we each had to do our part. We looked at it as if we worked hard together we would celebrate in the end together. And each time we earned a marble to fill our bucket, we talked about it. Each time we sat down to add a marble and discuss it, it gave us a chance to revisit those expectations. To me this was a fair way of recognizing what was working well in the class and I could focus on the growth in independence of the group instead of just an individual. This is how we started writing the story!

Once our bucket was filled, we decided as a class that we wanted to make gingerbread snails that we had seen in a book. It was simple, it was fun and we all were happy. The reason I even mention creating a story of "us" is because I think it is so important and the foundation that everything else is built on. One of my students last year heard me foundly talking about the wonderful class I had the year before and he questioned me. He thought if they were so wonderful then how would anyone else measure up? And it is true those kids were my vegetable loving, garden growing, no tattle tailing, love to read, hug me to death and happy go lucky class of kindergartners... And he asked what his class was. And I said that only time would tell as we write the story of "us" and it would be a different story than "them." And as the year unfolds to does "our" story.
4. Student ownership in learning? How do you instill this in every child?
It's been said that teaching with a sense of urgency provides the best quality of instruction for our children. As it states in the book, when people understand the reason for a task, that serves a the rationale or force to keep them working. And think about it, don't we all just want to know...why? Isn't that one of the very first questions a young child will ask? I believe we instill this in our children when we understand that this is a necessary part of each lesson and it's really that simple.
5. Stamina! How are you going to build stamina with reading? independent work? Will you use a timer? Will you set goals?
I think this is one of my favorite parts of Daily 5. I love the process of building stamina so call me crazy. I have used timers four a couple of years just because it helped make the stamina building measurable. I also know that I have a tendency to get off track at times and this helped me. I really wanted the children to be able to have an accuarate measure of time as we were building stamina. We did set class goals and that was an important part of our community building BUT I have some work to do on helping the children set independent goals...another post, another day.
Be sure to head over to Kindergarten Smiles to link up and share your reflections and read what other teachers are saying! And be sure to link up with your own thoughts.

Kindergarten Smiles

Next week we are heading back over to visit Tammy at Live, Love, Laugh Everyday in Kindergarten for Chapter 3!

Live Love Laugh
In anticipation of hosting Chapter 6, I created this beginning sound game! Click on the link if you are interested.

And just in case you wanted to ask... my class last year was the raisin loving, science loving, calendar chant singing, try anything once, poetry reciting, art inspiring, map creating kindergarten kids!

For more fun visit us here!

1 comment:

Miss L said...

I've been following your blog FOREVER and I am awarding your blog the One Lovely Blog award :)
I am linking to your blog through your button so my followers can enjoy your blog too.

You can learn more about it on my blog
Miss L's Whole Brain Teaching

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