I have to say that my reading block is a great part of my day. The kids have individual reading time, then buddy reading or literature circles, and stations. I am pulling guided reading groups throughout this time. I love being able to spend this time with small groups of students. I love listening to them read and helping them to enjoy it.
This is the most routine part of our day. Here are my basic guided reading plans.
It also includes our online intervention tool -- iStation. I have another teacher who comes in to work with some of my students and I love her! We are required to keep a log of our guided reading time and turn them in every six weeks. This is the template I made.
I am also happy to say that I have my kids read around the room during individual reading times. I made these "reading spot" signs and taped them to the floor. (Actually, I need to redo several. Chairs and little feet can cause a lot of damage.)
I am having some trouble loving teaching this year. I have a good class, so I don't think that is the problem. I just keep feeling beaten down by all the demands that are sometimes unrealistic.
I have some issues with some of our assessments, because I don't think they are developmentally appropriate. I hate having to beat the kids down with reading passages, when we should just be focusing on reading with fluency and comprehension. Oh no... there has to be some mandated assessment that "measures" what they are learning.
I am seeing a big discrepancy in the numbers. Not only do I feel like the worst teacher in the world when my class scores low, but then I have to find a way to share the low scores with my students. That is a tricky thing. I want them to take the assessments seriously (because they will be taking them throughout their academic career), but I don't want them to have a panic attack whenever we take it or feel horrible about their performance. Ugh.
I think the worst part about all of this is I can't do anything to change it. I am just the teacher.
We are really battling bad attitudes and disrespect at my school. Last year we implemented R-time. It is a really great resource for teachers to talk, model, and encourage practice of good manners.
Watch this video if you are interested. I think it is making a big difference for us. It helps us deal with the ugly issues of disrespect, bullying, bad manners, and making new friends. We do a lesson once a week, or as needed, on Monday mornings. I would encourage everyone to check it out!
My goal is to take pictures of my students at literacy stations this week and share them this weekend!