Sunday, August 9, 2015

Week 1

Just finished my first week as a teacher! Minus the whole teaching part.

One thing I didn't realize about being in a Title 1 position is that nothing can officially be done until w e have data to qualify students for our program. Because of a new testing system in our district, we won't actually get this data until mid-September. But, fortunately, we can unofficially work with students before that date to help them work on their reading skills before they're tested on them.

That being said, this past week was still a busy and crazy week. Our team was put to work doing non-professional duties -- car rider duty AM and PM (which we are assigned to all year) and Kindergarten lunch duty (which was just for this week.) I know there's a big debate about teachers in non-professional school roles, but that's probably for another day...or another blog...! After a full semester of every-day recess duty with 1st graders, it didn't seem so bad.

We also did some training for a couple of the many interventions we will be administering to our T1-ers this year. As of now, I am fully trained to administer the orange (kindergarten) kit of LLI, I know the basics of Phonics First, and I know the overall ideas of the blue, red, and green kits of LLI. There is still a long way to go for training. When will that get done? No idea.

However, the bulk of our week was spent organizing, labeling, and doing other clerical work. Since Title 1 is a government-funded program, our materials can only be used by the Title 1 staff and students. Therefore, we had to label each book twice to claim it as ours, look up the book level and sharpie it on the front, and organize every book into a bin, by level, and in ABC order. Then type each title into our inventory. And there were only about...oh, 300-400 new books (?!) Yes - it was a task! But a necessary one to make our year go smoothly, and I'm glad we were able to get it all finished before Jumpstart.

What's Jumpstart, you ask? It's that unofficial way of working with struggling readers. We have a list of student concerns, kids who might not be on-grade-level with reading. We will use push-in and pull-out models, depending on the grade, to work in small groups with these kiddos. We plan on using conferring and guided reading as our main strategies these first few weeks. On Monday, we will start going in and actually working with these students. We will be administering reading interviews and just getting to know them as kids and as readers.

I've developed some handy dandy forms, which I'm happy to share. One form is on my TPT store for $2, but the others are linked below for free. As I said before, it's so hard to find Title 1 resources, and I want to help change that as much as possible! We'll be using the reading interviews next week to get to know the students. The anecdotal forms will be used throughout the year to document what goes on in each session. Having a standardized form for note-taking should also help our team with collaboration and communication. Feel free to use these, I hope they help!

Excited for a fabulous year,
Miss T.

*FREE* Reading Interview for K-2
*FREE* Reading Interview for 3-5
*FREE* Anecdotal Notes Sheet for Groups of 4 or Less
*ONLY $2* Anecdotal Notes Sheet for Individuals

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