One Busy Teacher

Community Building
Three days down and my students and I are learning a lot about one another. Our theme for this week is "My Identity" with a focus on building a community in the classroom. On the first day students took a survey using Google docs to tell me a little about themselves. Tuesday, they participated in a brown bag sharing activity, which was a hit. This is the first year I did this and think I will do it from now on. They were so excited to share things that represented them, and the students who were nervous just asked me to share for them. Today, we began with morning meeting something else I wanted to start last year, but didn't do and am sorry I didn't. Our classroom community is really coming along and they are very eager in the morning to sit on the rug and share. BTW they love the crate seats. Those are a hit too!!

On Monday the students completed a Reading interest Survey, completed a classroom Scavenger Hunt, and selected a book from the library. I then read aloud Thank You, Mr. Falker and focused on how the character changes in the story based on the setting.BTW you can also listen to the story by a celebrity on StorylineOnline We then made a text to self connection on the difficulties we may have as readers and reflected on what our goal would be. I introduced the Cafe board, had them write their name on a sticky note, and then students decided what their goal would be for the next few weeks by placing their sticky note on the Cafe board. On Tuesday, students wrote to a journal prompt and we shared in our family circle. Next, I began with a read aloud using Crickwing again focusing how the character changes in the story based upon the setting, and then made a text to self connection on being bullied or doing something nice for others.

Today, our main focus was a writing sample. Students were given a writing topic, which was read aloud and then began brainstorming and writing their rough draft. Students will be scored using a rubric on capitalization and punctuation only.

Students took a pre-assessment today, which will determine which leveled Spelling list they will receive on Monday. This is a great way to differentiate.

So tomorrow, the plans are to do a journal prompt. Compare and contrast the first two read alouds. Next, I will read Chrysantheum and model again how to make a text to self connection. Students will then research for homework the meaning and origin of their name. Then they will begin working in small groups for the remainder of the time reading, finishing their rough drafts, copying their leveled Spelling list, beginning Word Work, completing a journal, and using the computers to complete a final survey.

Whew! I am a busy teacher.


  1. Sounds like you're off to an awesome start:) I see you're using CAFE already.....are you going to do Daily 5? I wamt to do CAFE too (will do) but I had a few people suggest I start with Daily 5. I think I have been unknowingly doing CAFE for years because I have always taught those reading strategies:) We are in week 2 and going strong:) Love all the techie websites you use and recommend:)

    4th Grade Frolics

  2. Yes you are a busy teacher! I heard about the book Chrysanthemum on the Kidd Kraddick morning radio show. Kelly, from the show mentioned that she read it to her daughter and recommended it :-) I hope your first week has been a great one!


  3. Hi Erica,
    I loved reading about your first week. I hope you receive your grant items soon because I know you are well prepared to put them to good use. You might want to join The Daily 5 wiki There is also a chat on Twitter.


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