Student centered classroom! Are looking for some guidance in improving your teaching skills? Here is a list of 5 ways to focus your instruction!! Reading, Writing, Math, Assessment, and MORE!Are looking for some guidance in improving your teaching skills? Here is a list of 5 ways to focus your instruction!! Reading, Writing, Math, Assessment, and MORE!
Student Centered Classrooms: Focused Foundation!
The art of teaching is combining “the what” and “how” effectively. A few weeks ago, I wrote about the need for careful planning. You can read about this HERE. When we plan lessons, we have to have “the end” in mind. We need to ask ourselves, “As a result of these lessons, what do I want my students to be able to do?” If my students are expected to reach a benchmark or behavior at a certain time of the year, I need to make certain my instructional practices help build the student towards this goal. The other day I got this message from a teacher and she gave me permission to share it with you:
“I just wanted to take a minute to let you and Deanna know something awesome! I work at a small charter school in XXXX. I teach a k/1 multiage class. We are a TAP school–you may not be familiar but basically each year we are given a value-added score. It’s based on a scale of 1-5. 1 being when students regress, 3 is when they show a years growth and a 5 is showing significant growth. These are based on MAP scores. For the last two years, I’ve been a solid 3 which I was thrilled with! I’ve been using your Writing Workshop for years and last year I added your Guiding Readers and adjusted your Guiding Firsties math so it could meet the needs of my Kinders as well. I just heard that my last year’s value added was a 5!! Thanks so much for developing an awesome curriculum in all areas! I saw my kids grow SO much last year!”
There are a LOT of ways to bake a cake! Deanna Jump and I have spent most of our teaching careers reading about “best practices” then trying things out in our own classrooms. We have been blessed to have the freedom to teach to the needs of our students. Over the last few years, we have co-written curriculum that has been adopted by thousands of teachers and hundreds of districts.
Student Centered Classrooms: Writers Workshop
Back in 2011, we created our writers workshop curriculum. We took everything we had learned about writing and combined it with our own classroom experiences! The results have been so rewarding!
Read more about how we run our writer’s workshop! I have blogged many times about it over the years and you can catch up by clicking below:
Shop our Writers Workshop Curriculum:
- Writers Workshop: Writing Through the Years for Kindergarten and First Grade
- Writers Workshop: Writing Through the Years for Second Grade
Student Centered Classrooms: Engaging Readers in Text
We want students to fall in love with the texts they read. We don’t want to teach comprehension skills, we teach them right away in kindergarten!
Read more about our Engaging Readers through interactive read alouds:
Shop our Engaging Readers curriculum:
- Engaging Readers Reading Comprehension for Kindergarten and 1st Grade
- Engaging Readers Reading Comprehension for Kindergarten and 2nd Grade
Student Centered Classrooms: Hands On Math Learning
Students do not learn math by filling out worksheets or by looking at a whiteboard. Math needs to be explored with hands-on activities. That is why our math curriculum is student centered.
Shop our math curriculum:
Student centered classroom!: Spirally review skills
As you know, not every one of your students is ready to learn the skills when the skills are first introduced.
MATH JOURNALS are a great way to spirally review skills each day. Have you taught a skill in October and all the students “have it”… then when you revisit the skill a few months later, they look at you like they have NEVER heard it before? Bringing skills back again and again, help to make the learning permanent. Your first-grade teachers will thank you! Our math journals take just a few minutes a day and the payoff is HUGE!
Read more about Daily Math Journals by clicking the link below:
Shop Daily Math Journals:
Each morning we start our day with these Read Write Trace Glue activities. We can quickly review letter formation, spacing, capital letters, sight word reading, directionality, punctuation, and details in our drawings. This is part of our morning work and my students love figuring out the sentence.
Student centered classroom!: Make it Predictable!
Make it easy for students to focus on their learning. Once they know how to play a particular game, you can just switch out the themes!
You can find these centers by clicking: Math and Literacy Center Bundle
We love these math fluency games.
Have some fun!
Student Centered Classroom: Target your interventions!
At the beginning of the year, I sort of have a “cast the net” sort of approach. But at this point of the year, it is time to zero in on what students know and what their next steps in learning should be. I start with this! (I added the highlighted boxes).
It is really easy to customize these pages. I made text boxes. You just need to type in the 5 letters you want to focus on… the rest of the page automatically fills in for you. You can create a full page in less than 10 seconds… REALLY!
The same exact thing goes for sight words. This page took me literally 10 seconds to prepare!
Now is the time to make a plan!