Sunday, January 6, 2013

Managing Small Groups and Computer

Whew!  It has been a whirlwind of a few weeks.  Due to some family issues and just feeling BLAH I haven't been posting much!

Since I FINALLY go back to school tomorrow I was updating my generic substitute plans.  I typically do this once a quarter as my schedule seems to ALWAYS be changing.  I lay these out on my desk each day before I leave.  They easily can use these to make it through any day.  I also have emergency plans and filler worksheets out behind my desk that they can always use as well.

(I took a screen shot but it isn't loading correctly- I'll try to fix it tomorrow.)

Going through my generic plans made me reflect a bit on how I manage my reading small groups and computers/ daily 5.  For the past 3 years I have slowly tried to make transitions more smooth and to control behavior a little bit better. 

For computer usage- I have tried allowing computer work as a reward for finishing work first, make it a daily 5 rotation and having a list of students for each computer and once one student was finished- they would go tap the next student on the list during work times to go get on the computer.

For groups- I have been mostly organized but didn't tell my students my plan for meeting.  some figured out the pattern of meeting on Tuesday/ Thursday but I never posted my group schedule for all to see.

This year I LOVE having a completely structured computer, daily 5 and small group schedule.  I have my schedule posted so that each student can see it and refer to it often during the day.  The first draft took hours to make because I took into account student strengths, weaknesses and identified my socially gifted (lol) kiddos.

Here is a peak at my schedule:
Alright- it will be posted hopefully tomorrow because I cannot get the pop up to upload images to work correctly.


To make the schedule I first took into account my pull out students and when they would be leaving the room.  I knew that I could not teach mini-lessons while they were out.  So any holes in the schedule are whole group mini-lessons.

Writing Schedule-
*I decided to take a small group of writing students each day for the first 15 minutes of independent writing.  These students know immediately to bring their things and I sit with them at my table. 

Reading Schedule-
*I schedule Read to Someone time first for all students because they just went a long time working quietly during writing.  I also make sure that my higher level readers and students that need more social interaction are available to participate.
-My reading intervention students are out of the room at this time.
-I schedule some of my more distracted students on the computers to work on Raz-Kids during this time.
-My reading program comes with 6 decodable reader books.  I have 6 students keep these in their book browsing boxes.  Each day during this time- they bring their book up and we use it as fluency practice.  These are my "bubble kids" and need fluency help.  We are a loud group but it doesn't matter because read to someone is a little louder as well.  After we read the story they go read it in partners so that I can call up and work on RTI lessons with students.

*I schedule Read to Self next.  Students are typically all spread out and already have their book browsing boxes out.
-I schedule some of my struggling or unmotivated readers on the computer to work on Raz-Kids.  These are often kiddos that appear to be reading but are really just turning pages during read to self.

*I schedule Work Work last.  Right before we have chanted the phonics dance/ spelling work/ word study and it is a way for students to go back to their seat and work. 
-Students first have to finish the daily word sort and then have word work choice.
-I schedule some of my higher level readers/ spellers on the computer to get on Raz-Kids because they often don't need as much word work practice. (NOTE- all students on the computer schedule are told that they have a choice to complete the whole group activity if they feel that they need the practice or they can get on the computer.  Sometimes I have to make that choice for them.  :))
-I schedule to work with my students that need help with words during this point.  I first help them complete their sort then we complete a reading lesson. 

We end our morning with a reflection meeting where we discuss what we learned, something great we did and how we did on the goal from the day before and finally we come up with a goal for the next day.  This is a very important part of keeping my kiddos accountable and giving them their own purpose to work each day.

I also have students use the computer during morning work and during clean up time at the end of the day. 

Students know where and when they are going places, transitions are quick and I feel like I get the most out of my literacy block by scheduling.  Yes- I have to tweak it when my students leave my reading groups- but it only takes a few minutes to switch people around.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Monday tomorrow!  I'm looking forward to see my 22 little smiling faces!  This is typically the point in the year that they just blossom and start gaining so much knowledge.  I LOVE this time of the year!  :)


1 comment:

  1. I head back tomorrow. Thanks for posting your schedule. It helps to see what others are doing in their classrooms. Happy New Year!