I started a new position after break and am back in a second grade classroom (woohoo!), but at a new school site where the focus is on balanced literacy. Thankfully, my class has their routines and procedures down, but there are some things in their previous schedule that I want to tweak. I feel like I've been working on this forever, but here's what I'm going to attempt to do:
ELD: This is the time that we teach English Language Development to our English learners. All of the 2nd grade students are divided up based on their proficiency level.
Morning Routine: The previous teacher had this in place and I've just decided to keep it. Students come in from ELD, turn in their folders, and write their homework down in their agenda. We also do the pledge and recite the Learner's Creed.
Interactive Notebooks: I am trying to limit my amount of whole class instruction to this time. I plan to use interactive notebooks in math and language arts during this time. My goal right now is to do a math lesson during this time on Mondays and Wednesdays and a language arts lesson on Tuesdays and Thursdays. After we add to our notebooks, I have an activity for students to complete in pairs/groups.
Calendar: Another area that was set up by the previous teacher in which the kids are great at running themselves. Once I get my work stations nailed down, I plan to revamp this to hit on more standards. Right now it's great with even/odd and place value.
Work Stations: Here is where my major overhaul is going to occur. I plan to do more small group instruction and will be having kids go to work stations each day. On Monday and Wednesday they will be engaging in language arts stations and on Tuesday and Thursday they'll be engaging in math stations.
- Language Arts Stations: I have three 20 minute rotations and 6 work stations (independent reading, partner reading, respond to reading, word work, writing, and games). During this time, I'll meet with my guided reading groups. I plan to make bookmarks similar to these created by Jessica at Literacy Spark. This way my kiddos still have choice, but I know that they are engaging in a variety of activities during the week.
- Math Stations: I have four 15 minute rotations with 4 work stations (independent practice, facts, journal/problem solving, games). I'll also be pulling small groups to work on specific skills as well as differentiate the material we're learning.
Interactive Read Aloud: Here I'll be using think alouds to model comprehension strategies. For the text, I alternate between our reading series and children's literature.
Shared Reading: I will be using poetry and our content area textbooks for shared reading. I plan to focus on fluency and phonics with the poetry and on comprehension, vocabulary, grammar, and punctuation with the textbooks.
Writing: I use Write from the Beginning which is a writing program that uses thinking maps to organize writing. I have an older version (before common core) and I'm going to adapt the materials that I have to focus on opinion writing next trimester. Right now, we're finishing up our how to unit.
Word Study: My kiddos love to do word sorts so I spend this time exploring spelling patterns while also reviewing high frequency words.
Social Studies/Science: I wish I had more time to teach this, but I don't. I love the content areas because kids loving learning about this stuff! I try to make this as interactive as possible so we have a lot of discussions. I also try to make foldables for each unit (Hopefully I'll be able to share pictures of those soon)!
So that's pretty much my revamped schedule. Some afternoons are different due to shortened days and specials. The work stations are new (to me and the kids), but I'm excited to introduce them and see how it goes. Any tips or advice?