Tuesday, November 30, 2010

We Did It!

We made a big structural change in our reading/writing time today. We moved to what we are calling LAB (language arts block) rather than separate reading and writing workshops. We will do a focus lesson at the beginning and then have almost an hour and a half for the kids to meet with us for guided reading, write independently, and do their work station (reading center). Our hope is that they will have responsibility for their learning, thrive on the choice, and we'll all have more learning time due to fewer transitions.

Yesterday we took time to think about something we are each good at and how we got good at it and how we can get better. We listed the ideas they thought of. I was really impressed with their thoughts. We tied this to how we will become better readers and writers - a theme we plan to continue to hit all year. But I was still a bit terrified about how today would go.

It went swimmingly! The kids were so excited about it. It seems we had the structures in place to make things work and they did. I know it has only been one day and I am knocking on wood, crossing my fingers, and anything else I can think of. But I am so excited by the possibilities! I am thrilled by the responsibility these kids took on today.

I did put up a few of our favorite characters with speech bubbles as well. I'm hoping (possibly foolishly) that these little reminders will help out when kids lose stamina at times.


Teri-K said...

I'm curious as to how you've restructured. How has your schedule changed, and why do you think it's better?
Thanks for the follow up - I'm very interested in what others teachers are doing in their classrooms.

Sarah said...

Yay for successes and victories! I'll cross my fingers with you too. Oh and I love your Mo Willems characters with their encouraging speech bubbles :)

Frau M. said...

I love, love, love the characters, and their encouraging words!

Kids, Canines, and Chaos said...

LOVE it! My schedule this year has reading/writing in the am and then our workshop time (think three group rotations and reading interventions) in the pm. It is hard having them separate, as we can't always continue with the stamina from the morning. Often I have to re-read exerpts from our text in order to extend. We had to give up workshop immediately after in order to continue having recess before lunch. Boo. I wanted both!

I ran in Annapolis. Were you running with Girls on the Run? I'm a coach and one of the girls needed a running buddy.

I'm thinking we just need to meet up some other time. I'd love to have coffee and pick your brain! I know we'd have SO many things to share!