Thursday, September 24, 2015

A favorite activity with my 5th graders is to have them write an essay:"I read because..." You can do this as a stand alone activity or in conjunction with any unit. I actually got the idea from an essay of the same name by Richard Peck.

“I read because one life isn't enough, and in the page of a book I can be anybody;
I read because the words that build the story become mine, to build my life;
I read not for happy endings but for new beginnings; I'm just beginning myself, and I wouldn't mind a map;
I read because I have friends who don't, and young though they are, they're beginning to run out of material;
I read because every journey begins at the library, and it's time for me to start packing;
I read because one of these days I'm going to get out of this town, and I'm going to go everywhere and meet everybody, and I want to be ready.”

― Richard PeckAnonymously Yours

You can also read the essay "Why I am a Writer" by Pat Mora in the "Autobiographies" W and M unit. Then have them answer her by telling why they are readers.

I love to hang these in the hall around conference time as the parents LOVE seeing them and other teachers always comment on what the kids write.

I have also invited other teachers to include their essays.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Using Google Classroom, Doctopus, and Goobric

As promised I created some screencasts to hopefully serve as a guide to those of you who would like to use Google Classroom, Doctopus, and Goobric to organize and assess assignments.  As I created these.  I realized I was using resources that I had gotten from others and I thought you should have access to those as well and I should give credit to the people who made these amazing things.

Dana Lavesque and Randy Stall have great resources on there Instructional Technology Page.  Check it out for more info on getting started with Google Classroom Etc.

The amazing Nate Ubowski from Heritage High created this doc for a session at InnEdCo this summer.  I refer to it OFTEN for all things Doctopus and Goobric.  These tools are amazing but if you don't use them everyday you may forget things and this doc will remind you of what to.

Here are the links to the 3 screencasts I made to help you use these tools.
Getting Started with Classroom
Making a Rubric "Goobric" friendly
Using Doctopus and Goobric

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Reading Response Rubric Follow Up

So I did a bit of research ... looking at several of your classroom websites as well as the general internet, and using what I found I created this DRAFT of a CCSS based rubric for written responses to reading.  I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your feedback/input.  Feel free to make changes or comments as my hope is this can be a useful tool for many of us.

P.S.  If you want, I can show you how to use a chrome extension called "Doctopus" to use this as way to efficiently grade responses kids turn in on Google docs ... but only if you help make this good! haha :-)

Reader's Response Rubric -- DRAFT

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Reading Response Rubrics??

Does anyone have a rubric they use to grade written responses to reading? I've been using the same one forever and as I pulled it out again this year I realized it left a lot to be desired as far as being aligned to CCSS and giving useful feedback to my kids.  I'd love any and all examples of what you use!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

E is for Effort!

What does effort look like?
One of the things I do at the beginning of every year is to create a poster with my students of "What does effort look like in a 4th grade Gt classroom?" or a 3rd grade? or a 5th grade? or an advanced math class?

We have the best conversations and they have wonderful ideas to share. I add all their ideas to my poster and then put it up in the room. We often refer back to it for a "little reminder" or just a "great job!"
I am doing this activity this Friday, so I will post pictures!