Saturday, October 27, 2012

Student Data Notebook

Teachers rely on data and observations to make decisions about our students daily. I spend more time tracking and analyzing data assessments every year. My lessons are all based on the data! I'm sure it's the same for you all too. While the data gives me get insight to my students, it can be overwhelming and time consuming. 
During the last nine weeks last year, I wanted to try something different. If it worked, I would save some time and if not, there was nothing lost!  So, I decided to see if the charts and graphs would help the students to see their growth. 
I was amazed at what happened as students began being accountable for recording their fluency scores each week on a graph. The students began compare one reading to the next and setting their own goals! I had students reaching goals they set for themselves, which were sometimes way beyond what I would have set for them myself. It was a great experiment, and I am ready to try it with this class. Now that the first nine weeks have end, it's time to give it a whirl! 
I would love to know how you track student data and if you have the students track it themselves. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

EEKK! Spiders!

Spiders, spiders, and more spiders! While I love teaching about spiders, I am burnout on them this year.  One week of plans turned into two weeks since my kids were loving learning all about spiders!
We started out with a reading of The Spider and The Fly by . My kids always love this book. We created a story map together. 
Then I led into informational text about spiders. We began with our wonderings. Each student was sent off to record 2 things they wondered about spiders. We charted our wonderings.
At the end of the two weeks, the students wrote what they learned. We added this to our anchor chart.
This was our first attempt at wondering and learning. It really gave me a glimpse of where my students' thinking was and where we need some guiding. 

We read a bunch of books on spiders and viewed some videos. They just could not get enough! 
I had to bring the spiders into math. Since we had been working on part-part-whole (and I failed to find enough plastic spiders to use as manipulatives), I had the students cut and color this cute little spider to use. The first two days, the students used them with mats.
On the third day, they had to create their own addition sentences using dice and the spiders. 

I also introduced graphing with the spider theme.
We compared narrative text and informational text. I was really surprised at the comparisons my students were able to make, all on their own!
As always, we had to complete a Can-Have-Are organizer. 
 I love that while the students were able to use the group chart for information, several kids wrote about things they learned that really stuck with them. Of course, I don't have a picture of those ones! 
The students took all of their learning and compiled it into a written piece. 

It has definitely been a webbed out theme on spiders! You can grab some freebies I created last year here. Or you can check out the revised unit here

Now we are Going Batty!

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