Sunday, November 16, 2014

November 17, 2014

Creating DIFFERENTIATED Math Assignments in Front Row

Thank you to Sarah Ganus for sharing this great tip with me, so I can pass it along to the staff! Your desire to share with your colleagues is one reason I LOVE teaching. I am thankful for teachers who value the growth of others, not just students. This reminds me of that saying, "You're only as strong as your weakest link."

The Printable page in Front Row allows teachers to create meaningful math worksheets for every student in his or her class. Front Row gives the option to print both Individualized Practice and Standards-Based Practice, depending upon what you want to accomplish that day.

Individualized Practice
The Individualized Practice sheets are created based on the skill (standard or sub-knowledge) on which each student in a class is currently working. With one click of the mouse, you will have a PDF document with a personalized printable for every student.

Once you select the domain and click on "Generate (Domain Name) PDF" button, a new tab will open that has a different printable for every student!

After your students are finished practicing, you can check their answers using the answer keys that are generated for each student and located at the bottom of the document. Even if two students are both working on the same skill (3.NBT.2-2.0), they receive printables with different problems.

Since the printables are completely individualized, students are able to work at their own level.

If students work on the same skill for a long time and have difficulty moving on, they will constantly receive different printables to practice that one skill. Since the numbers and questions are different each time, each printable will be different than the time before.

Monday, November 10, 2014

November 10, 2014

This past week I had the opportunity to observe a 1st grade teacher named Ashley Read, who I had the opportunity to get to know in my Valor class this summer. I was impressed by her intentional use of vocabulary with her students. For example, “What does being present look like?” and “I will wait until everyone is present until I begin.” Obviously, she has taught her students that “present” means being attentive. What a positive, up-beat way to remind students to be on task WITHOUT saying it in a negative way! This made me start thinking, in general, how important it is that EVERY SINGLE WORD we say to ANYONE needs to be intentional, because it IMPACTS our relationship with them.

Likewise, our ACADEMIC vocabulary is even more important. There is a great resource called “lead4ward” that we will be working with in PLC's this year. You will find a comprehensive menu of all grade levels by clicking here. Note that there is an ACADEMIC VOCABULARY section for each subject listed for each grade level. This section provides a list of the academic vocabulary that is included in K-5 grade level TEKS, and which is also used in STAAR assessments. We can help support our students’ success by assuring we are using the correct academic vocabulary that our students will be held accountable for. So often, our students may fully understand the concepts they are being tested on, but academic vocabulary that they are not familiar with can get them off track!

I hope you will take the time to review the academic vocabulary for the content areas you teach in all grades, K-5. When we intentionally teach the vocabulary to our students and then hold high expectations for them to learn and utilize the correct vocabulary themselves, we are working together as a campus team to ensure success for ALL students!

Monday, November 3, 2014

November 3, 2014

In my opinion, Cannon is above the district learning curve when it comes to using Twitter, Facebook and blogs to communicate about your classrooms! The use of social media creates an atmosphere of transparency that helps to build relationships. I love to share with other liaisons the use of your weekly blogs - you set the standards high. I am impressed!!

Speaking of blogs, I am in the process of creating my own blog. As part of my blog, I will be uploading my section of the Cannon News FLASH called Coaching Corner. I will notify you asap when my blog is ready, so that you will know how to access and subscribe to it, so that you can be notified of when I post things to my Learning Liaison site that might be helpful. (I like the blog format because you can find things easier through the “labels/tags”.) I will be mindful of the titles, so you do not waste time reading something that does not apply to you.

I will be participating for the first time as a co-host with the GCISD Twitter chat on Thursday. Join us on 11/6 @ 8:30-9:30 pm for Learning Outside the Classroom with @sushi155@angiebakke & @Lisa_BrownGCISD #gcisdchat

Twitter shortcuts I am learning to use:
  • Ts = teachers
  • Ss = students
  • w/ = with
  • B4 = before
  • b/c = because
  • BTW = by the way
  • DM = Direct Message
  • Thx = thanks
  • RT = Re-Tweet
  • TIL = Today I Learned​
  • IMO = In my opinion

Below are some of the Twitter names that I used to inspire my instruction last year:

ELA: @MrSchuReads, @literacydocent, @IRAToday, @ProfessorNana @AmyRass, @colbysharp, @nerdybookclub, @pennykittle

Authors: @barbaraoconnor, @PatriciaPolacco,

Technology: @SkypeClassroom, @TeacherApps, @AuntyTech @mattbgomez, @TechNinjaTodd

I would love to know more about your favorites in the areas of motivation, STEM, math and using technology in the classroom. We will be sharing these in our next round of PLCs. ​