This week at Barrow I started off playing a sight word game with a student. We reviewed a few words and then matched the flashcards. Next, I pulled individual students in the hallway to practice their “weather forecast” and record them with an iPad. These 1st graders had to write a beginning, middle, and end report on a weather topic of their choice, such as tornados. In a few weeks, they are going to go into the library and read off their forecast with a green screen behind them. The students are so excited for this! I helped them fix words they couldn’t read and also reviewed presentation skills, like keeping the paper low enough for the camera to see your face. The kids loved to see themselves after I recorded them. It was interesting to me to be able to actually experience how this teacher incorporates technology into the classroom. After about 30 minutes, I then did some busy work in the classroom while the students went out to recess. I taped some of the student’s work into a poster board about verbs, and then cut out numerous mini squares that the teacher is going to use. Many of these were different reading centers, including reading to a partner or listening to an audio book, and some were stations, such as the computer station. I’m happy to say that this is another week of success and I’ve learned many techniques to use in my future classroom!
I went out to Barrow for my independent study and worked with Mrs. Skinner’s first grade class. They were so cute and little! For the first 20 minutes, I observed the teacher as she conducted a vowel game and read a book to the class. I paid close attention to the language she used to speak with the children, her classroom management strategies, and what tools she used. For example, students used a sign with their hands when they had a connection to the story and then they got to share their connections. I loved this idea! Looking specifically at tools, the teacher used technology often in my first visit. Class dojo was the most frequently used tool. This website allowed the teacher to give students digital high fives and praise for good behavior, while also encouraging class values. The teacher also used PowerPoint to aid the discussion questions after the book and to lay out the standards for this specific activity. After the class reading, I worked on about 5 students one-on-one using the same vowel game that the class just did. This was an extra review for students needing it and allowed me to get to know these students. After about 20 minutes, Mrs. Skinner’s class went to the media center to Skype with another class, and I stayed in the classroom and organized Monday folders. As I was doing this, class dojo kept going off. I thought it was great that a teacher can enact points away from the classroom on any device. Last, we all went out to recess. I’m excited for this opportunity and I can’t wait to continue practicing math and reading with this class!