Showing posts with label Book Study. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Book Study. Show all posts

Monday, June 16, 2014

Chapter 1: How to Prepare for Guided Reading

I'm linking up with some fabulous bloggers for a book study of The Next Step in Guided Reading by Jan Richardson. Chapter 1 is hosted by our leader Jennifer from Teaching with Grace.

If you're a new teacher or you're moving down to a lower grade this is an excellent resource! Everything is spelled out for you and many ideas for each grade level are offered.

1. What part of the reading caught your attention? 

This chapter is full of work station management charts that can really help you if you're just starting out. Most of the charts have five groups of students. I've found in my own classroom that I have four or five groups depending on the makeup and needs of my class as well as the number of students.

2. How do you already incorporate this into your guided reading routine?

I also liked the little bit about encouraging independent reading. I read The Book Whisperer a couple of years ago and it's a MUST READ no matter what grade level you teach. I share the philosophy that students need the opportunity to explore and try to read books that are above their level or out of their comfort zone. My own classroom library isn't leveled. I have it sorted each month with books related to that month (ex: Thanksgiving books in November), nonfiction, by a specific author, etc. For students who aren't strong readers they love that they can explore the same books as their peers. Once they CAN read those books they are incredibly proud.

3. What is something new you want to try next school year? How do you want to make your guided reading time better or what new things do you want to try?

I haven't tried Book Talks. Well, I guess I've done a modified version. Our library was turned into a center for learning and innovation so we no longer have a librarian. We simply have a fifteen minute check out time so where I USED to be able to go in and read a book to my students and talk about an author now I'm just shuffling them in and out and lining them up. It's sad and frustrating. I did start checking out books by the same author or illustrator. I would read one to my students in the afternoon and lay out the other books along my chalkboard. Students would be able to read them all week until we went back the the "library" the next week. In my own teaching and use of mentor texts we talk quite a bit about what we like about the book- how the word rhyme, that it's funny, that it reminded you of something, that we like illustrations, etc.

4. What are some resources that you ALREADY HAVE that you can use to teach what you read about in this chapter/section?

Text to self is such a fun topic to teach. It's one that I try to introduce at the beginning of school while reading books from one of my favorite authors, Peter Brown. Peter Brown wrote You Will Be My Friend, which is fantastic for the first week of school. He also wrote Children Make Terrible Pets. It's hilarious. The main character is a bear who tries to make a little boy her pet. The kids think it's hilarious- and it is. It's perfect for making connections to pets they have or want to have. I did a cute little project that you can read about here. (Also good for following directions!)

5. What are some NEW resources that you want to get to try to use what you learned in this chapter?

My library is in desperate need of some new labels. I bought new bins from Really Good Stuff last year and I love them. The kids are able to easily flip through the books. However, the labels that come with them bins are NOT cute. There are some great labels here that I have added to my TPT wish list. 

Be sure to read up on what the other participating bloggers are sharing!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapters 18 &19: Finding a Crew & Finding a Treasure

This is the end of the book folks. I'm sad that it is over but I have so many great ideas running through my head and I feel so motivated for the new school year!

Chapter 18: Finding a Crew
"All pirates travel with a crew; you can't sail, navigate, and fight battles all on your own."
Ain't that the truth? Thank goodness for blogs, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest. I got into blogging because it was like having one giant team where everyone wanted to share all of their best ideas. I instantly became a better teacher and started challenging myself. Pinterest has some of the best pictures and I love that I can store those ideas in one place and go hunting for them. I am also on Twitter and FB all the time and have found other great educators, blogs and ideas on those social media sites. One of my teammates is also a blog follower. We are constantly texting about ideas we've read about. So if you find that your team at school doesn't collaborate well look to these other places to find ideas!

Chapter 19: Finding a Treasure
Dave Burgess has included his email address in this book and he wants to hear about our experiences implementing the Teach Like a Pirate techniques! 

But wait....there's more!
Dave Burgess wants to give away FIVE prizes! If you've been linking up your posts below then you're already in the running! Gina and I will use a random number generator to choose five winners. Winners can choose either a Teach Like a Pirate t-shirt or a signed copy of Teach Like a Pirate. How awesome, right?! 

Andrea from For the Love of Teaching Math and Callie from Teach-a-roo both hosted this chapter! 

For the Love of Teaching Math

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 17: Where Do I Start?

After all this wonderful information and great ideas and hooks from Dave Burgess where do we start? This chapter really addressed some of those fears we may have with starting something new. Several fears are discussed but the one that hit home with me was what we do with the critic. There's always one, right? There is always one person who has the mind set of "this is what we have always done" or someone who sees just a snippet of a lesson and wonders how in the world your lesson is rigorous enough to meet standards. We can choose to let those people ruin our enthusiasm or we can push it aside and keep striving for a classroom that is engaging and challenging at the same time.

Dave Burgess also talks about perfectionism. I may strive to be a perfectionist in many ways but I have learned to put myself out there with my lessons. I don't beat myself up if a lesson is an epic fail. I've even stopped lessons five minutes in and told my class, "Ok. This just isn't working. Ok was my plan. I want to try again tomorrow. Any suggestions?" Even first graders have great suggestions! (Plus I actually like them seeing that I tried and didn't succeed. I like them to see that I don't give up and ask for help.) 

My friend Teri from Kinder Kapers is hosting this chapter. You'll love the title of her post!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 16: The Awkward Question

This chapter is the first in Part 3: Building a Better Pirate and begins with a simple question.
Do you want to be great?

I do! But it seems some of us are afraid to verbalize that. I have been on teams before where if you did anything differently than the way it had always been done then you were told that you were trying to make the rest of the team look bad.

 Dave Burgess says,
 "Your greatness in the classroom doesn't negatively impact or inhibit anyone else's opportunity to be great." 

I love that quote. I'm a highly competitive person and the person I compete most with is myself! There is always a long list of things I want to change for the next school year. Every year I strive be better.

Laura from Peace, Love and First Grade is the host of this chapter. Be sure to read what she's posted!

Peace, Love, & First Grade

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 15: Around the Edges

We're nearing the end of this awesome book and just like previous chapters I'm wishing I could spend time in Dave Burgess's classroom. I can just envision how engaged his students are and I know that he is one teacher his students will never forget!

Chapter 15 has some hooks that I'm really excited to incorporate. He has several hooks in The Contest Hooks that I think all grade levels would enjoy. I love the idea of an in-class challenge too. I think when we do snowman math races with addition wheels that qualifies. It creates a great sense of team and unity too.

I'll admit that the Magic and Amazing Hooks are really stumping me. I'm going to have to see what other bloggers are thinking about and maybe I'll be able to come up with some good ideas!

The Mnemonic Hooks  section was my favorite! I made it through chemistry and a math test or two using mnemonic devices and they are so much fun to think of! Even in first grade students love to come up with a mnemonic device. Example: Never Eat Smelly Waffles was one my kids came up with for remembering cardinal directions. I also LOVE the idea of doing a presentation using a mnemonic device the way Dave Burgess has with PIRATE.

Extra Credit Hooks
What intriguing mission can I send students on to allow them to extend their learning in a unique way?
I love this hook! I really should put a challenge out there more often because you always have a couple of students that can't wait to go home and research something. Yes, even in first grade. First graders are a really curious bunch and they are eager to learn everything they can.

My Texas pal Lindsay, from My Life as a Third Grade Teacher, is hosting this chapter. Go check her out!! 

My Life as a 3rd Grade Teacher

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 14: Advanced Tactics

More hooks! Dave Burgess has even more great hooks in this chapter. I've highlighted several and below are a few of my favorites.

The Mission Impossible Hooks:

How can I design my lesson so that my students are trying to unravel and solve a mystery?
I love this idea! I started working on something for the end of the school year but never quite finished it. I would love for my students to have to solve a big mystery. You could incorporate so much into this lesson with reading and math and social studies. Years ago at a previous school there was a bulletin board in our third grade hallway that had 50 clues for the 50 states. Students had to use computers, encyclopedias, and books to find the answers. The first 5 students to have all of the answer correct won a pizza party. It was so much fun! 

Can they be provided with a treasure map or sent on a scavenger hunt through your content?
I love this idea too! I think having the kids race all over to find clues about a lesson would have them so entertained. I also thought that it would be a great way to incorporate parent volunteers. 

The Reality TV Hooks:

How can I design my lesson to take advantage of the popularity of reality tv?
So, my options are a little limited with first graders as far as how many kids are watching a show. I have done a voting and graphing activity with American Idol. I did it for about four years. It was a blast. At the time I was team teaching so all the students who watched American Idol came in and voted in the morning. We tallied and graphed the votes and made predictions for who might not make it to the next round. {American Idol was an easy one to use because there seems to be nothing else on that's new when American Idol premieres.} Even if students weren't watching the show they were able to get practice with key skills. It made things fun!

The Techno Whiz Hooks:

How can technology help to connect my students to people from all over the world and help them gain a global perspective?
I would love for my students to be able to explore other places. The Smithsonian website allows for a virtual tour. There are lots of virtual field trips on the web too. Maybe you could even create a scavenger hunt with a virtual field trip?! 

Melissa from Dilly Dabbles is hosting this chapter! Be sure to see her great suggestions for these hooks!


Monday, July 8, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 13: Stand and Deliver

Do you think of yourself as a public speaker? I don't usually, but WE ARE! We speak to little people all day! They are an audience that I'm very comfortable with. I've presented to adults before, but for some reason that's a little more difficult.

But there's no need to be afraid!

There are more really wonderful hooks in here to get you thinking! You won't have any time to be nervous!

A couple of my favorites are from the Swimming with Sharks Hooks:

Can I participate in the activity?
Is there a different place, or multiple places, that I can present from for the sake of novelty?

I absolutely LOVE participating with the class in an activity and I've just got to do it more. The students love for me to be on the floor or working in a group with them. And they REALLY love it if I take out my camera and let them take pictures of me participating.

Dave Burgess says talks a bit about how teachers are so used to standing front and center presenting a lesson to their students who are seated in their rows of desks.
I am so very guilty of this. But the more I read this book the more I keep looking back at lessons and see how they can be improved. 

Another hook that I loved was from Backwards Hooks:

Can I tell them the end of the story and let them figure out and discover the beginning and the middle?

How awesome would our students think that was?! And why the heck haven't I thought of that?! Dave Burgess is brilliant I tell ya! 

Lynda from Curls and a Smile hosted Chapter 13. Go check out her amazing posts!

Curls and a Smile

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 12: All the World is a Stage

So at this point in the book you've got to believe Dave Burgess's class is amazing! In this chapter he talks about all the ways to transform your room to make your lesson more effective and he has simple ways to do it. For example, for some lessons he uses large rolls of plastic sheeting to cover the walls. He then adds decorations on top of the sheeting. So simple. He has lots of hooks for you in this chapter to help you think about how you can transform your classroom too. Can you change the lighting, remove desks, add music? 

Dave Burgess also lists Board Message Hooks such as writing something down that will intrigue your class as they come it. I've done that with my first graders! It's fun to hear them discuss what they think my message means. When I taught 4th grade I read aloud The Mysterious Benedict Society. In this story the children all have to learn Morse Code. I would put up a message in Morse Code for my students. They loved it! 

There are so many hooks in this chapter that you'll wind up highlighting. I can't get enough of this book!

Sweet Tamara from Mrs. Russell's Room is hosting this chapter and she has done an amazing job! Check her out!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapters 10 &11

Chapters 10 starts off with this wonderful quote from Pablo Picasso,

"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up."

This chapter is full of hooks that help you incorporate art, music, and drama into your lessons. I love art and this coming up with ideas for how to use art in lessons in something that comes easy to me. I'm the girl who asked for colored pencils and water colors at Christmas! If you're out there saying you can't draw or sing I can tell you that your students don't care! They like seeing our efforts. If you haven't heard of Deep Space Sparkle then you've got to check out her site. This art teacher has lessons separated by grade level with literature connections. She has lessons on famous artists as well. I've used several lessons in my own classroom and my students have loved them.

Chapter 11 is about using student hobbies to hook them in! Remember how important it is to get to know your kids? Use their hobbies in some way in your lesson. I also like Dave Burgess's real-world application hooks. I always wanted to know why I needed to know something. My favorite hook from this chapter gives you a lot to think about, "Can we increase motivation and engagement by offering reasons to learn that go beyond because it's on the test?" The test. {sigh} The test sucks the joy out of learning I think. But if we teach beyond that then the test doesn't matter. Our students will learn more than we hoped to squeeze in!

I'm loving that these past few chapters really give you great questions to guide you as you think about lessons for your classroom.

Faith from 1st Grade Fantabulous is the host of these fantabulous chapters. Check out her post!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapters 8&9

*A day late in my post y'all! So sorry. Internet was working on everything BUT my computer. I don't know what I did this morning to get it working again, but it seems like all is back to normal!*

These chapters talk about presentational hooks and adding some movement to your lessons. 
I LOVED these chapters because Dave Burgess gives several questions and idea hooks to get you thinking outside the box. As I read the chapter I was picturing some different ways I could spice up my lessons for this school year. It's so much easier to be enthusiastic about a lesson when you see how your students are positively responding to it. He tells a great story about a history lesson he taught that had the students SO engaged in what they learned that I know they will never forget it. 

Don't be afraid to have fun! You have permission, Dave Burgess said so. 

I don't want to give too much away about this chapter, but so y'all know I have highlighted most of Chapter 9! 

Head over to Daina at Sticky Notes and Glitter to see her FABulous post on these chapters!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 7: The Third Circle

Chapter 7 is called The Third Circle. Totally sounds like a Hunger Games sequel, right? 

This chapter is all about presentation and selling your lessons to your students! Listen people, presentation is EVERYTHING! And it starts with your open house with your parents. Last year my team and I made a decision to ask our parents NOT to focus on grades but instead on growth. We know each child is different and has different strengths and we wanted parents to make effort and growth the focus at home. We also laid it all on the line. No sugar coating. We told them all about us and out personalities and what we hoped they would do at home. I added humorous items to my presentation (like how sad it is that through marriage I have to be a Raiders fan. It's sad people. You can take a moment and be sad for me....ok, moving on.) It worked! This year was amazing with my parents, but it was all in how I presented it. If it had been on a piece of paper without me showing my passion for teaching to the parents then my year would have been completely different. 

Dave Burgess does mention all the decisions you make regarding your lessons. I admit the lessons I'm excited about I can rock it. But some of those stinkin' science lessons are hard for me. I'm working on it! 

He also mentions transitions and how important they are. I completely agree! That takes a little practice, but once you find things that work for you and your students transitions are half the battle!

Kim from Joy in Sixth is our next host. Head over to her blog to see what she had to stay about this chapter!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate: Chapter 6 Enthusiasm

I'm really a little sad that we are halfway through the book already. I've loved every word of it and find myself really reflecting on lessons I taught this year and how I can make things even more exciting in my classroom this year. 

This chapter is about enthusiasm and how you "bring it" to your classroom every day. I know we have a passion for giving our students the best experience possible when they come to us. But there are days when you're sick, or your car died at the gas station, or you spilled your entire cup of coffee on the way in to school and you just aren't at 100%. But you FAKE IT and try to be enthusiastic and plaster on a big ol smile. My car broke down this year on the way to school. I was planning on being there super early so I could set up a fun math lesson I had planned. I pulled into the gas station to buy a bottled water and then my car wouldn't start.  I wound up being late to school. Late to school and cranky. I told my class what had happened and I said, "Ok, give me ten minutes and then I'll be ready and we can get this party started!" Truthfully, I wanted to skip the lesson altogether, but I felt much better pretending my morning had gone just the way I planned.

Dave Burgess talks about his routine before class starts. I have one too! But I think mine benefits me and my students. My class is extremely structured and I have found that my first graders respond to that. We like routine! Every morning my students come in and unpack, I greet them, and they begin morning work. While they work I have music on. As the year goes on I make a playlist of songs that the class likes and that's often what they listen to. I love hearing them sing softly to songs and they get their work done. After our attendance bell rings I sharpen pencils and then our day begins. The good thing about this routine is that even a sub can do it so my students still start their day off on the right foot!

Carmen from Exploring Elementary is this host of this chapter! Head on over and check out what she has to say!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 5: Transformation

This chapter starts off with a GREAT quote from Dave Burgess, 
"Provide an uncommon experience for your students and they will reward you with an uncommon effort and attitude."

Isn't that wonderful? And it's so true. I think back on my experiences in middle school and I can think of two teachers that I liked. I would have done anything for their praise and I loved going to their classes. One was a drama teacher and he made everything fun! The other was a math teacher....and I wasn't really even good at math. The rest of my teachers were forgettable or awful. (I may or may not still be able to sketch comics about my horrible 7th grade science teacher.) 

Dave Burgess asks a couple of great questions in this chapter too. One of them is if your kids only had to come to an end of the year exam would they still come to your class anyway? 

Mine would! I make sure they feel important and appreciated and I try my hardest to make learning exciting. I think first grade teachers have it a little easier in this department. First graders have only been in school for maybe a year or two before we get them. Learning is still new and exciting for them and they (hopefully) haven't had a bad experience with school or a teacher yet.  I have had a student tell me to let them know if I was going to have a sub because she just wasn't going to come to school if I wasn't there! I loved that! 

My dear friend, Lisa, from Growing Firsties is hosting this chapter. Head over and see what Lisa had to say about Transformation!

Growing Firsties

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Chapter 4: Ask and Analyze

We're already on Chapter 4: Ask and Analyze!

This chapter was a good one for me. I especially liked the section on asking yourself the right type of questions when you are planning a lesson or activity to make yourself think outside the box. I plan my units and lessons and things I sell on TPT around my students and what needs I see need to be met. I search for new books with my class in mind. Every year my classes are different. And sometimes it's just hard to come up with something REALLY good. The quote that stood out to me was, 

"How long should I wait for a good idea? 
As long as it takes!"

He mentions writing down your ideas because your best ideas seem to come to you when you aren't trying to force yourself to come up with something. I put notes into my iPhone whenever I have a good idea because I can never remember it later!

Kate from Purely Paperless has a great post on this chapter! Head over to check her out!

Purely Paperless

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Chapter 3: Rapport

I just finished reading the third chapter of Teach Like a Pirate on my back porch and felt so connected to this chapter. It's all about Rapport that you have with your students. 

Would y'all believe at the beginning of last school year we were told by our administrator not to form personal relationships with our parents or students? "Just be professional and make sure your students and parents know your classroom expectations. They don't need to know anything about your personal life."
First, I agree that teachers should be professional. But when your students and parents really get to know you they feel connected. At open house one of my slides is about football. I tell my parents that my husband and I are Notre Dame fans....and that unfortunately because my husband is an Oakland Raiders fan, I too am forced to cheer on this sad sad team. I have pictures up of my family on my desk and when my niece does something hilarious I share the video with my students. I greet my students every morning and as a class we celebrate each others successes. If I've messed up a lesson I say, "Well, even teachers make mistakes." Because I take the time to show and tell my class about me they are willing to share about themselves. I developed an amazing rapport with my class this year and it was my best year teaching!

Dave Burgess says, "I actively encourage teachers to develop a classroom climate where students feel like doing the outrageous; where the out of the ordinary and sometimes silly are the norm." I loved this! I've been known to be a little wacky. The end of the year testing is torture for us all so my class and I came up with a plan and a goal. We wanted to be completely done in three days. They wanted to do some water color painting related to a book we had read and wanted a read-a-thon. When the last test was done I shouted "HOLLA! We did it! We're done!" Then I busted out some killer dance moves- lawnmower, shopping cart, cabbage patch. Then the rest of the class danced too because WE DID IT! Our plan worked! (I secretly wish an administrator would have seen that. It must have looked hilarious!)

Dave Burgess also mentions that he plays music as a transition. I do too. But not just any music. I'm certain there aren't a lot of teachers playing "Whip It" or the Lumineers. And I tell my students every song is my favorite song. "Shhh. Y'all this is my favorite song!" They roll their eyes and laugh. 

After reading what Dave Burgess does in his first three days of school I think I'm going to have to step up my game and come up with some really creative things to do that first week.

Jana at Thinking Out Loud is hosting this chapter! Head on over to see what she has to say about Rapport!

Thinking Out Loud

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Chapter 2: Immersion

We're on chapter 2 where the "I" in Pirate stands for Immersion.

Dave Burgess uses an analogy of being a swimmer versus a lifeguard to further explain immersion. A lifeguard is watching the water, but a swimmer is in the water doing everything. I loved thinking of teaching that way. Your students learn so much more from you being involved and excited about a subject you are teaching.

The very last paragraph of this chapter speaks to all teachers in regards to the overemphasis of standardized state testing. Yuck. Too much testing in my opinion. I know in my district our third, fourth, and fifth graders are constantly taking benchmarks to prepare for "The Test." (Let's not get me on THAT soapbox right now) His point- just teach. Teach really well and get your students involved and don't focus on "The Test." If you're teaching what you are supposed to and teaching it well then your students will be least that's what I think!

Marie from The Hands-On Teacher in First is hosting this chapter. Head on over to see what Marie wrote. Line one is sure to grab your attention!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate, Chapter 1: Passion

I'm so excited that today is the first day of our Teach Like a Pirate book study! This book has been the kind that I just can't put down! 

Each letter in PIRATE stands for something and P, of course, is passion. Dave Burgess talks about professional passion, personal passion, and content passion. The whole chapter made me reflect on my passions and how I applied them during this past school year. In this book Dave Burgess says that we need to keep our passions in mind when we aren't teaching our favorite subject so that we still come across as passionate. That made so much sense to me! (I tried really hard to be excited about rocks and soil this year. Like Academy Award winning kind of hard.) 

Mary from Guided Math is hosting this chapter so head on over to her blog to see all of her thoughts. 

Guided Math

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Teach Like a Pirate Book Study!

I am beyond excited to do this book study. My bloggy Bff Gina from Third Grade Tidbits and I are cohostingthe book study on Teach Like a Pirate by Dave Burgess. 

 Have you heard of this book before? Read it? It is a really good book. Gina and I have gathered some FANTABULOUS bloggers to join us and lead discussions on each chapter. Each chapter (or set of 2 chapters for some) will have a host (or two) that will post their in depth thoughts about their chapter. Gina and I will post little blurbs about each chapter, but to get to the really good stuff and the discussion, you will want to head to the blog host for that chapter. Since there are a lot of amazing book studies going on this summer, we tried to make ours last only a month, so there will be posts on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays. Here are the blogs you will want to follow.

Chapter 1- (June 11)
Guided Math

Chapter 2- (June 13)

Chapter 3- (June 16)
Thinking Out Loud

Chapter 4- (June 18)
Purely Paperless

Chapter 5- (June 20)
Growing Firsties

Chapter 6- (June 23)

Chapter 7- (June 25)

Chapter 8&9- (June 27)

Chapter 10&11- (July 2)

Chapter 12- (July 4)

Chapter 13- (July 7)
Curls and a Smile

Chapter 14- (July 9)

Chapter 15- (July 11)
My Life as a 3rd Grade Teacher

Chapter 16- (July 14)
Peace, Love, & First Grade 

Chapter 17- (July 16)

Chapter 18&19-(July 18)
For the Love of Teaching Math

If you have read the book or are planning to read the book and want to join in the discussion and posts, we would LOVE to read your thoughts. We are going to have a link up where you can add a link to your posts for each chapter. If you link up, make sure you put your blog name AND which chapter the link will take readers to. This way you can link up multiple times. Make sense?


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