Monday Memo 1.4.16

Week at a Glance

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Bi-Weekly Focus

For the next two weeks in our walk throughs and observations will collecting data on classroom organization and discipline.

Cell Phones

Don't forget that we will be collecting cell phones soon. If there are any important text messages or pictures that you need to retrieve please do so before turning in your phone.

Do you still want to contact parents via text but don't want to use your personal number? Google Voice is a great app. When you sign in it assigns a random local number to your phone. Your parents would still be able to call and text your Google phone number and all calls will be sent your personal phone.

Parent -Teacher Conference Documentation

Teachers please make copies of the parent teacher-conference forms that you filled out while meeting with your parents. Please submit those to Mr. House by Friday January, 15.

Better You...

After the PD some were asking for more tips and tricks on ways to improve their instruction. Periodically, there will be tidbit of information that you could use to make a better classroom. This week's focus: Utilizing a Balanced Literacy Approach.

This has been a best practice for years. The research was done by the Teachers College of Columbia University, where Professor Lucy Caulkins lead the charge. Here's the idea: Students need to experience literacy in every form in order become proficient in literacy. Exposure is paramount. Balanced Literacy block is designed to encompass all of the essential components . (There are other, more complex versions out there. This is the most basic.

  1. Word Work- Exposure to new vocabulary words in context.
  2. Interactive Read-Alouds- The teacher models fluency, intonation, and thinks aloud for the students.
  3. Lesson -There are several smaller component that make up a lesson
  • The Hook- This is the piece that draws your students into the lesson. Be an Actor. Watch a short clip related to the topic. Sing a song.
  • Mini-lesson- This is a short engaging lesson that demonstrates how a skill is done
  • Guided Practice - Let them try it with you
  • The send off- a small statement telling students how they will complete a task independently.

4. Independent practices- This is typically done by breaking up the class into smaller groups according to ability level and then allowing them to work independently on a task. This can also be included in your guided reading time. It is also important to incorporate independent reading.

5. Conclusion/Sharing - Students share their success in their independent practice or something amazing they read during their independent reading. This could be whole class or small group.

This format is applied to both the writing and reading portions of ELA. As stated before there are many different versions of Balanced Literacy this is the most simplistic. Think about ways you can incorporate these components into your ELA instruction.

Infinite Campus Behavior Log

Please refer to video sent to you in an email. This video is about how to log behaviors in Infinite Campus.

Career Day

We need about 25 professionals to make this event a success. Please take a moment to reach out to someone you know with a profession that may be intriguing to our students. You can place their contact information on the excel sheet that I have shared and I can confirm their attendance. Our students will really enjoy the exposure to various professions!

Vote for January Making a Difference Award

You may have to dig deep in your memory but please vote for someone who did an outstanding job in December. The window closes Friday January 8th!

Weekly motivation

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