Instructional Coach Weekly Update

Week of Nov. 9-13

Strategy Spotlight: Annotating Texts

What it is: Annotating text is a Write Tools "responding to literature" strategy that can be used in many different academic settings. Annotating text is a way for students to think critically about what they are reading and make short notes about their thoughts right on the text.

Why annotate?: Good readers respond to the text they are reading. Good readers pay attention to their thoughts as they're reading. Students who are keeping track of their thoughts while they read will have a clearer picture of what's happening in the text. Often times annotating a text will slow a reader down which will help them discover and uncover ideas they would not have discovered otherwise. Annotating can be done before, during, and/or after reading and it can be done with fiction and non-fiction texts.

Additional resources:


  • Run copies for every student of the Journey's main selection for the week, or a section from a science or social studies textbook and have your students annotate as they read or as you read it together as a class.
  • Students can annotate anything they are reading- it's easiest if the students can write right on what they are reading (vs. using sticky notes) so it may require more copying than usual.
  • Make students a laminated bookmark of the common symbols they may use when annotating so it can be out every time they are reading (and it will last all year!)

Standards Covered:

  • See photos below (p. 244 in red Write Tools binder and p. 292 in green Write Tools binder) to see all of the standards covered by annotating texts.
  • More than 35 ELA standards can be covered when students annotate texts!

This Week

  • Team planning meetings with 3rd, 4th, 5th, and special education
  • NO FRIDAY LITERACY MEETINGS (due to social thinking meetings on Thursday)
  • Attend a half day RCD meeting with Barbara, Jon, and Ann
  • Attend a CRK webinar
  • Teach for the 3 winners of last week's drawing
  • Cover for a couple of teachers who will be observing other teachers
  • Drop in observations as time allows

Last Week(s)

  • I have spent the majority of my time doing drop in observations - trying to get into every classroom to observe different parts of literacy instruction.
  • Attended another two day training for Instructional Coaches with the other CPU IC's.
  • Worked with Jessica Quandahl as we look for ways to continue to improve our literacy instruction
  • Attend weekly team planning meetings, weekly literacy meetings, and data team meetings
  • Modeled several lessons for several different teachers
  • Continue to make standards based tracking books for several more teachers
  • Worked with Jennifer Burkhart to analyze our Dreambox data
  • Found and made resources specific teams have requested

Coaching Corner

* I am hoping to be able to give the IC Day 31-60 survey at the end of our MTSS meeting on Wednesday morning. Please bring your computers with you on Wednesday morning so you can take the survey.

* Here is a great website someone showed me - the website has student models of research papers. This may be a very helpful resource once you start teaching research paper writing later in the year!