Ridgeview Elementary IC Newsletter

Happenings, Tips, Tricks, and Reflections

Instructional Coaches Goal

Improve student learning by providing continuous, relevant, and job-embedded support to teachers with a focus on:
  • Technology Integration
  • ELL/GT: differentiated instruction
  • Curriculum: 5 non-negotiables & 7,9, 10, 1

My Schedule...

The next couple of weeks I will be running around, much like last week. I will be getting some district and school level work done, with the ending and beginning of coaching cycles. I also have Cognitive Coaching, CCIRA & an Infinite Campus training coming up. I can't wait to share all that I learn :) Please feel free to email me anytime with questions, and I will make time for you.
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+1 Nonfiction Writing Opportunity: Making students critically think through Picture of the Day

This week I would like to share a rich learning opportunity that Mrs. Wheeler and now the 5th grade team has implemented into their literacy time.

Picture of the Day... Wonder of the Day... or What's going on in this picture?

We all wish for our students to leave our classrooms capable of analyzing complex situations. We intend for them to recognize multiple layers of problems and emerge with new ideas that will continue to inspire their thinking well beyond the last bell of the school day. Let’s begin to consider the Colorado Academic Standards position on critical thinking by looking at the reading anchor standards. A quick scan forces us to notice language like, “analyze how individuals, events, and ideas develop” and “interpret words and phrases” and “integrate and evaluate content.” These words—analyze, interpret, integrate– suggest that the intent behind the standards isn’t simply better scores on a particular test, but to impact the lives of students in meaningful, long term ways.Whether learners practice critical thinking while examining a piece of literature, a photograph, or a complex workplace or life problem, analyzing, interpreting, and integrating nurture critical thinking.

Now let's think about how we can do this is a meaningful way that not only targets the standards but allows students to uncover the content.... think... Nonfiction Writing and integrating pictures to open up or uncover content. Mrs. Greenhow shared an article this week from the New York Times, 10 Intriguing Photographs to Teach Close Reading and Visual Thinking Skills. The article, "offers ideas from students and teachers who have engaged with these images for ways to use them, or images like them, to teach close reading and visual thinking skills." The article reminded me of The Picture of the Day, activity I did while teaching Kindergarten and 3rd Grade. I would purposefully pick pictures related to what I wanted the students to uncover or learn about. For example, when I wanted to student to discover what it meant to sort and classify I would pick images of clutter or organized books in library. Or in 3rd grade when the target was for students to discuss regional development, rich pictures of the wheat fields, the gold rush or logging brought the most interesting discoveries to the table. I reflect on the time I spent planning, and it was as little as picking out images. The nonfiction writing developed as my students were engaged to write down inferences and support their claims. They couldn't wait to share with each other... it was as if it was a mystery they solved!

In can't wait to see how it goes over in 5th grade this week as they have integrated this activity into a literacy station on Google Classroom.

Mrs. Wheeler should be proud to know that one of her parents was sharing with me that the first thing their daughter wants to do when she gets home is to get onto Wonderopolis to write in her journal about the Wonder of the Day!

Extension Activities: Riddle, Poem or Quote of the Day

iPad Camps: Teachers, Parents & Students

ACCESS Testing Schedule: This Week

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