HSE 21

at Geist Elementary

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Feature Teacher: Mrs. Sharlee Friedle- Second Grade Teacher

This edition's feature teacher message reminded me that most things in life for which I am most proud were hard at times, even messy, along the way. Thank you, Sharlee, for encouraging us to continue to celebrate our students.

The Joy of a Single Moment

Sometimes in the world of education the weight of what we do can press in from all sides making us feel like it’s impossible to carry on. We start to question the calling to a profession that keeps us up late, that fills our conversations even outside the doors of our classroom, and that infiltrates every part of our lives. We question, we create, we plan, we teach and then we reflect. It is in that reflection that I find my why. Though I’d love to say every moment in my classroom is joyous, the truth is that teaching is messy and often challenging. So on the hard days, I try to look for the joy in just one single moment to find my why. Below is one I experienced recently with my students. I hope that during your hard days this year that you can try to reflect on the day and find the joy...your why...even if it’s in a single moment!

-Dec. 1st Mrs. Friedle's Weekly Update

"Today was an amazing day full of proud moments. Celebrations certainly are A LOT of work and usually include some somewhat stressful moments. However, it was easy to forget the nitty gritty parts of the project work when I saw the smiles on the kids’ faces as they were literally bouncing up and down waiting for people to come through the door so that they could show off what weeks of hard work and perseverance have taught them.”

Mrs. Friedle's Students and Parents Celebrate

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Increasing Student Voice with FLIP GRID

Have students who are timid during turn and talks?

Want to increase debate and argument and discussion?

Thinking about collaboration platforms for up coming BOOK CLUB groups?

If you are interested in amplifying student voice and providing additional ways for students to share their thinking through video and online discussion, consider attending this optional PD.

If you attend, you can schedule me to introduce this tool with you in your classroom!

Check out the site below.



"SILENT MATH" - an alternative to Think, Pair, Share or Turn and Talks

I've been trying to flutter around Twitter more lately, and one educator I always enjoy is Marilyn Burns. Some of you probably follow her or read her math blog. In her latest post,

One Lesson, Two Pedagogical Mistakes, Marilyn is not only transparent about mis-steps in her planning and instruction, but she makes us pause with a "SILENT MATH" concept. The gist is that when the teacher places a star next to math work, problems, etc, no one can talk. They just think. And work.

Check it out!


DISRUPTING THINKING by Beer and Probst - Book Study coming soon!

If you've seen, heard, or experienced the increased depth in conversation, conferring, and writing when implementing Notice and Note Strategies for Close Reading by Kylene Beers and Robert Probst, then I think you will love their latest work, Disrupting Thinking. View the one minute You Tube video, read the except below, and consider joining me for a book study coming in February and March!

See me if you are interested, so I know how many copies we will need.


Digital Resources Highlight - FRONT ROW

The paid version of Front Row is available for grades 3-5 students district wide. However, the free version of Front Row can be used by K-2 students as well. Many of you have found ways to implement this digital resource; if you've not and are interested in learning more, login, explore, and consider some of the inquiry lessons in which your students might engage. Schedule me to try one out together!


Notice and Note Strategies for Close Reading OPTIONAL PD SERIES

While I know our staff has many teachers well-versed in this work, I'd like to offer a continuation of PD. Some new folks have expressed interests, some had to prioritize other learning last year, and maybe there are even some that ask, "Does this really apply to my students?" If you want to find out more, attend one or all of the sessions - ALL are welcome!


  • Overview of the why and what behind Notice and Note
  • Introduction of Sign Posts for Fiction: Aha Moment, Again and Again, Tough Questions, Memory Moment, and Words of the Wiser, and Contrasts and Contraditions
  • Beyond turn and talks - depth with questioning and conferring in order to scaffold students to higher level thinking
  • RESOURCES - mentor texts, video clips, etc.
  • Integrating writing about reading - just in time for book clubs for our upper elementary students!
  • If time allows....TEASER ABOUT N&N Non Fiction - Three BIG QUESTIONS!

8:15-8:45 in the GES Media Center: