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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Knowing


Slice 5 of 31
 

 
 
Knowing my readers and writers...
 
Today felt good!  I was able to confer with 3 students and talk with them about their writing.  All three of them had very unique things to discuss today.  Larieyah shared that her mom and dad got married over the weekend.  She wrote about how she was the flower girl and her brother was the "reng berer"-she expressed how her "bruther" dropped one of the rings.  Kahana shared how she got a new dog over the weekend, a pit bull and she got a new "neklis" and "brslit".  Angel shared how he "wots" new Mario games for his xbox360.  I am glad I got to share these moments with them and get to know them as writers.  They are growing like little weeds.  Each of them had little teaching points that we are working towards, growing them along the way.
 
 
Knowing our little community...
 
Today felt bad!  I am struggling with understanding what makes these little people tick.  I have never seen nor worked with so many children who fuss, fight and generally don't get along with each other.  I don't know how to make them get along.  They are mean, mean, mean to each other.  They say hurtful words, show mean actions, push, shove and battle all day long.  I want nothing but the best for them but everyday has been a struggle.  I feel like I suck as a teacher in the fact that I cannot make this work...
 
 
Knowing the learning targets...
 
Today felt bad!  I know what the learning targets are for my students.  I spend hours (really at least 4 or 5) planning high quality instruction for my class.  I am working on learning the CCSS for ELA and Math.  I am working to get my students able to articulate what we are learning and why-and yet today when the principal was in to do the walk through and ask the students what and why they were learning during math, they were not able to explain what they were learning or why.  I just keep trying my best to get these goals across to them...we're working on it.  I started using "I can" statements to help with putting the learning targets in kid friendly language.  Hopefully we'll get there...
 
 
Knowing the data...
 
Today felt good.  The data tells me that these students are learning.  They are making progress.  They have made tremendous growth since the beginning of the year.  The red and yellow areas of the pyramid have decreased for all areas we assess.  I will continue to progress monitor and check-in to make sure they are progressing as they should.
 
 
Knowing me...
 
Today felt bad.  I need help...


16 comments:

  1. Such true snapshots of our lives as teachers with the ups and downs. I love the peek at conferences and a window into their stories, who they are.

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  2. Amy, hang in there! Some years, some classes are just hard. Keep celebrating the little steps and the little kindnesses. Hoping you have a caring colleague to support you…

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  3. I totally get your divergent feelings....During any given day I feel GREAT, WORRIED, EXCITED, SCARED, ANXIOUS, EAGER, and zillion other feelings about my own teaching and about their learning. We know that high stakes assessments will determine student effectiveness.....worry that observations at any moment in time can determine our effectiveness....and wonder about the stress on both kids and teachers....Like you, I try to keep my eye on the kids....their strenghts and needs...and their growth...it's hard though....hard....

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  4. Yes. Just what it is like in the day of a teacher. Your thoughtful reflection tells me you are doing just what you should be doing for those darling ones in your care. Keep doing it.

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  5. Your passion for your profession is clearly shown through your writing. It is difficult to hold on with the ups and downs of our days. Hang in there.

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  6. Thank you for so honestly documenting the days of a teacher. How true that some days we feel spot on and some days like we do not much right. You sound like a teacher I'd be happy to have my daughters with, whether they know the learning targets just like that or not. You care and you are passionate.

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  7. Teaching has never been easy Amy, but I wish it wasn't harder. I wish I could do more for the profession I love,
    Bonnie

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  8. Boy you said it Amy! It should be so simple . . . encourage, teach, open up young minds . . . but those days when it's all about manners, kindness, respect . . .is it a wonder we feel like we are on a roller coaster! Thanks for your honest thoughts.

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  9. Well - that's a teacher's day in a nut shell. We aren't teaching programmable robots, sometimes it takes longer to get a concept across, and sometimes our kids just can't articulate what they know when they are put on the spot. You have a great attitude though - good for you!

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  10. I love the way you pulled in all the pieces of your school day to show the influence on how you felt by day's end. I'm sorry you ended the day feeling "bad" ... your work is so full and difficult. Do you do something like this listing assessment at the end of each day? Can you circle back to the "Today felt good!" moments and focus on them as you leave?

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  11. You ARE making a difference. Progress is progress. Celebrate that on your worst day!

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  12. I know the feeling. I remember trying to make the best lesson plans ever, and they still fell short in some classes. Sometimes it's the class and their interaction with one another that makes it hard some years. All we can do is our best, ask for help, and go on to better days.

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  13. Oh, I get it! Our jobs are complex, messy, rewarding, exhausting, and all-encompassing. We have to work hard to not judge ourselves on superficial things like whether or not our kids can "pass the walk-through." I resent administrators walking around with clipboards asking my kids what they are learning. It's not an authentic question. It's a question used to judge my ability to teach. I'm beginning to believe that we teachers need to stand together and refuse to let the insanity continue.

    Focus on those times you are conferencing with your kids and you can see them stretch and grow. You are doing a good job and your kids are lucky to have you in their lives.

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  14. Amy, you are a teacher! You are making a difference! Your data shows it, and the inside of your students will show it too. It just might take a little bit longer to show it on the outside. Hang in there! And when you feel down, write another blog post; we will listen and encourage you!

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  15. Thank you for sharing so honestly the emotional roller-coaster that is a normal teaching day. Teaching and learning don't move in a straight line. it is much more complicated than that but we often still have the expectation that it will. You asked for help. I would suggest addressing the fussing and difficulty cooperating within the subjects you are teaching - writing prompts about the best way to solve a problem with a friend, stories about cooperation, math challenges that must be addressed as a team of two, discussion about what worked and didn't when working together, then a challenge for a team of four. Best of luck and don't give up. Working together is a skill that we learn. Just like multiplication tables, we get better as we practice.

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  16. Thank you all for your offings of kind words, support and ideas of help and hope! They all mean so much-really! I will take all of your words of wisdom in to consideration and keep plugging along!

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