Today when I came in, the students were taking the dreaded SMI. How boring! Not only was it boring, but the students were also really struggling with the concepts, so Mrs. Sutliff had me walk around and note the questions that were testing the students. They were not even close to third grade level! There were many questions that 6th graders wouldn't have been able to answer, but I felt like a teacher as I walked around and observed the students and noted the concepts that the students had the most difficulty with. It was also a great insight to the data that I will keep on the students, but it also failed to show the importance of standardized testing, as it doesn't give the teachers direct feedback and doesn't correlate with the common core.
Unfortunately, Mrs. Sutliff lost her voice, but in order to conserve it, she let me teach a part of the lesson! We created a schedule for their special read in write in day, and I tested their homophone skills between right and write in the words "read in write in," and practicing their telling time skills, as I stated "If we started at 9:00 and read for 30 minutes what time will it be after we're done?" Thus, we intertwined their telling time knowledge into something simple that shows the practical application in life. It was fun to give the students the responsibility to make their own schedule because you could tell they felt very special. All of the students were behaving so polite except for one student, whose struggling with the medicine he is taking. Mrs. Sutliff caught him lying on his desk because he couldn't control his behaviors because of his ADHD. It is sad seeing a child like that, but it is great to see a team of people who came in to help him!
Today I showed up for observations, and I couldn't find my class! All of the students' materials were sitting there, but the students were no where to be found! I walked around the building a couple of times, and finally found them in the library learning about energy conservation! How cool! It was a great lesson to help the students really grasp the concept of environmental sustainability and the effects that their energy conservation has on the world. Later, they went back to the classroom and heard from one of the student's mothers about her journey from citizenship in Canada to become an American citizen. It was very unique to hear about the difficult journey that she had to endure to get to this point. So, I can't even imagine the much more difficult journeys that people of a foreign country must endure because of their lack of English skills.
Love, pajamas, reading writing and Valentine's all in one day! I'm not sure if there is anything better than that! The kids were so excited, and so was I! We all decorated valentines boxes for a special category and the class voted on the best one in each category, and let me tell you there were some very creative boxes! I was so impressed, they made my minion box look pretty lame. But, it was evident that the day was very hectic for Mrs. Sutliff because the students were all hyped up on sugar and when it was time to clean up, the students were too excited about their treats to actually clean their things up. Once the students were out the door, I stayed to help Mrs. Sutliff clean up, and I really enjoyed that because it was the first time I really got to have a conversation with her because normally when I am in her classroom she is always teaching, so we don't get a lot of time to talk, but it definitely helped me get to know her and to relate to some of her interests! All in all the students had tons of fun, and I LOVE all their smiling faces. Happy Valentine's Day!! :)