Sunday, February 18, 2018

Forward Exam Proctors


This week's staff meeting is focused on Forward Exam administration for proctors. Teaching staff who don't proctor the Forward Exam need not attend. I have included the presentation below for teachers who are proctoring but have a meeting conflict not allowing them to make this staff meeting. Proctor teachers not able to attend should watch the DPI test administration training video included in slide four of the presentation.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

RTI and All School Read In


On Tuesday, our staff meeting will focus on revisiting why Response to Intervention is so important to our students and the criteria for students to access tier II and tier III interventions. At this staff meeting, I will be sharing the evolution of the state of Wisconsin's vision for RTI over the last decade. To give you time to reflect on these visuals, I'm sharing them below in the order when they were first presented (oldest to most recent).

Original Pyramid Type Visual to Explain RTI

Updated Visual by WI DPI 2010

Most Recently Revised Visual Rolled out by WI DPI during the 2017-18 School Year

On Friday of this week, we will be kicking off "I Love to Read" month with a read in at 2:50pm in the gym. The PTO is going to announce the classroom winner of the box top competition then. Also staff who are participating in creating a taped book talk, Kelli can help with this anytime you are ready. However, I am also setting time aside at 9:00am, after our late start staff meeting on responding to reading/Forward exam preparation, for staff to tape their book talks. We're going to share these talks on the news and also send them to parent to generate excitement for reading in February.   

Friday, January 12, 2018

Martin Luther King Jr. Day


Here's some school resources, for those of you looking to infuse some MLK Day learning on Monday. Both links have lesson plans for elementary age children.

NEA MLK Resources

Education World Resources

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Guided Reading Tips from Fountas and Pinnell


       Here are some ideas from Fountas and Pinnell to help you get the most out of your guided reading time. On Wednesday, January 10th we have out progress monitor meetings during common plan time in Mrs. Lindstrom's classroom.

Twelve Tips for Powerful Teaching in Guided Reading Lessons

The following are some guiding principles that may help you get more power in your teaching:
  1. Notice the student’s precise reading behaviors.
  2. Eliminate ineffective behaviors and help the reader do what proficient readers do. 
  3. Select a text on which the reader can learn how to read better- not too difficult and not too easy. 
  4. Teach the reader not the text.
  5. to read written language not words.
  6. Teach for the student to initiate effective problem-solving actions. Use clear precise language that passes the control to the reader. 
  7. Only ask the student to do what you know he can do. 
  8. Don’t clutter the teaching with too much talk. 
  9. Focus on self-monitoring and self-regulating behaviors so the reader becomes independent. 
  10. Build on examples of successful processing. 
  11. Teach for fast responding so the reader can process smoothly and efficiently.
From Guided Reading: Responsive Teaching Across the Grades by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Copyright (C) 2017 by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Published by Heinemann.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Learning Ideas for Before Break


I came across this post when looking for ideas to keep your students engaged throughout next week. Each idea included in this blog is presented in a written and audio/visual format. Also keep in mind some engaging ideas Kelli Hedlund has rolled out to you this year:  Breakout Edu and the Hour of Code activities. In fact one of the ideas in the post below is coding. I know she'd be more than happy to help you with either of these two active learning formats, if you'd like to try them out next week.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Morning Meeting Sharing Tips


    With the end of the semester just around the corner, I thought this Responsive Classroom article on ways to spice up sharing timely and also supportive of our students' speaking and listening skills. 

Keeping Sharing Fresh

In my conversations with teachers I hear a common concern about Morning Meeting at this time of year—how to move forward with sharing. Teachers have long lists of varied ideas for greeting and activity and are growing more comfortable with embedding academic content into their messages in ways that involve students and get them excited about learning. But sharing has stalled out.
Many teachers began the year with highly structured, around-the-circle sharing with teacher-chosen topics, to help students ease into sharing. This structure worked well at first and students participated eagerly—but now teachers are finding that students are getting tired of this routine. At the same time, teachers know from observations during the day that many students aren’t ready to make the leap to a more open, dialogue sharing structure. This is a great time to begin using structured partner sharing—a format in which two students sit face-to-face and take turns talking and listening in response to a teacher-generated question. This structure provides an effective bridge to dialogue sharing and can be used throughout the year to keep sharing varied, lively, and engaging.
Partner sharing gives students a chance to practice the key skills of speaking clearly and concisely, listening carefully, and responding appropriately to each other’s ideas and experiences—skills that are essential for successful dialogue sharing as well as for other kinds of academic conversations. It might also be a safer format for children who are reluctant to speak up in front of the larger group, helping them build confidence and find their voice.

Following are some tips for introducing partner sharing:

When first introducing partner sharing, consider assigning partners. Are you needing to work on class cohesiveness? Then pair students up who don’t know each other very well and give them a “getting to know you” topic, such as “What’s one thing you like to do after school?” Or you might consider pairing students who are interested in the same academic topic. For example, if the class is studying animal habitats, pair students who are both interested in animals of the tropics.
Teach, model, and practice new speaking and listening skills. In around-the-circle sharing, students will have gotten lots of practice in responding succinctly to a focus question or teacher-chosen topic. In partner sharing, you can build on this skill by having them respond with a main idea and two or three supporting details. For example, for a topic such as a favorite book character, the person sharing would name a character and give a few reasons why this character is their favorite.
Students have also had practice in listening respectfully to each other. Partner sharing offers an opportunity to teach them how to listen and then respond to another’s sharing with a question that elicits more information (“Does your favorite character remind you of someone you know?”) or a comment that connects to the sharer (“Sounds like you really admire this character’s bravery”). Again, teach, model, and practice each of these skills.
As students become comfortable with teacher-assigned partners, build in ways for them to talk with a variety of classmates. One such structure is Inside-Outside Circles sharing. Here’s how to set this up:
  • Have everyone count off by 2s.
  • Ask 1s to stand and form a circle, facing out.
  • Ask 2s to form a circle facing in, so that each 2 partners with a 1.
  • State a topic or ask a focus question (“What’s one intriguing thing you learned about mammals in yesterday’s science lesson?”). Each person shares a thought.
  • At a signal, everyone stops talking.
  • Give a new topic or focusing question. Direct one circle to move to the right so that everyone has a new partner. Discuss the new topic.
Carol Davis is a professional development designer at Center for Responsive Schools.

Sunday, December 3, 2017


Here are the upcoming events for the week.

A reminder to complete the PLC survey I emailed out last week by the end of the day on Tuesday, December 5th so we can use your feedback to plan our late start staff meeting. Certified staff who are not grade level teachers, if you have not been pre-assigned to meet with Teaching and Learning staff, you still have the option to meet with your teams from 8-10am. Please make sure your team fills out your agenda topics and the building you'll be meeting at using the link below. Again if your team is not meeting on this day, I'd like you to attend our building PLC meeting at 8:05am.

Late Start Agenda Link