Another great tool that I took away from this practicum was the integration of Daily 5 by the entire Grade 2 team. I am a big believer in the Daily 5 and Cafe books by the Three Sisters. If you haven't read or used some tools from either, I suggest you take a look. It has changed the way I teach Language Arts!
The Daily 5 is broken down into:
1. Work on Writing
2. Word Work
3. Read to Self
4. Read to Someone
5. Listen to Reading
And CAFE stands for:
In these books they take you step by step into each section and provide great ideas and methods for integrating it into your class.
I only have one complaint about this book:
When I examined their expected daily schedule, most of the time was spent on language arts and math. From my experience every class that I have been in has had other subjects as well..... you know... science, social studies, computers, french, music, physical education, etc. So I didnt find the time break down of each Daily 5 activity applicable for me. However, I found it easy to incorporate 3-4 daily items each day (even if it occurred throughout the day).
Some of my favorite things to do with Daily 5:
I loved read to someone, depending upon the day I would either use popsicle sticks to randomly choose pairings or I would group by reading level. This also gave me time to read one on one with a few students and fit in some assessment. I also created my own coaching bookmark to help the listener be a better coach.
I would use read to self every day after lunch (this was mostly a classroom management technique in order to calm the wiggles), As soon as the kiddos put their lunch away they were expected to get a good fit book and read. As a positive reward I would pick table groups that were ready and reading and give them a table point.
Listening to reading was sometimes difficult to do but I found a few great sites:
book flix (unfortunately for this site you need to be a member, most schools in Alberta pay for this service so I had this for free)
The Ipad and Ipod also have some great apps for stories, however, if you don't have access to these a simple tape player and head set work wonderfully too!
Because I live in a province that can be sunny and 10 degrees Celsius in the morning and a snow storm in the afternoon, I have become an expert at indoor recesses. I always have lots of games in the classroom, but one of the kiddos favorite things to do is watch a story. So I let the special kid of the day go on the smart board and pick a book and the class quietly watches and enjoys their snack (this really helped a lot of my students that couldn't handle unorganized activities).
I am still no expert with Daily 5, but I am loving what I have discovered so far. I always get really excited when I substitute teach in a classroom that is using this tool because I can get soo many new ideas for myself.
Anywho... I have rambled on a little more than I wanted.. I am excited for tonight because it is my favorite TV night! Greys Anatomy and Vampire Diaries :) I am hoping to work on my Red Neck Rag quilt while I catch up on my shows.
TGI almost Friday!!
A special thank you to Kim at Finding JOY in 6th Grade! She sent me on a blog hop to Ladybug's Teacher Files where I fell in love with the variation that Kirsten made to her CAFE - CRAFT board so that it was more applicable for her Grade 4&5 Class. This is an image from her blog post, but I suggest hopping on over and reading about her variation if you haven't done so already.