Saturday, November 8, 2014

November blog post personal reflection

I have just really started using google.docs routinely in my 8th grade special education pull out LA class. All written work is to be submitted to me through google.docs. For some of the kiddo’s this is difficult because  it takes them so long to remember the basic steps to get to the drive.  After about 9 weeks we have finally gotten over that hurdle and we all get on now at the same time. Since I only have 10 students in my class this is a very easy way to monitor their writings and to give immediate feedback. They really enjoy the banter back and forth when they are writing, I don’t actually edit the writing rather what I do is I will highlight the mistake and will write to them reminding them that its a proper noun, rather than writing “change to a capital letter”  I will also write things like “ is the the end of your sentence?’ I will also write things  like “Sorry but this sentence makes no sense, can you remove or add some words so it makes sense?’  I will make suggestions in real time for them to add noun modifiers etc.. A great deal of the time they understand my comments but there are times when they are totally lost. I have students reading at the 1st grade level as well as students reading at the 5th to 6th grade level.I have a student that is in the pace program, ie a wide variety of levels in one class. I adjust my comments accordingly.
I have found that this approach to editing is teaching them to self edit rather than relying on me to do the editing for them. My hope is that they will learn fro their mistakes and pay a bit more attention to the writing process in all aspect  of their writing

October blog "what's the big deal about empathy?"

What’s the Big Deal About Empathy?

“An emphatic environment is a smarter environment”  As a special education teacher I have know for quite some time that there is a strong relationship between social emotional learning and cognitive performance. Now there is scientific research to back that up. when we as teachers put ourselves in our students shoes we tend to respond to them a bit differently,the research has shown that this is an essential skills in the classroom. it is also essential that our students can show empathy as well. The article states that we need to  respect the decisions of others, sometimes a difficult choice in the classroom but what a wonderful way to empower our students into feeling they have a voice and they will be listened to , in turn they will learn that they need to listen to others as well.We need to build empathy and encouraging classrooms where everyone has a voice in an controlled and appropriate manner. The most important info within the article is that we need to take action according to our own personality and interests.We need to be able to understand the experiences of others always encouraging pro social behaviors with the ultimate goal of benefiting others,  I'm not sure how I can go about doing this in my classroom but I am going to pursue this and see what I can do even if tiny little baby steps.

Friday, November 7, 2014

september blog post The Many Uses of Exit Slips Robert Marzano

The Many Uses of Exit Slips
Robert Marzano

In reading this article I am reminded about how important exit slip are in the classroom. I used to use them all the time and then they seemed to go out of “fashion”   Our assistant principal has been  talking to us about using them and when I saw this article I was interested in reading it to see if it would be appropriate to use in my small, pull out LA class. Marzano has convinced me that I need to incorporate the use of exit slips once again in my classroom. It is quick check for me to see if what I taught that day actually sunk in!  Sometimes the students in my classes will look like they are understanding the material but then during discussions or assessments i realize they did not understand , but were not conveying that info to me. by using an exit slip I can assess right then and there if they understood the concept for that particular lesson. I will be using the concept of the exit slip in my classroom