It is the first thing we do every morning. We come in, put our binders away, pick up our book bins, open our “good fit books” and read.
I like starting my day this way because it sets the tone for the rest of the day, and let’s face the biggest chunk of our day in first grade is reading. It also gives me time to unload binders of notes, take the lunch count, attendance, and get my thoughts in order. It is time for my kiddos to settle in and practice building that sought after stamina. My few that take AR right now can take their tests, check out new books, and record their scores.
It has taken A LOT of practice this year to get the stamina and practice part to kick in, but the other morning I took a moment to look around, and my heart warmed. They were reading! All of them. Reading…or at least acting like they were reading…which is good enough for me right now. I quickly got out my phone and grabbed a quick video. It was too cute the way some of them were “reading like the teacher.” And of course it is anything but silent!
Another way I like to squeeze reading into our day is with my morning message, and now that we have to “post” what our kiddos will be learning each day, it is a good opportunity to “tell them” what they will be learning. I like things simple and easy and this covers both. I have the common core standards posted that we are learning, but really I can be covering the same standard in a variety of ways for weeks. So to simplify it for my kiddos- and me, I write it out in a morning message on the board. The messages look something like this:
Good Morning Kiddos!
Today is Monday, October 22, 2012.
Today we will be finding nouns and modifying them with adjectives in sentences. We will discovering character traits in our stories, and finding the main idea. In math we will work on counting on by two. Use your journal to write about something fun you did on fall break.
I always pick a kiddo to read it to the class after our "silent reading." Sometimes I don’t get the message up until the kiddos are already reading, and it warms my heart to hear them read along as I write.
Parent teacher conferences are the week, YAY :/ sarcasm inserted here. I have to say though our school does have some amazing parents. This year Mr. Principal said we could do our conferences the evenings before conference day (Friday) which means a couple of late evenings, but Friday OFF!
Do you post your targeted learning goals in your classroom? If so how do you connect them to learning for your kiddos? My next goal is simplifying all that data keeping…there has to be an easier (and less time consuming) way for my firsties to gather and understand all this data that’s supposed to make them better learners. Really?