Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Looking at the data

I have been looking at ways to shift learners who are not making expected gains in reading. Looking at mid year data, I have narrowed my focus group down to three students who are working at Levels 12, 14 and 15. All three students have trouble using decoding strategies independently. 

One area I have identified that has potential for improved growth, is gaining more reading mileage. While these students all read each morning, they do not read at home regularly. Each book they read is only read once. So I have put two things in place:
1. These students (and a few others) go to buddy reading Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday morning with a Year 5 & 6 class and read aloud to their buddies. 
2. I have begun adding a page at the start of their Explain Everything activities where they need to record themselves reading their story, as well as read their book to a buddy in the classroom.

In addition, one student now has a book box with the Associate Principal so that whenever she has time to spend reading with the student, she can.

I have also had a conference with one of the parents, and sent home sight words and word endings so that they have specific things to work on at home. 

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Why we do what we do

It is very easy to get bogged down as a teacher and forget about the important things - why we do what we do.

I took these photos during the week. The first was of a stunning sunrise over the school playing field one morning. It reminded me to slow down and appreciate things that are right in front of me.

The second photo was a selfie we took to send to my husband as a good luck message before his anaesthics exams began. When you think of your students, it is easy to just think of all the things they need to learn and all the trauma and pain many of them have experienced. But when I look at this photo I see kids who love unconditionally, want to be loved unconditionally, and are dying to learn.

That's why I do what I do.