First week of summer and I have been a busy bee!! I had Monday off, but Tuesday started my summer job as a county trainer for our newly adopted reading series, Journeys. I enjoy working with teachers (though they can be a tough group sometimes!) and sharing what I do in my classroom (obviously right?? that's why I'm here blogging!). My training partner is a teacher on my team, which makes it extra fun and my BFF is also a trainer. We get to meet for lunch everyday. For Five for Friday linky with Doodle Bugs, I want to share some of my summer training.
The focus of this training is not so much on the new textbook, but more on what the literacy block should look like. My county wants teachers to move from a 90 minute reading block to a 180 block. This block should include reading, writing, speaking and listening, and language arts, but we also need to start thinking about how science and social studies might fit, too. Over the last several years, my county has provided teachers with an Instructional Focus Calendar for each subject. This was nothing short of lesson plans. Many schools demanded that teachers follow these plans day by day, minute by minute. So many teachers have had their hands tied for so long and now they are getting their creative freedom back! I can tell that some are super excited about this change while others are unsure, and still others almost DON'T want it. It's hard to teach an
The Gradual Release Model is another focus of the training.
Daily 5 is another model we want teachers to consider. My county is moving towards this and I'm thrilled. I've already been organizing my reading time using it and it makes me happy to see so many teachers willing to consider it. Daily 5 takes you from traditional centers to much more meaningful literacy time with virtually NO prep! If you do not already use it or have not really investigated it, I HIGHLY recommend it.
Teachers in my county have to look at writing differently, too. Gone are the days of prompt writing. AMEN!! I thought this day would never come! We have one more year of the dreaded writing test. ALL teachers, not just grades 4, 8, and 10 will be responsible for writing. Shouldn't that be how it should have always been? Not so much here!
Is your day set up to teach integrated units? Do you use Daily 5 and/or CAFE? How is your literacy time structured? I would love to have some ideas to share at my trainings!