Monday, September 16, 2013

Positive Points Monday

Traditionally, Mondays have a really bad reputation. I'm linking up with Permanently Primary to help start a new trend towards the positive!

Here are a few positives from my life: 

1. I am getting MARRIED in 5 days!!!!! I am SOOOOO excited!

2. I have the world's BEST friends. My two best girls took me off yesterday for a mystery fun day! I felt SO loved!

3. My cat acted like he was going to vomit in my bed this morning but decided to do it on the hardwood floor instead. (It's the small things people!)

4. I woke up this morning in a home in a safe neighborhood and I was warm. 

5. In 5 days I will get to spend quality time with the people that I love and love me! 

I would love to read about the positivity in your life this week! Go link up! :) 

If you didn't get a chance to download yesterday's freebie click here.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Feed the Horses! Freebie!

Click here or on the image to download an addition freebie! :)

Have a great week everyone!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Team Teaching in Second Grade!!!

This year I am team teaching in second grade!!!

It is something that I have wanted to do since my first year of teaching so I'm SO glad that I was able to convince my teaching partner to climb in the boat with me. 

I teach math, science, and social studies and my co-teacher teaches ELA. 

Recently some of my followers have been asking about how team teaching works for us. So here is the 411. :)

1. What does your daily schedule look like?

*Note for safety reasons the actual times have been changed but the amount of time remains the same.

After specials each day we switch kiddos and we don't trade back until 12:30pm. This means less time going back and forth across the hall since our morning is so choppy.

2. How did you decide to group the kids? 

Luckily for us our kids were pretty well balanced between the two classes so we started out just switching entire classes. Lately we have been having some scheduling snafu's with ESL and Spec. Ed so some kiddos have gotten switched around. Now that we really know these kids we will probably doing some more switching in 2nd quarter.

3. What is it like teaching TWO classes of math each day? 

Well, I absolutely LOVE math so I really enjoy doing it. The key is to maintain the level of quality instruction each day. There are days where I am playing catch up with my afternoon group because my energy level is just better in the morning. Now that I know this about myself I've become more aware. I also take notes, LOTS of notes. Last week I was fussing at my morning group because they didn't have an assignment completed. Well it turns out I never assigned it to them. So now I am more conscious of what I am doing and with who. My Math Teacher Binder has really become an essential this year. :) 

4. How do you manage Math Daily 5 for TWO classes? 

I do a LOT of pre-assessing to keep up with what my kids need, like at least twice a week. Usually it is just one or two questions on a piece of scrap paper. I try to differentiate centers when I can but sometimes everyone does get the same thing. Again, my Math Teacher Binder really is the key to helping me keep up with where everyone is at. I added some pieces of notebook paper to the back and that is where I record which centers everyone needs to hit during the week. Eventually I am going to make some "pretty" pages but this works for now!

5. How do you cope with not knowing what your kids are doing in ELA? 

The key ideas here are really TRUST and COMMUNICATION. I absolutely trust my co-teacher. We also talk DAILY about certain kids. We note behavior patterns between the two classes and we keep each other informed if someone is struggling. 

6. How do you handle being consistent with classroom management, like with behavior systems? 

My co-teacher and I BOTH have the exact same clip charts and they say the same things. We also both use concepts form Whole Brain teaching. I saw her using this system with our kids so I got on board too. The key is to be consistent and to try not to hang onto things you did in the past just because they are familiar to you. Sometimes the kids try to play Mom and Dad with us and will ask us both the same question to get a different. They learned very quickly that we TALK every day! We have almost daily conversations so that we stay consistent with which behaviors we are clipping up and clipping down for. 

7. How did you get admin to support you? 

This really wants a problem for us. Our administration is absolutely wonderful. We did have to lay out our schedule and we were asked a few questions about classroom management etc. We are just lucky I guess. :) 

If you have any more questions about this topic just shoot me an e-mail: secondgrademathmaniac (at) yahoo (dot) com.
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