The first month of school has flown by and I am one tired teacher!!! Re-acclimating to third grade has been a roller coaster ride! It has made me realize how much of a first grade teacher I had really become. It may not have been as natural to me, but I had the systems and curriculum down - mostly because I wrote most of it. The other thing that has thrown me for a loop is that third graders as so much more different than they were 8 years ago! They are so much more savvy and grown up! On the other had, I find myself talking about a lot of the same things I talked about with kindergartners in terms of social skills and behaviors.
I am also in a new building, so all of the social connections are different. Just the routines and general movement in the building is soooo different. I am adjusting to a 4 hour morning! by 12:45, I am so hungry! I also have worked really hard to make sure my copies are ready and I have items ready to go to the office and library because they are like a quarter mile walk! I am also taking a crash course in the curriculum. It is a bit different at this grade level. We had worked on creating grade level units in first grade and in third, everyone has the curriculum, but teaches units and topics in the order that works well for them.
We are departmentalized for math and that makes things a bit tricky. I don't really know the kids as well and the management, routines, and curriculum have been a bit of a struggle!
In the other part of my life, I have been in grad school for several weeks now. I have class 1 night a week, but at least a hundred pages of technical reading every week. The use of technology is a huge change for me - everything is responded to and maintained online. Learning about research is very interesting, but my brain is just so full of new stuff that I am spinning and not feeling like I am giving my grad class enough attention. We are currently working on developing a research project with a small group. The idea is to teach us how to prepare our proposal for our doctoral dissertation.
On the other hand, we have been learning so much in our classroom!
I have been implementing Daily 5 in my classroom. I'm not feeling like I have been too successful at this point, but am trying to give myself some room to figure things out and see what works in my classroom this year. I started out by having choice in daily 5 and found it just wasn't working. I had kids skipping centers or not really being as accountable as they should be. I brought back my good old center board for the Promethean and things went SOOOO much better today! I thought about having recording sheets, but don't want to waste the paper or have more papers to deal with! Click on the chart to learn more about how I made and use this.