Are you done with school yet? I have 9 days left! With the school year winding down, some of my blogging friends and I decided to take some time to take a look back at this year, and a look forward into next.
Welcome to Reflect and Refresh, a two part linky party where teacher bloggers share their reflections on the 2014-2015 school year and ways they are planning to refresh their teaching in 2015-2016.
Last year, I started using EdModo to communicate grades with parents. EdModo is an online grade book that allows parents to look at their child's grades and ONLY their child's grades. After each assessment, I went into EdModo and updated student grades. At a quick glance, I was able to see who I needed to move around in math groups, who needed extra support, and who needed a challenge. Better yet, parents were able to see what their child needed to work on at home. I received nothing but positive feedback regarding EdModo, and I used it this year as well. I think it is an amazing communication tool and helps keep parents in the loop! For more information, visit EdModo.
Organization & Classroom Management
Each group of students is a whole new ballgame in classroom management. What worked for you one year may be a complete failure the next. This year, I decided to implement The Super Improver Wall from Whole Brain Teaching. It was a godsend! Each of my students was working toward their own "goal," and was in competition with only his/herself. My students FLIPPED when they "leveled up" to a new color. Who knew that changing a piece of construction paper would be so meaningful! I wanted to keep parents in the loop too, so I began to send home little leveling up notes that the students filled out to a loved one at home letting them know of their accomplishment. This has been such a great positive INTRINSIC motivator in my classroom! To read more about The SIW, check out my post here.
I was really proud of my writing instruction this year. Last year, I definitely taught by the book. Even though I didn't abandon our curriculum resources this year, I definitely did more planning for what my students' needs were. I wanted to make writing FUN, and not just a subject that I had to teach. I definitely think I accomplished this because my students are BEGGING to write stories all day long! They even sigh in disappointment when we have to skip writing! Want to see how I got my students to be independent writers? Check out my writing offices here.
My Big Summer Project
We are moving to a HOUSE this summer! I can't wait to have more room, but most of all, I can't wait to have an office!!!! There was a linky party going on this weekend with Ashley Schroeder from Schroeder Shenanigans in 2nd, and it got me SO darn excited to start planning and decorating my office! I am very excited to finally be able to have all of my TPT things organized and not taking over my dining room table. I also hope that I will be more consistent with blogging once I can have a calendar that is not hidden by papers. Fingers crossed!
Want to join in on the Reflect and Refresh fun!? Link up below!