Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Bumps in the Road

Lately, I have been hitting some bumps in the road. Personally, my body is tired and sick, that is getting better. Last week however, when I was at my sickest and at school teaching my kids were CRAZY! It was a rough week. They forgot procedures, they couldn't remember to be quiet when the teacher was talking, they just haven't been motivated to learn. My youngest daughter awoke on Saturday morning with a drippy nose and nasty cough. Wonder where she got that from? I didn't want to do it but was forced to take Monday off to play nurse. (She's getting better though, thank goodness!) Today, another indoor recess and my kids were awful! We had to stop a lot to regain composure, we struggled with doing even the mundane things. My girls have begun to squabble, and use unkind words...
Wednesday will be different. When Kathy Collins wrote her book Growing Readers she gives descriptions of units that a first grade teacher could teach with regards to Reading Workshop. One of the neat things that she does in the book,and I can only assume in real life,is anticipate "he bumps in the road." Now I did not anticipate this bump in the road. Usually after holiday the students are different. Here is what I have decided to do about these bumps:
1. Spend a day going over procedures. All procedures, don't miss anything.
2. Get back to the basics of the workshop classroom. Go over the promise, again, and again. Get out the book Oliver Button is a Sissy, and Molly Lou Melon. Discuss how to be "nice," again.
3. Read aloud, read aloud, read aloud. We have to reestablish our sense of community.
Anybody else got any suggestions?


Jen Barney said...

being sick is "stinky"
don't worry, my treasures seem to be on the brink as well. pull back and go back to the start. retrace your path and revisit what you started.

Kathy Douglas said...

It is not unusual to have to go over procedures all over again. This won't be the last time,either. How about the Kevin Henkes books. He hits that sort of thing. I used to start the year off with that author study because it was good for building community.

Ruth Ayres said...

Sarah --
You are so wise to go back to the heart of workshop teaching -- COMMUNITY. Your approach is pure and based in best-practice.

I hope all went well today and that you (and your family) are on the road to recovery!

Katie Dicesare said...

Wow. I am not glad that your kids are off but I can relate. My kids were amazing last week but I had one of my kiddos come in with out meds this Mon ( I am not an advocate of meds but I know that this kiddo truly relies on it and helps calm him) and the whole class was off. I have been doing the same things you are doing. WE had huge discussions about routines, classroom behaviors and community. I read Big AL and Big AL and Shrimpy. I haven't read Oliver Button to the group this year. Thanks for the reminder!