Tuesday, September 27, 2016

September 19-21, 2016 Visit. Following is a photographic journal of my first visit at Vinalhaven School. While there, I observed many of the responsive classroom practices in place as well as powerful literacy instruction. Bravo!

  • Mr. Warren's 4/5 ELA
  • Mr. Warren reviews the plot line graphic organizer students and teacher have used to analyze stories they are reading together as well as a story they have written as a class. 

    • The terms they learned are used interchangeably in reading and writing.  The literary terms are academic language.
    •  Each student has a copy of the graphic organizer on their desk.

    • After reviewing the terms and modeling the writing process, students begin to work on writing craft - learning the difference between telling and showing.  Mr. Warren allows students to discuss their thoughts and then begin writing, circulating among the students and coaching them as needed. 

    •  Teaching and modeling a writing strategy and then individualizing instruction based on one to one needs incorporates the best instructional strategies.

    Mrs. Paquet's 4/5 Science
    • Mrs. Paquet teaches close reading, according to CCSS guidelines, to a heterogeneously grouped 4/5 class.  Students read the same article.  Mrs. Paquet had students read the first part of the article on the computer as the computer read the article to the students. 

    • Next Ms. Paquet, read the article to the class as they followed along.  She stopped at strategic points, allowing students to go back into the text in order to reread and infer the meaning of the two vocabulary words they were investigation.  Directions were given in order to instruct students in strategic thinking.

    • Strategic teaching with appropriate scaffolding is key to students success.
     Ms. Reidy's 3rd Grade ELA
    • Ms. Reidy's classroom is populated with anchor charts in many content areas.  These charts support students as they learn and implement new learning strategies.

    • Ms. Reidy introduces a writing anchor chart.  She introduces the new chart as she scaffolds children applying new strategies to examples from their writing this afternoon.   
    • Modeling, scaffolding, and applying strategies to their individual work, insures student success.
    Mrs. Andrews' 2nd Grade ELA
    •  During the literacy acquisition stage, many students need time to practice strategies teachers have modeled.  This period of literacy development is about learning the strategies and taking them to the level of automaticity.  Establishing this process at the beginning of the year is crucial.  Here, students work to practice new strategies learned based on their individual needs.

    • Schedules and Anchor Charts are posted around the room to guide students' practice.

    • Individualized instruction followed by practice assures student success!

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