Data Notebooks


Kindergarten Daily Five book study Ch. 2

Alright, before I get to the Daily Five, I've got to share something with you! Well, as some of you may know, I was moved to Kindergarten from 1st grade at the end of last school year, and another girl was moved from 2nd down to 1st. Well, a lovely 2nd grade co-worker has gotten a job closer to her house, so we have an open slot at our school. So, my principal called me yesterday, and asked did I want to move back to first grade, as my other friend is moving back to 2nd grade.

Well, I'm staying in Kindergarten folks!! (I did have an ulterior motive, lol!). I moved last summer from 1st to K. I moved in January after the tornado! I would have to move AGAIN this summer, and then move AGAIN when our school is rebuilt, which should be next summer! I just couldn't see myself packing up AGAIN, and moving in this hot sun all the way to the back of the school (which is a long way a way, by the way)!!! I told her I might move back in a few years when there's another opening.

(Secretly, I've really fallen in love with Kindergarten, and I think I would miss it too much! Shhhh!!!!!!)

Now, on to the Daily Five!!!

Hmmmmmmm.........that's a big word right there! It boils down to a few students that I trust implicitly! I do think that I learned to trust my students more this year. It's amazing that it also coincided with what I thought were better centers. I happened to notice that when I had things that students were engaged in, center time was smoother, and I could focus more on my small group, instead of micro-managing everyone else. However, I definitely agree with the sisters! The more we trust them, the better they do, in every area of the classroom.

It's just that some 5 year olds can be downright devious!!!!!!!!!! I'm just sayin'!!!

Now, I'll tell the truth on this one, I have a HUGE problem allowing students to choose where they are going to go for centers. I mean, I have gotten better since I first began teaching. I make sure that there are several things for them to do in a center, and even that simple choice has improved the quality of center time. Hmmmm....maybe their on to something here!

I mean, I'm just wondering, what if students want to go to the same thing everday, or if two students who shouldn't be together because they'll get into trouble want to be together, I just have so many questions about that!!!!

How do you keep up with who has done what, and if there is a particular one that they are avoiding? It seems like it can become more

I think I do a pretty good job at building a community in my classroom, but we do need to work on disrupting others while working. This is where self-monitoring comes in, and I definitely need to help my kiddos with that! I am all ears here!!!

However, this is definitely something that I want to get better at, because it can become a monster in the room, especially if they're all at each other's throats!

Sense of Urgency
I definitely need to spend more time explaining the why's of everything!! I think that sometimes we can believe that they are a little young to understand it all, but they are definitely brighter than we think. For me it all goes back to developing in them that love of learning, of not being afraid to mess up and make mistakes. It makes me so sad to see kids that are afraid to learn! For these particular kids, I'm worried about their future, because I'm thinking that they have so many years of schooling to go!

I want all of my students to be like Jenna, so intent on learning that she wasn't going to let anyone get in her way!!

I'm REALLY interested in building stamina. Once I read this section, it made so much sense to me! Right now, my exercise routine consists of the Couch-to-5K app on my iPhone. Everyday I'm building my stamina, my endurance to run longer and longer. Now, I get on that treadmill in the morning, and sometimes I just want to get off and go home and eat breakfast! However, I know that I have to keep going, and it still amazes me that I can do as much as I can do without getting tired! And then I start to think, hey, that was easy today, when last week the same thing made me exhausted!

That's how learning has to be with our kids, to get them to a point where they want to keep going and getting better. One day, they can look back and say, hey, that was easy today!

Stay out of the Way
Now, I think as teachers this is just in our nature!! I can 100% say that I get in the way a lot of times! Sometimes I feel as if I need to go around monitoring and checking, but I guess they feel the same way we do when we have a walk-through or and observation! Especially when it is unannounced! I can see myself in their narrative, especially when I think I can hand it over to my kids. When I step back, it all falls apart!! I think it definitely goes back to trust, trusting them from the beginning with something that I've entrusted to them.

Whew!!! It can be scary to realize all that you are not doing as a teacher! I also know that it will be better for my students in the end!! I'm so excited, I can hardly wait!!!!!

Talk to you later!

Daily Five Ch. 1 Reflections

 Alright, I'm linking up with other K teachers for a book study on The Daily Five! Here are my reflections on Chapter 1. I'm so excited!!
1. How do I teach new behaviors?
Practice makes permanent, in most cases. We do a LOT of talking the first few weeks of school. We discuss what is desirable, and what is not. We also take turns showing what the correct and incorrect behavior looks like.

2. How do I teach expectations?
I start of by doing a lot of modeling! As kindergarten teachers, we know how important that is! Sometimes you can think you've done enough, but in reality they need so much more. So, when in doubt, model some more! I also praise students who are exhibiting the desired behavior. That definitely gets the attention of the other students.

3. How do I monitor student behavior? whole group? small groups? individual?
In whole group, it's pretty much ok, I don't have to monitor as much because I am in close proximity to all of the students. If I do, then I may call their name, or look at them and hold up a finger, which lets them know that they've earned a behavior point (not a good thing).  In small group, usually I let my eyes do the talking! The majority of them gets it at that point. I have had to give individual behavior charts to some students.
4. What do I do when a student is not exhibiting desired behavior?
If after trying to change their behavior positively does not work, then unfortunately we have to move to negative consequences :-(.   Each students earns 2 points before moving on to the next color, all the way to red. I usually keep up with it on my clipboard, but lately I've gotten pretty good at keeping up with it in my head. They also do a great job of keeping up with it.

5. Whose classroom is it?
Well, in my defense, I have done better with this! It used to be 100% mine, and now I think I'm about at 65%-45%. Don't look at me like that! I'm working on it!
6. Locus of control?
They start each day on green, and have to add sticks to it. The go to yellow, then orange, and then red. Thinking about eliminating orange. We'll see.
7. Where are supplies stored?
Up, up, and away! I know, that sounds bad! I have what they need out, and they are responsible for the upkeep of what is in centers. Sigh, I have a lot to work on!
Check in tomorrow, for my special announcement about my 200 follower giveaway!!! Don't miss it!

Behavior Charts ~ Help!

Hey guys! I hope you are enjoying your summer, I know that I am! I've been pondering some things, and I've decided to turn to my blog friends for help!

At my school, each student has an agenda to be used as communication between home and school. I also use a take home folder, and I have a weekly behavior chart that the children color each day and it is also sent back and forth to school for a week. Well, after 4 years, I'm thinking of changing the way I send it home.

Changing to what? Good question, because I have no idea!

I know that some teachers just write into the agenda, and put some kind of a happy or sad face. My question to you is, how do you communicate with the parents the students' behavior for the day? Is something sent home daily, or do you just write in the agenda or stamp, etc.?