Anyhoo...I am loving the book so far. Everything I've read just makes sense. I am linking up with a couple of blogs. Why don't you join me?!?!
1. Do you trust your students? How do you build this trust? Are you able to trust them and allow them to be independent throughout all aspects of your day? Are you going to be able to stay out of their way? I do trust most of my students most of the time but I recognize that I can't trust all of them all of the time and that's mostly my fault. I want to get started so quickly at the beginning of the year that I don't spend long enough training and guiding them. I'm hoping for help from this book. I do think I'll be able to stay out of their way. But what about those kids. You know the ones. Like my Max from last year. Doesn't follow rules anywhere else in his life so why would he follow them at school? Will I be able to reach him?
2. How much choice do you give your students throughout the day? (would love for you to share some examples!) Do you go over your daily schedule with your students or is it just 'posted' in the room? I feel like I give them some choice within certain boundaries. I let them read books of their choice during independent reading time. I let them write their own stories during writers workshop. Also let them solve math problems using their own strategies but these are all within my timeline. I don't know if that is enough choice for what the sisters are talking about here.
3. How are you going to create that sense of community where students will hold each other accountable? First of all, I'm going to try and make my room look really cute! That's important right?!?! I'm so excited about my blue and green colors this year. I am working on a few projects that I will share later on this summer. But hopefully, if I train the kids well and set up all of their expectations, I won't have to do too much accountability checking. I think they'll chech each other for me.
4. Student ownership in learning? How do you instill this in every child? Abso-stinkin-lutely!!! Writer's workshop has taught me that you always get your student's best when they know why they're doing something and that it belongs to them. I tell my kids from the beginning of the year that if they really want to learn to read, they will, if they practice and use their strategies, just like all the athletes out there. The only way to get better is to practice and I can't do it for you. They may grumble at first but once they see it working with themselves or their peers they get on board quickly!
5. Stamina! How are you going to build stamina with reading? independent work? Will you use a timer? Will you set goals? ... Stamina is really a new idea for me. Of course the kids are able to do more and for longer at the end of the year than at the beginning, but I've never taught that or talked about it. I'm excited to learn more about this!!
What do you think? Take a minute and leave a comment! :)