Firstly, I really wish I could get some readers to respond here. I suppose I am not doing enough commenting of my own, which might draw some readers.
Secondly, I really enjoy Two Writing Teachers blog, especially the daily snapshots of what is happening in the classroom. It inspired me to to do the same.
I teach in a Title 1 school, which is about 80% Hispanic. I am bilingual, and teach English As a Second Language. In my school, I AM the LAnguage Arts teacher for my students, all of whom qualify for ESL. My 7th grade students also have a reading teacher. I am the only LA teacher my 8th graders have. In Texas we have the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test which the 8th graders muct pass to go on to 9th grade (No CHild Left Behind Legislation).
The tests are over now, but school is in session until June 5th. For the kids, they’re done. I have chosen to read Where the Red Fern Grows as a class in 7th grade, and today we read aloud chapter 17. I have not been doing vocabulary lists,or an extended project. I want my kids to ENJOY reading, and even my successful students rarely choose to read. My main goal in reading this mostly aloud (students follow in their own copies) is to have success in getting into a story of novel length. Today, my feisty 7th period group listened (quite a few even followed along reading) for some pretty extended periods!
I do point out as I read where I might not know a word, and talk through how I deal with it (context? not worry about it and keep going? break it apart for roots/affixes?), or questions I ask myself. I commented today that the questions I ask the kids are questions that I ask myself in my head. One of my girls said, “I never ask myself questions when I read.” She earlier had commented that she understands better when I read aloud. She is one of my better students as well. We had a nice discussion for a moment on how good readers ask questions/make comments in their heads while they read
Tomorrow is Friday…yay! I need sleep!