Friday, August 16, 2013

Mrs. Beers' 6th Grade Language Arts: Teaching Setting

Mrs. Beers' 6th Grade Language Arts: Teaching Setting: Setting seems like a concept that is so simple to teach-where and when a story takes place.  The foundation for this learning is established...

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

First Year: Whirlwind of Love and Exhaustion

I find it amusing and distressful that I could not make time to write on my blog once the school year started. I feel like I missed out on such a wonderful opportunity to document so many amazing things that happened in my classroom, but my focus truly became completely targeted on my students having the most amazing school year of their lives AND finishing my KTIP (I willl blog about this experience later).

I still cannot believe everything I accomplished since last August.  I NEVER dreamed it would be possible.  I want  to make a list just so I can visually shock myself:
Designed  a pretty cool, efficient, and useful classroom.
Created about 20 flip charts and several movies.
Lego Training/Blood Born Training/Epi Pen Training/Seizure Training
Writing Conference
3 Day Technology Conference
Running Club 18 Meets
Coordinated Recycle Team for the school
Spoke at a PD at WKU to block II students about my trip to LA
Spoke at Cumberland Trace
Spoke at my school
Food Team Initiative
Coordinated and Led Student Led Conferences
2 KEA Meetings
2 PTO meetings
Program Review Meetings and Evidence gathering
Arranged for Artist and Chinese Students to visit
Helped kids create over 25 green screen movies
Created end of the year movie for them.
Created 6-7 pretty good newsletters and then GAVE UP! (I have a goal to do BETTER this year!!!)
Created a blog account for 86 students on Kidblog.
Field Trip to Drakes
Field Trip to Louisville
Took care of two students who were homeless for about a week 1/2
Spoke to the entire sixth grade as a Reach for Your Dreams Member

That does not include what I do every day and every week:
teach, create lesson plans, teach, grade papers, evaluate data, reteach, weekly meetings, teach, more meetings, teach, meet privately with students about behavior problems, problems at home, problems with peers, problems, problems, problems, teach, create better lesson plans, fill out conduct sheets, and on and on.

How do I feel after my first year of teaching??????
1) I can't believe what teachers really do in a single day, much less a year.
2) I can't imagine doing anything else with my life.

More to come about lessons learned and how much I LOVE my students.
Final thoughts:  I love my students. I love teaching.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Our First Day

We had a wonderful first day of school.  Our group of sixth graders are fantastic.  We had to take care of lots of paperwork and procedures the first day, and they really hung in there and got the job done!  Today we are taking our 2019 photos for our classroom display.  I am excited to see our students in their graduation cap!  We had one new student first thing in the morning - she was nervous, but the kids helped her feel okay.  We played Graffiti-Tag You're It on the white board to help us break the ice. Only our markers were allowed to talk, and wow, did they tell some kind of story together as a class. All I can say is stay away from unicorns and llamas!  We also played four truths and a lie.  I stumped them all with my lie that my dog's name is Jake (it's really Jack).  For some reason they did not believe that I was 41 years old, had a daughter who just got back from a trip to Alaska, or that I am a black belt in Kung Fu.  Hmmm....

Everyone have a great weekend, get lots of rest, and see you Monday!
Mrs. O

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

First Two Days

#1 Priority:  Find out how is everyone getting home 
those first two days!!
  • Fill out Facebook interest inventory.
  • Fill out learning style inventory.
  • Whole class instant write fictional story on the white board.
  • Watch the "Welcome to Sixth Grade" presentation.
  • Practice and learn classroom procedures.
  • One-word-to-describe-yourself speech bubbles to hang above desks.
  • Collect forms from students and mark off on spreadsheet.
  • Play four truths and a lie to introduce myself.
  • Begin work on the 7 Habits - Be Proactive Activity.
  • Post schedule in hall and create student data spreadsheet.
  • Put together data notebooks.
  • Decorate covers for take home folders.
  • Review and apply for leadership jobs.
  • Take Class of 2019 individual photos.
  • Classroom pet writing contest.
  • Create Parts of Speech foldable for notebook.
  • Finish finger print tree.
  • Begin Class Mission Statement

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Sign up for text reminders

Parents can easily sign up for text messages.  I can instantly send reminders about homework, permission slips, tests, assignments and more!

1. Send a text to (614) 335-7771

2. With the message: @onan

from remind101

Monday, July 23, 2012

Our Writing Block Schedule

Sample Writing Prompt:  How is writing like Pizza?

Daily Language and Writing Centers
Each box has all the necessary tools to accomplish the tasks
Excerpts from popular books with writing response
         Our daily block schedule allows for one hour of instruction in writing and language.

1. Each day we will begin our block with 10 minutes of writing in our composition books.  These assignments will be posted prior to students entering the room, so that students may come in and immediately begin writing.  This will be a consistent part of our daily routine.  Some of the assignments will include the following:

  • Writing in 1 of 30 different themed books.  These themes will be determined by students at the beginning of the year (see previous post).  Students will then write in a different themed journal each week. This process will also include peer editing.  Students may look forward to taking home one of these journals at the end of the year. 
  • Writing in response to current events, pertinent social issues, videos, guest speakers, art work, science assignments, and social studies topics. 
  • Free writing on topic of choice.

2.The next portion of our class will be language and writing centers.  Students will work in one of four centers each day, Monday-Thursday.  Language and writing centers will provide students with various language arts challenges that support our current on-demand writing pieces, spelling/vocabulary practice, and response to reading.  These centers will be differentiated for learners.  Students will receive weekly homework assignments related to center tasks and skills.

3. The last segment of our writing block will be dedicated to working on our on-demand writing pieces.  These pieces will include narrative, informational, and argument.  With each new writing piece, students will be introduced to a specific time-line for the piece, tools for writing the piece, collaboration time, writing, peer editing, teacher conferencing, revision, publishing, and presentation.  We will use the Writing Rubric board to narrow our focus and practice different writing skills with each piece.  Students will fill out sentence strips related to the requirements of the piece and place them on the rubric to use as a tool throughout the piece development.  Topics will vary over the year but will be interesting and relevant to sixth graders.  Students should expect to write letters, editorials, reports, personal narratives, argument pieces, poems, and much more!