Kristen Wideen is a grade 1/2 teacher in Windsor, Ontario Canada. She says: “I love to collaborate with others and incorporate technology into my classroom. “
EDITOR NOTE: This is an abridged version of Mrs. Wideen’s post for May 22, 2013.
I had a group of teachers visit my classroom last week. They were there to see how we incorporate technology in meaningful ways into the primary classroom. I had a couple of teachers ask me if I had a schedule of what we do throughout the day to give to them. Alas, a blogpost is born. So, here it is, a day in my room without you actually having to visit me! (I am taking the day that my visitors came in and writing what we did that day)
Students enter school and write a short message in their agendas. On Tuesdays and Thursdays students read or give mini lessons to their parents on the iPads in our Learning Commons. For those students that don’t have a parent come in they may blog, read independently or with a partner until 9:00. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays students choose to blog, read or write until 9:00. Many students chose to blog about our new tadpoles in our classroom that day.
9:00 Twitter Review – Reading Mini Lesson
If there are any mentions or interesting tweets on the class Twitter account, we read the tweets and respond. On this particular day, we had some interesting tweets from a class in Singapore responding to our tweets about our new tadpoles.
Some of out tadpoles have little legs today! pic.twitter.com/UbjRdpvoPk
Today I brought lettuce for the tadpoles. Destinee, I love tadpoles. Do you?
We have some tadpoles in our class. We are researching how to take care of them. pic.twitter.com/zL3cqJfXQV
After we read and responded to some tweets we were ready for our reading mini lesson. I have been teaching the students the difference between on the page and off the page questions. I have taught the students that sometimes the answer is right in the book. If we can put our finger or fingers on the answer, its called an on the page question. The answer is right on the page. We just need to use evidence from the text. When the book doesn’t tell us the exact answer/ when we can’t put our finger on the answer/ when we have to add our ideas to help us answer the question then … it is called an OFF the page question. You need to use evidence from the text to answer the questions along with your own ideas. I went over our anchor chart and I told them that they were going to be detectives that day and they were going to figure out what type of question I was asking. I was using the fabulous book, “Tuesday” by David Wiesner which is nearly a wordless book. Because the book had very few words, I decided to read the book to the class first without asking any questions. My students used the comprehensions strategies they have learned throughout the year and wrote about their thinking … while I read the story. I made book marks with a QR code on them….
I then reread the story asking the following questions while the students saw the pictures up on the smart board. (I scanned the pictures so the students could view the pictures larger as we discussed the questions.)
- What time is it?
- What do you think the Detective is thinking? What type of question am I asking?
- What trouble do the frogs get into? Use evidence from the text to explain your answer.
9:30 – Literacy Stations
Students are grouped in pairs and go to 1 station per day. Here is a list of my literacy stations. I have 2 literacy station groups for differentiation.
1. Word Work A – Write the room
2. iPads – blogs
3. Science Station
4. Writing – Write About this app
5. Reading-Buddy reading
6. Smartboard – spelling practice
1. Fluency Station – Audio Boo – You read to me i’ll read to you
2. Writing – Write about this app
3. iPads – Blogs
4. Science Station
5. Insect Write the room
6. Library – reading buddies
I will share a description of a few of these stations:
10:10 – 10:50 Nutrition Break
10:50 – 11:40 Prep
11:40 – 12:30 – Writing
Students are learning how to write fairytales and are learning about beginning, middle and end of the story. My teaching partner, Mrs. Belanger, read the students a different version of Goldilocks And The Three Bears. She then had them show the beginning, middle and end using the Popplet app:
12:30 – 1:10 Nutrition Break
1:10 – 2:05 Math
We usually have silent reading for 20 minutes, however on this day we were writing math problems to share on Twitter with Mrs. Degroot’s class. We tweeted math problems and solved math problems on Twitter until 1:35 then skyped with Mrs. Degroot’s class and we exchanged math problems via Skype.
2:05 – 2:50 Art
On all other days we do math stations during this time. However, on Wednesdays we have Art. On this particular day we read “A Color Of His Own” By Leo Lionni and students created and painted a chameleon.
2:50 – Dismissal
Phew….that was a long blogpost! Hopefully you gained a little bit of insight of what goes on in my very busy classroom!