Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Morning Meeting Basics

Morning meeting is one of my favorite parts of the day. Students have the opportunity to work together, support each other, and become a member of our classroom community. Also, it is a great opportunity to spiral different concepts in a fun way.

In my classroom morning meeting takes place from 9:10-9:30am. Morning meeting has four main components: morning meeting, share, activity, and morning message. I use the Morning Meeting Book by Roxann Kriete as a guide for structuring morning meeting.

Here are some resources I use to help with planning morning meeting greetings and activities:

The First Six Weeks
*This pack includes character education posters, morning meeting activity cards, and morning meeting greeting cards.

 KaBoom!
*This pack has five Kaboom! game labels ready to print and use. My students LOVE KaBoom! so this is a quick and easy way to spiral concepts. We play KaBoom! money, sight words, addition, and subtraction.

For the share portion of morning meeting I create a daily share schedule. Each child knows the day they get to share (no items, they just share one event). This keeps it easy and students know what to expect. One student is in charge of the share chart and they announce whose turn it is to share and counts questions/comments (each child gets three comments/questions during their share).

Finally, for the morning message portion of the meeting students read the message (written on the white board) and correct errors related to our language skills or word study skills for the week. This year I think I will create the morning messages in power point so that I can edit the document for next year.

Morning meeting is a great way to build classroom culture as well as start the day with a fun learning activity which invests students. If you have any resources you use with morning meeting, link it below so I can check it out!

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Monday, July 20, 2015

Making Morning Work Count

Over the next few weeks I'm going to share some of the strategies I use during the school day. First things first... morning work! When my students arrive, I want every minute to count. Here are the resources/ways I structure the first twenty-five minutes of my day.

Students are coming in at different times from 8:45-9:10am. In this time, they need to get a variety of things accomplished. Here is a list of my second graders morning responsibilities.

1. Hang up coat/back pack
2. Check for notes/homework in morning meeting folder
3. Complete five common core spiraled math problems
4. Read or write (book shop if it is their share day)

At 9:10am, we go over the morning work problems together and students are responsible for checking their work! This holds them accountable without adding additional grading for me to do daily. They enjoy grading their papers and take pride in getting all or most of the problems right. They love the immediate feedback. Here is the resource I use for my morning work. When I taught first grade, I used the first grade level and it was fantastic as well. Both first and second grade editions are rigorous and ready to use!

Daily Math Practice, Grade 2 by Evan Moor
*You can also purchase a PDF version of this resource.


Even though this book is not from our math curriculum, I love how it presents the material in a slightly different way challenging my students to apply their knowledge learned during our math workshop. I find that students are able to make connections to what we have already learned and love solving the challenging problems. The book follows the general sequence of skills introduced in a typical second grade math curriculum and is aligned to the common core standards. I copy enough days for one month at a time. Each student is responsible for keeping track of their monthly morning work packet in their desk. This saves times, keeps their papers organized, and helps eliminate day-to-day copying. I would love to hear how you utilize your morning to make the most of student learning! Leave a link below and I will check it out.

Happy planning!

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Monday, July 13, 2015

Academic Learning Schedule

Over the last few years I have found that having a regular, structured schedule everyday is extremely helpful with the culture of my classroom. When students know what to expect in their daily schedule, they are able to focus on rigorous learning standards. As for me, I LOVE schedules. I like to do lists. I like to know what is happening for the day. It makes planning easier, teaching more enjoyable, and the day runs smoothly. So, as I get back into blogging - it has been toooooo long - I thought I would share my academic learning schedule with you! I always enjoy seeing how different teachers get creative with curriculum and find ways to fit everything into a short day. Over the next few weeks, I will post about each element of our school day. More specifically I will be sharing curriculum, management strategies, and other ideas!

8:45-9:10am - Students arrive, eat breakfast, and complete five spiraled, common core math problems. Early finishers go book shopping, finish writing pieces, take AR quizzes, and read silently.

9:10-9:30am - We quickly check their morning work (common core math review), complete calendar, and transition into our classroom morning meeting. Our meeting consists of four elements: greeting, share, activity, and message.

9:30-11:40am - LITERACY BLOCK
  • Reading Workshop {mini lesson, work time/conferencing, share}
  • Word Study
  • Writing Workshop {mini lesson, work time/conferencing, share}
11:40-12:10pm - Lunch

12:10-12:40pm - No new instruction is a time in the day where students practice previous content and skills, receive remediation, or additional instruction based on individual needs.

12:40-1:10pm - Recess

1:10-1:20pm - Drinks/Restroom

1:20-2:00pm - Specials {art, music, physical education, health, library}

2:00-2:45pm - MATH WORKSHOP {mini lesson, work time/conferencing/differentiated stations, share}

2:45-3:15pm - SCIENCE/SOCIAL STUDIES {topic alternates based on long term curriculum plan}

3:15-3:25pm - Students pack up to go home, complete their behavior log, receive papers, complete unfinished work, and earn addition "morning meeting" activity time.

3:25-3:30pm - Dismissal

Let the back to school countdown begin.... {HOW IS IT HALF WAY THROUGH SUMMER!?}

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