Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thankful - Day 20

I am thankful to be planning for 2nd grade writers.

My shift back to elementary school is now less than a month away. And, while I just spent a satisfying day reviewing essays with college students, I have spent much of this week mentally planning to work with elementary students. Readers' Workshop, writers' workshop, Social Studies . . . I can't wait.

Today, on my reading list is the outline of how my district is implementing the Common Core standards in English Language Arts. After that, I'll review the WIDA materials for my English Language Learners. Since I left this school district, only a year and a half ago, there have been a lot of curriculum changes so I'll have a lot of catch up work to do. I'm looking forward to all of it.

But truthfully, what excites me the most is Writers' Workshop. I love to write, and I love to work with young writers. Later today I'm taking my Staples coupon to the store to purchase notebooks for my students. I want to make sure they have a place to draft and make lists and explore ideas. I'll probably pick up a few colored pens as well, because sometimes all the writing inspiration you need is purple ink. 

I got to peek into what will be my classroom for only a few minutes last week, but immediately I began planning. Given the unfortunate turnover of temporary teachers and substitutes they have been through this year, there is no clear design to the room; there is too much of what looks like "teacher space" and not enough that clearly belongs to the students. The teachers who have been in there are doing the best that they can - and doing, I should say, some amazing work with these kids - but, since no one has felt that this was their room, they haven't made changes. I'm looking forward to working with the kids to identify the design we need to make the room the best possible learning space.

To that end, I have been collecting. So far, I have two canvas bags perfect for holding special book collections, my mother's old bingo bag that will house craft supplies, rolls of adding machine tape that once belonged to my sister, and a dozen magnifying glasses saved from my old classroom. Once I know what we need and want for our room, I'll put the call out to my family and friends who have always filled my classrooms with treasures. I am blessed with a generous and crafty family, many of whom inherited our grandmother's tendency to hold on to things because "you may find a use for them." 

I am thankful to be planning for these 2nd grade writers.

What are you doing today? Join the Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life challenge every Tuesday.

1 comment:

  1. Your excitement is delightful to read about. I am sure your second graders will be blessed with a teacher who is thinking about and planning for them weeks in advance of arriving. That seems important as it sounds like they haven't had ONE teacher to belong to yet this year. Happy teaching!