Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Thinking about next year - Professional Book Discussions

   I know several of my blogger friends have read many professional development books this Summer. The three I read were Teach Like a Pirate, The Book Whisperer and Whole Brain Teaching for Challenging Kids.  Now that I know a little more about what I will be teaching next year, I'm really starting to think about how I will apply what I have learned.  I found out I will be teaching an EC class, which consists of standard students mixed with students with disabilities, and also an advanced class with AIG students mixed in, which are students who are intellectually gifted.   With such extreme differences in classes I really want to be prepared for differentiating my classes while keeping them both engaging.  If you have read any of the books I mentioned above please feel free to join in the discussion by commenting to this post.

    Teach like a Pirate makes me want to plan lessons that are so engaging students would rather come to class than stay at home.  Here are some things I'm pondering for next year:
   1.  How will I structure my class so that it can be engaging but orderly at the same time?
   2.  What structure lesson plan will I use that is predictable for my EC students but still flexible?
   3.  What lessons can I plan for teaching grammar and vocabulary that are much more fun than just taking notes and practicing with sentences?

    The Book Whisperer has already guided me in planning my classroom library.  I have so many more books this year and have arranged them by genre so students can hopefully find something they enjoy more quickly.  Some questions I'm still pondering for teaching Language Arts include:
    1. What requirements will I set up to assess that my students are growing as readers?
    2.  Will I stick with the 40 book goal Miller suggests?
    3.  How will I structure my LA class period to allow for plenty of SSR time and everything else I need to teach?

  Whole Brain Teaching makes me the most excited about teaching this year.  I can't wait to start using my new class rules and gestures.  I am a little concerned about how my advanced students will respond to the silliness of WBT.  I feel like I've researched WBT enough that I'm prepared to use it, my main concern is just how receptive my students will be.  I'm also deciding on if I will break out the Super Improver Team during the first week of school.

If you have read any of these books, please feel free to post about how you will be incorporating what you learned into your own class this year.  I'd also love any suggestions for the questions I posted!

Finally, don't forget tomorrow is the last day to enter my 200 follower Extravaganza! 


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