Thursday, May 7, 2009

K-1 Collaboration

Today a group of kindergarten and first grade looping teachers met together to work on continuity between kindergarten and first grade. Each of these teachers, four currently in kindergarten and four currently in first grade, loop back and forth between kindergarten and first so they have intimate knowledge of both grade levels. They started the morning talking about our Reading assessment where we monitor all of the big five reading areas.

Next they looked at the Pacing Guides for kindergarten and first grade. This is our guideline for teachers, a look across the curriculum for each week of the school year. They discussed the Guide that we have had in effect for many years and that we rework every year. We look at what works and what doesn't in each year, how to tie our Pacing Guide into the county's newly adopted Houghton Mifflin Reading Program and the county learning schedule in reading and writing. The teachers spent several hours editing a Pacing Guide that works for our kids at Chets Creek!

After lunch two second grade teachers joined the group as we discussed persuasive writing K-2. As I have written before, the state has added persuasive writing to our writing schedule but without a lot of direction. This group of teachers talked about the standards and goals for each grade and reviewed all of the county materials and the resources we have found through our work. They came up with a global idea of what a final product would look like for each grade level and then divided to write a rubric for each grade. They selected children's books for each grade and then outlined lessons that will be written over the summer and added to our wikis.

It was such a productive day - a day of collaboration. I think it makes each of us feel good when we have heard the voices of our colleagues and addressed issues. I feel so fortunate to work with a leadership group that values time for teachers to work together and to spend time with teachers who enjoy the work and believe that when they work together they come up with a better product that works for kids!

1 comment:

Suzanne said...

These vertical articulation work sessions are always so valuable. It is nice to have the expertise of so many looping teachers who know the expectations across multiple grade levels. I appreciate their time and energy toward this effort. I know at this time of year, it would be easier for them to just focus on their class of students, but they are always so generous to the global picture. I love it!