Saturday, February 20, 2010

Saturday Morning.....and I Must Be Missing My Grad Students it is a sunny Saturday morning and while I a little concerned about another pending storm, I am moving ahead thinking about our class and what points will help you to all see the potential of teachers to shape comprehension. As I read this reader response about thinking aloud, I really found myself thinking about INTERACTIVE READING AND THINKING ALOUD!

The reflection observed:
"I thought the modeling of interactive read alouds to be most helpful in terms of working with younger children in helping them monitor their own comprehension."

I too find my mind wandering at times when I read. Recently, I have been reading aloud editorial columns from the NY Times to my Dad who is very ill but still thinking. As I read YOUR response I was thinking about MY READING of a recent column by Maureen Dowd. While I was reading, my mind was not on the column but rather on the irony of my Dad's condition where his mind is intact and his body is not. FORTUNATELY, in the middle of the column I stopped to have a bit of an interactive think aloud "turned around"....that is I asked my Dad what he was thinking to help refocus me to the article without rereading it.

NOW THE REAL REASON FOR THIS POSTING is not to get you to read Maureen Dowd but instead to think about your own reading and how discussion supports all of our comprehension.
While it would be ideal to think that we are always thinking and focused on our reading......we are not! right now when the piles of laundry are awaiting and the dust bunnines are rolling across the office floor......our minds are elsewhere....but it is good to know there is a way to restart our comprehension!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

an idea

So the FIRST person who finds and comments on this blog will get a FREE 2-point reader it that for an "attention grabber"!

Snow Days

I'm not sure anyone is even reading my attempt to model and scaffold a "modern" form of literacy, blogging; however, I guess I might as well begin to share my thoughts in writing and make them "shared text."
Yesterday, I really had a glimpse into the complex feelings of Superintendents of Schools and others who struggle to make the decision to delay, cancel or keep open schools during times of "unsure" weather. While the weather people were not screaming, "A blizzard is coming," the snow was blowing and drifting from my vantage point and the driving was VERY scary with roads covered with snow and cars off to the side like "unsuitable" candies tossed from that box of Valentine goodies. I found myself worried about "my" students who would soon be trying to get to class and I began to wonder if it was worth the risk. But, then I began to feel like a WHIMP for even thinking of cancelling class and feeling GUILTY for all the money you pay to hear my "weekly pearls of wisdom."
ANYWAY, those feeling all swirled around as sipped hot tea and watched the channel 12 news again and again hoping for a sign of what I should do....
AND THEN......I got that sign I was looking for.....Westchester Community College cancelled their evening classes....that was good enough for me......they had LOTS of LOTS of kids and they wanted them to be safe.....
You never know in those situations and so I got a glimpse of how Superintendents MUST struggle again and again.....and yet I certainly have mumbled unkind things about WASTING or NOT GIVING time when the weather was iffy.....
So on this first day of the "season of reflection"......I will try to be KINDER and MORE UNDERSTANDING to those who have to make decisions every day about the welfare of others......I will not second guess their decisions with unkind words and really is a HUGE responsibility.....just like being a teacher....because everything we do has impacts our students.....even this blog MIGHT someday impact you and your teaching!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Literature Circles

As you prepare for your Literature Circle Role, you might want to think a little more deeply about the diverse roles of literature circles in today's classrooms. Chekc out:

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Some good sites to explore books

Carol Hurst's Site with book reviews

Univeristy of Connecticut Resource Site

Some great picture books - not just for high school students!

A good place to explore themes and units of study

Random House site

Books for teaching Point of View

Childre's books with social studies themes

K-3 Books for social studies themes