Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Daily Five Book Study - Chapter 2

Chapter 2 of the Daily Five brought to the forefront some things I am already doing and some things that were "WOW!"Be sure to check out Nicole's blog: Teaching With Style to link up your post and check out the blog hopping posts too!

1 .What goals do you have for your classroom as you work to implement the principles and foundations of the Daily 5 discussed in chapter 2? What support do you need to do this?

My Goals:
  • develop student independence without being a "helicopter" teacher
    • support: trust that what we've discussed with rules, etc. will work!

  • instill a "sense of urgency" for student goals, tasks, etc.
    • support: TBA -  I need to read more Daily 5!

  • help students become intrinsically motivated with their learning
    • support: begin to weed out some of my extrinsic rewards systems

  • celebrate accomplishments as a community (possibly during Morning Meeting)
    • support: revise daily schedule; student input

  • don't get mad if the students start talking and getting silly during independent work time because you forgot to look at the clock and then realized that they have been sitting at their desks for 45 minutes while you were thoroughly engrossed with a RTI group. . . they don't have STAMINA!
    • support: implement the Daily 5!
Here is a great YouTube video with Alfie Kohn that discusses Positive Reinforcement (approx. 47 sec.). If you haven't heard of him, he provides awesome insight with a variety of topics but especially with regards to rewards and motivation!

2. What stands out as the most significant aspects of this chapter?
This is hard to say . . . how about, "STAY OUT OF THE WAY!" As teachers we need to relinquish some of our control! I know I know, you don't want to have to find out from Little Joey that Little Mickey was eating a brown crayon from the writing center because so-and-so said it tasted like chocolate cake. 

However, I truly believe that if you establish your classroom routines and expectations as well as trust, then you don't have to be a "helicopter" teacher and hover ALL the time. 

Think about your own experiences with adolescence. . . how would you have learned how to drive if your parents/families hadn't let you drive on your own? They weren't always there to say,"OK here's a stop sign, make sure you remember to stop, don't forget the turn signal, and make sure you check your mirrors!" This is all good and well during your permit/"Cinderella" license, etc. but at some point they had to TRUST you to do it on your own. 

3. How do the foundational principles of the Daily 5 structure (trust, choice, community, sense of urgency, and stamina), align with your beliefs that support your teaching strategies and the decisions that you make about student learning?

Trust is the area in which I believe I am strongest because this is established the first day of school! Trust is so important for my classroom, as I'm sure it is for all classrooms, because it is at the root of:

  • bathroom breaks
  • drinks at the water fountain
  • sending messengers around the building
  • classroom jobs (although this is something that will need to change with the Daily 5)
  • operating machinery/technology
  • even getting Mrs. Cook's walkie-talkie from the classroom because she forgot to bring it out to recess duty!

These are all examples of trust in my classroom. . . there are many others but these are the main ones.

I remember towards the end of the 2011-12 school when the students were coming down with "spring fever", something happened involving multiple members of the classroom that violated the classroom trust. (I'm not sure what is was exactly so it mustn't have been Earth shattering but a big enough deal to give a "lecture".) So I started listing all of the things, jobs, areas, tasks etc. that the students perform and/or are responsible for and I said, "What now? The trust is broken so that means all of these things will now need to be either chaperoned by an adult or will need to be taken away. . . No more messengers to the office, no more going to the bathroom by yourself . . ." and as the lecture continued, the mouths dropped to the floor, a few students cried (some crocodile tears), and some just looked stunned.

Trust is huge and without it, the other foundations are obsolete (in my opinion anyway. . . ).

With choice, it is harder for me to "let go" of control and turn it over to the students. However, we as educators always tout, "I learn so much from my students!" Well think about it now. . . if we shift the locus of control then we will REALLY learn from our students! I really believe that choice within the Daily 5 is true brain-based learning (which is what I teach down at Wilm. Univ.). The example of the superintendent and the principal is so true! We want our students to want to read and become life-long learners and by giving them choice, they will prosper.

An example of this that comes to mind is when I read aloud a favorite book of mine to the students (such as Strega Nona) . . .  and the true reason why I am reading it aloud is for enjoyment. . . then the students go to the library and when I go to pick them up about 20% of my class has a Strega Nona book as their choice! It is mind-blowing! It is not because of "brown-nosing" it is simply because they loved the book and wanted some more time with it!

If you know what I'm talking about can I get a "HOLLA!"

This is something that I need to do more of! Although I feel like my classroom is a community of learners and that we are citizens of our school. . . it is rare that the whole classroom community celebrates the accomplishments of their peers! And it seems like such an easy way to further develop an already established community of learners.

Hahahaha is all I can say about the "Jenna" example in this section! I even read it to my husband (a construction worker) because I loved it so much! Thankfully he is a good listener and truly supports me in all my endeavors and impromptu read alouds.

I think it is so important to tell students the reason why. They are probably thinking it anyway after you teach your lesson and some of them are probably whispering about it too . . . 

Student 1: Why are we doing this?
Student 2: I don't know but we need to or else we have to do it at recess.

I always make sure I explain to the students why we are doing something but my explanations are far from the Daily 5 explanations. This is something that I am excited to learn more. 

WOW! This is something that was/is not in my consciousness. . . maybe subconsciousness . . .  

In my classroom, I always implement transitions about every 15-25 minutes, depending upon the time of year, because we know students' attention spans are limited especially at the primary grades. But rarely do I factor in stamina! Typically when the students start to get noisy, I start saying "Shhhh. . .  remember we need to be quiet!" Then I get frustrated because I'm not done with my reading group, etc.After about 3 rounds of this, I realize then that they have been doing the same task for a long time frame and then just move the class along to the next lesson/activity. 

Stamina is something that I really need to work on with my students in order to implement the Daily 5. 

Well . . . thank you so much for reading my longest post ever! I hope that you also had some "WOW" moments in chapter 2. I'm excited to read everyone's summaries of the chapter! 

Chapter 3 coming up next. . . it will be hosted by Mrs. Freshwater's Class and Thinking Out Loud. Be sure to check it out!

Educationally Yours,


Anonymous said...

Great job Kristin!! I just read that chapter as well! Should I just wait until our get together to comment and discuss??? Kristin B.

Heather said...

I love the video! You made some great points here and I especially agree with you when it comes to stamina. I've had the same "Shhh" conversation with my class until I'm the one frustrated and they have completely lost it with me too! Thanks for sharing! ~Heather Langley

Mrs. Cook said...

Kris - Let's discuss face to face! I'm excited!
Heather - Thanks so much! I'm excited to see how it's put into practice in the coming chapters. Thanks for stopping by!

Mrs. Saoud said...

I have to agree, stay out of the way is one of the most significant points in this chapter to me. I've never thought about the amount of interruptions I made when talking with kids. =)


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