Monday, January 9, 2012

Comment Round Up

Love like big, pink, glittery heart love! 
But, recently I haven't been so good at keeping up with them all.  I just went in and commented in some of the comment sections of a few posts. However, I thought I would take some time to comment en masse to some of your comments to a few particular posts.  Gee, I used the word comments a lot here!  Anyway, I love to hear what you have to say, and I really appreciate that you take the time to post some words. 

Here are some thoughts on your comments.

Crafting Power Sentences
I'm so glad so many of you liked this lesson.  It has really gone over well with my students.  Kim from Finding JOY in 6th Grade made me laugh out loud when she wrote that she would fall over dead if her friends used more than 5 words in a sentence.  I feel ya, Kim!  That's one of the reasons I created this review lesson! 

Some of you noted that I tend to post in detail.  Often I think I'm just rambling, but I like to give as much information as I can.  Sometimes I've seen something on other blogs and think I would like to use it.  I like to know how the teacher implemented it and then make changes I need to to make it work for me.  That's what I always encourage you guys to do.  Take what I post and run with it!  Only you know your friends and what will work best for them.

Use Your Writing VOICES!
VOICES for You & Great Clip Art
The VOICES posts are some of my favorites.  What I like about the VOICES board is that it works across any grade level.  Mrs. Brown, who teachers 10th and 11th grade, and Mrs. S at Stapler's Strategies for Sizzlin' Second Graders! both commented that they plan to use the VOICES board in their classes.  And, I know it will work in both!  Some of you asked for copies of the words, and I'm happy I was able to figure out how to do it.  I'm not always as techy as you may think!

Important Questions
These really were important questions for me, and I was so curious to hear what you had to say.  I asked about two things; your Reader's Workshop and Words Their Way. 

I first asked about how reader's workshop was implemented in your district because it is currently being implemented in mine.  I'm not loving exactly how it's being implemented, but I do love a workshop approach.  Debi2610 asked if I had anything I could share.  To be honest, my district is implementing a new part of the workshop each month this year, so much of what they give us is being tweaked and changed often.  I am familiar with the method and have been using it prior to this year, so I've been able to work with it.  But Debi, a lot of what I post is all part of my reading and writing workshop lessons.

Some of you mentioned programs or models like CScope, GRR (Gradual Release of Responsibility) Model, Dorn model, and Faye Brownlie model of student choice.  Hopefully, my links are all correct.  I was familiar with some of them, but a couple were new to me.  It's amazing how instruction across the country differs so!

As for Words Their Way, all I can say is LOVE IT!  My friends love it, and it seems to be working well.  I'm planning to post more about it when I have had more time to work with it.  But, thanks to everyone for the comments.  They were helpful.

Planning The Impossible
Loved the comments on this one! It seems that asking teachers to cram more and more in the teaching day is a universal teacher frustration.  I've been working within the constraints of my literacy block, and it's sort of, kinda, maybe working a bit.  I'm still not satisfied with my reading time, but I don't see anything changing in the near future.  I had to laugh at the one anonymous response that basically told me to shut up, close my door, and just do my own thing.  Let me tell you, the idea has crossed my mind!   The only problem with that idea is that our district is big on walk throughs.  This is where administrators do random walks through your room to see what you are up to.  They stay no longer than ten minutes and it is not considered an observation, but they may come and go as often as they please.  I also have to have my plan book available at all times.  Under these conditions, there's no closing the door and doing your own thing!  But, as I said, I'm slowly making it work.  But then, don't we always do that as teachers?  We just make it work!

You're a Heart Breaker!
You know I love your comments.  I especially love when you come back and tell me how you used an idea I posted.  Megafizz tried the Heart Breakers game with her 5th graders, and they loved it.  That made me happy!

So, that's kind of it for today.  Lots of words and not a lot of pictures on this one.  But, there is a lot of thought about your words and a lot of thanks.  To you!  Thanks for posting comments, and thanks for taking the time to read my little blog.  See you soon. :-)


  1. We nominated your blog for the Versatile Award! Head over to our blog to learn the details! : )

  2. I really appreciate your blog and I find myself reflecting on my own practice after while reading your posts. I worked in your Theme activity (loving Molly Lou Melon as well!) and now we are moving onto lit studies with a focus on finding the common theme embedded throughout (I teach 6th grade). Also, the Heartbreaker game was a great ah-ha moment for me... I'm in the process of making it a Smartboard interactive game with your recommended 'hearts'

    1. Thank you so much for the kind words Shannon! I'm glad you have found something you were able to use. I have tell you, I have a Promethean board in my room and it never occured to me to move my Heartbreakers game to it! I'm glad you mentioned it. Thanks!!

  3. What a great blog post! It always feels nice to thank those who are supporting you, as well as review some of your more popular posts.

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    Teaching in Room 6