I haven’t gotten a chance to talk about my 2nd graders yet this year so I thought they would be my blog for today.   I was lucky enough to have a few of my 1st graders from last year be in my 2nd grade group this year.  One of the things we are working on is trying to problem solve on your own first.  Many of them come to an unknown word in reading or writing and while I’m working with a student I’ll hear, “MISS ACUFF!  WHAT’S THIS WORD?” or “MISS ACUFF! HOW DO YOU SPELL ______?”

IMG_8219(Quick side bar: Before I could say, “Try one of your strategies first and I’ll be there in a few seconds.” another student from the group said, “You know your job.  Do something….like sound it out.”  I had to smile.  I might have another little teacher in training.)

Last year they were my babies and had them next to me the entire time.  Now, in the way Interventions That Work want us to do it, the kids meet with me as the whole group briefly for letter work and directions/book orientation and then they go off to begin their work.  This gives me an opportunity to come around to each student while they are working and conference with them on their reading or writing.

Every group session it gets easier for them.  They are learning to use the strategies they have been taught–look for parts you know, what makes sense, what do you see in the picture?  In their writing they are getting better at using their writing skills–try it on your practice page, do you know a word that sounds like that word or is similar?, using your word dictionary, using your book for help, trying the word and circling it for me to check when we conference.

IMG_0068I was really proud of the kids today.  They all were doing a great job during IMG_8220writing of going to their strategies first and trying it.  They all know more than they give themselves credit for.  I went over writing strength and goal sheets with the kids and we were making sure they were monitoring their writing and going back to check.  (An example of the sheet I use it to the left)  I try to have my 2nd graders focus on 2-3 things they can work on.  For a lot of them it’s spacing, capital letters, and using the line spacing appropriately.

So we’ll keep chugging along!  I tell my kids the important thing to ask yourself is, “Am I better today than I was yesterday?”  We take it one step at a time and just have to keep making sure that the work we do today is better than the work we did yesterday.

It’s a great day to be a Lowell Cougar…am I right??