Category: Student Spotlight


Meet Ms. Wilson

IMG_8674Hello, everyone!  I didn’t forget about you!  It’s just been a very busy last couple of months–and unfortunately, a lot of it has been testing.  We just got back in the swing of things about 3 weeks ago and 2 weeks ago I got a new student teacher.

Please meet Ms. Elizabeth Wilson, a Elementary Education major from the University of Northern Iowa and a Cedar Falls native.

She started with us last Monday, the 11th and will be working with the kiddos through March 3rd!

She’s been getting her feet wet with a wide range of activities and teaching lots of lessons.  The kids love her and it’s been fun to watch her grow in her teaching already.  She comes with a lot of enthusiasm for teaching and kids.

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I love celebrating the successes of my students.  Today one of my Reading Recovery students wanted to know how many words he had on his writing chart.  I told him he had 80 and he wanted to get to 100.  I thought we would add a couple more, but he just started writing word after word after word.  “Have I shown you tub?….Have I shown you…”  I was amazed!  And within 10 minutes my little Daniel had added 21 new words to his writing vocabulary, which brought his grand total up to 101 words.  (Oddly enough today is the 101th day of school.)

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Before break I offered any of my Reading Recovery students a chance to either have lunch with me from McDonald’s or receive a prize if they read every day over break and had their parents keep track of their reading and sign the sheet.  I was very happy when I had one of my students bring his sheet back.  We finally were able to schedule lunch together today.  We had a lot of fun sharing lunch together.  It’s nice to be able to take time out of the day to have one on one time with students outside of instructional time.

IMG_0127Yesterday marked the first day of my student teacher, Tad Brace, starting with me.  Tad is an Education Major at UNI and will be working with my groups and me.

Mr. Brace will be working with us until March 7th and will then be moving on to teach middle school Social Studies.  I, along with the kids in my group, are really excited about having him with us the next 8 weeks–especially the kids as they don’t usually get a guy teacher.

Tad will one by one be taking over my groups with my support and supervision, but I will continue to teach my Reading Recovery students and pick up some other students to work with.

Be on the look out for lots of really great things happening with our groups at Lowell.

One of the things every teacher strives to do, is instill a passion in students to want to read and write during their free time.  One of my 2nd graders has been very eager to soak up every ounce of knowledge he can at group.  When our 30 minutes was up he told me he didn’t want to stop writing.  I told him I’d leave some journal paper and if he wanted to write during his free time he could and I’d be happy to look at it the next time I came to group.  I had forgotten about it over the weekend and I was extremely surprised when Antavious came up to me when I walked into the room for group, grinning ear to ear, holding his 2 stories.  He had read about snakes and turtles and had written the information down in his own words.  I was very proud.  I have a “wall of fame” outside my door where I post some group work that I am proud of.  He was beaming when I told him this would definitely go on my wall.  I wanted to share this with everyone else.  I was happy to see that even though the spelling, punctuation, and grammar aren’t perfect, you can see some erasing that he attempted editing–a skill I am still teaching him how to process.  Please take a look at my Antavious’ writing!

This story says: Snakes can be 500 pounds and very small and big and fat and thing and sharp and poisonous and smart and they are 3-D.  They yellow.  They red.  They green.  They might eat us.  They jump.

This story says: Turtles can be 700 pounds and turtles fat and turtles wrinkly and turtles can fight and they scared of us and they is green.  They big.

UPDATE: I decided to send this work to the Principal’s Wall of Fame wall so Antavious could be recognized among his peers as someone who is making a reading-writing connection, taking the strategies he’s learning in group and putting them to use, and showing me the best writing he’s done so far this school year.  I think the work he’s doing outside of group is pretty darn awesome. (The Principal’s Wall of Fame is a show case outside of the Principal’s office where any teacher in the building can nominate a student’s work each trimester to be displayed and recognized for the entire school to see.  Students are announced on the intercom and typically there is a special lunch or treat at the end of the trimester for each student)