For this chapter please complete the document for chapter 5 located in the documents section.
Once completed, scan it and upload it with your response to the following question. (I'm not as technologically smart as many...I wish it were in a fill in format and easier....but those kinds of things are on my list to learn this summer. So...thanks for doing this one old school.)
I always try to give my students feedback on anything we do. However, I am not sure it is very effective in the elementary level if those comments are written. I doubt highly that my 5th graders read everything I write on their papers. In fact, I know they don’t because they never respond to the silly things I write on there so I don’t think they are reading the serious ones either. Therefore, to increase the effectiveness of my comments, I need to conference with my students to give them their comments. This is something I love doing, but with our large class sizes I have not been able to do.
I like that idea! When teaching this class another time to more high school teachers they were going nuts about commenting on homework...one idea is to comment on a couple a day and get to the whole class throughout the week or over a 2 week period.
Another idea would be to maybe give a couple points to kids who comment on your comment...this way maybe they will be more likely to read them.
I like the idea of small group conferencing because I think it is more meaningful to the students. The other day I took a few minutes during teacher time to conference with my small groups about a reading assignment. It was great. I felt they were very focused. Next year I might try to increase my teacher time during reading groups so I can incorporate some conferencing into it.
I, too, think conferencing in small groups is a good idea. I just cannot see where I would add this in to my day on top of everything else. I suppose the small group time could partially be designed around the homework. It would take a lot of time and effort, but be well worth it! Alena, I feel like my little darlings hardly read my comments, either! Have we trained them to ignore the written feedback or is it just hardly done so they don't notice it?
It's interesting that writing homework is something that I have never even assigned. The students are asked to have their reading log (short summary) but to focus on a specific trait is a great idea! I feel that is something that I can build into my homework easily. Thank you for the great idea!
I too have very limited time to give specific feedback. At the beginning of the year, prior to our rotations model, I did. Out of the 27 students, I would stamp REDO on anywhere between 5 and 10 a day due to lack of effort, or I couldn't read it. I MAYBE got 3 back. The students do not read the specific feedback oftentimes.
In my former life (California Teacher), we would give a writing prompt on Monday as part of the weekly homework assignment. Monday was prewriting, Tuesday was drafting, Wednesday revising/editing, and Thursday was Final draft. Yet another thing I am going to reincorporate into my classroom. But I like the idea of focusing on a specific trait, maybe the topic for writing will lead them toward a specific trait?
I like your idea of building on your writing prompt. My daughter's 3rd grade teacher had Vocabulary Monday, Sentence Tuesday, Paragraph Wednesday, Poetry Thursday and Spelling Test and short writing prompt Friday. She loved knowing what each day would bring and that she had to learn the vocabulary in order to use it in the sentences and the paragraphs that came later in the week. Her writing really improved.
I also like the idea of working on the specific traits, like the "conclusion" as a focus for a week's worth of work.
Every year up until this year, I have assigned my kids a prompt in the same format at the district writing benchmark. They get it on Monday and we turn in and present their work on Friday. I am usually very pleased with the results. I tried something a little different this year, by allowing them to journal more than responding to a given prompt. I am curious to see how my test scores compare.
In a different lifetime, I used to comment on my students work and give positive feedback and areas for improvement. I even remember a time when I would comment on my students writing journals with personal comments. I have gotten away from that and I am sad to say I don't know why. Time is definitiely and issue, however I think it took reading this chapter to bring it back its impertinence. This is definitely an area I need to improve on next year.
I think the feedback I give my students in Math is great. We always look it over together and work through the difficult problems. However, I would like to do more oral conferencing with my students in writing. We always conference after their rough draft, but I think it is important to conference more than just that one time. However, with 35 students in my classroom this year, I have not had the time to do it more than once an assignment.
Good point, Betty. I don't know why I forgot about math. I guess I do give a lot of feedback in math that is constructive. I wonder if this is because math is very straight forward and it's easier to see how to make something wrong, right. I am not 100% sure my students even know what to do with the comments I leave them in writing for example.
My chapter 5 documents are attached.
I do not give homework assignments to my class of severe and profound students. Sometimes, I have seen my 6th grade daughter come home with busywork homework. I HATE THAT!!!! My time with my daughter is precious and even though I understand that some homework is ok...she sometimes has HOURS of it due every night. Too much for a 6th grader. My rant is now over...thank you.
I use homework to reinforce concepts that I have taught. I believe that practice helps deepen students' understanding. I probably give about an hours worth of homework each night to my fourth grade students. I know that some people would say that is too much, however, many of my students finish all of it in class, so they just need to review it with their parents in the evening. I ask my parents to be involved in students' homework, not just as a facilitator, I feel that if they can show their child another to work a problem then that gives the child another strategy in their skills tool box. I really like the homework policy on page 65 and I will probably change mine up to match the one in the book. The other interesting thing in this chapter is the comment about the Japanese using the same amount of time in working on 2 or 3 problems than 2 or 3 pages. This deepens knowledge base and helps the students use abstract reason and application to other problems. This might be why Asians are tops in Math scoring.
I think the part of this chapter that jumped out at me was the section on establish and communicate a homework policy. I loved the idea of a contract - this is something I definitely want to use next year. I had a heck of a time getting my students to complete and turn in their homework and even though I communicated what homework my students would be receiving each evening, my parents still seemed to have no idea that their child had homework when I called them. A contract that parents and students have to sign would be a great resource to pull out when meeting with students and with parents during conferences. I only wish they had an a full example of a contract that I could modify and use.