Tuesday, August 16, 2011


So, I've been spending a lot of time at school as of recently (big surprise, I know!) working very hard to get things set up for this year.  Now that my room in itself is almost done, I'm starting to focus on other (larger) projects.  To be honest, I've kind of been putting off the whole planning/curriculum project because it's a BEAST!  Our school is adapting a new Reading Series this year. 

It's a biggie!  I'm also piloting a new Math program this year.  (I know nothing about the math at this point in time.) 

I'm also getting one of these bad boys!  (Yay for technology integration!)

That's an Epson Bright Link, for those of you unfamiliar (me being one of those people!)  It's kind of silly in my mind that I'm LITERALLY going from little to no technology use in the classroom to almost complete dependency on it!  These two series are heavily connected to online resources, videos, assessments, etc. But between these items, getting my room together, organizing and creating centers and activities, and moving to a new grade level, I'm starting to feel overwhelmed!  I need some help from some educational gurus!  I've been consulting with some of my staff members and we've formally decided that it's not the teaching of these items that concerns us, it's the management! 

The change is an exciting one though!  I actually feel glad that it's happening this year and all at once. I recognize that this year will be difficult (especially the first few weeks!) but by next year (at the latest!) we'll all have an opportunity to overhaul and really figure out how to do things in a way that works for us.  I just feel bad for this year's kiddos as they transition with us! I'm hoping that these new changes will help to meet the needs of our student population.  Education, in itself, is in a rough spot these days. I only want to change the world.  Is that so hard?


  1. This is our 4th year of using the Scott Foresman Reading Street series. Just remember that you can't do it all, so you have to pick and choose what to focus on for your kids. I teach 6th grade so I probably can't help you too much, BUT just wanted you to know that if you give your kiddos the Baseline Assessment online-it will grade it for you and break it down by skill what each child needs to work on. It will also give you a master report that show the percentages of your whole class and what they did or did not master, for example: author's purpose, main idea, etc. Good luck and let me know if I can help you with anything! :)


  2. Shannon, that is a HUGE help! Thank you so very much for the advice. My only concern is that it will be one VERY lengthy test (especially for very young 3rd graders at the beginning of the year!) to administer. I'll look more into it! Thanks a BILLION!

  3. I have loved Reading Street. Lots of resources available on the web from awesome teachers. Check out Waltke's web or Scott Foresman activities (google it) and TONS of great things aligned to each story.

  4. We are using envision. This year we decided to send the Daily Spiral Review home because many students struggle to understand the concepts and then they get home, get discouraged, and parents are confused. This also ensures that students are getting a lot of general math practice at home. I just thought I'd give you a heads up. Sometimes the program doesn't make sense to the kids, and it can be frustrating. But just stay positive and know that there are a few of us out there who have been through it too. Good Luck and I LOVE your blog.

  5. Anonymous--thanks! I have been there and have modified many of the materials I found. (I'm noticing a lot of what I'm finding are for the older version of the series, so I have to "reinvent the wheel."

    Hannah, I know NOTHING about the Math or what it comes with so I'm going to have to play catch up on that when the materials arrive! I'm assuming the Daily Spiral Review is like a premade notebook type deal?? I will stay positive--exciting changes lurk ahead! :)