Wednesday, January 29, 2014

National Boards Video Entry 3 take . . . sigh . . .

In working on the video portion of my EC Gen. Entry 3 essay and video, I realize that not only have I failed to really READ the requirements, but the Sink and Float Unit with water tubs does not go over well with Kindergartners!  There was water splashed all over the place!  Oh MY!

So, back to the drawing board and switching Science Units to Comparing and Measuring which is definitely more Math based, but one of our district required lessons. 

While selecting my video entry, where I found I needed to change it up was video taping the whole class vs. a small group.  Entry 2 is video a group of no less than 6, Entry 3 requires a whole class experience.  While I still struggle with the words "whole class experience" I hope that I have finally nailed it as this turned out to be a pretty good lesson with great cooperative kiddos!

I created the worksheet we used to guide us on our Comparing and Measuring journey . . . below is a sample of what we did during this lesson. 

It was my hope that the kiddos could do this independently but they still required assistance.   In the video requirements of providing a whole class experience, I did have some students in small groups with adult assistance just to keep the kiddos on task.  It's Kindergarten!  They are 5!  Whole class experience without adult guidance would provide mass organized chaos!  I typically have wonderful helpers and volunteers in my classroom and am blessed to have them in my classroom.
With that said, as I start to write my Entry 3 and review my video, I am keeping in mind those looming words "whole classroom experience".  I hope and pray that I am meeting the requirements.  We will see! 


Monday, January 13, 2014

National Board Entry 3 Video taping . . . take 2!

So I am working on the video portion of my Sink and Float lesson for the Entry 3 requirement for Science/Math . . . I'm not sure it has the warm fuzzy feeling of success that I had hoped for.  The pre-teaching for the lesson was to observe and predict if a ball of clay would sink or float.  We discussed that clay can take many forms and that we can manipulate the clay into different shapes and perhaps find a shape that will float.  We read a story "Who Sank the Boat" by Pamela Allen in hopes that the students would think . . . gee! 

I can make my clay ball into a boat!  Well, not so much.  We drew pictures of what was made, then colored in what happened (sink/float).  Some students got so involved in making their shapes, they forgot to mark their charts!  Discussion did not prove any clay structures could float . . . Not sure if this was a success or not!?!  Tomorrow, we will construct boats!  Keeping fingers crossed they float!


Sunday, January 12, 2014

New Year's Resolutions and New Blog Design!

I am so excited to start the new year with a fresh new look to my blog and a New Year's resolution to document my Kindergarten experiences (both successes and failures), new items on Teacher Pay Teacher, and my National Board experience!  

Currently in my classroom I have revamped my Reading Groups . . . I'm sure you have all been there!  As time has gone on, some kiddos move quicker than others and some need more time.  I am excited to start with my new groups on Monday and get them moving along!  I have incorporated and am working on some word work for sight word practice and will post on TPT when I am finished!  I am lucky to have a student teacher from Central WA University and a wonderful volunteer from Pierce College in my classroom!  Without their help and taking over some groups, I wouldn't be able to accomplish my start 2014 goal of starting the kiddos writing in their writing journals!  I felt like SUPER teacher this week as we had several great days in a row of directed writing as a whole class!!  

The National Board process has been slow to start for me and I am getting a bit . . . A LOT . . .frustrated truth be told!  It's an overwhelming process, with a lot of technical writing.  Very cut and dry which is not what I am used to!  The key words that ring in my ears from our cohort leaders are "clear and concise" with your writing.  I am working on video taping my Science lessons this week and hope that I can get a good 15 minutes to submit for my entry.  If only the kiddos would cooperate!  LOL  Little things I have learned that may help if you are also joining in this journey is to remember to not use the kids names while video taping and let them LEAD the discussion.  As much as you want to jump in (they are Kindergarteners) it's best to let them go and see where the discussion leads!  I will address the pre-teaching and post lessons in my actual entry writing.  

Look for pictures and more to come . . .