Tips and tools from an elementary school Literacy Coach
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
Back to School Goals Linky Party
This week I'm wrapping up my Reader's Workshop Miniseries. There are two episodes left: Word Study & Guided Reading.
In the meantime, I thought it'd be fun to join a Back to School Goals linky party! Every year, we gear up and get ourselves mentally ready to start a new year with new little people. I've been working with teachers the past two weeks to help set up some plans for the beginning of this year. We've really appreciated the time to put together our structures and routines for reading and writing. Great way to get a jump on the new school year!
So to help think about my goals for this year, I'm linking up with I (heart) Recess (what a great blog name!) to talk about my Back to School Goals!
Personal: This year is a BIG year for me, personally. I'm going to marry my hunnybun in October! We're gearing up for our wedding and looking forward to taking a fun honeymoon. Sometimes I get really caught up in work, and he does too. I'm a stay late-er, meaning I'll go in to work on time at 7:30 but I'll leave at 5:00 or 5:30, and still bring more home to do. We have Saturday Camps and Saturday School at various times throughout the year, and it seriously takes away from my family time. So this year, I want to make a point of leaving at a decent hour. I'll still stay late (I know myself well enough to know that won't change) but I'm going to try to leave a little earlier and hopefully work less from home.
Organization: I bought my house years ago and have lived by myself for a long time. When my hunnybun moved in almost a year ago, the house was very much mine. My stuff, my furniture, my style, my old TV from the 80s, and my tiny refrigerator that didn't suit two. We've since made some updates and I had to compromise on a lot of things (like sofas and moving a few rooms around) but the house is still mostly what it was before. We started with the backyard already. After we're married, we'd like to redecorate: repaint, new pillows, change some of the colors. I can't wait!
Planning: I don't think this is what "planning" means, but I would like to plan our dinners better. My hunnybun and I both have some weight issues and he has a really bad habit of, if we don't have a plan for dinner, he wants to eat out - and eat badly. He "doesn't like to be limited" his words which annoy me so I have to be careful when planning meals, but I think a good plan would help us.
Professional: I plan with teachers every Tuesday for reading and once a month on Thursday afternoons for writing. We also plan as needed and I frequently schedule meetings, classroom visits, and modeled lessons (myself and other teachers modeling for each other). The hard part is meeting with teachers after visits or lessons to debrief. Teacher time is precious and I want to spend it in the most valuable way possible. So I need to make sure that I plan purposefully to review and debrief with teachers about the positives in their teaching and new ideas we have.
Students: I don't have a classroom of my own anymore (boohoo) but I do have teachers who it is my job to grow. I have to consider my teachers as my students. The tough part about that is that, with students, you pretty much know more than them. With teachers, they all have different levels of experience and teaching knowledge, so it's my job to find new and useful ideas and tools to help them, wherever they are!
Motto: I don't always know what the best decision is. In teaching, you try things, and see how they go. You gather your evidence and make plans to improve. You do the same thing in your personal life. The good thing is, professionally and personally, you're not alone. So, no matter how tough things get, we'll figure it out together!
This is what our planning looks like. Messy but useful!