Tuesday, May 19, 2009

My Unit

My unit will focus on young children using language arts skills to develop reading fluency; using dramatics to improve oral language development and boost confidence; Making positive choices through character analysis and realizing that actions have consequences.

EQ: What choices should you make to stay safe?

UQ: How can you make responsible choices?

CQ: How does reading and learning about Goldilocks' choices make you aware of your own personal safety choices?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Projects Promote Deeper Thinking in my First Grade Classroom

First grade students love projects and working cooperatively to do research; ask questions; create things that extend or culminate the learning process makes the learning experience have deeper meaning and relevancy for them. At this age the learning is greatly enhanced when the students are actively engaged in the process. When many hands-on learning activities and experiences are used the result is positive, successful mastery of skills and concepts. The children's enthusiasm for the subject matter soars when they feel they're responsible for the outcomes and have an active role in the learning process!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Thinking Skills Matter In My First Grade Classroom!

I strive daily to encourage my students to think deeply and become motivated, enthusiastic learners. I want them to be genuinely EXCITED about learning! The importance of a positive, nurturing atmosphere helps to develop a classroom that's child-centered with an emphasis on active learning. Correct modeling is an essential ingredient at this age and stage of learning! The students become independent workers and deeper thinkers when I provide positive reinforcers, humor when appropriate, and integrate standards and subject matter across my first grade curriculum. Songs, games, questioning techniques and the use of technology(Smartboard interactive activities) help to encourage higher order thinking skills and cooperative learning in my first grade class. I have a class motto that the children relate to: "If you believe, you WILL achieve!" and they know that "can't never could" so they're encouraged to try new things and have an "I CAN" attitude with a willingness to work together so that our classroom is a place where everyone feels safe and excited about learning.