I am linking up with Amelia from Where the Wild Things Learn for a schedule linky. It is so interesting to see the way different teachers schedule their time. As a teacher it always feels as though I am under a time crunch (there is so much to get done and so little time to get everything accomplished) but I am pretty sure that is a universal feeling of teachers so I am glad to know I am not alone!
My schedule changes each day but is similar on Monday/Wednesday/Friday and similar on Tuesday/Thursday. Below is a copy of my “Monday” schedule. To be honest, I love my Monday/Wednesday/Friday schedule much more than my Tuesday/Thursday schedule. The biggest difference between the two schedules is that on Monday/Wednesday/Friday my students have a special in the afternoon and on Tuesday/Thursday my kids have specials in the morning. The specials in the morning causes me to teach math and reading back to back in the afternoon which is a lot for first graders.
Breakfast, announcements, and a story: Our kids eat breakfast in the classroom. Over half of my students eat breakfast in the classroom each day. It is a quiet time as students come in, we take attendance/lunch count, and listen to a story online or watch a BrainPop Video. This time gives me a chance to check in with students, check homework/folders and take care of any parent notes/concerns.
Phonemic awareness, word wall, and poem notebook: We use Michael Heggerty for our phonemic awareness program. We usually do a quick word wall activity (clap, chant cheering, find someone who, making words, ect.) and fluency practice with our poem notebook. We do not spend too much time on any one of these activities but they are important to our daily routine.
Writing: We use Lucy Caulkins units of study for writing. Currently we are on her second unit which is informative writing or in first grade terms we are making “teaching books.” I start with a mini lesson for students. I do my best to limit it to 10 minutes because that is just about the attention span of my first graders!! Then, students are off and writing. While students are writing I call some back (depends on the day and the skill we are focussing on) to work with me so I can help guide their writing on a daily basis.
math: I start with a mini lesson, number of the day, or a math talk depending on the day and the focus of our lesson for that day (whether it is new or review.) After the mini lesson students break into centers each day. I pull students back for guided math during that time to focus on specific students’ needs.
Counting book and common core review: We take a couple of minutes everyday for our counting book. This is an activity that I feel is crucial to student’s understanding of numbers. The majority of my students can count by 1’s to 100; however, starting on random number or going backwards is much more difficult. All of my students can count by 10’s to 120; however to start on a random number and count by tens is much more difficult. So we use our counting books every day. The common core review is a quick question that forces students to think deeper about a specific problem. It is a balancing an equation problem, a multiple step word problem, ect.
recess and lunch: Typically, our students go outside for recess for 20 minutes and then have 20 minutes to eat. However, with this cold weather they have been inside for most recesses. Hopefully, it will start warming up soon because I know my kiddos are ready and wanting to be outside more!
words their way: This is my first year using this program and I am really enjoying it. I recently gave students their benchmark assessment and was really impressed with how many more sounds they are able to hear when writing new words. I have different groups for words their way and this is time I use to meet with each group and introduce their new words/sounds. The other students are in centers while I am meeting with each group.
Specials: At our school we have 35 minutes plans. Our specials include: library, art, music and gym.
Reading: This would be the time of day I would change. Due to pullout schedules with our ESL teachers we are required to do reading at specific times. This is my “reading block” time and it is difficult for my little guys to stay so focussed and to work quietly at the end of the day. I would love to be able to switch my math and reading time because in math a little noise is fine (as they are working out problems and playing games with partners) but during reading in order for students to be focussing on reading to themselves it really needs to be quieter. Which again, is a challenge but my kids do their best! I do a version of Daily 5 centers while I pull back guided reading groups based on Fountas and Pinnell reading levels.
Pick up and Pack up: We quickly clean up, shut down our laptops, get bundled up and ready to go!
The days do go by quickly the majority of time and I know that is mostly because there is so much to teach these little ones each and everyday!
Thanks to Amelia for hosting this linky and giving teachers an opportunity to see how other classrooms schedule their time. There is lots to learn from scheduling so make sure to hop on over to Where the Wild Things Learn!