Friday, January 4, 2013

Best Teaching Practice: Making Agendas Practical

Sadly, it is almost the end of my holidays and I will be back in the classroom for the month of January before I go out on my extended placement. With the end of the holidays comes the scramble of getting assignments completed that I should have done at the beginning of my holidays but I was distracted by free time and my big comfy bed.

In my practicum class we discuss best practices from my our initial placements and after the break, my turn comes up. I have decided to do a best practice of the agendas that my lovely associate teacher used in her classroom. The activity sheet can be found on Jamie's blog or on pinterest.

So here is a snippet of the handout I will give my practicum class:


Class: combined 2/3
What is it?
Instead of a regular agenda with large blocks for Monday-Friday and small blocks on Saturday and Sunday, the students were given a binded package of the same activity sheets. The activity sheet included a Number of the Day with which the teacher would write on a special spot on the chalkboard each day and the students were required to answer questions about that number. Then the teacher would also write a new sentence each day on the chalkboard that was grammatically incorrect and had spelling errors “dont 4get to be safe trick-or-tweating”. The students would then write down in the space provided the corrected version of the sentence. In the second line, if there was any correspondence with teachers and parents, it would be written in that line. Since the agendas were not looked at daily, the students would know when to show the teacher their agenda if there was a correspondence from their parent.
When did it occur: Each day the students had an 80 minute math block at the end of the day and the first 15-20 minutes was given to the students to work on their agendas.
How often did the agenda booklets change: Approximately every few months.
Positives of this practice:
I thought that this practice worked really well for the grade level of the class and because they did not receive any homework. On Thursday they had a file to take home with any handouts that were meant for their parents (i.e. permission forms, notices etc…) with their parents but other than that, there was nothing required for them to write in a regular agenda. I also liked how it was a good routine for the students, each of them new that after the last recess, they were to come in and get their agendas and start working on it.

Let me know what you think of the idea!
Later days, 
Tara