Spelling & English Language Learners

image sourced from publicdomainpics

This article has many good insights about how to teach and help English Language Learners to succeed in our classrooms. It has some helpful ideas that can easily be adapted to our practice. Here are a few key points I took from this article:

  • Teachers that mark mistakes on student’s work actually distracts them rather than helping them correct themselves. Student mistakes are a key part of developing language.
  • Instead of the standard spelling test, show students the pictures that indicate the meaning of the word and then write it. We could also give multiple-choice tests that has various ways of spelling a word and see if they can recognize the right spelling.
  • It can be difficult for students to develop fluency when they have to ask for help or look up a word in a dictionary because it stops their flow of thinking and it can be hard to continue their train of thought.

website: colorincolorado.org


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First blog post

For my first blog, I wanted to post a video to capture my idea and my passion for this inquiry project. My goal is to develop a greater understanding of how to empower young women in schools, to build their confidence, and to educate them on powerful women in history.

 


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Moving Forward –>

We have learned so much about inquiry in these last month or so in our courses. A common pattern I have noticed is the focus on inquiry in more of an intermediate setting. Inquiry for the primary grades can be challenging because of the amount of materials and content that needs to be covered.

My colleague Lindsy Friendship and I have found a way to bring our primary students natural wonders and curiosities with inquiry and play. Some people may be wondering; What does this look like? Where do you go next? How do you cover all your students?

As we move through this inquiry you will get to see these questions being covered. We all know that every classroom is different and every student in the classroom is too, so not all of these ideas will work for every time and will definitely need to be adapted accordingly.

I am excited to explore this inquiry and share my experience with you! Please comment with any questions, or thoughts.

 

Thank you


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All About Spelling Program

I looked at level one in the All About Spelling program and I will be exploring it further in the near future. It is a multisensory program (visual, auditory, kinaesthetic) that takes the struggle out of spelling for students. Some interesting things that I have found in the teacher’s guide so far are that certain sets of phonograms shouldn’t be taught together, such as b, d or a, e, i, o, u or p, b or m, n because they sound alike to an untrained ear. I also read about how some letter make more than one sound, such as ‘a.’ An ‘a’ can sound like apple, acorn, or water, which is something I know but I never thought about how to teach that to students. This program doesn’t state a particular order in which to teach phonograms but rather focusing on figuring out which phonograms need to be taught and teaching those phonograms. Since I was a little confused with all the new vocabulary I have been reading, I had to look up what a phonogram actually was and I found that a phonogram is a character or symbol used to represent a word, syllable, or phoneme.Screen Shot 2017-10-14 at 11.32.23 PM


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Why ADHD in the classroom?

When I was looking into inquiry projects I struggled to think of a topic that would further my learning. I obviously thought of a million topics I could do, however I wanted something that connected to my immediate learning I was doing this year. When having a conversation with a classmate the topic of a boy with ADHD in my practicum class was brought up. That is when she suggested I inquire further into this topic.

I never thought ADHD within the classroom would be hard to manage, I quickly found out I was quite naive… This practicum has been a wake up call to the lack of resources available for students with ADHD and I plan to research to find resources, tactics, and tips to helping these students succeed to their full potential within a classroom.

Throughout the next few months I will be talking to my immediate practicum contacts L.S., E.B, and E.J. to see direct resources in the Nanaimo, Ladysmith school district in order to help my student as much as possible. I will also be researching tactics online and hopefully creating a plan with this student to help his learning.


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Technology in the Classroom

On October 6th, my practicum school partnered with another local school to invite Google-certified educators and innovators in to share a variety of tools to implement Google into the classroom and make teachers’ lives easier. I decided to make these tools the basis for my 2017-2018 inquiry project and further my research to make it directly applicable to TRB Standard 5 – “Educators implement effective practices in the areas of classroom management, planning, instruction, assessment, evaluation and reporting.”

Throughout this blog, I will go through each of the areas mentioned in Standard 5 and highlight the tools I took away from the workshop as well as others I have found throughout my research. My goal is to make these tools applicable and accessible for all, regardless of experience level.


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Teaching Diverse and Inclusive Classrooms.

“We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter what their color.” – Maya Angelou

The following information is taken from this article.

It’s 2017 and you can bet your bottom dollar that any class that you are put into these days is going to be diverse. For some teachers who are stuck in traditional ways of teaching, this is intimidating, but for some it is a challenge to incorporate each learner into the woodwork and to make sure each of their needs are met.

incl

Research shows that, “traditional teaching methods are often ineffective for learners outside of the majority culture.” The article states that many students from minority groups, especially women and people of colour, are most likely to prosper when their classroom has a focus on collaborative work where they can share personal experiences and, “examine relationships between persons and ideas”. In parallel, more competitive learning environments may cause students from minority groups to feel isolated and unable to speak their mind. In classrooms that model competitive learning, such as calling on students who raise their hands quicker than others, some students fall between the cracks. In environments such as this it is important to outline clear expectations for when it is appropriate to speak, to always show respect, and that it’s OK to make mistakes.

Some of the questions outlined in the article are:

  • Do your examples or illustrations acknowledge the experiences of people from different backgrounds in non-stereotypical ways?
  • Have you examined your own conscious or unconscious biases about people of other cultures?
  • Are the students welcome to share from their own lives and interests? Are they treated as individuals?

I found the question regarding the resources used in the classroom showing perspectives of people from an array of backgrounds to provoke a lot of thought around what that would like in a BC classroom. Incorporating materials written from the perspectives similar to those of students in your class could seriously promote empathy and acceptance within your classroom dynamic. For example, including stories or books by First Nations peoples into social studies lessons or science lessons could spark new ideas for many students in your classroom and could also allow for First Nations children in your classroom to take pride in their culture and share their own experiences. Again, it is important to allow room for cooperation, sharing, and relationship building in the diverse classroom.

Ultimately, if you are working to create an inclusive classroom then you are also making strides towards making your classroom a safe space for every child. By incorporating times for students to connect, share experiences, and work collaboratively you are creating space for students to celebrate and respect their diversities as strengths rather than weaknesses. Keep in mind that small group work should be monitored so that students are working in new combinations of partners often.

“Whichever methods you choose to make your classroom more inclusive, know that remaining sensitive to and flexible about the ways diverse populations communicate, behave and think, will help create a supportive learning environment for all students.”

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Teaching Diverse and Inclusive Classrooms.

“We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter what their color.” – Maya Angelou

The following information is taken from this article.

It’s 2017 and you can bet your bottom dollar that any class that you are put into these days is going to be diverse. For some teachers who are stuck in traditional ways of teaching, this is intimidating, but for some it is a challenge to incorporate each learner into the woodwork and to make sure each of their needs are met.

incl

Research shows that, “traditional teaching methods are often ineffective for learners outside of the majority culture.” The article states that many students from minority groups, especially women and people of colour, are most likely to prosper when their classroom has a focus on collaborative work where they can share personal experiences and, “examine relationships between persons and ideas”. In parallel, more competitive learning environments may cause students from minority groups to feel isolated and unable to speak their mind. In classrooms that model competitive learning, such as calling on students who raise their hands quicker than others, some students fall between the cracks. In environments such as this it is important to outline clear expectations for when it is appropriate to speak, to always show respect, and that it’s OK to make mistakes.

Some of the questions outlined in the article are:

  • Do your examples or illustrations acknowledge the experiences of people from different backgrounds in non-stereotypical ways?
  • Have you examined your own conscious or unconscious biases about people of other cultures?
  • Are the students welcome to share from their own lives and interests? Are they treated as individuals?

I found the question regarding the resources used in the classroom showing perspectives of people from an array of backgrounds to provoke a lot of thought around what that would like in a BC classroom. Incorporating materials written from the perspectives similar to those of students in your class could seriously promote empathy and acceptance within your classroom dynamic. For example, including stories or books by First Nations peoples into social studies lessons or science lessons could spark new ideas for many students in your classroom and could also allow for First Nations children in your classroom to take pride in their culture and share their own experiences. Again, it is important to allow room for cooperation, sharing, and relationship building in the diverse classroom.

Ultimately, if you are working to create an inclusive classroom then you are also making strides towards making your classroom a safe space for every child. By incorporating times for students to connect, share experiences, and work collaboratively you are creating space for students to celebrate and respect their diversities as strengths rather than weaknesses. Keep in mind that small group work should be monitored so that students are working in new combinations of partners often.

“Whichever methods you choose to make your classroom more inclusive, know that remaining sensitive to and flexible about the ways diverse populations communicate, behave and think, will help create a supportive learning environment for all students.”

 


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