Friday, September 18, 2009

In answer to the rhetorical question "How was your day?"

If I really described my workday in detail, it would be so jargon-filled that only small portions would be understandable by the greater public at large. Let's try anyway.

It was benchmark day. With Title I and REACh funds, we formally benchmarked reading levels for each and every student in our school building. We'll do it again in January and May. Today was my day to write sub plans, copy my word lists, and participate in benchmarking my class.
How's that so far? Not bad, eh? Let's go on.
My sub would need the multimedia cart to show a Safari piece for science. He'd also be teaching a make-words vocabulary activity and a personal narrative lesson in taking brainstorming sessions and focusing on one seed moment.
Meanwhile, I reviewed the differences in Rigby benchmarks vs. Fountas and Pinnell and how that would affect my levelled reading program in fiction and informational. We discussed formulas for calculating error rate, self-correct rate, WPM speed, fluency, comprehension rate, and instructional vs. independent levels. Then the bell rang, and we were on.

I pulled the benchmark kit out of the reading specialist's office, organized my workspace in a corner of the instrumental music room, and called my first kiddo to read for me. Using the intermediate kit and the adaptive calculator for reading rate, I benched her, sent her back, then calculated the data I needed while she and the next student walked the halls. Error rates, meaning based or visual, all were important tools for planning instruction. That's the heart of assessment, isn't it? But I digress.

I finished the second student and then sent him out for recess. I was on my way to ask the Title I Reading teacher about comparing comprehension and fluency rates in an when the 6th grade teacher almost ran past me. "Georgia's going to Starbucks. Do you want anything? Of course you do!"

I reached the Title teacher in her cubby within the library and asked her about satisfactory vs. excellent comprehension scores, extending rather than literal comprehension, and what counts and what doesn't as additional information in the retell. Text to self connections and the less common text to text connections are the best options for extending the retell beyond the literal. Then she redirected me into the speech/ language room because the SLP (not the PSL) was going to Erbert and Gerberts to pick up lunch. Would I like anything? I'd brought a lunch, but this sounded better, and I could add up the cost without analyzing fluency, so I said yes, please, and I'll take the avocado on top.

With lunch on the way, I was momentarily distracted by the library media specialist having trouble with the large Monovision monitor that attached to our computers. She and I troubleshooted (troubleshot?) and found out that we needed to reset the screen resolution and one other display option before it would work. Then we rebooted, observed, and shouted woo-hoo! so loudly that the kids coming back in from outside heard us and stared. I can just imagine: "There they go, bouncing around the computer monitors again. What is this, some kind of celebration dance?" If they only knew.

My day? Pretty good, all in all. Unique, to say the least. I can't wait for tomorrow.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Ah, I sure miss edu-jargon;)

9/18/2009 1:03 PM  
Blogger Liberty Rose said...

If the public only knew there was so much nitty gritty to really understand how a kiddo is doing in reading.

I am glad you got Starbucks and a good sandwich for lunch...without those the day may have been intolerable!

9/21/2009 4:48 PM  

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