Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Day of Collaboration

Yesterday I spent A LOT of time with the other teacher at my level who teaches ELA.  It's great to have people you work with that enjoy collaborating and planning together.  After spending quite a bit of time getting to know many parts of Wonders, I needed someone to bounce some ideas off of.

We got a lot accomplished, and I now have a long list of items to complete - which is good!  So I'll take it one at a time.  I had already started on a Weekly Page that I wanted to give to students each week with spelling words, vocab, etc.  I showed Kelley what I had so far, and as usual, she did a great job of giving productive suggestions for changing a few items.  Once I have a plan, I like to get it knocked out.  I tend to want to bounce all over between ideas and projects, but my new goal is to work on one item at a time until it's COMPLETE!  So here it is: Unit 1, Weeks 1-5.  For each week there are 3 versions, the only difference being the leveled spelling lists.

 The front has the spelling list (with phonics focus), vocab list, and Unit and Weekly theme questions.  I added either a famous quote or proverb for each week that lends itself to the theme.  I love using quotes!

I also added an "Investigate" section.  This is something that they have the week to think about and take notes, so that they can share in a small group at the end of the week.  Besides trying to make a personal connection to the weekly theme, this helps tie in speaking and listening goals.  The "Optional Challenge" is meant for differentiation, and will bring in some component of Internet research for those who attempt this.

Finally, a place for tracking reading.  We use AR, but I'm hoping that this will help students keep up with weekly goals.

The back has a spelling sort.  I had to scramble the lists so that they aren't grouped by pattern, like on the front.  This is similar to Words Their Way.  There are many ways to do this.  My plan is to have students complete this, and the rest of the back, on their own either at home or school.  On Friday we will share in small groups.  I will rotate through groups/partners to spot check.

I've done a similar activity with vocab in the past.  This definitely improves over time.  Sharing a few great examples each week helps give motivation to "up their game."

The bottom boxes are obviously space for the matching sections on the front.  I like sometimes not giving them lines, and letting them figure out how to "plan for their space."

I've added these to my TpT store.  There are 30 pages in all for $2.  I'm hoping that those who purchase come to my blog.  My goal is to make this a place where we can have a discussion with other teachers using Wonders to talk about what works and what doesn't.  If you purchase these Weekly Sheets, and start using them, leave comments and suggestions.  I plan to continue making these for Units 2-6, but want to see what changes if any  to make.  I'd love any thoughts, suggestions, ideas from other users before I dive in to the next set.

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