Teaching Informational Structure

After last year, I realized I need to spend more time teaching my students informational text structures.  I have spent time reading and researching to understand these structures because I had never taught it before beyond chronological order. This year, I decided one way to incorporate this instruction was into an explorer inquiry unit.  As my students […]

There is Something About…

There is something about… time, writing, reading, thinking, accomplishments, reflection, being proud of myself, exceptions to a rule, and new doors that make me move forward in a chaotic educational world.  When there is so much bogging us down in our profession sometimes it is really difficult to keep a positive attitude.  Not to mention our […]


What types of conversations do your students have in the classroom?   Today I am thinking about verbal conversations, although there are several types of conversations students may have in the classroom.  This is an area I have focused on this year.  Throughout the school year, I have continually thought about how I can encourage […]

Sub Plans

Tomorrow will be the third day that I will have a guest teacher (substitute teacher) in my classroom. I will also be gone for the morning on Tuesday.  It will be a total of three and a half days that I will not be in the classroom.  I typically am not out of the classroom […]

Motivating Students to Read

Today, at the Illinois Reading Conference, I was able to meet Aaron Reynolds.  He is an author we have wanted to bring to our school for our One Author-One School program.  (A yearlong author study with a culminating activity where the author comes to our school.  Each student receives an autographed book at the end […]

Chant With Me: NO SNOW DAY! NO SNOW DAY! Last Day of ISATs tomorrow!

Tomorrow is our last day of ISAT testing!  My kids are so excited that tomorrow’s test has no extended response and it is only 20 multiple choice questions.  Let’s just hope there is no snow day!!! But can we just talk for a minute about that extended response? THEY ROCKED IT!  We have been writing […]

Dealing with Stress

How do you deal with a particularly stressful week?  I know we all have stress daily, but this week (already) I am feeling particularly stressed!  We are finishing up ISATs this week and then I will be gone Thursday, Friday (Illinois Reading Conference), Monday (ELA District Committee Meeting), and Tuesday AM (Building Leadership Team Meeting-Rising Star).  […]