Thursday, September 5, 2013

Anchor Charts--2nd Edition

We are a couple weeks into the new school year and everything is going great! Our class of 22 is busy learning routines and procedures and new 4th grade skills. Back to School Night took place this past Thursday and it was wonderful meeting many of our new families. The students were very proud to show off their new classroom to their parents and siblings. I always love overhearing their chatter as they show parents "our meeting area", "my desk and morning work binder", "our classroom library and book tubs", and "the place where we do our attendance and lunch count". They are like little experts already!

One of the new things in our district is the new reading series--Benchmark Literacy. This is far from the traditional basal series of the past. It is always a challenge to get to know something new but I think that once it becomes familiar, it will work well with the balanced literacy framework that's already been in place the last few years. I am no longer following Daily 5 (sad face) but I do think this new program does a good job of setting up the routines and procedures in a way that is similar to Daily 5.

As in the past, this program requires a number of anchor charts to be created and posted in the room for the students to reference throughout the year. If you've followed this blog for awhile now, you know that anchor charts have only become a part of my classroom in the last few years. I would like to share some of the new charts created this past week as part of the new series.

This is a new bulletin board that shows all the Metacognitive and Comprehension Strategies covered in the 4th grade BL curriculum. These are a lot like the CAFE lessons I used in D5. Each week, we focus on one of each. For example, this past week we had whole group lessons on Asking Questions (Metacognitive) and Identifying Main Idea and Supporting Details (Comprehension). We refer to this board almost daily!

The components of Readers' Workshop.

What Readers' Workshop Looks/Sounds Like--
These were things the students came up with and they are pretty spot on. These students are very familiar with the Balanced Literacy framework so they now come in knowing expectations pretty well. We will refer to these often as well.

Turn to your Partner--
These are the prompts and questions we have begun to practice using during our reading discussions. This takes A LOT of practice but it will pay off in dividends later on as the students start to have really rich discussions about what is read!

I'll close this post with a photo of my up-and-coming writing center! It includes posters I began using last year and is still a work in progress--but I'm likin' it so far!

Can't wait to share more information with you soon!