Friday, July 5, 2013

Ah Sweet Summer

I have so many ambitions every summer.  Books I want to read, units I want to revamp, andnow, Common core is staring at me straight in the face.  This year I will be teaching ELA and social studies to two clocks of students. It looks as though there will be about 21 or 22 students per class.  I know that isn't many, when you look at other teachers' classes across the nation who have 30 or more students. So I shouldn't complain. It is a little tough to swallow, though, when I had 16 or 17 students for a few years and wow.  What a difference.But I digress.

As I have piddled a little with the ELA common core standards, started on my long range plans, and tried to interpret what these standards are needing me to teach, I have gotten a little frustrated with the lack of resources that spell out exactly what the standards want.  There are some out there that are guessing and give minimal guidelines... but I guess what I want is something that spells out what the standards mean.

On top of all this I am trying to integrate my ELA and social studies completely. For example, In social studies,

Week one :
Fictional piece : Wooly and Fang (skills: summarizing, story elements)
Nonfiction piece: Cloning a wooly Mammoth (skills: Discussion, supporting an opinion)
Poetry:  Mammoths on the Move (skills: Rhyme scheme, repetition, onomatopeia, alliteration)
Writing:  Writing an opinion with supporting details (cloning)
Extension: Mammoths (researching)

I know that all these have some sort of cost, and over the years I have paid for a membership of different sites and when I make my copies of the resources, I have them for several years.  With the first week of school I talk about the continents, archeology and mammoths and it takes me right into the land bridge theory.

Doing my ELA strictly around my social studies units is going to be the only way to step up my game in the content area.