Sunday, November 24, 2013

Freebie! Dual Language Classroom Resources

I have been working with some teachers that teach dual language programs.  They shared a book with me by Karen Beeman, M.Ed. and Cheryl Urow, M.Ed., Teaching for Biliteracy: Strengthening Bridges between Languages.  This book illustrates how to build bridges to biliteracy and how to bridge theory to practice.  Dual language programs are designed for students who speak English at home, for students who speak Spanish at home, and for two-language students who speak both languages at home.  The goal is for students to develop cross-cultural understanding, bilingualism and biculturalism in all students.  To reach these goals, instruction is divided between English and Spanish with at least 50% of instructional time being delivered in Spanish.  

I just posted Spanish ABC Cards on TPT

Dual Language Classroom Resources 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Free Resources for Creating ELA Centers K-2

I have been working with a group of K-2  teachers on creating centers for English Language Arts.  The centers that I designed are interactive and include "I Can" cards.  These centers will help your students to become more independent learners, allowing you to focus on small group instruction without interruptions! Just download and print the materials below.  I recommend that you introduce one center and one activity from that center at a time until the directions and expectations for behavior are understood.  We want students to be self-sufficient.  

I designed the centers below from some fabulous materials that can be downloaded free on the internet and from my colleagues on Teachers Pay Teachers along with materials from the local Dollar Tree store!  While you're at the store, stock up on double-sided tape and a few science boards.  Each science board can be cut in half for two centers.  

Caitlin Clabby at Kindergarten Smiles designed a set of Writing and Word Work Cards! free on TPT.
 Literacy Centers "I Can" Posters English & Spanish were designed by mrsriccasclass on TPT.
Writing Center Vocabulary Cards were also downloaded from TPT.  The file contains monthly files. 

The Poetry Center is a great accompaniment to a student Poetry Notebook.  The center includes a poem of the week and poem strips for students to put together.  If you Google: Catawba Schools Literacy Centers, you will find the Poetry Task Cards in the center above.  

Happy Creating!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

What is Rigor? FREEBIE DOK Posters!

Everyone is talking about RIGOR.  The Common Core Standards call for a more rigorous curriculum, instructon and assessment.  Rigor is the kind and level of thinking required of students to successfully engage with and solve a task.  Rigor is not about difficulty, it's about complexity of understanding. 

What does rigor look like in a classroom?  Two widely accepted measures of cognitive rigor are Bloom's Taxonomy and Webb's Depth of Knowledge Levels.  Bloom's Taxonomy focuses on the verbs and indicate the level of performance or the level of higher-level questions.   Depth of Knowledge focuses of complexity of content standards to successfully complete an assessment or a task.  When you unpack the standards, first look at the verb and align it with Bloom's levels for the level of performance.  Then look beyond the verb to determine the level of understanding required to meet the standard.  

Karen Hess created a Cognitive Rigor Matrix that integrates Bloom's Taxonomy with Webb's Depth of Knowledge for analyzing teacher lesson planning and assessments.  In my district, we have been "mapping" out the learning events in our UbD units to ensure a balance of lessons and assessments across all levels from simple to complex.  Teachers are seeing that they can "tweak" some of their lessons and assessments to make them more rigorous.  For example, 

DOK 1 Describe three characteristics of metamorphic rocks.
DOK 2 Describe the difference between metamorphic and igneous rocks.
DOK 3 Describe a model you might use to represent the relationships that exist in the rock cycle  

All three tasks begin with the word describe but each task is at a different depth of knowledge.  Check out what comes after the verb!  What comes after the verb is more important than the verb itself.  

Karen Hess has a Cognitive Rigor Matrix for ELA, Math/Science, Social Studies and the Arts. and they can easily be found on the internet.  You can also find beautiful Bloom's Taxonomy posters for the elementary grades from Wake County Public School System.  

Grab my free Depth of Knowledge DOK flipchart on TPT:

I am also attaching Depth of Knowledge DOK posters that I created today.