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Welcome!

Welcome to my blog:) Since I am so far away from my friends and family, I want to keep you updated on the fun and trials of my new job. Thank you to everyone for your support, encouragement, and the tips/ideas you may offer!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Semester 1 is Coming to an End

We returned to school on January 3rd, and it was more than a little disappointing to go back to a 50 degree school (especially since Brian was in Jamaica).  Sadly, my roommate and co-worker in the classroom adjacent to mine lost her fish that day.  We had to tell our students that the poor fish froze to death.  Luckily, that hasn't put a damper on the rest of 2011!

My student mentioned in a previous blog (who was having significant behavioral problems:  wetting pants, hitting, etc. to try to get sent home) is on a new behavior management program.  It has been working well.  Every morning and afternoon he behaves he is reward with 15 minutes of free time, among other things.  So far this is working well!  Keep your fingers crossed for me:)

On  Friday I have my second observation by my supervisor.  She will be coming to observe one of my social skills groups.  During group we will be doing yoga - a great calming technique and an introduction to physical activity.  I am hoping this goes well.

Friday is also the end of the quarter, so IEP goals and grades are due in a week and a half.  Things will definitely be busy!  I am also attending an inservice next week to learn to use Boardmaker.  We are also purchasing a new curriculum for the Special Ed department.  It will be interesting to see the new materials.

I can't believe I am almost half way through my first year!!!!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 to 2011

Tomorrow is the first day of school for the year 2011.  We are nearing the end of the 2nd quarter, and I feel like I still have soooo much to do!

I am hopeful that my students did not forget everything over Christmas break ::fingers crossed::.

December Achievements
* I am proud to share that two of my students have mastered counting change without using touch     points!
* One of my students has mastered approximately 10 letter sounds in the last month!  (He previously knew none.)  He is learning the letter sounds quickly!  Now, we have to work on sounding words out.
* One of my most successful group social skills classes took place in the month of December - listening bingo and play-doh afterward.
* I am working with a friend to implement a plan to teach one of my students all the letters and sounds.  The student is frequently mixing up letters like d, p, b, q, j, and k.
* I rearranged my classroom, and I think I like it.  Students in the time out area have a decreased view of the rest of the classroom.  I also became very organized - boarder and poster boxes.  Completed lots of laminating.
* I am giving my students more opportunities for independence.  I have begun to teach them where everything in my classroom is, and I will ask them to get things or move things.  This gives me hope that on sub days the students will be able to help the sub, if the sub can't find something.

Goals for January
* Teach time to my two math students.
* Teach all letter sounds to my first grader.
* Teach 80 Dolche Sight Words to another student.
* Use SAFMEDS to teach multiplication to my 4th grader.
* Do more puzzles with my students.  (I was surprised my students did not understand the concept of putting all the straight edged pieces together.)
* Increase reading comprehension in another student.

I still love my job:)  I just want my students to learn as much as I can teach them!!!  Wish me luck on this endeavor!  We have a lot to do by the end of 2nd quarter....which is 3 weeks away!