Thursday, August 27, 2009

i just might be able to do this afterall

So, a couple of days ago I told you I started a new approach to the literacy instruction in my classroom this year. While I read the books and agreed with the strategies that were presented, I was scared. Would it really work? Would I be able to pull it off without looking like a bumbling idiot? (No comments from the peanut gallery, here!)

On Monday I introduced a strategy called cross checking that has some hand motions to go with it. When I introduced and modeled the strategy I felt like the kids were looking at me like I was from another planet. For me this one seemed like a hard one to explain in a way the kids will get it. We reviewed the strategy on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Fast forward to math yesterday. I was reading a word problem to them from their worksheet. My mouth was going way faster than my brain apparently because I started giving them hints about how to solve the problem before I read the final question. Initially, I thought it was a multi-step problem. In my mind I was thinking that the first lesson in the book in 2nd grade was a little early for a multi-step problem and that I didn't remember that from last year. Once I read the question I realized I was on the wrong track and that there was just extra information. Still. Already?

Anyway, I stopped and said, "Wait a minute I didn't read that right." Right then one of my boys who is a very low reader said, "cross check" and did the motions. I just about cried with joy. This opened up a very nice discussion about how we can use our reading strategies in math. I asked the kids if they thought it was ok to use our reading strategies during math. Another little boy said, "there are words, aren't there?"

This was the exact confirmation I needed that these new ways will be ok. It was only the third day of school, but the kids are showing me we are on the right track.

You better believe that on my prep period I ran to tell my principal what happened!


Amber said...

That is awesome.

Those are the exact reasons why I teach.

Suzanne said...

I am so glad they are working, and can't wait to start when I get back. I need to ask for those books...