Weekly Routine

CONTEE SEELY’S CLASSROOM OBSERVATIONS

I have been grateful to have publisher and author Contee Seely observe my classes two times so far this year. Being watched by someone that literally wrote the book on TPRS (Fluency through TPR Storytelling, with Blaine Ray) could have been an intimidating experience, but Contee is so gracious that he made me feel at ease and this allowed me to teach my plan without feeling self-conscious. He speaks Spanish so he was able to understand everything that was said in each class, and with his wealth of knowledge and experience he was also able to simultaneously see and process [...]

SSR WIN!

For the first 2 1/2 weeks we have been focusing on just two areas: 1) classroom routines, procedures and rituals, and 2) Personal interviews. The affect and confidence level in the class is just about right: students are confident that they can learn Spanish and comfortable with the environment we have established so far. The interviews are progressing and the students are picking up more high frequency verbs they will need to communicate in class and read the passel of novels available to them. Students are doing well, but on Friday they amazed me. We were drilling the calm, quiet [...]

By |2017-10-11T13:22:15-06:00August 31st, 2015|Categories: Hope, Light Reading, Reading, Starting the Year, Weekly Routine|Tags: |0 Comments

STARTING THE SCHOOL YEAR: THE CLASSROOM LIBRARY

The classroom library is an integral part of any world language classroom. Telling stories is so dramatic and compelling that reading can be treated as the ugly cousin of language teaching, but it shouldn't. When done right, reading can invigorate your program and save your sanity. And doing reading right is free reading. In too many classrooms, we act as if the kind of reading that we all love to do does not even exist. We act as if the only kind of reading that counts is plodding, over-analyzed dissection of texts, rather than joyful consumption. We want to be [...]

STARTING THE SCHOOL YEAR: PARTICIPATION GRADING SCALE

In the previous post I showed the latest version of the participation poster. The question now will be how is participation measured.  Many teacher try a daily points system but find it is just too hard to keep up with. They don't always have time after class to mark scores for all students, and by the end of the day don't remember well.So the question becomes "How do you make this system manageable and easy to use?" Here is what I do. I hand out a Participation Grading Scale sheet to every student at the beginning of the period on Monday. Students evaluate their [...]

HOW TO GET YOUR STUDENTS TO DO SUSTAINED SILENT READING (and like it!)

Teachers are always saying that their students just do not like to read. I realize that this may be true, but I also know that when students say that they are just mimicking their peers and elders, and they may not really feel that way--they do not know enough about themselves to have an informed opinion because they have been raised in a culture where reading is changing and few have quiet time to read. They probably just need some help. We need to provide them with the tools and the materials so that they can become readers. We need [...]

CLASSROOM OBSERVATION BY JON COWART

Last week Jon  Cowart, the lead world languages teacher from a school in inner-city Memphis, Tennessee, came to observe. Since he was investing an entire day, I adjusted the class schedule so that he could see a variety of activities that we typically do over the course of several days. The students hummed along as they normally do so that he got a good idea of how the classroom operates--a few even acted up a bit so he could see how my classroom management system works! Here are Jon's observations: Bryce, Thank you so much for allowing me to visit your classroom all day last [...]