WARNING-Long post. Possible depressing post. 🙂
Eye opener today. I mean an EYE OPENER. But first let me give you some background information.
This was my first year teaching history. 4 classes. 5/6 grades. 1 hour each.
I have attempted to implement strategic teaching for the first time:
TWIRL- talking, writing, investigating, reading, listening
Chunking the text
It’s been a roller coaster. Some weeks I’ve done good with it. Some weeks not so much. 🙂
AND I’ve tried to reflect on what has worked and what has not.
BUT, I’ve missed the boat with one student. OR have I missed it with more???
Today we were studying the California Gold Rush. Easy and simple topic. 2 short pages of text. Maybe 6 paragraphs. Short paragraphs.
Even when we cover 2 pages like this I chunk the test. I usually give them the purpose for reading a certain paragraph as well.
In this instance I told them to read and find out what Boomtowns were. Then turn and talk about it with their partner.
I was mingling with students. Asked this one student to tell me what Boomtowns were. He couldn’t. Told him to reread and tell me. He still couldn’t. I asked him if he understood what he had read. He said no. At least he was honest.
So I proceeded to “show” him how I read informational text. Reread sometimes. Talk to myself while reading. Read in small chunks. He got tears in his eyes.
He can’t comprehend. Even 7 SHORT lines of information. In an easy history textbook. How is he in the 5th grade? How has he not received intervention? Oh, that’s right. We don’t provide intervention in upper grades for comprehension. Sigh.
I don’t teach him reading, but how have I missed this ALL year?
Have I been so caught up in “implementing” strategic teaching that I have been blind to my students?
So I end this post with this. Today was an eye opener that I have let down two people. Myself and this student. OR how many other students have I let down? And where do we go from here?
How do we keep students from falling through the cracks?
Yes, this student is failing the 5th grade this year. Because of math and reading.
Will he make progress next year as a reader with reading the story each week and taking a test on Friday? I think not. Otherwise he would have made progress THIS year.