Reading Parade 2015

Friday, August 21st was an exciting and fun day at Holsenbeck. We held our annual reading parade and book character dress-up day. The reading parade is a celebration and reward for literary accomplishment. Every student who brings in a list of at least 10 books he or she read during the summer gets to march in the parade. All students get to dress as their favorite book character in celebration of the joy of reading. After the parade, parents and families are invited back into the classroom for a reading engagement activity. Both events are meant to promote the importance and joy of reading.

This year, TWELVE students from my class marched in the parade. That means they read at least 10 books during the summer. That is the highest percentage I’ve ever had from my class and I am very proud of them!

Ms. Masters's Parade Participants

Ms. Masters’s Parade Participants

A selfie before the parade

A selfie before the parade

3rd grade parade participants

3rd grade parade participants

The parade was fun for everyone!

The parade was fun for everyone!

When we came back into the classroom, my students shared a character presentation book talk as the character they dressed as for the parade. All week they worked on their speeches and practiced their speaking and listening skills. The practice paid off because their speeches were great!

IMG_0283

IMG_0282

The Reading Parade and Book Character Dress-Up Day is one of my favorite days of the school year. I love to read and I love it when my students enjoy it too. I hope my class had as much fun as I did!

The Teacher of the Year is the Grand Marshal of the parade, so Ms. Masters got to ride in the back of the convertible!

The Teacher of the Year is the Grand Marshal of the parade, so Ms. Masters got to ride in the back of the convertible!

Harry Potter characters: Ms. Masters as Luna Lovegood and Mrs. Pacut as Hermione Granger

Harry Potter characters: Ms. Masters as Luna Lovegood and Mrs. Pacut as Hermione Granger

Reach for the Stars!

Reach for the Stars 2015

Goal setting is very important for student success and has been a part of my classroom culture for years. During the first week of school, we have a class discussion about goals. We discuss the difference between long- and short-term goals. I also teach students how to set goals that are realistic. Finally, I explain the importance of having a plan to reach a goal. Students have a data notebook for recording their progress in a variety of areas including Math Masters, AR, and reading level.  I encourage students to look at their current level, decide where they want to be, and how they will get there.

This year, teachers at our school read the book Closing the Attitude Gap by Baruti K. Kafele. Kafele says:

Unwritten goals are essentially dreams that can be easily forgotten. Goals must be made concrete by writing them down.
As part of the focus on goal setting in my classroom, my students traced their hand and wrote down a goal they have. I put the goals on the bulletin board in the hallway so we can all look at the goals and hold each other accountable. For this first task, students could write any goal: academic or personal, long-term or short-term. My students shared a variety of goals from reading 40 books to striking out 100 players in baseball to graduating from college. My hope is that by writing these goals and making them concrete my students will be more likely to make a plan to reach their goals.

A poster hanging above my desk summarizes this perfectly:

Your teacher’s goal is simple: to help you reach yours.

A New Year

IMG_6001_OpenHouse2015Welcome to Ms. Masters’s Class! I’m so excited about the new school year and my new group of students. After our first week of school, we are starting to get into our schedule and routines. I hope parents and students will find this blog to be both a helpful resource and a great way to stay connected with the events in our classroom and at our school. Many of the resources parents might like to access were posted on the blog last year. There are helpful links in the menu at the top of each page. There are also some old posts that have some important information. Here are some posts to check out:

I will use the blog, email, and Remind to share information electronically with parents this year. You can subscribe to updates to this blog by submitting your email address on the home page. Of course if you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to email me, call the school, or send a note to the school. I know we’re going to have a great year!

-Ms. Masters