I completely missed joining the linky party from Finding Joy in 6th regarding what changes I want to make during the NEXT school year...I kept reading everyones responses and not having time to join...so I'm going to list mine anyway!
I've been wanting to do this for a while now. I got into the Daily 5 stations and have been implementing those for the past couple of years. They are so much better than traditional centers which have to be changed constantly and require so much management. I feel like reading groups are sort of "cold" now and I really need to move forward with more independent reading and one to one reading conferences. It will do away with a lot of wasted time getting kids together in groups while keeping others on task, etc. plus allow me to meet with ALL my students, rather than just the strugglers. I want them on task and reading more. I feel totally comfortable doing this, I just need to work on some sort of management system for conferences so that I can take notes electronically. The other thing that has been holding me back is below...the grades...There is a lot of instruction/assessments that we have to give as a grade level. The reading workshop time would be additional to shared reading so I just need to find a way to make the time (and eliminate some of the unneeded whole group instruction).
I literally feel like I've taught in two different worlds. In Connecticut, while teaching first, I did not give any multiple choice tests (ever...) and students did not receive number grades. Here in Texas, while teaching second, we give TONS of multiple choice test and there is so much focus on grades. Some of it is beyond my control, but I feel like I am still working to find a balance somewhere between the two. Even though I assess here ALL the time, I feel like I don't know my students as well as I should because they aren't all that meaningful to me. I need to get back to incorporating more formative, ongoing assessment within my classroom. Also, I want to have different ways to "grade" my students beyond multiple choice tests.
I work all weekend. Literally. I need to stop because it just keeps happening. Especially now with blogging, TpT, and my Masters courses. The problem is that I wake up extremely early and thus cannot stay up late. By the time it is 9, I'm basically ready for bed and really no work gets done after seven or eight. But, I need to figure something out so that I am getting some of my plans typed during the week. Or during my day. I get to school by six thirty and leave usually between five and six, but I really don't find any time within that day to work on lesson planning and things like that beyond our team meetings.
I take on a lot of extra responsibility and work...some of it's because I am team leader and some of it is just because I can't stand that it isn't getting done so I volunteer and do it, even though it really isn't my job and should be done by someone else. So, I guess that is two separate things. I sort of need to stop saying I will do things I just don't have time for and I also need to let go a little and let others help me instead of just doing everything myself. (Sometimes I probably take on responsibilities because I want it done my way...)
This is an ongoing goal for all of us I'm sure. I've said before that I have a very strong reputation for being super responsible and organized...but I'm not that organized! Because of that, I freak when I cannot find things I know I need. (Because I'd never want to admit I lost something!) I think all the great ideas from bloggers and creations on TpT will help me with this as I clean things out this summer and plan for next year. A lot of it has to do with my computer too. I don't have any paper files any more and need to keep everything electronically. I have a habit of saving things all over the place and with random names thinking I am going to go back and fix it later...never happens! Same as a pile of paper! My life safer is that my laptops have this "search all" feature which will basically locate any file by name, regardless of where it is saved. I have the same issue with email...I think I have several thousand e-mails in my inbox.
I mean just what I said! This year just seemed so frazzled...could have been their behaviors, paperwork, testing, etc...whatever but I just want next to be more enjoyable for all, myself included!