Saturday, October 08, 2005

Three day weekend!

First day of the long weekend and it's pouring down rain! Well, this should be conducive to all of the planning that I told myself I would do. I won't feel so bad for not getting out of the house an doing something! Though I might pack up my books and head over to the Tea Lounge on Union Street to get some work done. I love that place.

I do feel guilty though that in my first months of living in NYC I haven't had any motivation (or much opportunity) to explore and do fun stuff. During the school week I never get out of Brooklyn and even then I only see my classroom, the subway and my neighborhood. Every Friday night the new teachers at my school go to happy hour. That's usually the biggest outing of the week and I'm generally home by 10 which seems so late! Ah, the life of a teacher!


Today I got my order from I got the 6+1 Traits of Writing book. I really love the concept and want to know more about it. I have all the rubrics for the model (from various workshops at Institute) but I don't really know where to start with implementing it. My plan is to get through some of the reading this weekend so that I can incorporate it into my lesson planning.

I'm hoping to use the 6 Traits to help me take my students beyond the bland Four Square Writing that they are currently doing. I'm going to emphasize that these Traits are applicable to Four Square writing (which they have to do in every single class and in every grade from K-12). I, however, don't plan on using the Four Square in my class. I really despise it. I know that I can get away with that for two reasons. The first is that no one in my building (administrators, coaches, other teachers) know what I am supposed to be doing therefore no one ever checks on me, I've never had my AP come into my room and tell me what should be on my walls or that my bulletin boards aren't up to date, etc. (I'm really sort of loving this freedom). The other reason, and probably most important because this is a justification that I could actually give an administrator, if asked, is that I have to prepare them for the NYSESLAT in the Spring which does not use the Four Square. In fact, it provides it's own graphic organizers which, if used like the Four Square produce the most horrifically organized papers. (I know this from the diagnostic I gave). So, I'm really looking forward to getting to know the 6 Traits and implementing them in my classroom.

Ok, so I'm going to stop procrasinating now and get down to work!

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