I made myself a weekly checklist so I can keep my tasks for the week straight. I really want to be more proactive. I find it much easier to concentrate on graduate school in the evenings the more prepared and organized I feel at work. You can get a copy here of the Word document if interested.
I have been doing guided reading the last few weeks since coming back from Christmas. We have been focusing on biographies, as a way to discuss what makes people successful. I felt biographies were a great unit for a new year as you think about goals and reflect on what makes other people successful. Since I hadn't taught guided reading in a couple years, I am always looking for helpful strategies to really guide my students as readers. In my reading for grad school this week, someone gave me an interesting article to read about vocabulary instruction. The article mentioned a really interesting way to teach word-mapping. I am excited to try it out this week. You can see the example from the article below. I love how they used the vocabulary to make connections about the person they were studying. I can see so many uses for this strategy. Often just introducing the words before reading seems very flat to me with older students. Word-mapping gives the vocabulary more context and utilizes higher-order thinking skills.
How do you teach vocabulary as part of your literacy instruction? How do you teach vocabulary in a way that is relevant and helps them make connections?