The next thing I decided to tackle this week was organizing! Last year I did something similar to what the sisters suggested and had a 'pensieve'.
Well, if I could show you a picture of how HEAVY this thing was, how hard it was to lug around when conferring with students, and then taking it home each night to reorganize and go over notes? Yeah right! There was no way this baby could make it home with me. It took up every last inch of my teacher bag with just it in there ALONE and doing the one handed carry... well let's just say that it usually made it down to my car, but I can't really say it ever made it back out of there.
So after reading Debbie Diller's book, I decided to try something similar to the pensieve, but make it more manageable for me to take around. So instead of using a 2.5 or maybe 3 inch binder (yes, it was THAT enormous!!), I've decided to go back to the old 1 inch.
Behind each pocket divider will be lesson plans. I used Jan Richardson's lesson plan format from her book The Next Step in Guided Reading which differ based on student's reading level. Diller includes some of her own plans broken down by comprehension, fluency, vocab, phonics, and phonemic awareness. I haven't decided which to use, and perhaps it will just depend on the group.
Now behind the lesson plans, Diller suggested dividers that have each student's name on them. Here you can put their running records which the book suggested you do on notebook paper. Starting out each small group lesson, I want to take one running record on a student, while the others are reading at the table. What a quick and easy way to keep assessment ongoing, but not overwhelming! I'll get more into what I plan to do in small group in my next post though!
Now the last thing I have included in the binder is my small group organization folder. Basically all I did was laminate two pieces of cardstock, taped on a piece of cute duck tape to hold the two together and voila! You've got yourself a homemade folder!
On the back I put the DIBELS scores for the beginning, middle, and end of second grade and correlating reading levels.
Click here to download the dibels table! Click here to download the reading levels!)
Now on the inside I glued 5 colored strips of paper (before laminating of course) to represent the 5 small reading groups.
I'm also thinking about putting their names in those tabs you usually use for file folders. That way I won't have to laminate and can easily change names by slipping the paper in and out. I want to velcro these on there too, which will make it easy to move their names to different groups as the year goes on. Not sure if I will leave them that large, or cut them in half so I can fit more names on the folder.
I'm really excited to finally have MADE SOMETHING even though it is late Monday night- it still counts!! And I'm organized. Things are looking good! Also here's the the DIBELS table in grades 1-5 if you are interested in it!