I cannot believe this is my seventh week at Wacousta Elementary.
It has also been close to seven weeks since my last blog post – but let’s not focus on that – life has been busy!
Since I accepted the position as a Reading Specialist at Wacousta Elementary, my job has taken on many roles. My day includes working one-on-one with students who range from 2nd to 5th grade. I work with multiple reading groups in second and third grade to increase reading levels. We focus on phonetic skills by understanding vowel sounds and word parts. I also have two second grade groups where we specifically focus on reading with fluency – expression, appropriate pace, and accuracy. For these two groups, I have incorporated Reader’s Theater to increase these skills and display their importance (blog post to come).
I then jump over to 5th grade where I teach the “Reading Rewards” program. This reading program shows students how to read unfamiliar words that are often “long” and “intimidating”. This is a whole-class instruction that has been a lot of fun to instruct! I also work with various reading groups within fifth grade to address vocabulary among the anchor text, how to identify cause and effect, and the main idea along with supporting details.
Reading instruction is about 80% of my job, but the 20% remaining is mathematics support. I work with three, small, fifth grade groups working with them on the program “AutoSkills” that assesses students’ specific needs and scaffolds instruction. These three groups have been a great time. One group calls me mom – which I am not quite ready for. I also help with math instruction in two 2nd grade classes focusing on a group of students who need extra assistance.
After Wacousta, I head out to East Lansing to work at Sylvan Learning Center. I have been a teacher at Sylvan for four months now. Adding a second job onto my plate has been hard work, but super rewarding! At Sylvan, I work with three students at a time who all vary in ages from 5 – 55, academic needs, and grade levels. I have three, one-hour sessions a night where I might find myself trying to re-learn the basics of calculus or how to balance a chemical equation.
It is a busy day, but every time I leave the school I am smiling. Although this is not my perfect position as a certified social studies, mathematics teacher with a middle level focus – but I would not trade this experience for the world. It is a great feeling knowing that you found what you love to do and be able to do it everyday.
Not many people can say that they do what they love
but I get to 🙂