We had our first face to face PLG for the year last week. It was really nice to connect with people in person! I really enjoyed our PLG as we were able to break off into groups and discuss our inquiries and what we have been working on or thinking about. There were some really great discussions and ideas that were given by others in the group which has given me a clearer direction with my inquiry.
This year I have been focusing on having my students write more frequently with having picture prompts each day. This has however still be relatively seperate from my reading program. After some great discussions and suggestions from other CoL teachers and leaders I have started to consider making reading and writing intertwined rather than being two separate subjects.
What will this look like?
At the moment for reading I have an overall topic each week where the students have the opportunity to find our facts and research a topic in detail. I then try and best as I can to link the journal articles to this topic for the week. The topic is generally related to our term topic as a school focusing on key aspects of the topic each week. Doing this allows the students to have more exposure to key vocabulary and ideas from each topic. What I would like to try and do for the rest of the term is incorporate this overall reading focus into our writing as well.
From this week I have changed the spelling words from being completely subject specific to words that are related to the topic but also found in our journal articles as well. I have gone from 3 to 4 writing groups and these are connected to my reading groups. So having the same groups for reading and writing. This means that in my literacy rotations I can see these groups for guided reading or writing throughout the week and also intertwine these lessons.
The overall task for writing each week I will try and make it relate to the overall topic. For example at the moment I am looking at compass bearing and directions so will have the writing task related to writing out instructions. I will then continue on with a writing prompt each week which will again relate to the overall topic and give the student the opportunity to use the new vocabulary they have been exposed to from reading and spelling into their writing. I am hoping that this will overall lead to a more in depth understanding of a topic.
This is where I am at with my inquiry this stage. It has been very valuable discussing my inquiry with other CoL teachers and leaders to get a clearer understanding of all my thoughts as well as a clearer direction of my next steps.