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KS1 teachers! How to organise Year 2 during lessons?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by Lucky Lady, Sep 12, 2012.

  1. I know the feeling but as the previous poster says it is still early days. Don't be hard on yourself so early on. You just need to be consistent about your expectations. I am having lots of wine tonight because to am feeling very stressed but know really that things will settle down.
  2. Agree totally with bigbev.
    For the guided reading carousel I have one group reading with me and then one group in reading corner, one group either playing phonics game in group (if lower) or phonics game on laptops (haven't tackled this one yet as need to go through the pain threshold of them logging on and dealing with the laptops many oddities yet), or writing silly sentences (lower) or crazy writing (higher ones - I start a story with a silly start and they continue writing it) or a guided reading follow up activity (only for higher ones at the moment - I have uploaded lots of these to the resource bank), or using the creative writing box.
    I am still going through the pain threshold whilst doing the carousel at the moment, as they are not yet getting the idea of sharing a book quietly, or not disturbing me unless it is an emergency, but they will get there eventually!
    For my lesson set up I do a whole class lesson, with the children then doing the activity at their level at the same time (most working independently with me changing who I work with depending on the lesson and need). When they have finished they look on the activities board to see what they can do in the remainder of the lesson. Activities include role play area, maths or literacy games, creative writing box, puzzles, tuff spot outside and listening to an audio cd. These rotate every day.
    If it makes you feel any better it is all hard work at the moment, as they are not trained yet, but I know by half term it will be sooo much better.
  3. Differentiated activities..........have you got any areas of continuous provision set up? I have 4 ability groups in my class so myself and a TA take a group each and get them going (this can be flexible - could be 5 min or up to 20 min if the group is your focus group for the session) whilst the others access CP and then leave the first two groups getting on with the task while we work with the other two groups for the remainder of the session. This seems to work well for us in the mornings. Not quite sussed out the afternoons yet when I'm on my own though!
  4. Sillow

    Sillow Lead commenter

    Thanks to everyone for their responses. I'll try and comment on what I can remember...
    At the moment I'm not trying to change books during guided reading, because I haven't done guided reading this week as I'm not sure how to do it! I've been changing books at a different time, but it takes ages!
    I think I do need a range of independent activities they can do, like a phonics-related sheet and things. Some of them are not very independent, though, so it can all be tricky as if they don't have an adult sitting with them they are ridiculously off-task. I have a role-play area, writing table, maths table and science area, that the children can use when they have finished a task (I'm trying to keep this to a minimum, though).
    You're right in that I need to continue to set my expectations and let them get used to things. I finding generally the timing of everything a little tricky; I don't know when I'm going to fit all my lessons in each week as well as a daily guided reading session!
    I will try out some suggestions here, thank you, but feel free to add more! It has been a bit of a shock after last year so any help is gratefully received!
  5. bigbev

    bigbev New commenter

    When I taught in Year 1 I used to 'do' my guided reading during KS2 playtime. I used to ask sensible Year 6 children to come and help an activity group for me....would always repay with selection boxes/cream eggs at appropriate times of year.
    The Year 6's also helped me during lunchtimes with pencil sharpening,filing, tidying up etc
  6. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Ooooooo now that is a good idea...
  7. modgepodge

    modgepodge Established commenter

    Why does it take ages to change reading books? It takes me precisely 0 minutes. Children know what level they're on, when they need a new book, they choose one, write it in their reading diary and put it in the book bag. They do this before school even starts. From y1 they are trained to do it - I took them over last week as y2s and all bar the very lowest ability child can do this independently. My year 1 class last year (different school) also changed their own book, tho we didn't expect them to write it in their diary.

    Thoughts regarding organising y2 to work independently gratefully received here too as its something I struggle with too!
  8. ESLAB

    ESLAB New commenter

    I too am doing guided group sessions for the first time. I have set up a daily rotation whereby I am working with a guided group doing reading, my TA is doing a guided group doing handwriting, then a group is doing a follow-up activity which is writing/drawing linked to an AF (some fantastic resources on TES), one group is doing independent handwriting practice following on from their guided group work and the last group is choosing (which is either listening to an audio book online, practising HFW, independent writing or reading topic books). If any of the independent groups finish what they are doing they can then do the choosing too. If anyone is having difficulties, I am encouraging them not to come and ask myself or TA, but have nominated three 'helpers' who they can go to instead. So far so good and finding it really invaluable. At the end of the session, it is getting ready for lunchtime - going to loo, washing hands, collecting packed lunch box - the children run this totally by themselves - whilst they go line by line, the rest of the class is reading an online book on IWB, which a helper sits at my desk and flicks to next page - so far, they LOVE IT! They know they have to go quickly and quietly (bathroom monitors ensure this is the case) and this allows me 10 mins to write up my guided reading notes, get ready next days/weeks books and check with TA how handwriting went., whilst it is all fresh in my mind Just sharing in case it helps anyone else.
  9. Regarding 1:1 readers, mine take ages too. It's OK getting the children to just change their own books, but when do you get chance to put them up/down levels and check they are on the right level? Do children's parents not get antsy that you are not actually hearing them read, or are they used to it now? I think that is the barrier we'd have to cross and it would have to be a whole school decision.
    I have full time TA support so she does them during both register times.
    As for my classroom setup, we have had changes in heads and opinions so I have done it many ways...last year was formal, and fortunately I had the more able y2 class so all were able to sit and complete the same task, in a differentiated manner.
    This year I have 30 of them and some are very poor...if they sat and worked alone they would ruin their books!
    So...I have two focus groups with my TA and I, then I set up 3 'exploring' activities that they move around and complete as they wish. Things like "Design your own dragon egg and then write some sentences to describe it.". They often have art/small world/maths type elements to them. The HARD part at the moment is setting my expectations that they will not just scribble one sentence. My plan is to keep on nagging, but it is almost impossible to police their work and monitor whether they really are putting any effort in unless I want them to show me every piece of work they finish...which just isn't practical.
    It's also tricky getting every child to complete the focus task every day in the time given..sometimes I dont, and have to either carry on the next day or start a new piece of work without them having had chance to do it. I find this hard to manage too.
    Occasionally I go through the finished work box, looking at all the work and giving stickers for good efforts. Im hoping with reinforcement/training of expectations we will get there!
    As the year goes on, I will have more children sitting working on task independently.

    Guided Reading: 1 group reading, 1 group doing follow-up comprehension questions from reading previous day with my TA, 1 group silently reading from reading corner, 1 group doing a muddled up phonics sentence (I just choose a sentence using our phoneme focus words, write the words onto a page in a muddled way, and then they cut, rearrange and stick into the right order.), and 1 group either doing reading comprehension cards I have (HA) or things like match the caption to the picture, sentence substitution mats, phoneme bingo/matching games. I have a box of resources like this so it isn't hard to just throw out.
    I train them its only for 15-20 minutes and that they are to just get on!
  10. Sillow

    Sillow Lead commenter

    Once again, great responses, thank you!
    There are lots of good ideas and I think I'm starting to get an idea as to how I can do it. I will train my children to change their books themselves from the boxes and they will take responsibility for remembering to do this when they come in straight from break (which is the beginning of the phonics session, so that's fine).
    As for guided reading groups, I will have one group each reading with me every day (and keep an eye on levels at the same time, as well as writing in records) and a group with a TA every day. The third group will do an activity linked to our phonics. The fourth group will do handwriting practice (which we do three times a week anyway, so it'll be following on) and that can include simple spellings, too. The last group will be able to choose a book for quiet reading - something they can't take home - or write in their reading journals.
    Right, I have a plan! I'll be spending Sunday putting together some activities they can do for phonics and handwriting. I'll trial it for a few weeks and see what works!
    Thank you, all, for your help. It's great to be able to discuss this with other KS1 teachers! [​IMG]

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