Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Importance of the First Day in the Artroom

So in my last post, I shared my Special Needs checklist. While I wait for that form to be filled out & returned, I need to gather info on my own about my students. So I use my eyes and ears during that first class.

During that first meeting I watch to see how individual kids follow directions. Since I use assigned seating on that very first day, I watch to see how the students handle my direction to find a matching card that shows where they will sit.

Are they focused on the task or easily distracted? If they didn't understand/hear my directions, do they ask another student, watch what others are doing or come to me for help?

Once seated, they'll fill out a sign-sheet at each table. On these sheets, I make notations throughout the class about what I observe: Are they listening? Following directions without prompting or re-focusing? Cooperating with those around them? Contributing to the class discussion or talking while I'm talking?

I have 2 activities planned once everybody is seated & signed in:
1. A PowerPoint presentation that explains rules, rewards, consequences, fire drill & lockdown procedures and an explanation of off-limit areas in my room (storerooms, my desk).
2. Assessment drawing

Assessment drawings earn the following designations: E - Exceeds grade level expectations, M - Meets grade level expectations or L - below grade level expectations and sometimes LL for far below grade level expectations.

Behavior & assessment notes/scores are entered on the class list for that first day. As the Special Needs info arrives, that is also entered on the same sheet. All the data is used when I make out the permanent seating chart. More on that in the next post...

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