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    take a deep breath...
    By jackee

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    I can totally understand the frustrations of feeling overwhelmed...I have many days that I feel there is not enough time in the day to do all that needs to be done. I can only tell you what I have found effective. First I established clear classroom routines. The kids check themselves in in the morning with a pocket wall chart, they do their own lunch count using clips on a jar and they have a set morning routine from 745 arrival till 830 of morning journal writing, morning math (a worksheet I make in the beginnnig of every week with 5 problems on it for each day of the week)

    This gives me freedom to check homework during this time...collect notes, and get other morning things set up. Next I have big book time where I focus on a different reading skill each week, decoding a word, predicting the story etc.

    After we do calendar and I encorporate math into that with a weather graph and two questions about the months numbers.

    We then read while I pull reading groups for 40 minutes. It sounds like a long time but again I found routines to really help. I got payless shoes to donate shoe boxes and each kid has a book box where they pick 5 good books to read. I spent one weekend leveling all of my books so that the kids can chose appropriate books. Although I teach 2nd grade I have kids from level below K to 4th grade in language arts. Each kid has a reading folder with a reading log sheet I made up. After they read a book they record the date, title, and what its about. This helps keep them on task. After reading we have recess for 20 minutes then we write for 45 minutes. again, they have sheets I made up for peer conferencing. All of this had to be modeled over and over dont get me wrong but after a month and a half it had paid off. Students are on task and really getting things done independently. This frees me to conference with individuals. Then lunch...

    then I read aloud junie b jones...great chapter books for this age. Then we do math from 12-1 then we do either centers, science, social studies or authors chair till dismissal at 2...

    Does this help at all ID be more than happy to send you some of the worksheets Ive designed...

    GOod luck@!!

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