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    The big picture vs. one day at a time
    By Julianne

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    Teacher books are great at giving you ideas but not so good at helping you understand how those ideas will translate into your specific situation. I think the most important piece of advice might be to remind you (you already know this) that you don't need to be doing all those wonderful lessons immediately. Take one or two pieces of the reading puzzle and work on those to begin your year. I like to start by teaching my class how to rotate through literacy centers. (The centers board on this site is a good resource.) Another component that is nice to start with is interactive writing where you work with the students to craft written pieces at an easel. These become the basis for many other lessons - their own writing, rereading, little books, etc. Once centers are working you can begin testing students to determine reading levels and then start guided reading groups. That's when you begin worrying about running records and all the other pieces of literacy. It might take 6 to 8 weeks to get all that in place. It's the same with math and science and any other subject. Start with one or two of the easier to implement activities and work up.

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