Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Standing On Their Shoulders

Yesterday, Joan spoke of meeting big names in literacy and thanking those men for letting her stand on their shoulders. Today, Gail and Joan let me stand on their shoulders and I have to give them a big thank you.

When I woke up this morning I had no idea I would speak in front of 320 people! Gail and I had discussed showing the group Twitter and letting them know about the #d5chat. I honestly thought they'd put twitter up on the projector and I'd tweet from my seat. And then Gail put the mic on me! I don't think I stopped shaking for ten minutes after I sat back down!

Right before I started to talk I asked Gail how she does this and her response was, it helps to do it with your sister... Joan will help you! It's all a blur from there, but we did recruit some new people to Twitter and got some people who were already on Twitter to think about joining the Daily 5 discussion.

I didn't take two days off from school to speak in front of all those people. I took two days off to learn more about reading practices and helping my students become better readers. Yesterday I tweeted that teacher preparation programs should include an acting class and after today I think teacher prep needs to include more information on how to teach children to read.

The past two days have helped me realize that I need to do more reading and research so that I truly know the best ways to help students learn to read. After Gail and Joan's presentation on the CAFE model and speaking to the wonderful two women from Wyoming sitting next to me, I've come up with a plan for what I'm going to do to start using CAFE (more effectively) in my classroom.


  1. Teach a full class lesson on check for understanding (I taught one at the beginning of the year, but they need to have more!)
  2. Meet with my 9 of my lowest readers for one-on-one conferences
I created a new google form, which more closely follows Gail and Joan's forms. Using the iPad I will fill out this form while meeting with my students. When meeting with each of these students, I will keep handy the "Sample Needs and Strategies" form, as well as several Ready Reference Guides (realistically, as many as I can print before reading starts!).

What an exciting two days! Pushed my learning and renewed my energy... I am excited for tomorrow!


  1. Congrats to you for standing tall and sharing your knowledge about Twitter! A memory you will never forget and a mini-lesson/model writing for narrative writing in your classroom too!

    I love that you were able to walk away and implement new ideas tomorrow. And you are renewed for the year -- good luck! It's the best feeling to be excited in your classroom because your students will quickly pick up on that energy and they will be soaring too!

    Please continue to share about your journey!

  2. I was there yesterday and today too!!! You did a great job! I am going to set up a twitter account tomorrow.

    It was such a fun and inspirational two days. I have been doing Daily 5 in my classroom. Now I feel more informed and ready to start CAFE. Can't wait!

  3. Thank you both for visiting and leaving such thoughtful comments.

    I am excited to continue this journey with both of you. So far today I have conferenced with 6 students and I hope to do more after lunch!

    Michelle, what a great idea to use yesterday as a model writing lesson, thank you!

    Mrs. Youngblut, thank you for your thoughts on yesterday and I look forward to seeing you on twitter!