Tuesday, April 15, 2014

From the Scholastic Top Teaching Blog

This is excellent. It was posted in September, 2013 on the Scholastic TOP TEACHING BLOG.  Follow the link to get even more information about this and to make downloading easier.  It's well worth the look! 

Click on this to go directly to the Top Teaching Blog

Common Core Lesson Plan Organizers for Math and ELA

By Genia Connell (Scholastic Top Teaching Blog) on September 11, 2013

The week before school began, elementary teachers in my district were presented with brand new reading and writing curriculums along with our first new math series in 21 years. These new programs have been put in place to help us prepare our students for full implementation of the Common Core State Standards. Trying to plan lessons these first few weeks, however, with all this new and unfamiliar material, has honestly left my head spinning. On top of all that, we also have a new teacher evaluation system (our third in as many years!) that will let me know if I am highly effective in teaching all of this new material. Oh my!
In trying to keep everything straight, I turned to a lesson tracking organizer that I created lasted year when I was trying to determine how well the lessons I was teaching in our old curriculum matched the Common Core Standards. This week, I thought I would share my lesson tracking organizers with other teachers who may be feeling as overwhelmed as I am right now or who would like to know they are on the right track with their daily lessons.

How Do I Use Them?

  • I keep these organizers at my fingertips in my all-in-one binder that also houses my lesson plans and grade book. I document which standards my lessons are hitting as I teach them.
  • When I teach a concept, I write down the date it was initially introduced, then note all work that was done to practice it along with the dates the practice took place. This could include large and small group work, journal pages, writing assignments, etc.
  • I track the date of all assessments in the assessment column, both formal and informal.
  • In the outcomes section, I include notes on the percentage of students who have mastered the concept along with notes on those who need more time and practice.
  • When I need to take additional notes on students or reminders for what I need to do next time, I simply layer sticky notes on top of the binder pages.

How Do They Help?

  • Since I began using these tracking sheets, I feel like I am getting a much better handle on what the standards are and how they all fit together with my curriculum.
  • I’m paying closer attention to make sure adequate practice time is being provided. If an assessment shows there are students who are still not proficient, then I know I need to provide additional support for that standard.
  • My teaching has become more focused and efficient. I look over the organizer while planning lessons and look for ways to add in ideas from several different strands and learning modalities to my weekly lessons.
  • These sheets can be a tool to include with any artifacts you may need to provide for your teacher evaluation. They are an easy way to demonstrate you have a purposeful and thoughtful process in place to help your children meet all the required  standards.


Download Lesson Plan Trackers for Your Grade Level

While I originally created the trackers for my third grade classroom, I've taken standards for K-5 and put them into files for all grade levels. Looking at the standards for grades that precede mine is also helping me fill in the gaps that are occurring in some areas due to changing curriculums. 
The ELA trackers provide all of the standards at each grade level in Reading (Literature and Informational), Writing, Foundational Skills, Speaking and Listening, and Language.
The math trackers cover all of the math strands at each grade level including Measurement, Geometry, and Algebraic Operations.
Each tracker is completely editable, created in Word so you can adjust them to meet your likes and needs. Every standard also includes a link to corestandards.org where you can get more information on the standards.
Click on each picture below to download your own copy.
Common core lesson tracker for kindergartencommon core lesson tracker for kindergarten

common core lesson plan tracker ELA grade 1Common core lesson plan tracker grade 1 math

Common core lesson plan tracker gr 2 elaCommon core lesson plan tracker grade 2 math

Common core lesson plan tracker gr 3 ELACommon core lesson plan tracker gr 3 math

Common core lesson plan tracker gr 4 ELA

Common core lesson plan trackerCommon core lesson plan tracker

Lesson Trackers in PDF Format

English Language Arts       


Kindergarten    Kindergarten
Grade 1   Grade 1
Grade 2   Grade 2
Grade 3   Grade 3
Grade 4   Grade 4
Grade 5   Grade 5

Genia writes: "I'm hoping you will find these organizers as helpful as I do when I'm planning my lessons. What tips do you have for teachers like me who are making their way through this uncharted territory of the Common Core?"

Monday, April 7, 2014

I Heart Teachers

I Heart Teachers!

A lovely YouTube video that's a sweet gift to each of you!

Happy Spring!


It's all about the interactions