I’m working on progress reports for your children this week. I want to give you a heads up: they’ll focus on your child’s learning progress first and letter grades second. Chances are these progress reports will be very different from the ones you’ve received in the past.
I’ll be providing you specific feedback on areas of strength and weaknesses. Not just a handful of letter grades.
We have an amazingly diverse and talented group of students. I look forward to coming to work each day to work with your child.
I will be transparent. I do have some concerns.
I must balance my time spent working with students working at or above grade level with those who struggle.
I’m concerned about getting students at a grade level reading fluency and continuing to see others grow beyond their current levels. We have many readers who are decoding below grade level which affects their reading comprehension. We have several decoding at or above grade level, too.
I’m concerned about many of our students’ reading comprehension. I’m also keen to keep those reading at or above grade level progressing in their growth.
I’m concerned about students reading independently for adequate, sustained periods of time at home with appropriate levels of textual rigor. Ready below one’s zone of proximal development does not help build reading comprehension or decoding at grade level. Likewise, I want to make sure kids who already love reading and are doing it continue to do so.
I’m concerned that students may not be spending enough time reading with an adult at home and talking about what they’re reading. If you have not yet made it a habit to read nightly with your child and discuss what you’re reading, now is the time. It appears we have students who are in desperate need of more reading with adults at home.
I’m concerned about students’ math numeracy-that includes their understanding of multiplication, addition, subtraction, and division facts. Now is the time to memorize those facts. It will be a MAJOR obstacle to advancing in math later. I’m also dedicated to extending and accelerating kids who are on or above grade level in their numeracy.
I’m concerned about students’ willingness to show mental grit and mental flexibility when it comes to critical thinking. We will be working on thinking moves for the next two years to get kids using their minds rather than just “doing” work.
I’ve had 24 days to get to know your child. You’ve had the past 10 years. I know you know them MUCH better than I do, and I’m working hard to figure out how each student learns best. In the little time we’ve worked together, I have seen many strengths and many areas that must be developed in individual students.
I have many concerns for students in our class, and I will need your help. We all play a role: students, parents, teacher. Together we can do amazing things. We all need to make sure we are each doing our part to the best of our ability.