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Charlotte Danielson: Domain 4 4a: Reflecting on Teaching

When beginning a set of lessons/standards, I first pre-assess or look at current MAP data to help me predetermine groups. During group lessons, I keep anecdotal notes on the students and I keep a rubric score of their performance. Any student may be shifted to a different group based on his/her needs. This helps me to see who is mastering a standard and who needs more practice. By implementing Lucy Calkins writing workshop, I am able to differentiate according to the needs indicated by student work. The students also help me to make groups by looking at their writing and using rubrics to score. I keep learning goals on my ipad for my students with IEP goals so that I can refer to it at any time. Although I have a plan for where I want a lesson to go, I am always willing to take student suggestions on activities they want to extend their learning with. One example is when we were reading a book about measurement in guided reading, the group suggested looking at measurements of animals. They researched an animal and had to record measurements they could find that described the animal.

As a class we came up with a mission statement. This helps us to remember what our job is and to stay focused and positive.

To keep connected with my students at a personal level and know their interests we share every week about our weekend. This allows the students to share something they are proud of and I gain knowledge about them quickly. They also get to know me on a personal level because I tell stories as well. I have visited peer teachers in the school to get ideas on how to improve the structure of my math groups.

4b: Maintaining Accurate Records

In addition to keeping anecdotal notes and rubric scores daily on students learning, I also keep up to date running records and MAP data. With this data, the students are able to create goals and steps to work toward their goals. Not only for my needs, but for anyone covering my class, I have a detailed list of accommodations, allergies, and behavior needs of students in our class. I also have the class discipline plan available for rewards and consequences.

Routines and transitions are very well coordinated in the classroom so that we have minimal interruption to instructional time. In the morning the students are responsible for making lunch choices and writing in homework notebooks. Also, the students have a work check off list that allows them to easily see what needs to be completed posted in the classroom that they can access regularly. During group rotations, students refer to a posted schedule to know what they are expected to do.

4c: Communicating with Families

I have a clear discipline plan in place in which the students helped to clarify the rules. On our website, I keep parents informed of what we are learning in class as well as upcoming events. Check out our website at Each week, the students write a letter to their parents about what is happening in class. This has become a favorite, not only for the children, but for the parents as well. I plan to have the students add information to the class website as well.

In addition to county wide parent conferences at the end of marking period 1, I have had several parent conferences or phone calls to discuss issues as they arise in the class. I like to keep an open line of communication and the parents appreciate my quick response. I have a few students that are on a discipline plan or reward system that get feedback home daily. When a student gets marked down, he must fill out a broken rule sheet to explain his actions to his parents and what he will do to correct the behavior.

Our county is using a new online gradebook and parents have access to their childs grades through parentvue. On several occasions, students have wanted to extend their learning at home with research reports or looking up the answers to questions that arise in class. I welcome this and let them share their findings with the class. At the end of the year, my class participates in an authors tea for their parents to see their growth in writing and many times they perform for their parents as well. Our class likes to have Mystery Readers come in to read for us. Our mystery readers are usually parents and sometimes former teachers or administration. Parents have also come in to share about their jobs, including a veteran for Veterans Day and a scientist with NIH to have us do experiments.

4d: Participating in a Professional Community

I attend weekly CFIP meetings and team meetings. I am on a school based STEM PLC and am on the Synergy team and Olweus committee, which are districtwide initiatives. I have facilitated school based professional development for both of these committees. Although I am not a current member of SIT, I have filled in for SIT this year and have been on the SIT team for at least 10 of my 15 years of teaching. During our unit on weather, I coordinated our meteorologist guest speaker. The Washington County Agriculture Center allows us to use lessons to extend our science concepts and co-teaches lessons within the units.

I attend PTA functions and am always willing to volunteer for afterschool functions, including Grandparents Night, Reading Night, and STEM night. For the past 4 years, I have organized a song for the second graders to sing in the Variety Show.

4e: Growing and Developing Professionally

This year I have attended some workshops by Dr. Spiri. Last year I was a member of the math institute and attended class monthly. I have had the opportunity to visit other colleagues within the school to get some ideas on how math is structured. I am currently reading the Charlotte Danielson Framework, as well as, constantly searching the web for new ideas to teach the standards in the classroom. This year I was a mentor teacher for about 4 weeks to a student intern.

4f: Showing Professionalism

I ensure that all student records are confidential. I give all students an opportunity to be successful. I attend all staff meetings, CFIPS, and IEPs and complete documents for these meetings on time. I try to be a team leader and help to make informed decisions regarding the students and the curriculum.