My New Second Grade Class

July 10, 2007 at 8:04 pm | Posted in education, second grade, Special Education | Leave a comment

Real briefly:

I have two students who read 5 words a minute.

I have two students who read 10-15 words a minute.

I have four students who read 20-30 words a minute.

And the other 9 are evenly spread out, reading 30-90 words a minute, which is really nice!

They should be reading about 55 words per minute.

About half my students are English Language Learners.  I have only one African-American girl in my class.  She worries me because, from observation these last three days, she looks a little withdrawn and separated from the other students.  She’s also reading at about 10 words a minute.  I know her family and had two of her relatives in my classroom, they were all very low academically and had lots of family and neighborhood issues.  I will be paying particular attention to her and help her integrate into the classroom community.

The two students reading at 5 words per minute are both African American boys, sadly.  One student has a great, positive, hard-working attitude and is already finding successes in the classroom.  His mother contacted me on the very first day and we started working together to help him become a success.  We both agreed that he needs the Student Success Team and probably testing for Special Education.

The other boy is having a great deal of trouble adjusting the classroom rules and routines.  I spoke with his first grade teacher and his behavior last year was consistently disruptive.  His first grade teacher is a National Board Certified teacher with an excellent reputation at our school, so I’m pretty certain she did everything she could to help him learn.  However, I already see some anger management issues with him.  I also know his family, again, another family of low academic students and some pretty angry, beligerent parents.  I called his mother twice, made an appointment for a parent conference today, which she missed.  Didn’t surprise me, but it does mean that he’s likely not getting the support he needs at home.  I will be referring him to the Student Success Team as well, but I want to sit down with his first grade teacher first to gather evidence.

My highest academic student is another African American boy, just in case people are starting to make assumptions!  His mother also contacted me and we’re excited to be working with each other.  I’m already wondering if he’s gifted.  He comes out with the most brilliant observation!

I have only five other girls in my class, all English Language Learners and Spanish speakers.  So far, I have one girl who loves to touch her friends (cultural), one girl who’s consistently late and already absent one day (oh boy), and all lovely, sweet, hard-working girls.

I have one absent-minded artist, barely interested in academic but wakes up and focuses intently one the visual arts.  I will be making use of his talent throughout the year!

I have an itty, bitty little accident prone genius.  He acts, and feels, like a kindergartener, but he writes, reads, and comprehends like a third grader.  He’s also smashed his knees and had his right eye poked in the three short days I’ve known him.

I have one student, J____, who is such a joy, but really, really wants my attention all the time.  Is this a second grade thing?

I have a line leader who is always too busy to find his way to the front of the line.  Quite funny because then he goes, “Oops!” and runs to the front of the line.

I’ll be observing the kids more to learn more about their interests and quirks.  So far, a very different class from my last third grade class.

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