Question Detail

How do I transition from first(10 years) to third?

Jun 20, 2013 9:09am

I have been teaching first grade for the last ten years. There have always been at least 5 teachers in my grade. I am now moving from an inner city to a rural school. I will be one of only 2 teachers in my grade. I am going to be the "experienced strong" teacher. I have not taught elementary above 1st before. I am overwhelmed by what to expect, how to set up my room, this is a testing grade!! Do I have word wall? 1 or one for each subject???? ANY HELP IS APPRECIATED

  • English Language Arts / Math / Science / Social Studies
  • Pre K-5
  • Planning

5

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    • Jun 23, 2013 11:43am

      You will love third grade! My suggestion would be to find out which curriculum they use and start there. I would also ask about any school wide procedures that you must incorporate into your day. For example, my school has class meetings first thing in the morning. As for the word wall, I find it best for them to have one in their writing folders. We use the Quick Word dictionaries because students can add to them as needed. What I do post are content vocabulary cards that have a picture representation. We have a high English learner population and that helps.
      As far as testing goes, start about two weeks into the year with strategies. Pinterest has many ideas, as does TPT. We are required to post released test questions to show the kids what it will look like. It has been helpful. Good luck and enjoy!

      • Jun 22, 2013 4:23pm

        Part 2
        On our team of six third grade classes this year, the room arrangements varied vastly. Think about what worked well in your first grade class and start from there.
        As far as Word Walls go, you need to decide how it/they will be used. Personally, I like for students to have a personal folder or binder to which they can add words in sections by subject. Our school district requires that we have word walls and post Marzano framed learning goals. That is where I meet that requirement, but the resource binder is much more useful. Besides, then I can add word especially for individual children.

        You are an experienced teacher. You will be great. I love changing grade levels. It keeps my teaching current and fresh.
        Enjoy! ;)

        • Jun 23, 2013 12:05pm

          Thank you for your wonderful input. I appreciate the voice of others that have experience in this area.

          • Jun 23, 2013 9:43pm

            Michelle- I just posted a similar response to someone else who is transitioning from one grade to another, so I'll post the information again here.

            As others said, the best place to start is corestandards.org so you can see where you'll be expected to take students by the end of the year. Just take a step back and realize that good teaching strategies for first grade can be adapted to third grade, and as long as you align your curriculum to the standards, you'll be able to create a pacing guide based on those standards, and design fabulous lessons as you move through the year.

            Katie (@KatieNovakUDL)

            • Jun 25, 2013 5:48pm

              Embrace the change! As Patti Martin said in her two-part answer, it will keep your teaching current and fresh. I have taught everything from kindergarten to, believe it or not, high school special ed. (where I am now). The chance to learn and grow when many of my colleagues are feeling tired and some are even bored has been awesome! This certainly wasn't the career I expected, but I feel that it was the best there could have been. I hope you'll find the same. I will be retiring in three years from a career that was way more exciting than one could ever have expected. Good luck.