Saturday, March 3, 2012

A Group Run and Parent Involvement Step #1: Mystery Readers

Good afternoon!  I was sharing earlier this week about my major guilt for not running in the 5K last week, so when my friend (right) said she'd be in town this morning and wanted to run, I knew I had to do it!  The PE teacher at my school (left) is training for a half marathon, so she joined us for our 6 mile trek.  I hadn't done that distance in a while, but was so glad I had some friends to make it easier!  We joined a group from a local church, and it was a really nice change of pace.

Our post-run picture with a gloved finger creeping in at the top.  Having friends makes the 20-something degrees feel a bit better too!  

Parent Involvement Step #1: Mystery Readers!
As far as school goes, one of my motivations as a teacher is knowing that families are involved in their child's education.  Although this doesn't happen all the time I wanted to find some avenues to help them stay involved or informed about our class.  I have one student who has a dad in Afghanistan, and many with grandparents who live far away, or live in a split home where mom or dad lives somewhere else.  

My sister-in-law came in and shared The Giving Tree!
I know many of you have done Mystery Readers in the past, and I jumped on board this year for the first time.  It has been a favorite of the students, and they love practicing their "inferencing" skills when I give them 3 clues about our mystery reader in the morning.  Throughout the year, we have had 10 readers, which is 10 more people than I had before.  Here are some of the documents I use at the beginning of the year at Meet the Teacher Night.  

However, this system only works for parents who work close (which is typically not the case, since my school is WAAAAAAAAAY out in the country) or stay at home.  To allow for even more people, I asked to have Skype installed on my computer.  The technology guru decided it might be better if we had a traveling cart with a computer and a webcam that could go into all rooms!  Even better!   

After waiting nearly the entire first semester to get the webcam ordered and installed, we finally go to Skype in a mystery reader this week!!  The kids loved it, and one of my students' grandma got to read to us from two hours away! 

What I love about Skype is that a parent could do it on their lunch hour, or while on duty in Afghanistan, or grandmas and grandpas can share their love of books from wherever they may be.  

We now have a cord ordered that will connect the computer to our projector screen so that it can be bigger, but for now we are enjoying books from afar!

What else do you do to get parents involved in your room?  

My Part 2 will be next week with another way to connect with parents!

4 comments: said...
This comment has been removed by the author. said...

I have found with this class I have that "desperation" is key. My student's won't take notes home and that just makes me have to follow up. If I reach out to the parents with a text I get nearly 80% replies and feedback. I also call midday. I believe it creates the idea that "this is serious. I need to do something ASAP."

Heather Perkins said...

Cute blog! Check out my new 2nd grade blog if you get a chance.

Sandy said...

Skype- what a great idea. If only we had that at our school- Well have to look into that. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I now have your blog bookmarked.