Turning A Deficit Into Something Positive!

Since I had to switch to teaching 4th grade, I am, once again, at a disadvantage. I don’t have all of the required materials. However, instead of thinking of it as a deficit or something negative, I choose to think of it as something that I can use to my advantage.

The old way that I taught the story was letting my students listen to the story on CD. But, since I don’t have the Listening Library on CD, my students are forced to read from the text. Let me just say (as I puff out my chest) that they did an excellent job. When they got stuck on a word, I simply told them what Sound Spelling card to refer to and they did it. I was so impressed. I had a pep talk with them and told them that I was so proud of how well they blended and that I looked forward to blending with them because it is so fun since they are so good at it.

I was proud enough with the blending. Now, I am even prouder with the reading because it shows that they are learning; that I am actually making a difference. One of my students, Lil’ Man, didn’t want to read aloud because he didn’t think that he could do it. I let him know that I knew that he could do it; that I would not embarrass him like that. I told him that I would not have asked him to do it if I didn’t think that he could. He didn’t want to do it, but I gently pushed him and he did it. He couldn’t believe it. He was so proud of himself. He was grinning from ear to ear like a Cheshire cat. Boy was I glad that I chose to see my lack of materials as a positive thing because it definitely turned out to be a very positive thing.


What Is Four Step Language Math?

I don’t even know how I came across this information, but am happy that I did. Reading this information was the validation that I needed to let me know that I am doing the right thing. This is pretty much what I do with my students. Read it and see what you think

(Taken directly from the site) Four Step Language Math is a math intervention program that blends in with any form of teaching, whether it is algorithms, manipulatives, drawings, or repetitive memorization. Four Step Language Math is more like a foundation in which teachers can get reinforcement for their teaching and give students a safe outlet to learn and become true owners of their knowledge. It helps teachers to establish a safe community that fosters communication and learning. It allows teachers to differentiate instruction and assess individual student needs through anecdotal records in a small group setting.

Four Step Language Math Intervention Program is composed of four basic components. The first step is based on gathering information about the problem through data identification. The second step is based around analyzing the information gathered and deciding on a strategy that will best help a student solve the problem. The third step is where the students take the information they gathered and use the best strategy to solve the problem. The fourth step is revisiting the process of solving by showing the students understanding of the steps taken to solve the problem.

The four steps the students do in class and on their own help them to further comprehend mathematical problems, trains them to think analytically, builds upon their reasoning skills, and gets them to think about their thinking. All of the steps and knowledge are then further enriched when the four steps are discussed in class providing further understanding of math.

If you would like to learn more, here’s a link I found: Click here