I am thrilled to have started the Daily 5 in both classes, however, one of my concerns was grading. This program is more of a process, showing data over time, and difficult to grade assignments regularly for the sole purpose of being able to put grades on report cards. I have gotten a handle on the reading (students write reflections and book ratings), writing (we do weekly writing topics) and vocabulary (using the Wordly Wise series), however, my big question was SPELLING! I didn’t want to do the same thing I had done in the past, which was introduce a new list of spelling words each Monday, test students on Friday and so on and so forth. I found that many of my students knew the words on Monday, and they found no value in preparing for a test on Friday. So, after much thought, I decided to create a pre-assessment using a few words from each Spelling Unit. I created one for 4th and 5th graders using Spelling City. After administering the assessment (which I explained to the students that it was only a pre-assessment so I could choose words for them individually based on their needs), I highlighted the ones missed and developed an individualized spelling plan for each child. Each student will be assigned spelling units based solely on the skills they need to develop and practice. It took me several hours, however, I felt so good when I completed the last list. I also felt relief knowing that I will be providing students with meaningful work. The students will be able to use the spelling books that were purchased this year, work on the skills they need, and have proper assessments, as needed. For the students that master the words earlier in the year, I will provide more challenging words. Duringword work (one of the rotations in the Daily 5), the students will be working on their own spelling words & vocabulary words. Here is an example of one of the student’s individualized spelling plans.
The checks indicate which units they will work on. Once they master that unit, they will mark it off and proceed on to the next list.