Elementary ELA Newsletter, April 2020

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April 2020

In this issue:

Teacher Wellness: Take Care of You!

As you resume the guidance and instruction for the incredible students in your classroom communities, there are undoubtedly a number of things swirling around in your brain that could add to an already difficult situation.  This newsletter features some resources to help you with the planning and implementation of lessons in this new version of your "classroom."  However, the most important thing I want to impart to you is how valued you are and how critical it is to take care of and surround yourself with people who care about you.  I came across two different texts that speak to this.  Neither of them are new, yet their messages are as timely and relevant as ever.  

The first article, "Boosting Resilience Through Creativity", is from Edutopia.  It's a wonderful piece that reminds us that asking questions, being curious, and experimenting with new ideas all make us more resilient.  

Jennifer Gonzalez, Editor in Chief for cultofpedagogy.com, wrote Find Your Marigold:  The One Essential Rule for New Teachers several years ago.  Although it was clearly intended to encourage educators new to the teaching world, I feel its message is applicable to all of us at this moment in time.

Virtual Meetings for Elementary Teachers

Oklahoma Education

We will continue to hold weekly virtual meetings in all grades bands and content areas.  The schedule for our elementary meetings are:

PK-K - Tuesdays from 3:00-4:o0 p.m.

Grades 1-2  - Fridays from 2:00-3:00 p.m.

Grades 3-5 - Tuesdays from 4:00-5:00 p.m.

RSA- Tuesdays from 2:00-3:00 p.m.

For information on how to access recorded meetings, or how to attend additional weekly meetings, please reference the article below.  

Covid-19 Instruction Support

The Covid-19 Instruction Support page was created to help you quickly and easily find the different OSDE resources designed for your grade level and/or subject area.  It includes quick links to:

Oklahoma Library of Digital Resources

Oklahoma Library of Digital Resources

The Oklahoma Library of Digital Resources (OLDR) is an innovative initiative to provide Oklahoma educators with high-quality, interactive teaching resources.  It launched in August 2016 with a collection of resources for 10 high school courses so teachers could incorporate digital learning opportunities into their lessons.  Now there are 51 courses, Pre-K through high school.  Oklahoma teachers have curated the resources and created sample lessons, ensuring the materials are aligned to the state's academic standards.

Click on the links below to access ELA resources for your grade level:

1st Grade

2nd Grade

3rd Grade

4th Grade

5th Grade

Click here for links to all OLDR resources, Pre-K through 5th grade

National Poetry Month, Earth Day, & More


If you're looking for ideas for special units or lessons, here are some events and observances that take place in the month of April.  Each one has a link that will give you more information on how to participate.

Monthly Features

Writing Prompt of the Month

For Now

One of the blogs I follow is called A Year of Reading.  Every Friday they feature a poem.  The poem for April 3 was written by Mary Lee Hahn and entitled "Gratitude."  It is an etheree, a 10-line poem where each line has a syllable count that matches the line number (1 syllable on the first line, 2 syllables on the second line, etc.). 

If you decide to celebrate National Poetry Month as a teacher/writer (and I hope you do), maybe one of the poems you write could be an etheree.  I had never written a poem in this style, so I gave it a go.  The result is the accompanying image.

Reading Quote of the Month

Reading Gives Us Someplace to Go