Reflection: High Quality Task Craft, Structure, and Integrating Ideas with "The Jabberwocky" - Section 1: Daily Grammar


In yesterday's reflection, I Thought They Were Always Writing, I wrote about changing the structure of my bellwork.  I think bellwork is a critical part to classroom management. And not just bellwork, a consistent bellwork structure, is critical. 


If the bellwork one day is to get up and do a four corners thing, the next day is to silently write a paragraph, the next day is to get out materials for an experiment, and the fourth day is a quiz, students won't know what's coming when they walk in the door.  Yes, there's an activity for students when the bellrings, but it's not bellwork.  It's being labeled bellwork. That might work for an accelerated group, but most of my classes aren't honors.  They need structure and routine that they can count on.


 You also have to consider what you, the teacher, need from bellwork.  Attendance is a no-brainer.  In my school, I also have to do the Elect to Learn (ETL) check.  I'm supposed to check for students' lanyards, IDs, agendas, and dress code on a daily basis.  I also check for homework and textbooks when we need them.  Does the system work?  Absolutely if the teacher is consistent and fair.  And that's where time comes in.  I walk around daily to check for these things and have a short conversation with students. Sometimes it's silly and sometimes it's serious, but it builds those relationships. Then I enter the attendance and ETL violations at the computer.  This takes time, so my bellwork needs to take some time.


I don't think there's any right answer.  A teacher across the hall from me does vocabulary work for her bellwork. The bellwork I do this year might not be the same as next year.  You've got to find what works best for you and your students.

  Routine and Bellwork
  High Quality Task: Routine and Bellwork
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Craft, Structure, and Integrating Ideas with "The Jabberwocky"

Unit 7: Analyzing and Crafting Original Poems with George Ella Lyon’s “Where I’m From”
Lesson 2 of 8

Objective: Students will be able to analyze main ideas and the author's use of language in "The Jabberwocky" by reading, writing quickwrites, and acting out the poem.

Big Idea: "The Jabberwocky" comes alive through reading, writing, and performing.

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december 2013
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