A Phenomenal Reflection: “How Far Can They Go?”

My kids can go as far as I can push them.

Sunday’s Reflection: “How Far Can They Go?”

As I took my Walk, I thought about How Far Can They Go?

Tuesday, I closed out a Main Idea unit, which is the Non-Fiction version of elements of plot, by having the kids read an article: “The Amish Way of Life.”

After they read it, I had them evaluate by asking: Do you agree or disagree with the Amish Way of Life? To high-level for second graders, right? Not my kids.

Here are a few responses.

Student 1: ”I disagree because the woman is responsible for the family. I think the men should be.”

Student 2: “I agree because I like to ride horses and I like to farm.”

Student 3: “I disagree because the woman shouldn’t have to do all the chores. The boys should be gentlemen.”

Student 4: I agree because they took away electronics. Electronics get you away from doing work.

They were charged to synthesize, as well, by stating if they’d like to do anything the Amish do or if they don’t like.

There was one cute response. A child said that “They shouldn’t have to wear clothes that people wore back in the old days. They should be able to wear what they want to wear.”

Another child liked that they had their own school.

Their ability to think deeply about the text and come up with their own thought process encouraged me.

Comprehending text is “supposed” to be a challenge at their age, so having well-thought opinions is next level.

Over the course of the next few days, I finished up Reading Level testing. (Such a chore.)

I was further encouraged by their growth in that area. Only two children fell below expectations. I was surprised but not shocked. I’ve told people that these kids are advancing faster than any group I’ve had in my career.

My kids normally follow a pattern. A few immediately improve, there’s a stagnant stage and then they explode mid-year. Around March or April(S.T.A.A.R. Mode Time), they peak.

Maybe due to their age, they’re improving as a group immediately. There are few pretenders as Na’Carol (Nee Dixon) Hall would say. But overall, they’re a very strong group.

On Thursday, the final day of the week(4-day weekend), I told kids that they had improved on their reading. When we get back, it’s GO time.

Friday, knowing that I had a group ready to be pushed, I created a 4-Day Weekend Task List or OKR(Thanks Measure What Matters).

  • Lesson Plan: Reading (2nd Nine Weeks)
  • Lesson Plan: Math (2nd Nine Weeks)
  • Phenomenal Block(R.T.I.) Rotations(3 Weeks)
  • Evaluate After-School Tutoring Structure
  • Social Studies/Science(2nd Nine Weeks)
  • Research Dyslexia Instruction (My sister, Christina, gives me the cheat code.)
  • Conduct PLC’s
  • Research Social Studies Structure(My boy AJ gives me the inside track there.)
  • Plan Technology Integration
  • Daily Schedule (2 Weeks)

I’ve completed many of tasks with a few left. It’s something that must be done. Because if I’m going to find out how far my kids can go, I must put in the work to take them there.

I leave you with two things.

1. How far do you think the group you lead will go?

2. Are you putting in work to get them there?

Say Back.

1. What do you like about the Reflection?

2. What would you like to know more about?

Application: Write down five ways you can take the group you lead to the next level.

Jeremiah Short, Educator

Published by Jeremiah Short

My name is Jeremiah Short, and I'm a educator with six years of experience. I love to teach and the overall craft of the profession. I've written one book on my journey(As I Took My Walk With God Volume I: I Stopped Wasting God's Time) with a second one way (As I Took My Walk With God Volume II: Greatness Was Upon Them). In addition to writing books, I've created several instructional routines: Word Power, T.I.D.E., Bloom's Units: Reading and The Phenomenal Classroom.

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