I started this year newly co-teaching with one of our ELL teachers. I have worked with EAs in class and had some great working relationships with other teachers where we co-taught interventions, but I have never had the chance to try co-teaching in the classroom. It definitely brings a whole new meaning to teaming and planning with other teachers. There is some great information here.
Last year my principal sent many of us to a co-teaching training through Puget Sound ESD and we were very excited to try it. I purchased the Educational Leadership issue on co-teaching and watched many videos. I was ready to jump in and try it.
This year rolls around, I have three new team members, I have new roles in my district, and I am trying to plan the scope and sequence for our new curriculum while somewhat trying to integrate it with our history curriculum and possibly/hopefully the science classrooms. I have been feeling a bit overwhelmed. On top of that, my co-teacher has had MANY newcomers and is helping a new-to-ELL teacher negotiate her different role in the building. We are both struggling to meet together and plan intentional grouping and differentiation for our kids.
One of the biggest points emphasized in the co-teaching training and talking with people who have done it is to have time to plan together. My principal made sure that we have common planning time (another item that is disorienting me after having the same planning for 12 years), but we are having a difficult time prioritizing our time to really sit down and meet to discuss our kids. My goal for this next quarter is to intentionally plan some lessons and groupings so we better use our time co-teaching.
Honigsfeld & Dove Co-teaching and Collaboration Models
That being said, it is amazing having another teacher to work with. She sees things or notices things that I don’t, or can’t, while teaching. She can ask probing questions and elaborate on the directions to make sure more kids are understanding the instruction. She can pull small groups to work with while I take the larger class, or visa versa. It is wonderful. After co-teaching and learning more about the teaching strategies and how to use grouping within co-teaching, I am hoping to implement some of the groupings and strategies to better utilize EAs in my class.
My district brought in Dave Irwin to work with several teams who are trying co-teaching this year. I am excited to learn more strategies for both co-teaching and differentiation for my students. We also were given this book Collaboration and Co-Teaching: Strategies for English Learners to help us implement more strategies to help our students.
Do you have any co-teaching experiences or strategies that would be helpful? I would love to hear from you!
In my non-teacher consumed hours I love to spend time with my husband and son, play board games, sew/craft/quilt, and read (I DO teach ELA).I aspire to be more into fitness and outdoors more often, though I find a comfy chair and a good book/movie mightily appealing.