New Teacher HELP!

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by MiMar5, Jul 18, 2018.

  1. MiMar5

    MiMar5 New Member

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    Jul 18, 2018

    Okay, so this is going to my first year teaching in my own classroom (I subbed for a year). I student taught in 5th grade in a VERY small town in the fall. The district didn't have a given curriculum to use for math and science, therefore my teacher and I created a pacing guide of the state standards in math and science and then taught them our own way. It worked very well too.
    Now I moved to a bigger district and will be teaching 5th grade again. The difference now is that I am given a curriculum for math and science (Everyday math and Science: A Closer Look). So my question is, do I need to teach all of the chapters? For example, the science curriculum has 12 chapters, do I need to teach all of them? And do I need to fit it in before state testing in mid-April? Or can I do a mix and use a pacing guide like I did before and use the curriculum to support it?
    I don't have an issue doing it any of these ways, just simply don't know how to do it. I do have a mentor teacher however he is traveling until in-service week starts the week before school starts. So just looking for a bit of clarification.
    Thank you for your help!!
     
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  3. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Jul 18, 2018

    I think the only way that you can know for sure is to talk to others in your district. Every district has different expectations for how curriculum and curricular resources are implemented. I would just wait until you talk to your mentor before you start your academic planning. For now, just think about what you might do to start off the year with your students (back to school and community building activities).
     
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  4. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Groupie

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    Jul 18, 2018

    If it were me, I'd look over the materials supplied by your district and only use the resources that allow you to effectively teach the required state curriculum.

    However, some schools/districts require you do every lesson in the adopted materials, so you should ask other teachers about this. You might want to avoid asking your principal about this, since he or she might just tell you to do everything in the book even if the state doesn't require those lessons.
     
  5. Been There

    Been There Habitué

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    Jul 18, 2018

    Congratulations on your new job! For every new hire, it's always hard not to get anxious thinking about the new school year, especially in the summer when you have extra time on your hands. I think it's often helpful to minimize the challenges that you'll face with some advanced planning, but be careful not to go overboard by re-inventing the wheel. After all, there are plenty of available resources that will definitely make your task easier!

    If your district doesn't have pacing and correlation guides (or even if they do), find one online that seems to have its act together. For example, this one has an excellent Scope, Sequence Timeline with a handy correlation chart that would certainly apply to your science program. Every grade level includes certain units of study that can't be omitted - these are the ones that you can get a head start on by developing a binder of relevant resources. For example, in grade 5 science you would probably start with either Structure and Function in Living Systems or Properties and Changes of Properties in Matter (the latter is my personal preference). You can realistically plan to teach the first 2-3 lessons in each unit until you receive further direction from your colleagues.

    The same district referred to above provides their teachers with support that you can access here. Follow successive links to find many useful grade 5 science resources. Remember to avoid wasting lots of time developing your own lesson plans by using what's readily available. Hope this helps!
     
  6. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

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    Aug 4, 2018

    Welcome! I teach science to grades 3-6, but also help coordinate science curriculum for K-6. Please feel free to pm me if you'd like to chat about science curriculum. I'm basing mine off quite a few resources mish mashed in an organized way, but my two biggest resources are Better Lessons & Mystery Science.
     
  7. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

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    Aug 4, 2018

    Ask to see any curriculum maps that your district is using - I'm sure that the prior teacher had something in place already and your district might have a shared curriculum map so that all 5th grade science teachers are teaching the same thing. That will help to explain what you should be teaching each semester or each month.

    If that isn't in place and there's no guidance given to you on what to teach, you'll want to cover the topics that are going to be on the test - you don't want to have your students unprepared. Look up what topics/skills will be on the test and plan your year out accordingly:
    - teach everything on the test before the test
    - anything else that is in the textbook can be covered after the test

    My situation: I'm at a private school, but I still have to base my curriculum off of something, so I rely on the Next Generation Science Standards since my students do not take a specific standardized test for science. The NJ science curriculum is also based on the NGSS (the state I teach in). K-5 performance expectations are clearly spelled out, while the middle school ones (grades 6-8) and high school are more free flowing for teachers to choose what they need to cover and when. I'm using NJ's curriculum for 6th grade as a guide.

    So between the curriculum map, seeing what was done before, what needs to covered for the test, and state/national standards, you should be set to teach science. :)
     
  8. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    Aug 8, 2018

    If you have a way to reach other teachers from your new school ask them. If not look on line see if there is a assessment list on the district site. Check if there is a pacing guide or recommendation on the district site. Check if there are copies of the district assessments that are accessible by you. If there are then use them to guide your pacing.
     

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