Discussion in 'Fourth Grade' started by blue678, Mar 19, 2011.

  1. blue678

    blue678 Rookie

    Aug 16, 2007
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    Mar 19, 2011

    Hi everyone,
    I currently teach a self contained 4th grade class. Next year, another 4th grade teacher and I will be switching classes - she'll take LA and I'll have Math, SS, and Science. I was wondering if anyone has gone through this process and has suggestions for how to make it go as smoothly as possible (ie: homework, behavior system, parent communication, etc.). I'm looking forward to becoming more of an "expert" in certain subject areas, but am nervous about having double the students and so on.

    Any help, suggestions, etc. you could give would be really appreciated.

    Thank you!
  3. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

    Aug 15, 2010
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    Mar 19, 2011

    Homework---have it posted in both rooms. That way the students can reference it. Always keep it posted on the board or in a certain spot in your room.

    Behavior system---it helps if you use the same system in both rooms. However, you can have your own behavior system in your room. What I did was color my classes: one is purple, the other blue. This way they can find their behavior piece to move as needed.

    Parent Communication---we each make a file of emails, phone numbers, etc for our homeroom and then send this to all the teachers who have our students. As they move by homeroom, this will be easier for you.

    Color Coding---color each class and have a different turn in folder for each class. Then have different folders for passing back papers, etc for each class. The color coding really helps me!
  4. Opal

    Opal Companion

    Jun 16, 2011
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    Jul 8, 2011

    I did this for two years. I taught math and science in 3rd and then looped to 4th and taught LA.

    In third, the other teacher and I were next door to each other and worked quite well together. We planned together to coincide themes and lessons, hw was the same, etc. It was a great experience.

    In 4th, I was with another teacher. We didn't work well together. I wasn't one of the "cool" teachers and didn't play her games. Our teaching styles were waayyyy different. We rarely planned together and each did our own thing. This was not a great experience.

    Don't be nervous about the 2x students. It is easy to get used to - and can be a blessing if you have a "special" student, if you get my drift. I found that I was better equipped to teach the afternoon group because I was able to tweak the lesson if it didn't go well in the morning.

    In third, we had behavior charts that were magnetic - we just switched them when we switched kids.

    One problem we had was the sharing of desks. Try to make sure the neatniks don't desk share with the messy kids. That was a HUGE complaint. Also make sure personal belongings stayed in backpacks, not in desks.

    Try to have the two classes socialize regularly, so they know who is in their other teacher's class. It builds a sense of community.

    Parental communication - we conferenced together to minimize parent wait time or driving time.

    Good luck!
  5. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

    Apr 25, 2007
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    Jul 9, 2011

    We each had a clipboard that we passed at class change to document behaviors/issues in the other room. We had the exact same rules/consequences. The first day,we met with the whole group at once to go over these.

    Practice switching classes. It will take some practice for them to remember all the materials they need to bring with them to change rooms. If possible, (and if you use them), send a set of textbooks home and keep a set in the classroom--that way they don't have to lug all their books back and forth. Have a set way you want them to line up in the hall. Have a set routine for entering the room. Have a procedure for what to do when materials are forgotten (nothing is more annoying then students coming back into the room to get a pencil or folder when somebody else is sitting at their desk).

    Back your coteacher's decisions at all times. Even if you don't agree with them, to the kids, you are a team. Discuss any issues away from the students.

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