Interveiw for Mrs. Bitzegaio and Mrs. Sullivan

Teacher Q&A

You probably see Mrs. Bitzegaio in the halls giving compliments to everyone she knows. Although she is tucked away in the fifth grade hallway, she is always ready to lend a helping hand to a student. I caught up with Mrs. Bitzegaio for more insight into what she thinks about this year.

Q1. How long have you been a teacher?

40 years.

Q2. What is your favorite part about your job?

I look forward every day to coming in and being with my students. They are the highlight of my day!

Q3. What is your favorite subject to teach?

I love reading, so literature is my very favorite. I also love social studies. I love reading about it. I love politics, reading current events, but I would have to say literature.

Q4. What goals do you have for Scribner this year?

I think that my students are lifelong learners. Reading is always of course my goal. I want my students to become independent in their activities that they do at school and as well in the classroom. I want them to be responsible and respectful. Those are two of my three big rules. Being responsible and on time are always the things that I want for my students.

Q5. Having had the 6th graders for a year already, what are they doing well in?

They are very responsible. It is a joy to have them for a second year because they already know the routines with Mrs. Sullivan and myself. We don’t have to go through all of the classroom rules again because they know those. We can just start off and jump in to what we need to know. I have really loved seeing them transform from fifth graders to sixth graders. I am also so proud of the way they help the fifth graders. They have become a big brother/big sister to them. I am just so impressed with that because they can take that attitude of being to cool, but they do not. In fact this year we have alternated the lockers between fifth and sixth grade and that’s been fantastic because they have been so helpful.

Q6. What do you see as the 5th graders strengths?

I think that they really want to be great students. Mrs. Sullivan and I are so lucky because they want to achieve and be good students. They are great leaders and love to read. They are interested in current events and are generally very active in sports. They have gotten in their slips for the intermural sports and are very involved in the school activities. They have become very active in the Scribner community!

Q7. Having been in the 5th graders shoes not too long ago I know how it can be coming to a new school. How do you think they are warming up to the new school and what’s your advice?

I think they are doing a fabulous job and part of it is because I think we partnered them up with the sixth graders. They are so willing to help them and I think it is because of the sixth graders last year. They modeled that behavior and now these sixth graders are doing the same. These sixth graders are very willing to help clean lockers and keep them organized. The sixth graders also partner up with the fifth graders to get them where they need to go for core+.

Q8. Have you changed any teaching processes? If so what?

We have a new literature book that have trailers for the story when you go online. They also have links to the history channel which is so exciting! Although, I still love the old book. It is the same publisher it is just new technology to go along with it.

Q9. What are your goals for ISTEP this year?

I always, always, always drive for my student to be pass+ and be the best that they can be. We were very successful with the sixth graders now and the former sixth grader’s results. I want great results but I also want the students to feel like they have accomplished something.

Q10. What do you think about not having acuity anymore?

I personally feel like it was a great help to kids know what they need help on. I am very sorry that they are not going to have it because I thought that was the very best things about it. It also helped kids enjoy learning by including fun activities like brain pop and I think the students really enjoyed it. Overall I am disappointed but we will figure something else out.

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During my time in the fifth grade wing, I also stopped by Mrs. Sullivan’s class to see what she thought of these questions. Mrs. Sullivan and Mrs. Bitzegaio are a great duo and determined when they have their mind set on something.

Q1. What do see as the 5th graders strengths?

They are definitely creative. In science they understand the concept of needing to make sure that an experiment only has one variable and everything that you set up has to be correct in order for your results to be accurate. They are also enjoying poster math.

Q2.Having been in the fifth graders shoes not to long ago I know how it can be coming to a new school. How do you think they are warming up to the new school and what’s your advice?

I think they are doing well. I think it is still a transition early in the year for them to see line between too silly and staying on task. We are doing a novel in core and a lot of them enjoy writing. I still see the normal amount of silliness with people loving the word “bacon” and playing with mustaches.

Q3. Have you changed any teaching processes? If so what?

I am doing more with letting them student grade their own work. I am trying to relinquish grading the D.M.R. quizzes and let them do that!

Q4. What is the best trait that you see in Mrs. Bitzegaio?

I am very lucky to have a teaching partner that has the same sort of expectations in the classroom. Even though our styles are different, we have a good system where we complement each other. What she expects in her class and what I expect mine are both, bottom line, the same types of things. Although, how the students do things are different, we expect the same things, like always trying your best, getting work done, always giving maximum effort, and that it is okay if it is not an A+. That is where I am very lucky because I feel like we agree on that and it makes teaching the same group of people much easier.

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