Friday, November 21, 2014

Five for Friday

I am linking up with Kacey at Doodle Bugs Teaching.
Five for Friday…woo hoo!

It was the 50th day of school this week. We celebrated by dressing up like the 1950's. Some of my firsties came in with white t-shirts and jeans rolled up, others came in with their hair high in an adorable pony with a bow and a cute little dress.
I LOVE my class!!!

We used The Fabulous Life of an Elementary Teacher's Disguise a Turkey Project!
Some came in as baseball players, a Christmas tree, a wreath, with camo, an upside down butterfly. Their ideas are endless.

When all of the turkeys come in we will be writing about them. We are so excited. :)

We played Roll and Record this week. I put the dice in these containers. I have no idea who came up with this, but THANK YOU a million times!!!

I ordered this from Artsy Couture.
It is amazing. A box and a USB port to go with all the photos we give them. LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!

Finally, my cousin made two hats for me and a prop for a newborn shoot. I can't wait to wear and use them!!! She is so talented!!!

We have two days of school next week. Thanksgiving activities!!! Woo Hoo!!!

Have a wonderful day!

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Monday, November 17, 2014

Math Daily 3 just a little introduction

I am in the middle of my grad course for this semester. I am taking Math Daily 3 from Upper Iowa University. It is the second one I have taken on the Daily 5/3 :)

Math Daily 3 goes along with our program Investigations. It just seems to flow with the whole sequence, schedule, everything.

After teaching the regular mini-lesson, there are focus lessons to be taught and then student and teacher choices.
This is where I start to LOVE it! The kiddos get to choose how they want to work on a strategy or concept taught. Brilliant! Investigations has built-in Math Workshop days and times, so this is going to be very easy for me to utilize in my classroom. The other thing I really like about this is that it is not an additional thing I have to do in my classroom. This will add to my time I can spend with individuals and small groups.

Of course the "Two Sisters" explain it so easily. This is from their website. Chapter 8 in the updated book is dedicated to Math. I think they could write a whole other book on just math. :)

I found some amazing resources on Pinterest. 

I have to set up my Math Board. This is going to take some decision making skills. I am going to have to take something down in order for me to have room for the board. 

I will share my progress with you as the course goes on.
Thanks for reading.
Have a wonderful day!

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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Shared Reading

We had an amazing speaker come and talk to us about Common Core, Shared Reading, Writing…basically everything in our ELA block.

I would like to talk about Shared Reading today.

This explanation from Reading Rockets really explains what it is and why we use it.
I think I have really gotten away from Shared Reading in the way it is suppose to be used. 
I was using our Read Aloud as a Shared Reading experience and it was really not that at all. I was holding the book, I was the one reading, I was the one asking the questions…see the pattern? :)

I am revamping the way I do Shared Reading in my classroom. We, as a team, have looked through our books to see what we can use as our Shared Reading books. We have our old anthology books. These have many great stories in them. Even though we are not using the anthology anymore, it doesn't mean we can't use the great literature.
I was thinking I would also like to get some of the books up onto my SmartBoard. I am sure we have some kids in the high school who need some community service hours. They could scan them and then read them. Maybe they could even come over and read them live. :) What a great community builder.

I like the simple explanation of how to use Shared Reading.

Here are some really cute finds on TpT.

This is by JK Curriculum Connection.
This product is free, but it's part of a larger product called "Natures Superstars". What kiddo wouldn't be interested in this?

This product by DeeDee Wills is a collection of campfire poems and activities. 
It looks so cute! 
We do a Literacy Campout at the end of the year. We will definitely be using this!

Jennifer Drake has created this book for all sorts of reading. Print it out and every student can have one in their hand. Then you can make a class book together. 
How adorable!!!

Do you have any tried and true ideas that work for Shared Reading? Do you have a lesson you would like to share? Let me know. Thanks!

Have a wonderful day!

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Saturday, November 15, 2014

Report Cards

Good Morning!
So, interesting time in school right now. Report Cards, planning parent/teacher conferences, progress monitoring, etc. etc. etc..
I finished with my report cards last Saturday or Sunday, I am not really sure. I worked really hard on them. We all do. I plan out my comments so that they are easy to read and to the point, but not harsh.
Our secretaries print them out on the Wednesday before they are due so that we can check them over. I was sick on Wednesday. :( Then I was sick on Thursday. :( I went in on Friday (finally) to find my report cards printed on the "real" paper. There were NO comments!!! NONE!
I was frantic. Not only was I coming back from being out for two days (I swear it's more work to be out, RIGHT?), but now I had to comment on ALL of them again!!! GRADEBOOK, not a big fan.
After talking calmly to my colleagues (HA!) I searched in all of the "other" folders. Well, there they were in my Social Studies folder. 1. Why are we grading first graders on Social Studies? 2. Why can't they transfer into my homeroom folder? 3. Why were they printed twice with no comments?
Anyway, our secretary had to save all of my report cards again after I moved every single comment over to my homeroom folder. Live and Learn.

How do you do Report Cards? Are they linked to the Common Core? Do they look different in each grade? I am so interested in what other schools do.
Thank you for your input.

Have a wonderful day!

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Friday, November 14, 2014

When You Are Out Sick...

I know many of you have emergency sub plans. This is probably something I should look into.
I try to use my current lesson plans and adapt them for the substitute.
I have been out the last two days. Bronchitis, Sinus Infection, and compromised oxygen (this one is new for me). When I went to the doctor, he said, "Well, it's nice to see you for your bi-yearly checkup.". I get the same thing in November and March.
Anyway…I digress.

I send in my adapted plans to my colleague. She prints them out and hopefully my substitute carries on with them. This past time, I am not sure why, I think we have a ton of new substitutes, my colleague called me and told me that the substitute was having a difficult time with my plans and Morning Message. Luckily, I have a lot of support from my colleagues and they helped the poor substitute out.

My question for you is…what do you do when you are out sick? Do you have pre-made plans? Do you just leave it? We are sick you know?

I am hoping not to be absent again…until March. :)
Your help would be so appreciated.

Have a wonderful day!

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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Project Based Learning Entry Event

We invited a local expert into our classroom to give us a boost for our Field Guide of Fish in Cazenovia Lake. Dr. Yorks came in with a few fish he and his class had caught the night before. Two of his students from his environmental class came with him to help. I can't even tell you how excited my firsties were to have him in the class.

After the experts explained about the fish that they brought we sat at our tables and made some recordings in our Science journals.
We made a sketch of the fish and wrote some details about it.

Brown Bullhead
The hit of the party!!!

They loved observing!

We even got to put our hands in the containers and touch them, carefully.

Then we put all the fish in front of us and Dr. Yorks and his students answered A LOT of questions.

He showed us some of the fish up close.

What a great entry event for our PBL project.
We are so excited to work with these experts again when they come in to give us some critique on our Field Guides.

Are any of you doing PBL?
What are you doing? I would LOVE to hear!!!

Have a wonderful day!

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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Thanksgiving Unit New and Improved

I have just updated my Thanksgiving Unit. I am leaving the older one for a freebie. The new and improved one I have priced at $5.00.
It is 57 pages of ELA and Math activities.

Math, Writing, and Reading, activities to use throughout November. 
Number Word Matching
Syllable Activity
Making Words
Writing Pages
Turkey Glyph
Math Number Cards
Place Value Game
A Great November Song

I hope you go check it out.

Have a wonderful day!

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Saturday, November 8, 2014

Product Swap with An Apple for the Teacher

Melissa over at Jungle Learners is hosting a product swap. We were matched and we were able to choose one product we wanted to use in our classroom.

Jungle Learners

I was matched with Kelly from An Apple for the Teacher. Have you checked out her blog? She has so many great ideas!!!

An Apple for the Teacher

I chose Kickin' It Math.
This is an EXTENSIVE program for practicing Math Facts in very fun ways!
There are parent letters, explanations of all activities, and very fun graphics.
We are going to be using this all year! My firsties are so excited about moving up each belt color.

My firsties LOOOOOOVVVVED it!!!

We played "I have… Who has?…" after Morning Meeting to get us ready for all of our addition work.

After our warm-up I introduced the math games and activities we would be doing.


One minute Math Facts. 
I have to tell you. These kids LOVED these! They all wanted to do these multiple times (and when I say multiple, I mean five, six, seven times!). They loved seeing their progress!
I gave them timers to use so they could work with partners. 

They worked on their addition facts with partners. Quick, Quick, Quick!!!
Partners went over their addition facts.

Taking it to the Mat
This is an addition game where you "win" a trophy chip. 
You take cards (I used our Investigation number cards) and pass out five cards to each player.
Players choose their two highest cards and add them together. The player with the largest total gets a trophy chip. So much FUN!!!

Fast Feet
Players try to match the addition number sentence to the answer as fast as they can.

My firsties were engaged and had so much fun learning!

Thank you so much Kelly for making Math Facts FUN FUN FUN!!!

You can head on over to Kelly's TpT Store to purchase it. I would highly recommend it!

If you would like to win this enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway below.

Kelly is reviewing my Criss Cross Applesauce Product on her blog.
If you want a chance to win this, head on over. :)

Have a great day and good luck!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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