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Good Connections: Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students

If you are like me, you have not had much exposure to Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students. 
Most general education teachers do not. Deaf and Hard of Hearing students comprise about 1% of the overall population of school-age children. Approximately 1 million people in the United States are Deaf. The World Health Organization states, "Around 466 million people worldwide have disabling hearing loss, and 34 million of these are children".

Because Deaf students do not make up a huge part of our population, we are ill-equipped to have them in our classrooms. A few years ago I started an ASL class at our local community college. I have fallen in love with the language. Not only am I able to communicate with  the Deaf community, but I am prepared to have a Deaf student or Deaf parents in our school. 

Now, I am not saying go out and be an expert in ASL (although I think everyone should learn ASL). We do have licensed interpreters around, but think about how much it would mean to be able to communicate one-on-one with the Deaf community.

Growth Mindset...Do you have it?

I have been taking a graduate course on Growth Mindset.
What is it?

Well, it's something I have had for a while. I may not have had it all along, but it has definitely been developed in my teaching career. 

“In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point. This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment,” writes Dweck.Aug 29, 2013

It's that idea that your mind is not set when you are born. You have the potential to do anything. We are not static learners.

Place Value Games

One of the things my kiddos need to work on is Place Value.

It is not something that is covered in our program as much as we would like, so I decided to create a product after a game I had seen many years ago.

100th Day of School!!!

We had so much fun yesterday!
We celebrated our 100th Day of School!
My firsties were beyond excited!

I purchased Deanna Jump's 100th Day Math and Literacy Fun! She calls it a mini-unit, but there are so many jam-packed activities in here.

I set up stations around the room for them to work with 100 things at each.

Blocks (Legos)
Unifix Cubes
Craft Sticks
Pattern Blocks

The best thing about this was that you didn't have to go out and purchase anything (unless you didn't have the cups, but who doesn't have a hundred cups in their cupboard or know someone in your school who does).


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Student Notebooks

Do you use Student Notebooks? I didn't until this year.

I will never go back.

If a notebook day is not scheduled, my firsties are disappointed. :)

 I print off the problem for them. I tried to have them write it in their notebooks themselves, but I figured that it is not an assessment of their writing. And it's much faster.

After we finish Calendar and Rocket Math, students get their papers and glue them into their notebooks. They sit on the rug and wait for the rest of the students to get ready. While they are getting ready, I write the problem up on the board. I read it to them and I have them talk to their "Smart Partners" about the problem. An example would be from the problem below. "Talk to your Smart Partner about how you are going to solve this." I give them about a minute to have a conversation then I call on a few to share what their Smart Partner has decided to do. They share what their Smart Partner said, "My Smart Partner, (insert name) said that he was going to solve the problem by counting on his fingers." This way, they are listening to their peers and sharing what their partner said, not what they, themselves said. Listening AND speaking!!!
When I have chosen a couple to share, I ask them if they are ready and then I give them three to seven minutes to record their answers depending on the difficulty.
While they are figuring out the answer I walk around and choose three students to share when the time is up. I look for three different answers and write their names on the board after the time is up.

Meteorologist for a Day

My firsties love jobs in the classroom. We have Calendar time every day before we begin our math lesson. I already have one student who is the Calendar Person for the day (I really should get a better title for that job. :) ). Anyway, we look at the weather outside, but I'd really like them to incorporate more Science in it. I am going to introduce Meteorologist for the Day. They are so excited to start. Since we live in New York, we are going to a little to the west to Minnesota (Go Vikings and Twins) to compare the weather. 
For more fun science projects go to Education.com
Science Project: 

Meteorologist for a Day

Kindergarten Science Science Projects: Meteorologist for a Day

Bricks 4 Kidz

We had another opportunity to have Bricks 4 Kidz to come in.

One of our colleagues wrote a grant. It ended up being four first grade classes.
They came in and taught a lesson on automobiles and then were able to build a car out of Legos. They worked in teams of two and followed directions provided by the leader.

Students get kits to work with that have all they need to build their cars. 

One partner was the builder and one partner was the shopper. 

When they were done building their cars, they got to build a figure and then test their cars out on the floor.

What a fun day!

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TpT Flock 2018

Oh Yeah!
I just signed up for my second year!

Who is going?
I am beyond excited!

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