Thursday, January 17, 2013

Celebrate Literacy Week

This week our school is celebrating "Celebrate Literacy Week". Everyday there are fun activities for the students to look forward to...I LOVE my school! :) Today the teachers were encouraged to dress up as a book character. There were so many great ones!!! I wish I could share their pictures...but I am sure the would not be so happy! ;) My team is so creative- we had Tacky the Penguin, Clifford, Thing 1 and Thing 2, The Cat in the Hat, Stellaluna, Skippyjon Jones, the Bee that stung Ferdinand and I dressed up as Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Around the school there were so many other great costumes too!! So I can not believe that I am actually going to do this...but I am going to post a picture of myself (I know I am crazy- but I figure the only other people who love stuff like this is ya' all!)
Happy Almost Weekend!
Tuesday, January 15, 2013

MLK Fun Stuff and a Freebie!

Today doesn't feel like Tuesday...I am already tired! It feels more like Thursday! Good thing the rest of the week is filled with fun stuff! :)

Tomorrow my little friends will be wearing these headbands and bracelets that they made today to celebrate the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. They had so much fun with this activity! I was amazed how they got so into it and at the end of the activity could name what each color stood for! I love 'em!! :) Since we made these at the very end of the day, I didn't let them take them home so they could wear them tomorrow. They were so disappointed!

As I started teaching about Martin, I notice that there were quite a few students that were a little confused with the word "dream". Most of the kids only thought of the word dream as something that they do at night when they are sleeping. So I took this teachable moment to teach about multiple meaning words. {ELA L.K.4a Identify new meanings for familiar words and apply them accurately.}! Hey look at that!! I created this freebie and would love to share it with you!

Well I am off...this week is "Celebrate Literacy" Week at school and I have to decide on a fun book character for my outfit tomorrow! Any suggestions?!?!

Happy Tuesday!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

"WOW" moment

Today I had a WOW moment that I just had to share with you!

In math, my students are learning about the numbers 11-20. After my small group instruction I gave my students the task to independently show me what they know about the number 15. I didn't give them any specifics of what I was looking for, just to show me what they knew about the number. After math centers, my students were sharing out his/her 'Discovery of the Day'. As I was circulating, I heard a student sharing with his partner the ways he discovered to make 15. When I looked at his board this is what I saw...

I was so impressed (Yes, I know there are backwards numbers, but I was willing to look past that...just this once!). I had been working with number bonds earlier this year when we were studying numbers 0-10...I just couldn't believe he figured this out all by himself!!! I, of course, did a crazy happy dance. As I was driving home I was thinking about how when I first read the common core math standards last year I was confused what number pairs were and the thought of teaching it and expecting my students to "get it" seemed ridiculous. I love that today my student proved me wrong...when we expect it and teach it, they will learn it and use it!!!

If you are looking for activities and assessments for teaching operations & algebraic thinking, click here.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Martin and His Friends

I head back to school tomorrow and although I enjoy my days of pajamas, tv and family...I look forward to seeing all my little friends again!

When I get back to school I plan on doing a few new year and goal setting activities but then I will start to teach about Martin Luther King, Jr. Even though black history month is in February I usually introduce other heroes while celebrating Dr. King's birthday.

If you you have never read the story of Ruby Bridges, it is a must!!! A few years ago my next door neighbor told me that I HAD to read this book to my class...

What she didn't tell me was that I should have read the book privately by myself first!! (Granted I am a cry baby...Publix commercials can make me tear up!) Oh my, I started reading this book to my class and I was so touched by the end I was fighting back the tears. My students responses were amazing, and their connection to the story was deep and impactful! Every year I read this story to my class and the results are the same- I fight back the tears and my students are touched by a young girl who is so close to their age who made such a difference in the world!!

Here are some of my other favorite books for Martin Luther King, Jr. and Black History Month--

Here are some fun craftivities that we will be doing...

For how we dream like Dr. King----

After we learn about Rosa Parks and how she "sat down" for what she believed in--

And we will document how we will be courageous in changing the world and follow in our heroes footsteps--

All of these activities can be found in Learning with Martin & His Friends {Black History Craftivities & Printables}
I was having so much fun with Dr. King, that I created this little timeline craftivity for older students (more suitable for grades 2-4)!

Hope you are enjoying your weekend!

Friday, January 4, 2013

"First Grade Fabulosity" is my guest!

Hi Y'all! My name is Carly Wizeman and I am so excited to be guest blogging today for Julie from Ms. Shope's Class Blog! A little about me.... I am a second grade teacher from Pearland, Tx (a suburb of Houston). My passions in life are...God, my family, my husband, animals, and teaching! I have taught for 5 years...all grades ranging from kindergarten thru 2nd grade! I'm super excited to be a part of this blog hop! This will be my very first!
My blog is called First Grade Fabulosity!
 I created the blog when I was teaching first grade last year, but switched to second grade this year and ultimately decided not to change my blog name... :)
I love sharing all my ideas and passing along ideas that I have used from other great bloggers! :) 'Sharing is caring'..haha j/, but really... I love sharing ideas! I'm sure my teammates get tired of me constantly saying, "Hey, look what I found!". I know it can be a bit overwhelming... Anyways...on to the more important stuff....

As I was trying to think of something to post today, I realized that I had a bunch of activities to share that I had done for the week before the Christmas break. BUT I figured that posting about those things wouldn't be as interesting since it has already come and gone. I figured most of you would be more interested in something that you might be able to use sooner than....ha! next year :)

So, I decided to share a classroom management idea!
This is my Word Card Board

In my classroom, I have lots of students that are always asking me how to spell words. Most of my students are great spellers but they have a few words here and there that they aren't quite sure how they are spelled. Most of the time I tell them to try their best and to write what they hear, but other times they are words that will be asked about frequently or sometimes words that can't be spelled phonetically. (fyi- These are not words that are up on my word wall.)


For this reason, I created a word card board. My students use this if they would like a word spelled for them. They go to the board, grab the corresponding letter card, and bring it to me. They let me know which word they would like to know how to spell. Depending on the word, I will either say.. "You can spell that one!" or "Go try that one on your own!", or if it is one that I think that student could use written down, then I will write it for them on the card or tell them how to spell it on the card themselves. Then they take the card, use it to spell the word in their writing and put it back in the pocket on the board.
The students will then continue to return to that card to look how to spell that word when they need it. Until...eventually...they will remember how to spell it.

Also, since all the students in the class are using it, sometimes the word they want is already on the card.

I have had this since my first year of teaching!.... I'm sure it is blatantly obvious with the handwritten letters (don't judge) haha :) :)

Some years I introduce the card board and my students don't really use it. In that case, I'll take it down if I realize my students aren't utilizing it... because it just takes up space. Other years, it is a big hit!

For instance, this year my students caught on very quickly and are using it constantly! Basically, it depends on the students whether or not I keep it up and use it for that year. I really don't pressure them to use it.

Now, that I have posted this... I'm starting to think it is time to make a new one :) That is another thing added to my already-too-long To Do List!

I have a last minute share!
ALSO! I found this idea on Pinterest! I use it as a ticket out systemin my class. I will ask the students a question about what we have been learning about or I will just ask them to share something that "Stuck" with them that day. The students must post their response before leaving that day.

 Unfortunately, I didn't take a picture of the board before my students stuck their sticky notes on there, but you can still tell that underneath I had laminated sticky notes to the board with my class numbers...This allowed me to see which students had not answered yet. Also after reading the responses, I was able to see which students got more or less from the day's lessons..
The next day I might also use some of the responses to review the previous lessons before moving on...This makes the students try harder when responding so that their answer will be chosen to share!



I don't use it everyday, but I usually use it mid-week and at the end of the week. My students seem to like it.. they are always saying, "Hey, we didn't do our ticket out today!"
Just a little somethin' to share!

Well, I hope you enjoyed my guest post for Julie from Ms. Shope's Class!

Be sure to follow her! ;)

Then...don't forget to come to my blog, follow me,

and check out my guest blogger, Tania, from My Second Sense!


 Have a Blast Blog Hoppin' today!
Thank you Carly for guest blogging on Ms. Shope's Class today! Be sure to head over The Resourceful Apple where I am guest blogging today. Click on the picture below to hop over and check it out! Happy blog hoppin'!!!