Thursday, April 28, 2011

School Success Story

I'm joining Ladybug Teacher's success story link party.  Let's give a shout out to all our successes!

My class thoroughly enjoyed my Bottle Cap math activities to reinforce all areas of my math curriculum.

I originally {blogged about the idea here} . It's easy to get started with this idea in your own classroom. Simply send home the note below and you'll get all the bottle caps you need lickety split, and then some! At some point, you might even need to turn away bottle cap donations.  I still have students asking, "Are you still collecting bottle caps?'  and I say, "Yes! Keep Em' coming"!





Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Forever in My Heart

For Mother's Day my students did this crayon resist and oil pastel art project that turned out beautifully.
They drew crayon heart designs, watercolored them, applied rubber cement, and outlined with oil pastels.

I attached a note that said,                                                                                                
          "Mom, You'll forever be in my heart"

Get the note here

                              


                                        
  
  

Friday, April 22, 2011

My Teacher Rules


Every year I get the cutest responses to this writing activity. Save this one for the end of the year when, no doubt, it seems your students know you better than you know yourself! LOL.  I first read aloud the book What Teachers Can't Do. Then, I bravely allow my students to write their honest opinions about me on this "{My Teacher Rules" writing activity}. You can also use the activity for a teacher appreciation note for your child's own teacher!




My Testing is ...Almost...Over...

I have to say that testing week wears me out. I have 1 day to go and I'll be done! Yeah.

 I found this cutest book by Nancy Poydar that goes with the Biggest Test writing above. The book is also available as a video on Discovery United Streaming. My class LOVED the video. Afterwards they wrote about how they would "tackle" the biggest test in the universe.


This is available as part of my Test Tip Poster set 

                   



  

Bunny Business

Isn't this just adorable?  A parent brought in these donut bunnies today. Now that's some very cute "Bunny Business"!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Signs of Spring

With Spring in the air, I read this book to my class today.

Then students wrote a poem called "Signs of Spring" with sunglasses decorated with their springtime views!  I used patterns similar to this sunglass template from The Best Kids Book Site. Looking for spring writing paper?  Check out the templates at Activity Village.


The poem above reads:

I go for a walk and what do I see?
Beautiful butterflies looking back at me.
I go for a walk and what do I smell?
Red, pretty roses, a joyful springtime smell.
I go for a walk and what do I hear?
Bees buzzing that's what I hear.
I go for a walk and what do I feel?
Sprinkling rain, that's what I feel.
I go for a walk and how do I feel?
Delighted and merry that's how I feel.
Spring makes my heart sing.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Doorway Quotes


Doorways make great learning display opportunities.  Just above my door I display posters that say:
Never say, "I can't." Always say, "I'll try." and "You Can't Do Wrong by Doing What's Right" It's amazing how students DO pay attention to "small posters" with very BIG messages.  Just the other day when one of my students was showing a moment of self defeat I simply said, "Never say I can't..." and  the class chimed in after me, "Always say, "I'll try".  Grab a copy of Doorway Quotes below and test out their power in your classroom!

What are some of your favorite quotes you use in the classroom?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Show the Money

I made these handy quarter posters. Enjoy.
Take a look at {this link} for literature titles with money themes. Summaries are included in the listing.




I've linked this post up with Marygrove College's linky.


Going Buggy...Litter Bugs

For Earth Day, I read a favorite childhood book called  LitterBugs Come in Every Size to my kiddos.  I make a big deal about sharing with the class that the book I'm actually reading is the same book my mom read to me as a child.  Here's the book.


Following the read aloud, I tell the class that they will create their own Litter Bugs using trash or items used for recycling.  I have my students do this as an at home project, but it could be adjusted to do within  the classroom.
Here's my sample I shared with the class.  I used newspaper, a Starbuck's sleeve, water caps, juice pouch straws, ribbon and a paper clip.

  
I must say, It's a Bug's Life. See my student's creations.  Later in class they write a "Buggy Bonanza" story.  Project details are available for purchase at my {TPT store}.             

                             


I display all the bugs in a "Litterbug Lounge"





Got Bottle Caps?



Over my years of teaching, I'm always thinking of how to make use of ordinary items.  "Bottle Cap Math" has been by far one of my best brainstorms in the classroom yet.  Why?  Because bottle caps are everywhere.  Ask your class to collect the caps and you have instant manipulatives! All you have to do is number them the way you want. This past summer I got busy creating 20 versatile math worksheets using bottle caps.  My worksheets include everything from patterning, skip counting, multiplication, probability, comparing numbers, fractions, place value, rounding and much more.  You have to check them out!  They are available at my {Teacher's Pay Teachers Store}.






Fraction Hoopla

As I was wrapping up my fraction unit recently, my class just wasn't grasping fractions of a group.
So on a whim, I combined hula hoops and classmates to model fractions of a set.  I made a worksheet called "Fraction Hoopla" and had groups of students model each problem. Then the class recorded and illustrated the answer on their paper.  My students went crazy over this simple, yet effective way to show a math concept.  The picture below is showing   1/5 of 10 equals 2.




Since my class went bonkers over this I wanted to keep the ideas going. I made worksheets for
"Multiplication Hoopla" and "Division Hoopla".  If you want the worksheets for your own class they are available on my {website}.

Mini Me's Poster People

Poster People are a perfect fit for my Open House every year.  I send home an outline on tagboard of a head, torso, and arms with each students to create their own mini me.  I encourage them to make their person resemble themselves as much as possible and it is absolutely amazing to see each student's uniqueness come out in this project.  And best yet...the night of Open House you'll have the quietest, cutest class sitting at their desks ready to learn!  What more can I say?






I Wish I May...I Wish I Might

As teachers we have so many high hope wishes for helping our students, but we don't have the high dollar money to go along with those wishes. Many of you are familiar with Donor's Choose, but have you heard of the National Teacher Registry?  You can set up a wish list account for willing families to buy from.
Do you like Lakeshore or Amazon? Yep, they have wish lists too.  Better yet...Amazon has a feature called the "Universal Wish List".  I added this hot little item to my computer toolbar, and whenever I see anything that tickles my fancy on any site online, I simply hit my Amazon button and it is added to my registry.
  

If you'd like to peek at all my wish lists to see how I've set them up check my Wish List page on my website.

The Value of Bucket Filling



For the past several years I've used the popular Bucket Filler books by Carol McCloud in my classroom.

If you've not taken a peek at this series it is a MUST do.  At the start of every school year I begin the bucket filler program. I have this bulletin board display of personalized buckets for classmates to add positive bucket filler thoughts.

Here's my Bucket Filler Bulletin Board. I personalized each bucket with student's names and taped them to party favor treat boxes.  




In addition, I found an adorable Bucket Filler song online written by Ken Beere.






Be sure to grab a copy of the song lyrics I typed up.  



Be sure to view the video skits done by Fairmont Elementary School too. The videos are a GREAT way to get Bucket Fillers off to a great start in your classroom!


Video 1




Video 2

Video 3
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