Friday, July 29, 2011

Pit Crew Bulletin Board

This is one of my fav bulletin boards to get up and running every year. It's simply adorable and it serves as an ongoing display space for work all year.  Students make a racer portrait of themselves flanked with a laminated piece of paper for the body. This is where I switch out the work to display.  The cutest feature is attaching the race flags to each hand. Now if you don't have a race theme you could do the same idea but say attach an Ipod if you're doing a Rock Star theme, or a mitt or ball for a sports theme.

I also have the students fill out a Get to Know the Pit Crew form.

Find more great ideas on my Pinterest page or TPT store

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Nifty Game Piece Pockets

So I've spent a good part of today printing, prepping and laminating games I've gotten from great blogs.
I found a wonderful Post It pocket that can hold all those game pieces or flashcards that miraculously always seem to go missing upon clean up time. The pockets are self sticking and can be removed easily and then reattached! Here's one of the games I prepped today with a pocket attached for you to see. Want your own pockets? I got mine at Office Depot.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Task Card Easy Does It

Grab an Easy button and play this game with a set of task cards.

Click image to get a free copy
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My task card giveaway ends tomorrow at 2:00 p.m. PST

**3 levels of winners**

Friday, July 22, 2011

Homework Management

In 3rd grade responsibility is expected for my students to record their daily homework. Here is how I manage it. Students are given a weekly homework chart and as part of their morning routine copy down assignments from the board. It takes a few tries to get the process streamlined for some students, but it's a valuable skill learned.

Click image to get a copy

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Slider Charts

I haven't stepped into a Dollar Tree store all summer, but today I did.  I am pleased that I did not go crazy with buying. But I wanted to share that I found some neat sliders for grading and math.

Does this look familiar?
Yep, the EZ grade slider that I got at Lakeshore for $6.99

How about this?

So cute and only a dollar.
Now I have one for at school and home.
Dollar Tree also had these sliders for addition/subtraction and multiplication/division

**Have you entered my giveaway?  All 48 of my task card sets are going to one lucky winner!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Task Card Battleship

One activity I use often with task cards is Task Card Battleship which is played in the same manner as the familiar game Battleship.  Click the image below to grab a free copy.

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Looking for task cards for your classroom? I have many to choose from in my TPT store, including a MEGA bundle of all by Reading and Language sets (at a huge discount)!

40 sets at a 20% discount

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Blog Mixer Linky

Oh the Places You'll Go with the blogs you know!  I'm having a seek and find Blog Mixer Linky party. Let's have some fun spotlighting each other.

In your link up find the following:

1.  A blogger who is a "New Kid on the Blog"
(Let's say someone who has blogged 2 months or less and has less than 200 followers)

2.  Post a blogger in your same grade level

3.  Post a blogger in a different grade level

4.  It's all about the button. Find a cute blog button and post it.


1. My New Kid blogger is Counting on Coffee. Cyndy started blogging on July 9th.  Hop on over, but bring your coffee!

2.  I teach 3rd grade and I found a fellow grade mate at Mrs. Obregon's Third Grade Rock Stars.  And she liked my Mini Me's and blogged about them.

3.  Tara at 4th Grade Frolics has a great writing tidbits post.

4.  Button Cuteness spotlight goes to Ms. Durbin at 3rd Grade's a Hoot

3rd Grade's a Hoot

Monday, July 11, 2011

Lots of Linkies Linky Party

What is it about Linky parties that I love?  Just about everything....sharing, finding new blogs and collaborating with other teachers. I know I'm not alone in this right?  So I've started a Lots of Linkies Linky party.  I know I sometimes forget to check back on linkies I've joined or I miss out on linkies I don't know about. So, my idea is to have you all link up here and post lots of linkies. You can post your own linky party, another person's linky, a past (closed) linky, or a cool current linky. Just keep em' coming.  For easy reference to this resource, I've added it as a permanent page tab at the top of my blog, so be sure to come back and visit! A linkback or mention of this resource on your blog will help this list continue to GROW. Spread the linky love.    
Jenn from Finally in First has given me permission to share her Linky Etiquette guidelines to help us all out. Thanks Jenn.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Raising Small Souls Videos

Raising Small Souls website has some helpful resources for parents and teachers.

This video has tips on parenting, specifically on the benefits of setting a healthy morning routine.

Another resource that is inspirational is their Animal School video

Teambuilding starts at home and continues at school. Share your teambuilding ideas in my Linky party.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Fall Reading Linky

Learning with Mrs. Parker is hosting a Fall Reading Linky.  One of my all time favorites to read to start the school year is Nobody's Mother is in Second Grade by Robin Pulver. It's a story about a mom disguised as a plant so she can go to school with her child. It's a great way to discuss the importance of being an independent third grader.

I created this literature prompt to follow my read aloud.  The student's responses are always good for a chuckle. This version posted is for 3rd grade, as that's the grade I currently teach. I just couldn't let this story go when I moved from 2nd grade. 

Don't forget, I also have a Linky Party on Classroom Team Building.  Join me.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Team Building Classmate Memory Trays

This team building activity was inspired by a familiar baby shower game. Of all the games played at baby showers...grabbing baby pins in rice, stealing clothespins from shower guests, and wrapping toilet paper around the  mother to be, I must admit that the baby item memory tray game is my favorite.  I use this concept in my classroom as a get to know you activity at the beginning of the year, but it can also be used as a part of your star student recognition. Students bring in 15 small items that are special in some way to them to display on a memory tray. The tray is passed around to classmates as they study and memorize the items.
Once the tray is out of sight, give students a {classmate memory tray worksheet} to fill out. Afterwards the star student gets to share about the items. I used to always do "Me Bag" sharing at the start of school, but this now takes its place. The classmate memory trays build classmate connections as well as recall and memory skills.  Can't beat that! Want more Back to School ideas? Pop on over to Fun in First's blog.

Do you have some great team building activities you use throughout the school year? It could be get to know you ideas, esteem builders, or ways to cultivate a caring classroom.                                         
***Join my Classroom Team Building Linky Party***
The first 3 ANY blogger to link up with their idea and also blog about my linky will get a free copy of my classmate memory tray activity. Start that linking up!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Spelling Relays


Get active with spelling using relays. This is the way it works. Make relay teams. Position a "referee speller" across from the starting line for each team. They should have a spelling list handy to refer to.
Boys in the relay line will run with a football down to the referee. Likewise, girls will have pom poms. The referee will state a word to spell. Boys will "hike" the ball for each letter and girls will "cheer" the word letter by letter. The referee give them a thumbs up if they get the word right and they run back to the next person in the relay line to repeat the process.  If a word is not right, a second try is given. If still not correct, the referee provides the correct spelling and the relay continues.  Hey, Ho, Sport Spelling is the way to go!

Making Multiplication Arrays

I use the very cute book Bunches and Bunches of Bunnies to introduce basic multiplication and arrays.
This book is written in rhyme with whimsical bunny illustrations. For example, one rhyme is as follows:

Count the bunnies at the ball
Rabbit partners short and tall
Now the music comes alive
And 5 x 5 = 25

I follow this story by having students create an array using small objects. Some students have used items like pennies, cereal, buttons, beans, stickers and more.  

Like this idea?  Grab the {array worksheet}.


Join Primary File Folder Games linky for more marvelous math literature lessons.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Clipchart Button Up and Down

I'm a believer in the Clipchart management system. It's worked wonders in my classroom.  I put my own touches to it with the use of buttons.  I purchased painted clothespins and then hot glued cute little ol' buttons to them. I then numbered the inside of each pin and at the beginning of each year, I let each kiddo select the button clothespin they want.  This allows for more privacy since clothespins are not identified with names, only buttons and numbers. I made a "Button Up Sign" and signal cards to hand out when needed saying, "You get to button up" or "Please button down".  I use the signal cards when I want to discretely let students know to move up or down. I keep a laminated supply of them handy on my front table.

Ready to get buttoned up? Click the images below.

Join Miss Kindergarten's Classroom Management Linky for even more ideas.
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