Friday, September 23, 2011

California Regions

This week my class wrapped up our learning of the four main regions of California by making these bean maps.  My grade level does these every year. We used rice, pinto/kidney beans, split peas, and popcorn kernels to represent the coast, mountain, central valley and desert areas.

I joined up with Clutter Free Classroom's Peek into my Planbook Linky.

Find more great ideas on my Pinterest page or TPT store

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Monday, September 12, 2011

On Task Behavior

I loved the self regulation idea I ran across on Empowering Little Learners.  It called to me because I have at least 3 students who have difficulty realizing when they are off task. I'm hoping this cue sheet will become a magic bullet to help them self monitor their choices. I'm willing to give anything a try. Today was my first day giving it a spin, and all 3 students were able to honestly tell me what level they felt they were at when I asked them. I posted a mini version on each of their desks. Enjoy this revised version of the original.

Join The Wise and Witty Teacher Linky for more ideas!

Find more great ideas on my Pinterest page or TPT store

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Let's Say Thanks with American Pride

A patriotic activity I use every year is the "Let's Say Thanks" site sponsored by Zerox. You can have your students send a postcard of their choice to show appreciation and support of our military and country.  All the free postcards are designed by kids as seen by this sample from the site. This is such an easy, but powerful way to validate the sacrifice of our country's armed forces, especially with the 10 year anniversary of 9/11 upon us tomorrow.

What do you do in your class to show patriotism?  Join Sunny Days in Second Grade linky party to share your ideas.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Writing Tips Freebie

I use this handy sheet to make comments on my students' writing. It's open ended to allow for a variety of constructive suggestions. I make notations in the conveys meaning section about the flow of writing. Does it have an organized sequence, strong beginning/ending, and stay on topic? For the spelling application section I may jot down words that were misspelled. In the grammar section I simply circle any of the areas I see a need for improvement in.  Happy writing!

Click picture to download

Join this record keeping linky for more wonderful ideas!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Addition Properties

My class is learning about the 3 properties of addition: Commutative, Associative and Identity.
I made up a worksheet to review what these big 'ol words mean. For commutative I discuss the meaning of the word "commute" or change. I also call it the flip flop rule. You can change the position of the numbers but the answer stays the same.  For associative rule I relate it to talking in a group (associate). It doesn't matter who you talk to first.  The identity rule is the easiest which is the zero rule.  Grab your copy of the property worksheet here. I also have a set of task cards for the properties too.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Playground Magic

I like to incorporate physical activity into my content area curriculum when possible. I've posted several ways I do this through Spelling Relays, Compass Rose Relays, and most recently Place Value relays.
I've also done Junk Food Tag when learning about nutrition and Landform Tag games during my geography unit. You can see pictures of these game ideas {HERE}.  Currently my school playground is basic in set up, with some four square courts, basketball courts, hopscotch and circle courts and a basic number grid.  My PIE in the SKY wish list would include more interactive playground court games as seen on these sites. I'm allowed to wish right?

(This site has a quarterly drawing for a free USA map stencil)


Friday, September 2, 2011

Compass Rose Fun

My absolute favorite part of teaching geography is when my students create their own compass rose.
Prior to sending this project home we've spent time in class learning about both cardinal and intermediate directions. I even do a PE Compass Rose Relay game. I set up directional signs in a circle formation, throw colored circles around and relay teams race to follow cue cards that says various things like:

Skip and pick up a green circle. Put it in the Northwest hoop.
Crab crawl and pick up a yellow circle. Put it in the South hoop.
High knee run and pick up a blue circle. Put it in the East hoop.

Once students have a solid foundation for their directions my grade level sends home this compass rose project.

Here are some samples:

Find more great ideas on my Pinterest page or TPT store

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