Wednesday, February 27, 2013
We made a paper plate leprechaun and wrote a how to piece for How To Catch a Leprechaun.
We made a "Do you believe in Leprechauns?" survey graph during math centers. The kids ask several of their friends if they believe in Leprechauns and tally the results. Next, they create a graph to match the tally marks. Last, they analyze the data.
The kids made a St. Patrick's Day parade. First, they spin the spinner and add that piece to the parade. If they land on the same piece, they put it in the parade again. They continue to spin until all the squares are filled.
Now, they find the black and white clip art to copy their parade. Organize the ordinal numbers. Write the ordinal number under each thing in the parade.
What a fun time to visit primary and secondary colors. We used our experiment to see which colors mixed together to make green.
The kids mixed food coloring and shaving cream in a Ziploc bag. Then, they recorded the results on the recording page.
The highlight of the day was making Shamrock Shakes by mixing ice cream, green sprite, and rainbow sprinkles!
The kids wrote a procedural piece on how to make the shakes.
To make the Shamrock _ock books, the kids glued down each picture and wrote in the onset to create the word.
This number line mystery game is super fun. The kiddos pick up a number card. They look at the card and have to determine where it goes on the number line. Once the figure out where it goes, they pick up the card that is laying there and put their own card in it’s place. Now they have to figure out where the new card belongs. They absolutely love this game!
These ideas have been updated! See the updated blog post (here). The ideas are in this unit.
Posted by Kim and Megan at 8:18 PM
Friday, February 22, 2013
Can’t believe it; but, yes it is finally done! (Be sure and read ALL the way to the BOTTOM for a surprise!)Every time we finish a unit, Michele sends me an email and says, “Okay, I think this is the best one yet!” Is it because we are excited about teaching it? Is it that it is like having a baby? Aren’t all babies the best? Or is it just because we are DONE?!!!!!
I just love the clip art by Nikki at Melonheadz! She is the best! This unit uses her tool clip for a building theme to teach the reading strategies. We’re kinda over the whole animal themed reading strategies and wanted something new that our reluctant readers, who are mostly boys, would make a connection to! I think we hit the nail on the head…no pun intended!
Some of y’all might wonder how we split up the work load. Well, first we meet together at a local restaurant and hammer out the unit…what it will be, what will be the theme each week, what are the mini lessons, what do we need for the teach and active engagement portions of the lesson, and what pieces we need to make it all fun and exciting for our little readers. (We tend to take up the table for most of the day, so we try to be REALLY nice to the servers!) In the units Michele has scripted the mini lessons as well as the monthly overviews. I think she is a gifted writer and has a way of explaining things very clearly. My job is to make all the “pieces”. I make the anchor charts, the games, the celebration, and any other items we need to support our readers. Michele sends everything to me and I proof read and add clip art! Yes, we both read it and yet we still seem to make a few mistakes!
Here are two of our games for stretching out words and for looking all the way through the word!
We also spent two weeks teaching author’s craft! This is one of my most favorite things to teach during Reader’s Workshop. I love how they start using the craft in their own writing.
We finish the unit with this fun craftivity where the kids actually make the tools and a little tool box to hold them! Super fun!
Recently Michele and I bundled units 1-3 and units 4-6 for a discounted price. So from now until midnight Sunday, 25th unit 7 will be at the discounted bundle price for a single unit—$8 instead of the normal $10! Click on the cover or follow this link to see the unit:
Posted by Kim and Megan at 2:34 PM
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Here are a few things about Rekenreks….
To use them…Always start with all the beads pushed over to the right. The kiddos push their answer over to the left. Then, they are able to read their answer from left to right.
So while I was in Chicago last week, my friend Kathleen wanted me to model how to use them. Now here’s the tricky part…she has a smart board! I never used one when I had my own classroom so this was an opportunity to try it out. I can’t believe it, but I made a smart board lesson for teaching the rekenrek. It was super funny to make and do. I had made the slides the night before. The next morning, My friend Kath and I each had a pen and were both trying to add the “movable” shapes at the same time, each of thinking we knew how to do it best!!! We finally got a much younger teacher who was able to show us our simple mistake and we got it all done! Then, during the lesson I used the tool to drag over the shapes and write the numerals. Can I say, I was just a little impressed with myself? It doesn’t take much, I am so challenged when it comes to technology!First I modeled how to move all the beads to the right side of their card. (Each of the children had their own card.)
In my lesson, I had made the first addition sentence using both rows, then the kiddos made the second addition sentence using both of their rows. We compared the sum on their cards to the sum on the smart board.
One teacher suggested having them do the first addition sentence on the top row and the second addition sentence on the bottom row and it would be easier for them to compare the sums! Totally makes sense! (Teachers from Kath’s school were observing while I was doing the lesson.)
The way I did it helps them to see the different equations and her way would help them see the sums…so that would be 2 different lessons!
Then, it was time for Math Centers and Small Groups. I pulled a small group to do a different rekenrek lesson---Make a 10. Here the kids in the small group each had a rekenrek.
Yeehaw! Wild About Numbers! Unit. (Not the smart board, just the small group lesson.) We practiced, conceptually a few times, then we started writing our combinations on the recording sheet.
Posted by Kim and Megan at 5:16 PM
Sunday, February 17, 2013
Maybe you celebrated President’s Day last week in your room. but, if it is in your plans for this week, here are a few ideas you can use.
****UPDATE This unit has been updated. I am adding the current pictures to the post so that you can see them.
Abe Lincoln's Cabin and George Washington Craftivities
We made these cute craftivities with “cut a sentences” about George Washington and Abe Lincoln. These are the updated ones. I added easy to use patterns!
Here's what they did...
- First, they cut off one sentence.
- Then, they cut between the words.
- Next, they put the words in order to make the sentence. They put the word with the capital letter first and the word with the period last. Then, they manipulated the other words to figure out what made sense.
- Last, they found the picture to match the sentence and glued it under the flap.
Comparing George Washington and Abe Lincoln
We compared the two presidents on a double bubble map. Here is the updated version. I added pictures to make it easier for the kids. I read each statement. The kids had to decide if it was true of George Washington, Abe Lincoln or both. Then, we placed it on the double bubble map.
- First, they walk around the room and ask their friends where they live.
- Then, they make a tally mark in the correct column.
- Next, they use the tally marks to create a graph.
- Last, the analyze the data.
To complete this story problem, the kids used clip art that I reproduced and cut apart. This allows the children to work at the conceptual level of understanding. Conceptual means the students are able to manipulate. The clip art pictures become a manipulative. However, she is also showing her answer abstractly by adding numerals to her recording page. Learning should always begin conceptually! This is the only way we can ensure that real understanding is occurring. It allows children to build mental images of their thinking and not just memorize facts!
I updated this just be using crisper, clearer clip art, fonts, and frames.
Sharing Cherries...Fair Share
For this activity, invite the children to roll the dice and count out that many cherries. Then, they share the cherries between the four trees to see how many cherries can be shared fairly.
Hooray for President's Day unit.
Posted by Kim and Megan at 10:17 AM
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
First, here's what I was sharing with the teachers:
I was talking about the flow map and the sticky note folder and how we can use them to mark something we want to share with our partner during partner reading time.
Sticky Note Flow Map
The Sticky Note Flow Map shows the children the steps to get ready to share
with a partner during Reader's Workshop.
1. First, they read by themselves. (The Sticky Note Folders are beside them.)
2. When they find something they want to share with their reading partner, they use one of the sticky notes from their folder to mark it.
Then, she shared this idea:
She reduced the size of the poster board flow map to fit on a half sheet of paper. Then, she glued the flow map inside their sticky note folders! Oh my word, why haven’t I thought of that? Now the kids have a reminder right there in front of them of how to use the sticky notes! Love it!
Posted by Kim and Megan at 4:49 PM