Saturday, April 9, 2016

Frog Themed Newsletter Templates

Last May I blogged about Parent Communication and inquiry about the Weekly Newsletters I send home. I was able to put them into PowerPoint which will allow you to add text boxes for full customization.
My favorite Clip Art{ist} Krista Wallden created some cute "monthly frog" graphics and I couldn't wait to use them. My first creation... The Weekly Ribbit.
Click Here for Frog Theme Newsletter Templates

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Word Analysis Journal (VA Curriculum)

 As the school year winds down I begin to reflect on my teaching practices and document what I intend to do differently next year. I've decided that really want to implement a Word Analysis Journal {VA SOL English 3.3 & 3.4} next year.
The first tab/section in the book would be Word Analysis and Grammar Resources. I created some reference sheets that students can glue in the journal and refer to them all year round.
The second tab/section will be reserved for vocabulary words. My goal is to focus on two to three words a week. I created a template that students could glue in their journals or you could just have them "freestyle" the information.
The third tab/section is reserved for poetry activities. I reserved the last 40 pages in the 100 page journal for this section.
Have you heard of Doris Young of Third Grade Thinkers? She's the first Virginia Blogger I started following. She's a third grade teacher and her resources were so helpful when I moved to third grade five years ago. I love her poetry activities. She has some on her blog and in her Teachers Pay Teachers Store.  Instead of a reading passage she uses poems and the follow up questions are word-analysis related.
So this is my bright idea for next year, I'm hoping that this journal will give students a concrete resource to aide them in learning and reviewing these concepts. How do you teach these concepts in your classroom?
Click Here: Word Analysis Journal

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Spring Break Learning Opportunities

In two short weeks we'll be on Spring Break. I wanted to provide my students with optional learning opportunities but I didn't want to overwhelm them. I put together a couple of activities that I'll send home with them.
1. I purchased Amy Lemon's Student Reading Challenge from Teachers Pay Teachers. This reading challenge is a bucket list that students can complete during any of the school breaks.
2. I try to incorporate STEM activities into my classroom and ran across these "STEAM Break" activities on Teachers Pay Teachers... for FREE. They are from Digital Divide and Conquer, I love the PBL Units from this shop and was excited to see some STEM activities students could complete at home.
3. The last activity I included was a sheet with multiplication and division practice I found in my files.
All of these activities are optional, students do not have to complete them. I'll give out stickers for Super Improver Cards and probably put together some other prizes for students who choose to participate.  Do you send home activities for students to do during school vacations?

Monday, March 7, 2016

Bunny Marshmallow Math

 Spring has sprung! After getting all excited about a possible Snow Day on Friday only to have the roads completely clear enough to go to school... on time...I'd rather have the warm weather. After school today I treated myself to first pedicure of the season and I'm ready to rock my maxi skirts and flip flops. Spring Break for me is in three weeks, the week of Easter or as I like to call it, Resurrection Day. I thought I'd do some seasonal activities as I know the students will be pretty antsy about the upcoming vacation.
I have another version of a Marshmallow Bunny Activity on the Teaching Oasis but decided to revamp for this year. It covers multiplication, fractions, data collection and line plots. It's geared towards Virginia Math Standards:3rd grade. I'm looking forward to this activity with my students, I'm sure they'll love it. You can download it at the link below.
Marshmallow Bunny Math

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Calandar Math

I had the pleasure of being observed the first week back at school last month and to top it off... it was Wacky Tacky Day!
I started planning for my observation lesson over winter break. The first place I looked was my district's Third Grade Math Curriculum Framework. I found a link to a model lesson on the VDOE, Calendar Math. After reading through the lesson I knew how I wanted my observation lesson to go. I would be day two of a six day unit on Math SOL 3.12: The student will identify equivalent periods of time including relationships among days, moths and years as well as minutes and hours.

My administration is into the 4 C's, have you heard of them? When they observe us they're looking for Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration and Communication. I tried to keep that in mind as I designed my lesson for the hour.
After my students took their 9's Multiplication Quiz I had them play the Calendar Game (communication, collaboration) that is in the model lesson from the VDOE. As pairs finished the game, they transitioned into the hallway for Calendar Task Card (some people call these activities Scoot, I call them Scavenger Hunts) completion. The cards were taped on the wall and students walked up and down the hallway recording their answers on this Recording Sheet (critical thinking).
As individuals finished the scavenger hunt with the Calendar Task Cards I handed them a "Design a Calendar" sheet (creativity) which had an activity from the journal/writing prompts section of the VDOE model lesson. Students then had the remainder of the math time to work on their own calendar.

Links to Documents in this Post:
Calendar Scoot Cards
Calendar Scoot Recording Sheet
Create a Calendar Design Brief

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Top 5 Blog Posts & Winter Freebies

Happy New Year! I don't know about you but my Winter Vacation is slowly coming to an end... but it's okay... I have plenty of snow days to look forward to in February and March! I thought I do a post about my Top 5 Blog Posts of 2015.
In this post I share a blank templates of the weekly/monthly newsletters I send to parents and a set of calendar pages for the 2015-2016 school year.

#2 Parent Communication
In this post I discuss the various ways I communicate with parents in my classroom. I share examples of my weekly newsletter and classroom website.
In this post I talk about an idea I had to welcome a student teacher and this past year a new teammate.
In this post I share the Whole Brain Teaching technique of the Super Improver Wall. Goodbye behavior clip charts, this system will change your classroom for the better!
In this post I shared some cross curricular activities to celebrate the 3rd Day of 3rd Grade!
I've been playing around on my computer today and created some activities to do upon the return to school.
Click Here to Download
Click Here to Download

Friday, December 4, 2015

Guided Reading Mini Flip Books

Man oh man has it been a rough week! Does anyone else feel like they are one "something" away from a nervous breakdown? I know I feel that way... one thing that calms me is creating and crafting. I purchased Learning in Wonderland's Double Sided Mini Flip Books during the TpT sale on Monday. I spent some time Monday night creating some guided reading mini books for my students to complete in reading groups.
I created a fiction and nonfiction versions. Links to printing and copying video tutorials are included with the set. I'd say they're appropriate for 2nd-4th grade.
Click Here to download the Guided Reading Mini Flip Books