Saturday, March 26, 2016

Celebrating Easter with a SALE and a Mental Math FLASH FREEBIE!

I hope everyone is enjoying a relaxing weekend with friends and family!

One of my goals this year was to sharpen our mental math skills.  Throughout the day I ask crazy mental math questions...

What is 20 plus 40.  Now subtract 8.  What is the number?

We make it a contest, first kid with their hand up gets a chance.  First right answer gets something.... but they don't know what.  Sometimes it is a high-five, or moving their clip up, a fancy eraser, or a treat.   They don't know and that is the fun of it!

At first it was HARD....  we had some tears, but we have kept on it and overall we are all getting better at it.   Can I say perseverance!

We have been off this past week, so I thought what better way to start back on Monday...  a game of SCOOT!  Mental math challenge!

I just finished these task cards today and to celebrate the holiday weekend, they will be a FLASH FREEBIE today.  Just click on the picture to download them from my TPT store!  Please leave feedback when you have a chance.

I made this set printer-friendly to save on colored ink.  I just ran mine on colored copy paper and they look great.  My number #1 helper is laminating them for me as I type.  What a good kid he is....  I guess he is hoping the Easter Bunny is good to him tomorrow.  

I also have a few kiddos that are extremely advanced in math.  I love to give them an extra challenge, so I made another set that uses simple multiplication and division as well as the addition and subtraction.  When I use 2 sets of cards so I can differentiate better, I just make them different colors and the kids know which set they follow.  This group follows the blue cards and this group follows the pink cards.

Here is a hardest page from the "challenging" pack.

I am joining in with a BUNCH of other TPT sellers for a special sale tomorrow!  No codes are needed. Just click and BUY!  You can search for sellers that are having a sale by using #eastersale!

Happy Shopping!


Monday, March 14, 2016

St. Patrick's Day!

I can't believe that it is already the middle of March.  Only one week until spring break!

Here is a little taste of what we are doing this week!

Today we read There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Clover!  This is part of series of books that we have read throughout the year.  The kids are familiar with the format and were so excited when they saw it in the book basket.

After we read the book we worked in groups to see if we could recall all the things she ate and put them in the right order.  We have done this type of activity with all the books, except this was the first time they didn't have retelling cards.  They had to make them up themselves.

Each group had a stack of large index cards and went to work.

Once the group had all of their cards done, they sorted them into the right order.

Then, we came back and reread the book again to see if they had them in the correct order.  I am happy to report that 5 out of 6 groups had them right!  We were all so excited!

We glued the cards onto sentence strips so we could hang them up!  The kids were so proud of their work.  When we do projects like these I like to have them do some reflecting.  Not only on their work, but comparing it to what others came up with.  It really helps them improve their ideas and creativity.  Some groups numbered their cards, while some added backgrounds, and one drew a picture of the Old Lady.  

Being good during the week before spring break is hard....  even for me!  So to help use remember to do our best we have a daily contest.  Each morning a new friend at the table gets to be keeper of the group's bucket.  We earn coins all day long for staying on task, being kind, answering tough questions with correct or thoughtful answers, and everything else that makes a happy classroom.  At the end of the day each table counts up their money.  The table with the most money gets a treat from the candy jar!  The only thing is they better be sure they have counted correctly.  If they tell me an incorrect amount their group is disqualified.  It is great for reviewing coins and makes them work so hard to earn them. If your kiddos are having a tough time this week, you might want to give it a try.

This is the BIG WINNER for today!

We usually have time for a game of SCOOT on Tuesdays.  This week we will be reviewing time with this little packet called What Time is it Mr. Leprechaun?


It focuses on telling time to the 5 minutes and is something we can always use more practice with.  It has 20 game cards and answer sheet.

SCOOT might be my most FAVORITE game of all time!  It is super easy.  Just post the task cards around the room and the kids move from card to card and write their answers on their answer sheet. SO MUCH FUN!  It gets them up and moving.

We are also doing a little work care of the Easter Bunny!

Like it or not, state testing is right around the corner.  So I try to hit at least 5 tested skills during the week for review.  We will become "Editing EGGSberts" by editing some Easter themed sentences to practice capitals, dates, and commas.

I'm also still "a work in progress" with organizing my classroom.  Every time I think I'm finished something else catches my eye and start moving things again.  Here is the best way I found to keep all my anchor charts organized.

I attach them to hangers with binder clips.  I can usually put 2 or 3 on each hanger.

One $12 clothes rack from Walmart holds all my hangers.  The best part is when someone needs a refresher or we are reviewing, I can quickly pull the chart off the hanger.  Easy as PIE!

I hope everyone has a great week!

Happy Teaching!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

March means MOTIVATION!

My kiddos and I are being Motivating in March!

We have taken a pledge to be motivating to not only each other, but ourselves!  Here is one of my favorite sayings....  I mean who doesn't LOVE confetti?

Last week we celebrated Dr. Seuss and we dressed up, read, and even had the pleasure of the Superintendent visit our class to read to us!  What a treat!

I tried to create as many fun activities as I could to go with our skills during the week and the Dr. Seuss stories we read.  Here are our TRUFFULA TREES!  We have been working on adjectives and we filled the trees with five adjectives to describe our tree.

We have been working on timelines and I pulled out facts from a Dr. Seuss biography that we read to let the kids create a timeline.  Some of the facts had dates and others they had to use the text to put them in order.  We worked in groups and had lots of fun making our timelines.  If you don't have the biography Dr. Seuss The Great Doodler, I highly recommend it.  The kids loved it and it will FULL of interesting things about his life.  I read it as a class read aloud and then we went to WORK!

Here are some pictures of us HARD at work!

Each group had 12 events from the text.   The kids had to work together to sort them into the correct order.  Each group had a copy of the book to use for help.

Then they had to double check their sort using the text.  As they found each fact, they glued it on the timeline.  I bought a roll of blue paper and didn't think about it rolling up while they tried to work.  PLAN B (as I call it when things go wrong) We grabbed some dictionaries to keep the ends down.  That's what I get for being fancy with my paper!

The groups did amazing and even came up with Dr. Seuss Themed titles for the top.  All in all it was a great project and the kids had a blast.  You can see that it was wear red day or dress up like the Cat in the Hat.

So our March is off to a MOTIVATING start!

My teaching BBF and I couldn't decide who would be Thing 2...  we both wanted to be Thing 1.  So we compromised on this.  Lee makes everyday fun and I'm so glad I get to share this teaching journey with her.   Find your teaching BBF and watch how much fun each and everyday will be!

I hope everyone is having a great week!

Happy Teaching!