Thursday, October 23, 2014

It's been A LONG TIME!

Moving to a new grade has kicked my tail!  Between the new grade and all of my son's baseball practices I have really left my blog hanging.....  tumbleweeds are rolling across it!


So I have lots and lots to tell you about.

We are really reading a ton of non-fiction texts in my class this year.  Each morning when the kids come into the room, they are greeted by a special book on their desk picked by ME!  I found a bunch of old leveled readers in a storage room and organized them into sets so I have a huge collection of fiction sets, but not many non-fiction.  So to make sure that everyone gets a chance some of the non-fiction that I only have a few copies of, I have been making our early bird into some quick math review and and then read your special book.  The kids love it!  Plus our AR points are going up!

One of the few non-fiction book sets that I have is on bats.  We worked on this story for three days and they really enjoyed it.  We have been focusing on picking important details out of the text and taking notes, so that we can write good informational paragraphs.  So instead of taking notes on paper we took them on BATS!

I just made tracers out of manila paper and BATS we have!  The kids loved making them and even though our spelling isn't the best (we are working on that one) they look cute on the wall!

We took our bats and shared facts so that we could write paragraphs.  Here is a picture of the display we made for open house.

I wanted the book to also be on display to help my parents see the type of books that they need to be reading with their child.  I just used clear tape and a page protector.  I know it isn't pretty but several parents commented on seeing the book, so it worked!

Here is one of the kid's finished writing.  We have been using a combination of Pow Tide and the Stoplight to learn to write good paragraphs.  After some thought, I have decided to stick to the following formula for every paragraph we write:

Topic sentence, 5-6 detail sentences, and a closing sentence.
I know kind of hard for second grade, but they are doing it!  AND SMILING!

We are doing great on the detail sentences, but are struggling with the topic and closing sentence.  Go figure!  I know they will get it, it is just going to take some time.  I can already see a HUGE improvement already.

We also have completed our first BOOK REPORT!  I was really pleased with how GREAT they came out.  We have been talking about making things VISUALLY APPEALING and they nailed it!  I hated to take them down today, but we needed to get a new project up.  Here are some of the kids projects. You can click on the picture to go to the packet on TPT.  Everything is in it for the kids to make a book report poster at home, all you need to do is making copies.  It even has the a parent direction page already made up!  I am all about working smarter this year!

I wanted to make something cute for their desks for open house that was sort of Halloween, so the day before we made these 3D pumpkin life cycles.  This project is part of a larger science unit and you click the picture to go to the unit.  The kids really enjoyed coloring all of the pumpkin pieces and it gave me 30 minutes of quiet to tidy up the classroom library before the parents came to open house!

Well I have lots more, but it will have to wait until the weekend!

I hope everyone is making each day count with your kiddos!

Happy Teaching!