Saturday, October 27, 2012

A Fact Family Neighborhood


      We just finished double digit multiplication, which was quite a feat.  Before we dive into long division (gasp!), we are studying the relationships between multiplication and division problems- that's right, Fact Families! I've created this C-U-T-E Fact Family Neighborhood set to help my students see how numbers are related with multiplication and division. Your students will tour from 2nd Street to 12th Street reviewing multiplication and division sentences while using the commutative property. 


Included in this set are:
 14 worksheets going from 2nd Street to 12th Street and 3 Mixed Review Sheets
7th Street- reviews the 7's


Mixed Review Sheet

3 Academic Vocabulary posters with examples...


 and a quick craftivity that students can do in partners or on their own for a great bulletin board display.  

Hope you enjoy this pack! You can find 
     



Friday, October 26, 2012

Spooktacular Savings Flash Sale

It has been a week (or so) since my last post. I have been bogged down with work, family life and have been really tired lately.  So to spice things up a bit I am joining in on the Spooktacular Savings Weekend Flash Sale.  Yes!  You read that correctly!  :)  Everything in my store is 20% off through SUNDAY!  Happy Shopping! 

Thanks to sweet Abby for the graphic! 


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

In Remembrance: Day of the Dead Writing Activity

     I work in a district that has a highly latino population. I have had the pleasure of learning about and celebrating some of my students customs and heritage over the past 6 years. One of the holidays that I have enjoyed celebrating with my classes is Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. Day of the Dead sounds a lot more dark and intimating than it really is. It is simply a holiday that remembers and honors loved ones who have passed away.  It is celebrated on November 1st and 2nd with a lot of different traditions, food and decorations. You can learn more about it on Mr. Donn's website. He has other power points and resources to share too!  Last year I had each student bring in a picture or item that symbolized someone who has passed away. We had a great show and tell time that was one of the most unique and special moments I have experienced teaching.
     This year I found a CUTE Dia de los Muertos craftivity from Lita Lita. My grade level is in charge of the November bulletin board in the front office and we decided that all of us would get this craft (thanks multiple user licenses!) and pair it with a writing assignment. Lita Lita's craftivity is definitely cute BUT there was no writing prompt that came with it so I created my own....

TADA...


Here is the writing prompt.... I added in a lot of thought starters to help my struggling writers.

My class really needs examples of GOOD writing to help them understand my expectations better. I wrote these two examples to help them see and interact with the text. I have prompts that ask them to point out the strengths and weaknesses in both. This can be done whole group or in partners before they start prewriting.
My example of an essay that needs to be revised! I added in a lot of the things that I have noticed my students doing so far this year.

This is an example of a good essay. 

     To start the writing off we always begin with a circle map. I plan on giving the students 5-8 minutes to write down anything they can think of about the person/pet they are honoring. This is done individually and students can share with a partner and whole class afterwards.

The second step is the wonderful Flee Map. I really want my class to focus on explaining rather  than listing!  The flee map I do whole group. I fill out one box, then they do theirs. I keep it really structured and sheltered.

These Sentence Stems will help those struggling writers know where to start! I plan on posting these as they fill out their flee maps.


After they have completed their flee map the next step is writing their rough draft. I always meet up with the students and go over their rough drafts with them. We have been focusing on writing basics: Capitalizing, indenting, spelling, not starting sentences with conjunctions, having complete paragraphs and sentences and using descriptive language.  These Self Editing Checklists will help them to go over their own writing in a more structured way.
Lastly, I created a Final Draft paper for publishing their writing. I will be using Lita Lita's creativity for our final draft but this can be used as their rewriting template.

      I am so excited to use this writing assignment this year. It will be something really special and meaningful to the class that they can look back on after many years and it still hold deep meaning. This holiday may be one that is celebrated by a specific culture, but celebrating and honoring a loved one who has passed away is something every culture loves.  I just posted this fun writing assignment on my TpT store here. Get it on sale for this week only!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Boo'ed Linky!


I blogged a couple of weeks ago about Boo Grams and Cynthia from 2nd Grade Pad created a blogger version of the game so of course I am on board for this! This is what you do...  Choose a fellow blogger that has MORE followers, another that has about the SAME number of followers, and last, someone that has LESS followers. Highlight their blogs with links to encourage others to check them out and make sure to let your fellow bloggers know that you shared about them.  Lastly, leave them some love by offering them a goody from your store as their "treat."

Here are my three.  Just click on their button to check out their AMAZING blogs.

I started blogging in the July and fell in love with Tara from 4th Grade Frolics  and her Made it Monday linky. I swear that she helped me stay on track and not procrastinate all my teachery duties this summer because her linky held me accountable! She still has this linky party so check it out every Monday, link up if you haven't and share in the many amazing ideas out there!



Next is....  
Little Lovely Leaders
Bridget from Little Lovely Leaders, who is an absolute doll! You can tell she is one hardworking lady! I love all of her products and ideas.  She has such a cute and organized classroom!  Take a peek here. I love how she has little clipart pictures of the supplies that her students will need for the assignment/activity they are going to do- that way the kids can just look at the board and know they need their scissors, glue and crayons out.  Simple yet BRILLIANT idea!

Lastly is....
I Love My Classroom
Emily from I Love my Classroom .  She has a lot of AMAZING ideas to share.  I got the idea of my Whole Class Journals from her and adapted them to meet my classroom's needs. She shares a lot of amazing, fun and creative things weekly. If you haven't subscibed to her yet, go and DO IT! 



Sunday, October 14, 2012

My Teacher's Secret Life

I was perusing Pinterest a couple of weeks ago and saw this really cute idea for a writing assignment from Confession of a Teaching Junkie.  She made a really cute writing assignment based on the book, My Teacher's Secret Life by Stephen Krensky.
This book is about a kid who thinks that all of the teacher's live at school and wonders about what they do once all the students leave.  I read this book to my class and used some thinking maps to help them make up their own stories about MY secret life.  We made a class circle map where each table shared ideas that they had come up with of things that I could be/do in my secret life.  I got everything from aliens to a fairies, werewolves and mermaids (must be my red hair!).  I used a Flee Map and showed them how writers plan their stories.  I filled out one box of the Flee Map, and then they filled out theirs. This helped me to closely monitor them to make sure that they were including  some of the writing basics that we have been going over thus far- transitions, main idea & details, incorporating sensory details etc...

My class LOVED this project and their stories turned out a lot better than our last writing assignment which was a lot less structured. Here are a couple of the final products.

Here I am as a fairy.... 
now I am a professional athlete...

and lastly, a mermaid....I promise I dress more modestly then this picture when I am teaching!

 I will definitely do this writing assignment again. Thanks for the idea and template Confession of a Teaching Junkie and thank you Pinterest for a lot of amazing ideas. If you would like to follow my Pinterest boards you can find me here.... I share a lot of ideas for all subjects on here.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Southern California Blogger Meet Up


     Last Saturday I was able to meet up with some amazing teacher bloggers to chit chat about blogging, Common Core, TpT, our students and everything in between. 
Here is who all was there:

Here are some pictures from the event- thanks to Michelle from Apples and ABCs for sharing photos with me! Enjoy!


Here we are, from left to right: Michelle, Kate, me, Traci, Krissy, Hadar, Fran, Ms. Lopez, Tammy, Molly, and Chrissy!


Most of the wonderful ladies here were primary so I was sooooo excited to see Molly there but we didn't sit next to each other so we didn't get to chat too much... next time!



I loved chatting with Fran! I could listen to her all day! She is such a crack up and was so willing to answer any questions I had!
     It was such a great time to connect with other people who share a similar passion as I do. I left feeling inspired, motivated and sweaty (we were sitting outside in 100 degree heat!).


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

October's Currently!

I can't express how much I LOVE October enough and I am so excited to celebrate this October with one of my Blog crushes, Miss Farley from Oh Boy Fourth Grade, Currently!



LISTENING: One of my dearest friends and fellow blogger, Michelle from Apples and ABCs, and I loved watching LOST together back in the day. She just introduced me to Revolution and I am OBSESSED already. It is gritty and violent and reminds me of The Hunger Games and Divergent/Insurgent.  Dystopian Society- yes please...but just in fiction, not in reality!

LOVING: My sweet Penelope is growing up so quickly. She said her first CLEAR simple sentence tonight and I was able to document it on my iPhone.  I asked her where our neighbors car was and she said, " I don't know!". She even put both of her hands up in the air! SO CUTE! This milestone leads me to my THINKING part of the Currently.... I have always wanted to be a teacher and LOVE being one... but this year going to work each day is so much harder than last year. Being a working mom is hard and it makes it even harder to not have any other young working mom peer in my life to be a mentor. I know I am doing what is best for my family and that Penelope is well taken care of by family and friends who love and support her.  I am blessed, but it is still hard.... a lovely paradox.

WANTING: a day-or 2- off. I feel sooo bogged down... maybe it is because it is October... I know next month will be easier with Thanksgiving week off.... Then I have a 3 week Winter Break... October is one of those months that drag.... I must persist! I had progress reports due today and conferences/report cards coming up so this will be a long month! This being said I am NEEDING more time!

Last, but not least...READING. I am in a fabulous book club and we met this week. I am currently reading/listening to via audible.com's membership- the second book in the series of A Discovery of Witches  called Shadow of Night.  I am enjoying it!

I can't wait to see what you all have to share on this month's Currently. Hope you all are fairing well :)!


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Boo Grams- You've Been Boo'ed!

     I love fall. I love October and I LOVE HALLOWEEN! Being the party planner, Martha Stewart, crafty person that I am, I volunteered to be on Social Committee this year.  I signed up to organized the Boo Grams this year.  If you aren't familiar with Boo Grams it is a fun activity for the Staff that  helps them get into the Halloween Spirit.  You simply choose 2 coworkers to "BOO!"- what this means is that you get some little treats like candy, Target dollar section finds, anything festive really and secretly place them in their mailbox, have a student deliver it or hide it in their room along with a Boo sign and poetic directions.  They then "BOO!" two other teachers.  Once you have "Boo'ed" someone, you place the Boo sign on their mailbox so that everyone knows who has not yet been "Boo'ed".

I looked online and saw a lot of free Boo sings and poems for neighborhoods that do this, but not a lot of teacher/staff related Boo items... so I created my own to share with you.

      This is what you hang on the mailbox of the person that you "BOO!" In an effort to save on my precious ink supply, I ordered 4X6s of these from Walgreens.com. Way cheaper, way faster and way more practical for me.  I ran off 40 copies of these for the entire staff and it was under $8.00... 
I decided to run off more copies than their are staff/participants just to be safe in case someone losses their 2 Boo-s.

   
     This is the directions page. I haven't decided if I am going to run these off in gray-scale or if I am going to make a poster of it and tack it up near the mail boxes... decisions, decisions.....
     Anyway, if you would like your own copy of this Boo Gram set you can get them for free here at my Teachers Pay Teachers store.

I would love to hear or see some posts about others who do this with their staff!