Sunday, September 30, 2012

And The Winner Is....

Drum roll please.....

I want to say thank you to everyone that entered, showed so much support, and helped celebrate my milestone!

A HUGE THANK YOU to Tracey, Christi, and Michelle for donating fantastic products!
I will not forget your generosity :)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

A Few Of My Favorite Things Giveaway

It has been slow moving, but my blog has finally reached 100 followers! I began this blog in June 2011 as a way to communicate what kids were learning to parents. As I read other blogs I was thankful to be able to learn from so many other teachers. So, I wanted to also share instructional ideas.

As a thank you, I am giving away a few of my favorite things.

Looking for a taste of Louisiana?
One lucky winner will receive a package with a pound of Community Coffee, Tony Chachere's seasoning, and a Cafe Du Monde beignet mix. I drink the coffee everyday and use the seasoning in almost all dinners. Can't get enough of beignets :)

Winner will also get each item that has been offered from fantastic blogging friends!

Tracy from Third Grade Allstars is giving $10 worth of products from her TpT store.

Third Grade All Stars
Christi from Ms. Fultz's Corner is giving her Do It All Clock set.
Ms. Fultz's corner
Michelle from the 3am Teacher is giving her Place Value Clip Art collection.

Giveaway ends Sunday, September 30 at 12:01am EST so start entering!
Once you have entered, please leave a comment with your email so I can contact the winner.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Rounding and Animal Facts

Students have been learning about rounding and estimating sums this week. We began by using a number line to round and then learned a rounding poem.

To practice using a number line to round, we went outside and drew number lines. Then, a student chose a number, stood on it, and hopped to each ten. They counted while they hopped to determine which ten their chosen number was closest to. 

To practice estimating sums, we went to Mo's Pizza. No, we really didn't go :)   
But that sure would have been nice!
Each child received a Mo's Pizza menu and ordered two items. Each item was rounded and the sum was found. Students repeated this procedure 4 more times. It was great seeing the students "buying" food and saying "Man, it cost a lot to eat!"

In writing, we are researching facts about animals. The students were given a bubble map with the following phrases: distinctive features, favorite food, main prey, predators, lifespan, habitat, and an interesting fact. They got onto A - Z Animals, a website full of animal facts, and filled in the circles with facts about their assigned animal. The phrase, an interesting fact, was filled in after they read a book about their animal. Tomorrow, we will construct our writings using the facts found.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Reading Centers

After the students spend 10 minutes in spelling centers, they begin reading centers. There are 4 centers they can be assigned.

  • Phonics - With Ms. Gros, the students receive phonics instruction.

  • Comprehension - Students choose a fiction story, read it, and answer questions found on the back.

  • Lexia - a software program that diagnoses the student's skill level and provides practice or instruction where needed 

  • Reading Skills - Students read a story and complete an assignment depending on weekly skill. Students created a flip book identifying title, author, characters, setting, and plot.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Writing, Editing, and Publishing Our Hurricane Isaac Stories

Yesterday the students filled in Flee Maps in preparation for their writings about Hurricane Isaac.

Today we got down to business and constructed our writings. The Flee Maps were used as an outline to guide their writings. After the rough draft was written, the students learned about using guide words to locate words in a dictionary.


The students were armed with the knowledge of locating words in a dictionary and instructed to edit their rough drafts by correcting misspelled words. {Ms. Gros and I read each rough draft while the kiddos were at PE and underlined misspelled words.}


After the final draft was written, they posted their story to Kid Blog.

We would love for you to read our stories and comment. Click here to access their posts. 

On a different note, I posted the other day about my Math and ELA Focus Walls. I did not have a picture of the ELA Focus Wall when I posted, but that has changed. 

Have a great weekend and I hope you enjoy the students' posts!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Hurricane Isaac Writings and So Much More

After being "off" for 8 days, the students had so much to share. They experienced a lot during this past week due to Hurricane Isaac. My partner teacher, Ms. Gros, provided them with an opportunity to share. The idea came from another fantastic teacher at our school, Mrs. Shepherd

First, Ms. Gros had the students divide their paper in three and illustrate their feelings before, during, and after the storm.

Then, they discussed descriptive words using the five senses. We ventured into the cafeteria and sat the students on the stage with their backs to the cafeteria. They wrote words using their sense of smell and hearing to describe the cafeteria.

The students turned around to look at the cafeteria after jotting down some words and then used their sense of sight to describe.

Ms. Gros and I were extremely please at how well the students did on this assignment! They were engaged and wrote two columns of words for each sense! At lunch, the students used their sense of touch and taste to write descriptive words and shared when we returned.

Our next step was to create a Flee Map to prepare for our Hurricane Isaac writings. A Flee Map is a graphic organizer that can be used to outline a writing.

Two choices were given as a topic sentence: "Do you want to know why I have been out of school for eight days?" or "Do you want to know what happened in south Louisiana?" Students chose a topic sentence and wrote it in the top rectangle along with the sentence "Hurricane Isaac hit Louisiana." They then thought back to their illustrations of their feelings before, during, and after the hurricane. In the first square, the students wrote "Before Hurricane Isaac, I felt ___." They inserted their feeling and wrote three reasons why they felt that way on the lines under the first main idea. The remaining squares were filled with "During Hurricane Isaac, I felt _____" and "After Hurricane Isaac, I felt_____" and filled in supporting details. Finally, a conclusion sentence was written in the bottom rectangle. The students wrote either "Now you know why I have been out of school for eight days" or "Now you know what happened in south Louisiana," depending on which topic sentence they chose.
Tomorrow, they will use the Flee Map to write their story.

A quick lesson as given on looking up words in a glossary. The skill learned in this lesson was used to define vocabulary words. The students wrote the vocabulary word, wrote the page number it was found on, and wrote the definition.

We ended our day with centers. Ms. Gros' group created a necklace with beads and stars (in preparation for tomorrow's expository writing.) My group reviewed previous math tests and learned test taking strategies. The remaining students either practiced math skills from games on this blog, watched math videos on an iPod, or read a story with the Leap Pad.

We accomplished A LOT today and I am looking forward to tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Currently September

Another month has flown by!
Time to link up with Farley at Oh' Boy 4th Grade

1.  Strange to have new tires listed as a favorite thing...I know. But, for the past 2 weeks the steering wheel has been shaking so bad while I drive. I mean...really was horrible...felt like I was living in Anchorage again and experiencing an earthquake. The entire car was shaking, as well, due to a tire going bad. Finally was able to get into a mechanic and have the tires changed. Thankfully, the shaking has stopped. Now on to get hubby's A/C fixed in truck. Poor baby, no A/C in 110 degree heat!

2.  Football season has started and so has my neighbor's and I weekly tradition of watching the Saints. This is the BEST time of the year!!!

Thanks for reading and don't forget to share!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Getting It Done

With all this extra time on my hands I decided to be productive. Our district has been closed since August 27th because of Hurricane Isaac. My family was lucky and we had very little damage.

Besides the few gaps in the roof from missing shingles the only other inconvenience was no power for 3 days. I can't complain because we have a generator that ran everything but the A/C and some people still don't have electricity or a home.
High up there so it's hard to see

I have written 3 weeks worth of math lesson plans, mapped out the math curriculum for the year, and updated a few pages on my blog. I'm so excited about the updated pages...they look so much more organized! I decided to use Glogster to showcase various videos and online games.

Take a look at the "Math" and "Videos" page to see the full products.

My Math and ELA Focus Walls in the classroom are looking proud :)
The students love having a reference during instruction. For now, I have a picture of Math and when we return to school I will take a picture of the ELA wall. I will be including a Writing Genre spot to it, as well.

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