Saturday, April 19, 2014

Number Sense activities and freebies!

Happy Saturday!!

I'm just checking in real quick to share a fun activity we did this week.  I was really excited to do something FUN with MY CLASS for a change, since I've been pulling third grade tutoring groups every morning for the past 2 weeks!  I'm a little bit bitter about it (as you can tell by the all caps) so we'll just move right along!!  :)

Every day in calendar, we go through patterns on the 120 chart.  My firsties are getting really good at finding one less, one more and ten less, ten more and even 100 less, 100 more!  We did some more concentrated practice this week and they did really well with that as well.

I made some 120 charts with numbers missing for them to fill out first.  Then we went through and found a few patterns along the way.  One day, we counted by 10s starting at 3 and colored that column yellow.  We also looked for even and odd numbers as well.  For our ten more, ten less practice we drew a box around a number, let's say 45.  Then we took another color crayon and drew a box around the numbers around it to show one less, one more, ten less and ten more.  All the kids said, "It looks like a plus sign!!" so that's what we started calling it.

I forgot to take a picture of any of my kids' papers, so here's a little recreation for all of you visual learners out there!

We did several of those on each of our 120 charts each day.  I also made some empty "plus signs" for them to fill out that looked like this-

And because I had a great workout this morning and am feeling happy that it's the weekend, I'll post all the sheets I made as a freebie in my TPT store!  Click HERE to grab them!

After we got pretty good at filling our "plus signs" in, I used this activity with my class.  On Wednesday, we just glued the flaps down in our math journals and wrote the numbers there.  On Thursday, however, I decided to make it a bit more fun and we turned them into flowers!!  I think they turned out so cute and they look awesome trailing down our hallway!

Aren't they too cute??

I plan on keeping these up for awhile, they add some bright color to our hallway!!

Happy Spring and Happy Easter to you all!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Ziggie Tales book review!!


I am so excited to share about a brand new children's book by Kathleen Wainwright!!  The book is called Ziggie Tales: Ziggie's Big Adventure and it just came out on Monday!  I have already read it myself and I really enjoyed it!!

It is a great book and I have a lot of fun things to share about the book!  You'll want to hear all about it, because I have a freebie to go with it, along with a giveaway for a free copy of the book!

Ziggie is an orange cat, with zigzagged stripes on his back.  He lives with his owner, Marley, an adventure-loving 7 year old.  Ziggie wants to go on an adventure himself, but finds that his adventure was a little more than he bargained for!

I know that kids will love to read this book!  It's a short chapter book and would actually make a perfect read aloud in any primary classroom.  It would be a great independent read for kiddos maybe 2nd grade or higher.

This book really lends itself to some great activities for literacy practice in the classroom.  It would be fun to compare and contrast some of the characters.  You could give your kids a Venn Diagram sheet to compare the two girls, Marley and Layla.  They could also compare Ziggie to a cat or pet that they have at home.  I really like how Kathleen gives us a peek at life through Ziggie's point of view.  It would be a lot of fun for a class to think about it other animals often feel the way Ziggie does, animals who wish they could go on adventures of their own!  It would also be a great book to use for learning about the sequence of events.  There is a clear problem and solution in this book, and it would be great for discussions with your class.  Kathleen even created a sequencing activity and she's letting me give it to you for FREE!  How awesome is that?

Click HERE to download the sequencing freebie!

I do hope you'll check out the book, I definitely recommend it.  Visit Kathleen's website for more information.

Here's the link to the Rafflecopter!  Go enter to win your own copy of Ziggie Tales!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 A few other bloggers also loved Kathleen's new book, and you can read more about it on their blogs. Just follow this link to find the other posts!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Animal Research Projects!

Happy Saturday!  (And I'm so glad it is Saturday!!)

It has been a loooong week and I kept meaning to sit down and write this post, but never did!  So glad it's the weekend (even though it will fly right by)!

So true!!!!!
Anyway, back to business!  Right after Spring Break (which was sadly 3 whole weeks ago!), we started our Animal Research Projects.  I've done this project every year that I've been teaching and it is always a lot of fun!  The week before Spring Break, I have each student pick the animal that they want to study.  I send a note and a little research guide home over the break and ask parents to help out with research at home.  I usually get most of them back filled out, but there's always a few that come back empty-handed.  No big deal, we just find some books in the library and do a little online research in class.

Then it's time to take our research and write it into our research journals.

I pull the kids in small groups during writing time, so it takes about a week to get everyone done.  This year, our awesome librarian showed us World Book Online.  We had half of the class looking up their animals online while the other half looked through books and worked on their illustrations.  It was great!!

After our journals were complete, we went to the computer lab to type up our research into a Kidspiration web.  I love using those webs because it is easy for the kids to use and it looks great as a part of the final product.

Once our projects are complete, the last thing we do is have a party!!  I love to invite other classes to come see our projects as a warm up for the kids.  They're a little shy at first, but then they do such a great job.  On the Friday after we're done, I always invite the parents and admin and other teachers to come and see the projects as well!  We had a great turn out this year and the parents were really impressed with all of our hard work.  It was so great to see how proud everyone was of their project!

Did you see my little photo-bombing friend?  She tried to do that in every picture!  Love her!!

Love these big, cheesy smiles!!

What are your favorite traditions from your classroom?  I would love to hear what you enjoy doing each year!!