Thursday, April 28, 2011

Camp Learn-A-Lot

Our class picture, outside Camp Learn-A-Lot!

     This year will be the third annual Camp-Learn-A-Lot.  The first year it was held for only one day and then grew to three the following year.  Like a "wildfire" the camping theme is spreading!  The first year I went camping in with my students, only two of the 8 first grade classrooms camped.  Last year there were four or five of us.  This year we only have 6 teachers and I think 5 of the 6 are all pumped up to go "camping"!Setting up the classroom is a TON of work and that is why we changed it from one day to three.  Three days gives us enough time to get a lot of fun learning in.  With so many schools determining the amount of time to do parites and special events at the end of the year, this works perfectly, becuase each activity is academically based.  We read in tents with flashlights, use adjective riddles to discover which creepy crawlers we are searching for, fish for math facts, go mountain climbing on the smartbaord for math facts, write in our camp journals, write about making smores, compare living and non-living things, and much, much more. I am going to upload my files that I have used in the past.  Some I have created and others are from other sources that should be marked on the acutal sheet.  If you aren't sure how something is used...just ask! Go camping and have some fun!!
Eating lunch outside! 
Happy Camper!

I bring in a tent that would sleep 5-7 adults.  I typically can fit 6 children with sleeping bags in the tent for reading time.
A river and lake to go fishing in!  The students have to 
cross the river to get across the room. 
 At the top of the river it has little stepping stones!

Reading with flashlights.

Nature Hike- The students went on a nature hike.
 They looked for one thing outside that was living and one non-living thing.
Then the students compared and contrasted these two items with a Venn Diagram.

     I absolutely LOVE going camping.  There is something to be said for being out in the wilderness, not showering, getting dirty, going fishing, cooking over a hot fire, and best of all...SMORES!   Unfortunately, so many young children, especially now with video games and computers, just don't get enough time outdoors, let alone go camping with their families.  A few years ago my best friend and fellow teacher called with such excitement.  She wanted to tell me her fabulous idea! While looking online she found that other teachers had done this same thing. What if we brought tents into our classrooms and went camping?!  Well...we did!  What fun we have had.

Monday, April 18, 2011


This year our first grader's decided to do something that seems very simple to adults, but to a 6 year old, can be very difficult.  This past winter, we challenged our first grade students to give up their ice cream and donate their $0.75 each Friday to help bring fresh water to an Island in Ethiopia.  Our classroom is blessed to have two students who were adopted from Ethiopia last summer and now live in our school district.  Learning about the island on which they were born, was eye opening to our students, families, and staff.  We decided that this would be a great way for our students to learn the true meaning of giving.

I am so excited to say that our little bit, contributed to a great cause.  They are currently drilling on the island and starting to build wells that can bring fresh water to the people of the island.
Check out this website:  It is never to late to donate and help out this cause!

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