Friday, September 26, 2014

Five for Friday- September 26th

     It has been a few weeks since I posted on a Five for Friday, so I am sort of including the past couple of weeks, instead of just this week! I am linking up again with Doodle Bugs Teaching for another Five for Friday.  I am so thankful for this weekly linky, even if I don't make it each week.  It still keeps me motivated to keep posting!

1. As we prepare for our first integrated unit of the year, focusing on nonfiction and life science, we spent this week doing a nonfiction text features review. Thursday and Friday were spent working with partners, digging through nonfiction texts, and determining how the text features we found, helped us to better understand the text.

2. Each math class, we start out with a warm up.  We do the same type of warm up each day of the week.  Every Monday is a number of the day, Tuesdays are word problems, Wednesdays are journal prompts, Fridays are Number Talks, and Thursdays are called The Answer Is...  This warm up is when we give a number (39) and expect students to come up with the word problem and a way to solve it.  We flex group for math and I am currently teaching a group of struggling math students.  The intervention specialist and I have taught them modified algorithms and number lines to solve addition and subtraction problems   There are a few examples of their work on The Answer Is... and it was great to see students using those strategies on this type of problem!  The first is called add going down.  The students add the tens, add the ones, and then add the tens and ones.  This works with hundreds, too! The second strategy is an open number line.  This student made hers backwards.  It should have started on the right and moved backwards, but that is ok!  She was able to understand what she was doing to find the correct answer.  My favorite subtraction strategy is called expanded subtraction, but I do not have a pic of my kiddos working on this, yet.

3. My view this past week, while walking at the lake and my NEW shoes!  They look EXTRA large in the picture!  You get the point, though!

4. Our school's biggest fundraiser is called Dance-A-Thon!  The kiddos loved this!  It takes place during our recess one afternoon and they have a professional DJ and dance instructor come in to run the activity. 

5. Last weekend, I went to the Columbus Crew game.  It was a GREAT soccer game. We were the first so many people in the stadium and received a free bobble head.  I took mine to school, only to have a few students SUPER excited to see that we had to have been there on the SAME night! haha As if I venture out to do things at night?!?! They were shocked.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Writer's Workshop is Up and Running!

       I have been extremely busy at school and don't have much time to write, but wanted to share how excited I am with my kiddos this year.  I used Lucy Calkins' Writer's Workshop for the first 8 years that I taught.  Last year was the first year that I didn't use Writer's Workshop.  When our new literacy support mentioned that she was hoping to introduce our school to Lucy Calkins, I was super excited!  
      We spent the first few weeks doing a ton of assessments required by the state and my district.  Now we are finally getting into our daily routine of writing.  My students are off to an amazing start and they are LOVING writing!  I am LOVING seeing their writing.  Here are a few of our anchor charts from the first few sessions!  

Happy writing!!!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Five for Friday... SLANT BOX, Visualizing, Writer's Workshop and more!

      Well, it has been a few weeks since I have blogged.  School has been super busy.  I am happy to say that we finally finished our first month of school!  It feels sort of crazy and hard to believe, but it is true!  I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday.  Here are a few things from my crazy week!

1.  This past weekend, I went up to Bowling Green for a football game.  This is where I went to college.  It was BEAUTIFUL weather and an awesome trip.  I LOVE everything about BG!  

2.  I received my SLANT box about a week ago!  Thanks Katie from Erb Rhymes with Verb!  I loved my goodies from the Hometown themed Slant box!  I FINALLY sent my goodies out, as well out to Jennifer from Kinderdrama! This was my first time participating in the fun and I really did enjoy it!  I just wish things hadn't been so crazy with the first few week so school and I could have focused a little more on this project!

3.  We use a program called Fundations by Wilson/Orton Gillingham.  Each day we do a chant of the letter combinations and sounds.  I have started letting a student lead us through this activity. On this particular day, one of my more quiet girls was our leader!  It was great to see her in the role of a leader!  Not sure where all my boys are in this picture!??!

4.  This is my 10th year teaching and the first 8 years I used Lucy Calkins Writer's Workshop as my writing model.  However, when I came to my new school I found they were really lacking in writing instruction.  So, I was super excited to hear that we were implementing Writer's Workshop this year.  So, we are starting it a little later than I would have typically, however, we are at least getting started.  Today my kiddos decorated their Writer's Notebooks and you would have thought this was the BEST DAY EVER!!!! haha :)

5.  Visualizing with the books A Bad Case of Stripes!  We had a blast and I loved seeing their mental pictures as Camilla changes throughout the text!

Happy Friday!

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