Friday, November 29, 2013

Foldable Friday: Integers

The biggest problem students seem to have with integer operations is remembering the rules. I have my students create this interactive foldable graphic organizer to help them remember.

Monday, November 25, 2013

My Truth Monday: Dream Vacation

Denise at Sunny Days in Second has been hosting My Truth Mondays and I've decided to join in! Today's post is about your dream vacation.

To see the other My Truth Monday, click on the picture below.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Middle School Give Thanks Giveaway!

Middle School Giveaway

Who doesn't love a giveaway? Well, Krystal from Lessons From The Middle and Kate from Kate's Classroom Cafe have teamed up to create giveaway just for middle school teachers, as a little thank you for all you do! I'm excited to be apart of this middle school giveaway and there are lots of fantastic prizes to be won! Let's get to it!

Middle school Thanksgiving giveaway

  a Rafflecopter giveaway Middle School Giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway
Middle School Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway Middle School Giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway
Middle School Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway Middle School Giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway
Middle School Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Book Review Tuesday: Children of the Tipi by Michael Oren Fitzgerald

Children of the Tipi: Life in the Buffalo Days by Michael Oren Fitzgerald.

Summary from the Publisher:

What was it like to grow up in the world of the pre-reservation Plains Indians before the coming of the white settlers? Prior to our modern era of television, video games, and computers how did American Indian children live, learn, and play? In this beautifully illustrated book, award-winning author, Michael Oren Fitzgerald, combines stunning photographs and simple quotations by Indian chiefs and elders to explain to today’s youth what life would have been like growing up on the American plains. Children of the Tipi includes sections on boys and girls at play, camp life, and the important role of parents and grandparents. It features historical sepia photographs of children at work and play, as well as detailed color photographs of their toys, tools, and everyday objects.

My Review:

This book is filled with wonderful pictures and quotes that really bring the traditions of the Native American to life. Some of the topics included are:  how children got their names,  story telling, nomadic life, and living in nature. Included are historical pictures and artifacts as well as pictures of how these traditions are still carried on today.  This would be a wonderful collection to any unit on Native Americans.

You can purchase this book at Amazon, Walmart, and Barnes & Noble.

Native Americans Linky

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Sunday Science: Cell Projects 2013

I do this cell project every year during our life science unit. I LOVE all the different ideas that the students come up with!

I loved that this student used a box for the cell wall.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Foldable Friday: Explorers

Last year when I taught the explorers, I had the students write the information down on a chart. This year I wanted to add the interactive component to it. I created these interactive foldable graphic organizers for my 5th graders.

The Spanish explorers graphic organizer covers Christopher Columbus, Hernan Cortes, Francisco de Coronado, Hernando de Soto and Amerigo Vespucci.

The English and Dutch Explorers cover John Cabot, Henry Hudson, and John White.

Jacques Cartier and Samuel de Champlain for the French.

The graphic organizer set also includes posters on each of the explorers.

You can purchase this set in my TpT store, TN store and Tools for School store.


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Classroom Organization: Task Cards - 2nd edition

Back in July, I blogged about THIS organizational system. I quickly realized that system was not going to work. I had too many sets of task cards and not enough room for them all. I was off again in search of the perfect way to store my cards.  After shopping at many stores, I found what I hope to be the perfect solution (although I've already had to reorganize it and condense some of the drawers).

The drawers sell at Michaels for $8.99. I happen to get them for 50% off, plus a coupon for an additional 10% of purchase, plus my 10% teacher discount ($3.64 a piece). They only had 8 of the black, so I had to purchase white ones and spray paint them.  

I did keep the coupon holders to organize within the drawers. I printed the topic on 1/2" X 1 3/4" labels (Avery 6467) and then used packing tape to adhere them to the coupon holders. I had to use the tape because the texture of the plastic kept the labels from sticking.

One thing I like to do with my cards is make a cover and answer key the same size as the set of cards. I usually take screen shots of the opened pdf and then open the jpg in Photoshop Elements. I put 2 covers and 2 answers keys on a page. I try only to buy task cards that can be cut into fourths (only 2 cuts that way!) so they are easy to create.

When I started to create math task cards, I added this to my product.  It makes it real easy to make it a self-check activity. 

When I use the task cards, I usually have two students partner up. They each do the problem on the card and then compare their answers. If they disagree with each other, they try to figure out why their answers do no match. When they are done with the set of cards, they self check their answers.

These task cards are by ChiliMath. I've fallen in LOVE with their products! I just love the variety of questions they use in their products.

Look how nice and neat they look!! Task cards by ChiliMath,  Teaching with a Mountain View,  Rachel Lynette and Amy Alvis (me!)

I have just started my venture of making my own task cards, which you can find in my TpT store.

Who do you go to for your task cards? I'm always looking for new topics. Let me know who your favorite sellers are!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Sunday Science: Gummy Bear Lab

Today's Science Sunday post can be found at Laura Candler's Corkboard Connections. I was honored when Laura asked me to do a guest blog post and I hope that you will join us over there to see all the fun my students had with this lab. 

You can click on the above picture to see the blog post.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Classroom Organization: Displaying Student Work

There are two places that I display student work. 

The first spot is in my classroom.  Several years ago, I got these clipboards in a scrapbooking kit at Joanne's. They are perfect to hold two student papers.

I got this idea from Fredia at Frogs in First.  My co-teacher and I share the hallway outside our rooms. This year we went with a "Winners" theme.

Last year we did a jungle theme.

The students LOVE seeing their work out in the hallway. Whenever they see that something new goes up, they rust over to see whose paper it is.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sunday Science: What do plants need to survive?

During our life science unit, we did a lab on what plants need to survive. I put mung beans in soil on a friday and by monday they were already sprouting.  Once the beans had grown for about a week, we started the experiment.

The students started by making predictions about what would happen in each scenario.

The students then made observations about what the plants looked like.  There were four different growing conditions set up.  

The first was with light and water.

The second was with light but no water.

The third was with light to one side and water. Unfortunately, over the weekend the water dried up so the plants got a little droopy. They did perk right up when water was added to the tray.

The fourth tray was inside a set of cabinets, which did not allow any light in, with water.

After 10 days, the students took each of their plants back to their table to make their "after" observations.

They recorded their observations on the lab sheet. I think they did a wonderful job with their pictures!

This lab is from the DSM:  Plants in our World kit.