Sunday, March 23, 2014

Science Sunday: Roller Coaster Fun!

I saw THIS idea from my friend Jennifer at Teaching to Inspire in Fifth and fell in love with the idea. I knew that I wanted to do it with my 6th graders when we did out energy unit.

I adapted her ideas a little bit.  My rules were the following:
  • Must have at least two "hills" 
  • Must have two carts showing potential energy, one of which must show the greatest potential energy 
  • Must have two carts showing kinetic energy, one of which must show the greatest kinetic energy
  • All cars need to have the type of energy it has labeled.
My students LOVED this activity as much as I did (plus it allowed me to work with my 5th graders...)

Two of my boys got really into the design and made obstacles in their roller coasters.

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Friday, March 21, 2014

Foldable Friday: Officers in the Continental Army

State testing requires memorization of lots of people, so I created these interactive foldable graphic organizers to help my students to remember everyone. I created two different version of this one.

These interactive foldable graphic organizers and many more can be found in my People of the American Revolutions poster and graphic organizer set. Just click on the picture below to find it in my TpT store.

American Revolution Linky

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Sunday, March 9, 2014

Classroom Organization: Math Games

It's time for another Bright Ideas blog hop! I hope you are ready to spend some time in front of your computer to get through all these wonderful ideas!

I've already posted how I organize my task cards (several times, LOL!), but I wanted to share how I store my math games.  So many teachers have these drawer sets that they use for different purposes and I chose to put my math games in them.  The one on the left is from Michaels and the larger one on the right is from AC Moore.

I made labels for each of the drawers. The unit on the right has drawers that ate 12" X 12", so I placed topics in those drawers that I knew had more games.  Above these units is a smaller drawer set that hold my dry erase markers, dice and playing cards.  The crate holds some dry erase boards and other subject area games.

I have file folder games,...

games with cards that are housed in envelopes,...

and games that I copied onto cardstock and laminated.

My first attempt at hold game supplies (dice, cards, etc.) didn't go so well. I re-used yogurt containers by painting them, adding letter stickers and then sealing them with Modge Podge. As you can see the paint has started to chip.  I've thought that maybe it I has sanded the plastic a little if the paint might have stayed on better, but I really don't know.

After I realized that the paint was chipping off, I changed direction and got these clear plastic containers.  I put the letter stickers on and again sealed them with Modge Podge. These have held up a lot better.

The next stop in the hop is Teaching Math by Hart. Kim is talking about organizing student led conferences. Click on the button below to check out her post.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Foldable Friday: Quadrilaterals

My 5th graders need to be able to identify quadrilaterals by their attributes. This interactive foldable graphic organizer helped them to organize their information.

I drew this on the board as a flow chart to help them remember that most of the shapes could also be called something  other than their exact name.

The inside of the graphic organizer.

If you like the graphic organizer, you can get them along with the matching posters in my TpT store. Just click on the picture below.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Book Review Tuesday: How to make a Planet

How to make a Planet by Scott Forbes.
Illustrated by Jean Camden.

Publisher's synopsis: 

Offering a new spin on astronomy and earth sciences books for kids, this out-of-this-world how-to details the making of a planet, namely the incredible, life-sustaining, one-in-a-billion planet Earth, starting with its basic ingredients, protons and neutrons, and making abstract concepts easier to understand.

The story starts out with a timeline leading up to present day Earth and continues with a discussion on how universe was formed. The book takes you step by step through the process of how the universe was form in very kid-friendly (and adult) language.

The illustrations are wonderful. They will definitely appeal to the upper elementary crowd. When we do our Earth and Space Science unit, my students are always asking me questions (more so than they usually do in science) because they find it so fascinating. I often find myself lacking in the knowledge to answer some of the questions they ask me (what exactly is a black whole?) The information in this book will allow me to explain it much better.

All through the book they have a "time check" which allow the reader to see where they are in the creation of the universe.  I definitely think this would help my students to understand how long it actually took for our universe to form.

Other topics included are:  seasons, composition of Earth, the atmosphere, water cycle, Pangea, and how to care for out planet.

I loved this book. The information contained in it will definitely be making its way into my science lessons. The illustrations were a delight and added to the overall package of the book.

This is definitely a book I will be adding to my bookshelf!

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