Friday, December 20, 2013

Week 18- RAK and Welcome Jack!

WE started the week with a few Random Acts of Kindness. My homeroom and Mrs. Reasner's homeroom delivered coffee and cookies to all the teachers and staff members in the building Monday morning. We wanted to show them how much we appreciate them all!

These students took the time to decorate the teacher workroom. They had a great time and seemed to be excited to be able to surprise the teachers with this random act of kindness.

Mrs. McNabb came in this week and made an ornament with us.

This is the tag that we tied on the ornament. The students added these items inside the plastic ornament.

Then they filled it up with Epson salt. It is like a mini I Spy for the Christmas tree.

We also wrote some math word problems using a price list and the 12 Days of Christmas song. 

We also played 24. Some of my students were serious about this game. On each card there are 4 numbers. They have to add, subtract, multiply, and/or divide to get 24.

We had a blast at our class Christmas party and there were lots of sweets for everyone!

The week wrapped up with our class gaining a new "student" named Jack. Jack is Dylan's service dog and alerts when Dylan's blood sugar gets too high or too low. We are looking forward to having Jack in our class every day!

I hope everyone has a wonderful break and a safe holiday!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Week 17- More RAKs & A Little Redesign

A few weeks back I was browsing Pinterest and ran across a pin where a teacher had her desks arranged the way I do mine sometime. She used drawers to help keep supplies close to the kids so I knew I wanted to do that.

The drawers came in this week and I love them! We keep paper towels, notebook paper, a stapler, tape, pencils, pens, and post it notes in the drawers. We are still figuring out what we need to add to them to have all our supplied close. I also added tissue and hand sanitizer to the top.

I'm also in the process of making the decorations to hang from the ceiling. I used wiffle balls and tissue paper to create these. I wasn't sure I loved them but the kids did so I'm keeping them. I just glued the tissue paper in the holes in the wiffle balls. They were super easy to make.


This week we continued our random acts of kindness (RAK). We selected different grade levels each day and went and posted positive notes to the teachers. We got so many comments about doing this and my kids are continuing to do nice things for each other as well.


We have several surprise RAK in the works for next week so check back to see what we've done!

One afternoon when we went to pack up we found that one of the students wrote positive notes for everyone and put them on their lockers. Great job!


I also wanted to share this game that my math coach, Mrs. Hamlet shared with me. The students play bowling with order of operations. They roll 3 numbers and write it on their paper. Then they use those numbers and try to write an equation to equal each number on the right side of the page. When they create an equation for each number they knock over the bowling pin (bottom left). I let them compete against each other.

This is the pdf file in case you'd like to use it too!

STUDENTS: What can you do to help someone else without expecting something in return? What is something that stood out to you in the RAK videos we watched this week? Can you duplicate this?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Week 16- Fractions & RAKs

I have so much to share about this week! We started learning about Holidays Around the World this week in social studies. Check out the file on TpT. It is a close read format and my students had fun learning about traditions in different countries.


We started learning about fractions this week and had several fun activities. We started with a living number line. I gave each student a fraction card and they placed themselves on the number line in the correct order.


On Thursday, during our small group rotations, I taught the kids how to play a game called From Here to There Fractions.



We used fraction cards that my former math coach, Haley James, gave me last year. The kids loved using these cards and couldn't believe I had playing cards with fractions on them.


Here is a picture of one of the game boards.


Want to know how to play? Watch this Gami that Haley and Avery made to explain the game.

I also had to do the chocolate bar activity with fractions. I love any excuse for chocolate.



We answered questions about fractions using the chocolate bar pieces.


Want to see the powerpoint I made for this? It is free on TpT: Chocolate Fractions 

And have I mentioned lately how much I love using Padlet with my students? This week we took pictures of our pages in the interactive notebook and I added them to the fractions padlet. That way students could go back and access it from home in case they forgot their notebook at school. It is also a good resource that shows the different ways I teach fractions. I like to show my students several different ways to do things and let them pick what works best for them.

My mom stopped by school this week and brought us a beautiful wreath for the classroom door. I love it!


Mrs. Reasner and I have been doing Random Acts of Kindness (RAKs) with our students during the school day. I gave my students a choice board and challenged them to do all of the items on the board this week. Find the choice board idea I found here. We also created a Motivation Wall in the teacher work room. I have seen several of these on Pinterest and knew we had to do this for the teachers. This is what we did. We also left other post it notes so that teachers can add some of their favorite motivational quotes to the wall. We didn't add a bunch because we wanted to leave room for others but I have a list of quotes I plan to add it no one else takes advantage of this.


To go along with the Random Acts of Kindness we started using the Christmas Kindness Countdown. It gives a different RAK each day for the students to do. This week we picked up trash, smiled at everyone, and made cards for our principal. I also showed them this RAK video and we talked about doing nice things for people and not expecting things in return. I think this is a great life lesson and I've seen my students doing nice things for others all week.

We also chose names for the Secret Santa RAK. Each student drew a classmate's name (I added my name too). We will do nice things for that student and reveal ourselves before the Christmas break. I also plan to have them make a picture of their RAK person and list things they have done for them. I found the idea on Pinterest (here it is). 

Mrs. Reasner shared the idea of writing positive notes for the teachers in each grade level so of course I was on board. We have been randomly selecting a grade level and writing a positive note on a post it note for the teachers. Then we go and stick them on their doors. I hope we have brightened some days this week with our little notes of love.

STUDENTS: We started doing RAKs this week. I loved seeing everyone doing nice things for each other. Has this carried over into your life at home? Have you done a RAK for someone at home or has someone done something for you? Share what was done. I'd love to hear about it.