Thursday, December 29, 2011

Happy New Year

Here's a New Year's Bulletin Board freebie. Have the students come up with a resolution and write it in the party hat. I've included a colored AND black and white version because let's face it colored ink isn't cheap. I don't know many teachers that print in color. When I make activities like this, I just tell everyone to pretend their watching 1950's television:) After they write their resolution, give them time to decorate their glasses. A little glitter would really make these stand out.  I've also included the dates through 2019, so I've got you covered for the next eight years.
Click HERE for your free copy.

Teaching Tip of the Week
I like to use my students' pictures several times throughout the year. There are lots of cute bulletin board ideas out there that use students' pictures. I take a head shot of my students at the beginning of the year and then just reprint every time I need them. You might even be able to laminate them and reuse.

Anchor Chart of the Week
Explaining what resolution means can be difficult even for older students. I like to use a graphic organizer when I teach vocabulary words.  Click HERE for an anchor chart and graphic organizer freebie.

Although this is a blog for 3-6 teachers, I'm adding something for 1st or 2nd grade. My mom is a first grade teacher and wants to do a little vocab lesson on Monday. It is basically the same form but a little more geared toward 1st grade. So here you go Mama because I love you so much! Click HERE for the new form.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

My First Linky Party

Well, I'm posting my first linky party for a friend of mine. Tammy over at Live, Love, Laugh is linking up, and the topic is New Year's Resolutions. Tammy is amazing, so check her blog out at the link below.

Here are my resolutions:
1. Stick to my low carb diet.
2.  Be more patient with those around me.
3. Walk with my friends at least 3 days a week.

1. Create my math curriculum for Common Core Standards.
2.  Spend less time at school on the weekends.
3. Be the best teacher I can be.
1. Get more followers:)
2. Add more of my personality to my posts.
3. Create great freebies for teachers.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Snowflake Mean, Median, Mode, and Range

Click  HERE for free copy

Here's a winter freebie for all you math teachers. I use a lot of music in my classroom, especially on hard concepts like mean, median, mode, and range. Be sure to check out the anchor chart for the songs I use to teach mean and range.  Even after I feel like they have a grasp of the concept, I feel it's important to review periodically. At my school we go back on January the 5th and that will mean a 2 day week. (I KNOW, don't get me started!) I'm going to use the printable to practice this concept. Hopefully the snowflake theme will make it seem not so much like work. I'm keeping this post short, as it is Christmas Eve, and I still have some shopping to do. Ahhh!!! Just wanted to give you something you could use in the classroom after the break. Enjoy! If you are not a follower, I would love for you to become one. Either way, I'm glad you stopped by and  Happy Holidays! Click HERE for snowflake printable.

 Teacher Tip of the Week:
Why not have a little cross curricular activity to go with the snowflake math? This is a great book to use for art, reading, science, or writing. If you click on the cover you will find a video version of this book.
Click on book cover for a free online video version of this book.

Anchor Chart of the Week:
Here's a copy of the songs I put on an anchor chart to teach mean and range. Click HERE for a printable version of the song lyrics.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Merry Christmas to Me!

I've met some amazing people since I started blogging. My blog is only two months old, and I've received another award. To be recognized by fellow bloggers is a great feeling. This award comes from an amazing blogger. Thank you Mary, at Sharing Kindergarten! Check out her blog by clicking on her button. Don't teach kindergarten? Don't worry she has ideas for every teacher.

Here are the rules:

1. Copy and paste the award on your blog.

2. Thank the giver and link back to them.
3. Reveal your top 5 picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
I get to name 5 other New blogs!
4. Hope that your followers will spread the love to other bloggers!!

To celebrate I'm giving you a freebie. This is an inquiry science lesson I incorporated with my Human Body Unit. This lesson was inspired by my mentor, Madelon Cheatham. She's been pushing me (lovingly) toward more inquiry based lessons. I still used an organizer for this experiment. (Sorry Madelon!) If you tried the mitten experiment I posted about a couple of weeks ago, you will recognize the layout. I like to remind my students to always follow the steps in the scientific process.
To get students thinking about taste buds, I played a YouTube clip on babies first bite. Then I asked students the question, "Can we map the tongue?" We brainstormed the different types of tastes such as; sweet, sour, bitter, and salty. Finally, and this is the scarey part, I let them design their own experiments. I provided them with possible testing materials: salt, sugar, lemon juice, vinegar,  Q-Tips, water, etc. Just click on the picture for your free copy and enjoy a little Classroom Magic!
                           If you're not already a follower I would love for you to become one!
                                         Here's a YouTube video of babies tasting lemons.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Technology and Poetry

My students had a blast writing poetry and then making a slideshow with Animoto. First, we brainstormed some winter words. Then I had them help me write a class poem. Next they used the template to write their own poems. Finally, they used Animoto to make a slideshow of their poem. You can set up a free teacher account at Animoto.  I suggest you set a kid friendly password so your students can type it in themselves. It is a very easy site to navigate your way around. My 4th grades didn't have any problems. My teaching buddy  had a problem with the program logging her students out before they started a project but creating a login that students can type in should eliminate that problem. If you want them to add photos, you will need to teach them how to save pictures to their computer. They can just add text if you prefer. Be sure to grab a free copy of the templates HERE or by clicking on the picture.
Check out the slideshow poem.
Brainstorm Template
Teaching Tip of the Week
If you want to incorporate even more technology or if you think your students need some more help with writing a diamante, check out this link for ReadWriteThink. They have a program that helps students generate poems.
Anchor Chart of the Week
This week's anchor chart comes from F is For First. Click on the picture and it will take you to Melissa's fabulous blog. I know I'm still teaching what an equation is in 4th grade.                                                                                                                                                    

Chuckle of the Week

Friday, December 9, 2011

Are Mittens Warm?


I love to combine science and picture books!  Here is an inquiry science experiment you can try with your intermediate students. First, read the book The Mitten by Jan Brett.  Ask the students why all the animals wanted in the mitten. Then let your students hypothesis about whether or not mittens are warm. This really makes them think. They will need to find the room, plain mitten, and hand in mitten temperatures. When they begin to look at and analyze the data be prepared for lots of questions because mittens are NOT warm. The body temperature creates the heat, and the mitten traps the heat. This will come as a surprise to most students. You should be able to find mittens at most Dollar Stores. Be sure to click on the book cover for a free online copy of The Mitten.

Click HERE for your free copy of this lesson and graphic organizer, and enjoy a little Classroom Magic! If you are not a follower I would love for you to become one. Either way I hope this post helps you create a little magic in your classroom.
YOU MUST CHECK OUT: Laura Candler's Corkboard Connections Blog! She has taken this activity and elevated it to a much higher level. It really is amazing, and she has generously included a freebie to accompany it. I can't wait to try out her ideas in my classroom!

Teaching Tip of the Week
Rachel Reyna of Fisher Reyna Education lead me to this amazing website, We Give Books. You must check it out. This website has high quality picture books available online. They even have The Hat by Jan Brett, so you could read it and compare it to The Mitten.

Anchor Chart of the Week
This anchor chart comes from Mrs. Carroll at The First Grade Parade. Hop on over an take a look at all the outstanding ideas she has for The Mitten. You could easily adapt some of them for older students.

Chuckle of the Week

Friday, December 2, 2011

Christmas Edition

What kid doesn't like cookies? Here is a graphing activity I plan to try with my 4th graders next week. This activity is a simple one with little preparation time. Don't tell the students what they will be graphing. Simply pass out a gingerbread man cookie and allow students to take ONE bite. Then pass out the graphing packet for students to complete. It's fun to talk about which gingerbread body part was the most popular. Pick up a package of cookies, and create a little Christmas Classroom Magic!
Click HERE for your free copy of my Gingerbread Man Graphing Packet.

Teaching Tip of the Week
Pick up your free copy of this Holiday e-book. It has over 50 free Christmas activities created by some to the top sellers at Teachers Pay Teachers.  Click HERE for your free copy.
Anchor Chart of the Week
I found this great chart from Babbling Abby on Pinterest. Visit her blog for more fantastic gingerbread man ideas. After graphing the cookies have the students create adjectives to describe them.

Chuckle of the Week

Friday, November 25, 2011

Get Happy with Division

Oh, the joy of teaching division! My 4th graders always struggle when learning this concept. I've learned a few tricks over the years that have made the journey a little smoother. I wrote a song to the tune of YMCA. The students really enjoy dancing and singing along to this catchy tune. You can download just the instrumental version of the song from several internet sources for free or cheap. I've made up some movements to accompany the song. We sing it throughout our division unit. To help the steps stick I let the students play Division Relay. I make two teams of students, and each team must race to finish the division problem. A student may only do one step in the division process, and then must pass off the marker to the next student.  In addition to this, I also give the students a step by step reference sheet to keep in their folder. Learning and making division fun is Classroom Magic!

Click Here for the Google Docs Version

 Click HERE to get it in Google Docs.

 Teaching Tip of the Week
If you aren't familiar with the website Pete's Power Point Station, you need to be. It's a great website to get free Power Point presentations. Click HERE for some great division Power Points and other resources.

Anchor Chart of the Week

Chuckle of the Week

Question of the Week
What is your  FAVORITE Pinterest find? I know so hard to choose just one. Try!

What Could Be Hotter Than Fire and Sunshine?

I'm so excited to have received the Sunshine and  Blog on Fire Awards. Sally from Elementary Matters presented me with the Blog on Fire Award, and Mandy from Cooperative Learning 365 presented with the Sunshine Award. It is such an compliment to have these two amazing bloggers deem me worthy of these awards. I'm truly thankful for this honor.

Here are the rules for accepting this award:
1. Thank the person who gave this award and write a post about it.
2. Answer the following questions below.
3. And pass the award to fabulous bloggers, link their blogs and let them know you awarded it to them.

Here are my answers:

  • Favorite color? Green 
  • Favorite animal? Monkey
  • Favorite number? 2
  • Favorite drink? Coke Zero
  • Facebook or Twitter? Facebook
  • Your passion?  Being a mom and wife, teaching, blogging, and making lesson plans
  • Giving or getting presents? Giving
  • Favorite day? I have two days my sweet girls were born.
These bloggers are awarded the Sunshine Award:

Fabulous 4th Grade Froggies
4th Grade Wonders
4th Grade Frolics
Fourth Grade Fanatic 

These bloggers are awarded the Blog on Fire Award:
Go Fourth! With Mrs. Owens
The Creative Apple
Ladybug's Teacher Files
4 the Love of Teaching

Oh' Boy 4th Grade