Tuesday, November 29, 2011

All About Moola...and How To Make It Stick

...in your students' minds, that is.

If your kiddos are like mine, they have quite a time remembering the names of coins and what they are worth.

When I introduce money in math, several students will say that a coin looks familiar or I have that one, but that's about it.

Thank goodness for Dustin Smith aka Teacher Tipster. If you haven't heard of him yet or seen any of his video segments of teaching tips, you MUST.

After you read this post, of course :)

Here is his video link to a very annoying helpful song that will have your kids remembering the coin names and values within minutes. And they will have the song in their head all day long. And so will you.

As we sing the song, we make bunny ears on top of our heads with our fingers for "Hey Honey, Bunny", then point our thumbs towards ourselves as we sing "I knoooow my money money." If you have a headband with bunny ears in your Easter unit, you may want to grab them to add that extra element of goofiness fun to this lesson.

Here is the bulletin board I have up in my room:

I'm thinking that we need an extra verse for the loonie and toonie coins.

{It's hilarious to watch when my students get to this board as they 'Write the Room'...they can't help but sing the song over and over as they point to each coin. Too cute!}

A pdf of the song can be found here. It was made by "The Grade Two Zoo".

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Literacy Work Stations

The craziness that is my life is becoming a little bit more calm. A little bit. A. little. bit.

But by the end of this week things will be smoooooth sailing.

And then I can relax and be in full Christmas mode. Maybe sip some hot chocolate by the fireplace, reading a good book, admiring the Christmas decorations. Can't wait.


Here are the next 5 stations that my students will be rotating through:

Listening Centre
We will be reading The Mitten by Jan Brett.

Students then fill in the reading response page with the title of the book and an illustration of their favourite part of the story. They also get to offer their opinion of the book.
The page is from Mrs. Jump's blog, and can be found here.

Students will write, stamp, and decorate the newest sight words that we've covered.
This page is from Mrs. I's blog, and can be found here.

Alphabet Centre
Most of my students do not have the entire alphabet down pat, so this station will provide some much-needed practise. There are alphabet puzzles and magnetic letters to give some extra reinforcement in this area.

Sight Word Book
Our sight word booklet is called The Mitten, featuring the new sight word was.
The book is from Hubbard's Cupboard, and can be found here.
See here for how this activity is presented.

Letter Mazes
Students are working on letter mazes Kk through Oo from Education.com, which can be found here.

Friday, November 25, 2011

From Head To Toe

To wrap up our 5 Senses unit, we read a fun book that talks about movement from head to toe...called From Head To Toe by Eric Carle.

Students L.O.V.E to act this book out as it is read. They also love to chime in on the repetitive phrases, especially answering the question "Can you do it?" with a loud "I can do it!"

We discussed how we have all been blessed with healthy bodies that can move in many ways, realizing that not everyone in the world is physically able to do these things.

The story lesson lead into a great class book.

Download this book {here} for FREE!

Here are some of the entries by my students:

I am amazed at the variety of movements they came up with.
Check out the skipping ropes!
I love the hopscotch squares & numbers!
We had a light dusting of snow the morning we made this book.
{It has since melted, thank goodness.}

Needless to say, this book is a very popular choice right now in our classroom library!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

It's That Time of Year...

...student assessments

...report cards

...after-school school meetings

...during school meetings

...evening meetings

...plan a November all-school event

...twenty parent-teacher conferences

...lesson planning

...post something on this blog

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Art: Eric Carle Style

Here is an art activity to go along with Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, a book we've been using in class to correspond with our 5 Senses theme. This art activity was led by a parent volunteer/former teacher.

Last month my students covered a large white sheet of paper using two shades of brown paint. They proceeded to move the paint around using a variety of textured items. The sheets ended up like this:

Templates were traced onto the back of the paper: 2 hind legs, 2 front legs, a body, and a head.

Students cut out the pieces and arranged them to create brown bear.

They added some grass to the bottom of a sheet of paper

and glued their bears onto the new page

Using pastels, they added some details- eyes and a nose. They used extra scraps of the brown painted paper to make the bear's ears and tail.

Here are some of their creations

(some pictures are before the ears & tails were added, and some after)

 Bulletin board display:
Thank you Mrs. J! What a great display!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hearing...and Shopping for Antiques

This week's guided reading lesson featured Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? by Bill Martin Jr.  This book also coincides with November's 5 Senses theme, with its focus on the sense of hearing.

I have the characters of the story printed for use on a storyboard, which students use to sequence the story.
The pictures are from kizclub.com and can be found here.

The flannel board can be found at your local antique shop.
{Does anyone else even HAVE one of these anymore?}

We also used the pictures to graph our favourite characters from the story:
I'm feeling a little sorry for the main character...no love from my class :(

These Sound Jars are a fun way to reinforce the sense of sound.
Small items are placed in the containers, and students shake them and try to find the two matching sounds.

Here are the items in my containers:

The bottoms of the jars are colour-coded for self-checking
{aka cheating}:

For all you young people out there, these containers are called film cannisters. In the olden days they used to hold film. Film is something that was once used in cameras. Just Google it. They can be found at an antique store near you.

Another game that my students always love to play is
and it requires a tape recorder. A tape recorder is an ancient device used to play cassette tapes. Perhaps you could Google that too.

They may be found near the flannel boards and film cannisters at the antique store.

{On a side note, while I started this post fairly upbeat about sharing some great ideas about sound, I have finished this post feeling a little embarassed by the resources I'm using... but I am not jealous of you other teachers.
Now excuse me as I catch up on my blog-stalking...ooh, this looks interesting, a post about Smartboard apps....whatever that is...maybe I should Google it...}

Monday, November 14, 2011

Literacy Work Stations

Here are the literacy work stations that my class is working on for the next five-day rotation:

Letter Mazes
Students are working on letter mazes Ff through Jj from Education.com, which can be found here.

Sight Word Book
This round, the booklet is called A Fireman, featuring the new sight word a.
The book is from Hubbards Cupboard, and can be downloaded here. See here for the previous post that describes this activity in detail.

Letter Tiles~Making Colour Words
At this station, students practise building colour words, based on the characters from Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr.
The book Brown Bear also coincides with November's 5 Senses theme, with its focus on the sense of sight. 

Power Towers~Class Names
Inside the Power Tower tube are words printed on Dixie cups. Students stack the words they can read and see how high their tower can grow.
This idea was posted here, and is from teachertipster.com.

Class Name Word Searches
I went on the website puzzlemaker.com and created word searches that had my students' names as the words to find. One side of the sheet has the boys' names and the other has the girls' names.

These dot-to-dot activity pages make each of the characters from  Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr.
They can be found here.

Friday, November 11, 2011

I'm Feelin' The Heat!

What an enormous honour to receive the Blog On Fire Award!!!

Thank you Cheryl at Crayons & Curls!
And thanks for all your sweet comments-they always make my day!

It feels like Christmas came early, I am so excited!

OK, now to follow the rules. I have to tell 7 things about myself and then nominate 7 blogs for the award.

1) I have ALWAYS wanted to be a teacher.
Growing up, we had a play 'school' set up in our basement, with several old-style student desks that my parents got when my (real) school was getting rid of them. I had a chalkboard and workbooks. I had a {cow} bell to signal when school started and when it was recess time. {I still have that cow bell, displayed in my living room!}I taped paper slips into our books so that my 'students' could check them out of the library. My poor brother and sister were my students. I picked them up at their bus stops using the wagon...yes, I was the busdriver too!

I have no family members who are teachers, but I've known since Grade 1 that it was the job for me. My Grade 1 teacher wore high heels and used sticky tac and made the cutest charts to hang in the classroom. I thought she was beautiful and nice, and I wanted to be just like her!

2) If I was not a teacher, I would be a librarian. I have a crazy love of books and would be on Cloud 9 if I were surrounded by books all day long.

3) I have been married to my college sweetheart for 15 years. It's so hard to believe that we have been together for over 20 years--seriously, where did the time go?!

4) We have three great children, two girls and a boy. They are the light of my life.

5) When watching movies, yes I follow the plot, but I can't help myself...I also focus on the houses and how they are decorated. {I know I'm not alone here, check out the website Hooked On Houses}! My absolute fave movie house is  from Father Of The Bride. In fact, when our family grew out of our 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom house, we levelled it, and we rebuilt our home to be like that one!

6) I love so many things: photography, reading, interior design, Pinterest, gardening, shopping, blog-stalking...and of course my blog followers!

7) I am Canadian. Both sets of my grandparents came to Canada from The Netherlands. My dad was born there too. My husband's grandparents and parents are from the Netherlands as well.
Hup, Holland, Hup!

Now to nominate 7 blogs that are on fire--check them out!

These blogs have been my bread and butter since I discovered the blog world:

Blogs I'm lovin' that are "newer" to me:

Blogs I love because they lead me find to even MORE great blogs:

Feelin' HOT! HOT! HOT!
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