Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Creepy and Spooky Wordless Wednesday

I love this time of year! This week we are gearing up for Halloween by learning about Nocturnal and Diurnal animals - aka all things that are "creepy and spooky". These owls are one of my favorite art projects. I love to see how each student interprets the exact same directions!

 This guy is a rebel! He is "floating" in the air instead of sitting on a limb!
 We discussed one owl that looked like he had ears but really they were just feathers. I love to see what they pick up on!
This one if from one of my OCD kids! He said he could NOT mix the colors! :)

What are you guys doing to celebrate fall and Halloween? Comment below and then join Miss DeCarbo and let us know!

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Friday, October 10, 2014

I am so excited to join up with Doodle Bug Teaching for Five for Friday! It has been a while!!

 This week started with an amazing weekend with my two favorite people, my nieces, Kylie and Kinsley!

Saturday night we went to Birmingham, Al for Boo at the Zoo. It was wonderful! We had a great time and made the best memories.

 Kylie with the fabulous Ms. Anne - our personal tour guide - and Uncle Avery
 Me and my mini me, Kinsley
 Sunday the girls, Avery (the hubs), my mom and I got to see my BFF, also known as my "pretend sister" to the girls, Amanda and her family baptize her 9 month old daughter, Arabella. I am so happy we were in our home town to be able to attend. Our families are so close we might as well be related!
My sweet "pretend" family! I hate I don't have a better picture!!!

 In class this week, we have started our farm unit. I have been very impressed with what all my kiddos already know about the farm and farm animals.

Our Farmer Schema Chart

We graphed our favorite farm animals - I have a class full of horse lovers!
Lettering Delights has super cute farm animal clipart, fonts, and more! I used farm animals from the "On the Farm" Collection
Click on the giraffe under my "Makes Me Smile" section to learn more about this amazing site!
We even brought farm animals into our math workshops! I found the cutest math game from TPT {here}! My kiddos LOVED it!! They rolled the dice "dot cube", found the animal the number correlated with and then covered one number for that animal. So much fun. I mean who doesn't love to play with the "dot cube"!


 In reading we watched the classic Three Little Pigs and then read The True Story of the Three Little Pigs and made a venn diagram of the two.

My kids LOVED hearing the "true story". We then graphed which story we thought was really true!
(Love the fonts? Check out Lettering Delights!!! Just click on the giraffe!)

Click the pic to go to Amazon to get your own copy!

And just for fun we ended talking about the three little pigs by reading The Three Little Wolves and The Big Bad Pig!

Next week we are continuing the farm and will be reading Jack and the Bean Stalk and using {this} supper cute writing activity!

What have you been up to this week? Leave a comment and then head over to Doodle Bugs Teaching to let us know or just check out what other amazing teachers have been doing this week!

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Friday, October 3, 2014

Discovery Education & Our Five Senses

So I promised the blog post a LONG time ago but since then my world has turned upside down in very exciting ways that I cannot wait to share with you a little later on. (No, not pregnant - yet!) I hope this finds you all well and enjoy your new kiddos!

Have you heard of Discovery Education? If not you are missing out, and you must be fairly new to my blog (older posts here)! 

DE is an amazing resource that I am so lucky to be provided by my school system. One of my all time favorite parts of DE (there are sooooo many) is the common core lesson plans. I taught a few of them last year, but made a point this year to put them on my scope and sequence. These lessons are amazing! They include links to video and image files from DE, worksheets, digital books and many more resources. Not to mention they list all the common core standards you are teaching!!! 

This past week we started talking about our five senses. This is something in the past I have taught near Christmas along with gingerbread men. However, since starting to teach AMSTI (Alabama Math Science Technology Initiative) science kits, I now need to teach five senses at the beginning of the year. So I began looking for fun ways to get my kids interested and was so excited to find a great three day lesson already done for me on Discovery Education. 

I took this lesson and added to it to make a Project Based Learning lesson. I wanted to show not only how amazing the common core lessons from DE are but also how easy they are to add to and cover an amazing amount of standards.

Day 1
I asked the essential question for the lesson, which was provided in the DE lesson, (one less thing to come up with on my own!): 
How do we use our senses to learn about the world around us?
This lead to a really great discussion. Some of my kiddos knew about the five senses and some did not. Then there were some kids that knew what they were but not what they were called. I loved when those students figured out they actually knew more than they thought. Another thing I love about the DE lesson is that they give you a list of questions that you can ask during discussions that are great for bringing in ELA standards. These helped me lead the discussion to hit all five of the senses. 

After the discussion, I told the kids we were going to watch a video of Little Red Ridding Hood and I wanted them to think about how Red used her five senses. After the movie we reviewed the plot (questions provided with the lesson to cover science and ELA standards) and about all the ways Red used her five senses in the story. 

Next we re-watched the part where Red realizes the wolf is disguised as her grandmother. We made a chart of what Red noticed, the wolf's reasoning, and the sense.

To end the lesson for the day we read one of my favorite five senses books, My Five Senses by Aliki. Click the book to head over to Amazon and get a copy for yourself!

Day 2
We looked at our chart from the day before and discussed each sense and then labeled our five senses anchor chart:
This was a last minute find on Pinterest {here}. I made labels to laminate but they were not ready until late Friday so we just used sticky notes. 

We then talked about how important our senses are to us and how different our life would be without any of our senses. We closed our eyes and tried to write our name and then a few tried to find the bathroom. We did a lot of giggling but realized just how hard it would be not if we could not see.  We then watched a video from DE about a little boy, Tristan, that is deaf. When we discussed the video (again questions provided that cover not only science but ELA standards as well) I was touched by how much empathy the kids had for Tristan. We then talked about how Tristan was just like them in a lot of ways. I passed out the DE worksheet for them to write/draw about one way they are like Tristan.

Day 3
This was a short day due to our schedule. We reviewed our senses with our anchor charts.  We watched the short video segment from Discovery Education: Your Five Senses and the world around you.

My sweet teacher neighbor gave me an amazing and simple flip book to make with the kiddos. They drew which part of their body was important for each sense.

Then we moved into our AMSTI weather unit. We used our five senses to go outside and observe the weather. This lead us to talk about how scientist mostly just use FOUR of the five senses and how dangerous it is to taste things when we are being scientist! I sure did not want to have to write a letter to a parent to explain why their child ate dirt or licked the sidewalk. :)

Day 4
We started this lesson with the question, "How can we use all our senses at one time?". I had a lot of great responses and most were centered around food - which is where I wanted it to go. Then we popped and ate popcorn and filled in this anchor chart. (From Pinterest of course! here)

To wrap up our lesson I asked the essential question again. How do we use our senses to learn about the world around us? This time they wrote/drew about how they use their senses to learn about places they go or things they do. (part of the DE lesson)

I gave them the prompt: My senses help me learn about my world when I ___. They thought about a place they could go or something they could do. We then met on the carpet and shared our writing.

Just FYI in four days, I covered the following standards:

Other Books We Read:
 (Click on pictures to go to Amazon)

Link to my Kindergarten Anchor Charts Pinterest Board {here}

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Friday, September 5, 2014

Five for Friday!

Happy Friday! I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to share with you five things that happened this week!
This week we started our three week unit, "All About Me". This first week we spent learning all about our five senses.  Here is our anchor chart that the kids have been labeling all week. The labels are in the library to be laminated (nothing like finding a fun idea on Pinterest last minute!!) so we have just been using sticky notes!

To introduce the Five Senses, I used a Common Core in the Classroom lesson from Discovery Education. My Five Senses: How They Help Me Learn About the World is an amazing three day lesson that really helped my students understand the importance of our senses. Using the wolf from the fairytale, Little Red Riding Hood , I introduced the five senses to my kiddos. They were HOOKED! We then watched different video clips, read books about each sense and did a lot of whole group and independent writing to explore how our senses help us learn about the world around us. I plan to do a more in-depth post about this over the weekend!

This week we also began our AMSTI Science Weather Kit. Before we became scientist though, we had to brainstorm exactly what a scientist does. Here is our super cute anchor chart that will hang on our science board all year!

Our first lesson on weather began with a book by one of my favorite author/illustrators, Jim Arnosky, Rabbits and Raindrops. I love his books and so do the kids!  In theory we would have contrasted our weather with the rabbits but since the weather was exactly the same, we had a great time comparing them. My kiddos fell in love with being a scientist and observing the weather. For the first time in three weeks, they were ALMOST quiet! :)

Later we discussed different types of weather that we have here on the Gulf Coast and graphed our favorite kind! As hot as it has been the past few weeks, I don't think I blame them for liking cold weather best!

  This week we have begun our Counting Jar morning work. Counting jar is part of AMSTI Math from the Terc Investigations math book. We have PE first thing so there is not a lot we can get done in the short amount of time so we do our counting jar. The kids come in and they have a counting basket on their table. In the basket there is a bowl of buttons, four empty containers, sticky notes and counting manipulatives. The students count the buttons, create a counting basket containing the same amount, and then write the numeral (if they can at this point) and draw a picture representation of the number. The students post their sticky notes on our class counting jar. After finishing my morning work, I walk around and check their baskets. This has worked out great! We are still working on working quietly and independently but it is going really well!

 We are also starting Daily Data. Right now it is more like weekly data but (fingers crossed) it will become daily soon. Each day there will be a question for students to answer in the form of a graph. Our first question is below. We had a great discussion about what all this chart could tell us. I love the last sentence. "If you put 9 boys and 9 girls together, that is like 9+9=18." WOO HOO!!!

What amazing and fabulous things have you done this week? Leave a comment and then check out all the other Five for Fridays from Doodle Bugs Teaching!

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