Thursday, July 21, 2016

Sentence Activity- Sentence RX

Teach Like a Pirate

This summer I read Teach Like a Pirate by Dave Burgess and let me tell you it's amazing! It gave me great ideas that I could use this year in my classroom to make learning exciting and fun. I would love to go to one of his workshops one day because his enthusiasm is contagious! This was an easy read and perfect for summer reading to get you fired up for the new year.

Student Engagement

Sentence RX

This past year I made an effort to create more engaging lessons and Teach Like a Pirate just made me more excited to teach them again and create new ones. One lesson we did this past year was Sentence RX. This lesson was for review and completed after we had done some work with editing sentences. This is a struggle all year for 3rd graders let me tell you! 

Editing Sentences Activity

I had the kids wait outside while I got everything set up. Luckily during this time one of my former students who is now in junior high came for a visit and helped. I bought the gloves and masks on Amazon and it came with so many that I'll have enough for this year too. I got 2 plastic table covers from Dollar Tree and split them in halves and covered the desks. I prepped the tables with everything they would need for the activity: glue sticks, scissors, pencils, gloves, masks, Rx pad, paper bandaids and small buckets to collect scraps. I also put lanyards with their "official" doctor information that they would wear. 

I greeted them at the door with my mask and stethoscope (from the Dollar Tree) and they knew right away they were in for some fun. They began working right away to save their patient: Sentence Sam. Every once in a while I played an ambulance sound that I found on Youtube. During that time they had to stop what they were doing and save another sentence "patient" by correcting the sentence that I was projecting on the screen. They had to rewrite the sentence correctly on a sheet of paper and then return to their main patient. If you'd like the powerpoint slideshow I used just click the picture.

It was fun to watch them because they took it so seriously and wanted to save all the patients. Ha! This was a really great activity and I heard lots of positive feedback from the kids. I did change some things that weren't working so that it will work out better this year. I created a file called Sentence Rx that includes everything we used for this activity. If you'd like to check it out just click on it. Have you read Teach Like a Pirate or tried out any of the actitivies? I'd love to hear about it!

Editing Sentences

Monday, July 18, 2016

Library Book Bin Labels

Do you switch your library book bin labels often? I seem to do that every year because my library changes so often with new books. I found these clear adhesive pockets in the Target dollar spot. 

So of course I needed new labels to fit the pockets. I created these simple labels for all of the series books in my library. I wanted a very neutral color so that it would go with my bright bins which are bright colors. I plan on adding number labels to the bins when the library is all set up so that students can put the books back easily. (The bins in this picture are actually individual student book bins.)

For the rest of the books that aren't in a series, I plan on organizing them like you would find in the bookstore or library. I'm thinking these spine labels by Molly Malloy would be perfect for that!

If you'd like these labels that fit the Target clear pockets, I made them editable to share and you can get them by clicking the picture. The fonts I used are KG Second Chances Solid and KG Alphabet Regurgitation. I'd love to hear how you set up your library. I'm always looking for new ideas.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Flexible Seating- Brainstorming

Now that the 4th of July is over, it's getting a little closer to back to school for me. At the end of the year we have to put all of our movable furniture in the middle of the room. So I went in today to start the process of making my room flexible seating friendly.

This is the first year I will be doing flexible seating and am ready for the challenge. Thankfully I have a couple of people at my school that are also trying it out so we'll learn together! 

My goal today was to move furniture. First I set up my small group table with these stools from 5 Below. They seem sturdy but I will be enforcing strict rules on how to use them. This table will also be an option for students to work at throughout the day. (I just need to figure out an easy way of taking off those darn stickers on the top of the stools.)

Then I set up this round table that the custodian so nicely put in my room after I inquired about it. I also got the canvas chairs from 5 Below. 

I had my computers on top of a big rectangular table so I moved the computers onto student desks. The table is quite large but for now will be my floor table after I remove the legs. I set up 3 desks to create a space for kids that just want a regular student desk and chair. I'm thinking of making it a group of 4 but that will take up more space. I am planning on raising the desks in the front of the this picture to create a standing table. However I'm hoping to find another smaller rectangular table. 

So that's where I'm at in my flexible seating brainstorming. I am also planning on having kids choose to work on the floor and all that is needed is a clipboard or some type of lap desk. I hope I gave you some ideas for your classroom! I'd love to hear what you're doing if you're doing flexible seating.