Monday, March 21, 2011

Projector! Virtual Field Trip

Can I please tell you how excited I am that I have a PROJECTOR in my classroom now! 
I know some of you are thinking whats the big deal I have a smart-board! To go from nothing to a projector is so fun. Our school does have a smart-board in the computer lab which I try to use often. Now having a projector in our classroom gives us so many more opportunities to learn in a different way. First up is a virtual field trip through the woods. Our school using Houghton Mifflin for reading. We started theme 8 week 1. The story is called, The Forest and on the HM website they have a link for a virtual field trip. 

Which I'm ecstatic to use in MY classroom on the projector for each little kiddo to get to watch. To go along with our field trip I created some "notebooks" for them to take notes on things they see and learn during the video. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Night Before St. Patricks Day

It's time to "set" those traps! I read this story to my students and then they put there traps around the class room and prepare to "catch" a leprechaun.

When the kiddos leave I magically turn into the "leprechaun" remember they are sneaky and like to leave messes. I leave some sparkle string all over each students trap so they know that he was there. I also mess up the classroom by turning things over, stacking things on top of each other, and other silly things the leprechaun might have done. 

Most importantly I leave a note from the leprechaun on each students desk. This note I found on a cute blog last year and have not been able to find it again so I will be making my own. 

I also left gold chocolate coins on each students desk last year which I purchased again. Then I saw The Teacher Wifes  idea with the YUMMY keebler cookies and creating the hats so I have to do this as well.

Happy day before St. Patricks Day!


There are some AMAZING giveaways. I unfortunately can't sleep so I decided to sign myself up for these great giveaways.

1. What The Teacher Wants is giving away $100, you heard me $100 bucks to The Container Store! WAHOO!

2. Thirst For First is teaming up to giveaway The Inspired Apple's "Lets Get Popping" with adjectives lesson. I'm really excited to do this activity!

3. Ms. Durning is giving away $10 bucks to amazon!

4. Primary Graffiti has teamed up with Doodle Bugs Paper for a giveaway! Have you seen her cute customized stamps! All of her stuff is great! Hurry go sign yourself up!

5. The Teacher Wife is giving away a $10 gift card to one of my FAVORITE store... Barnes & Noble sign up !

P.S. I can't figure out how to add these ladies ADORABLE buttons. I copied and pasted it into my post and have tried clicking buttons and searching the internet for answers. If you have the answer I'd love to hear! Thanks!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Money, Money, Money! $$$

In my classroom one of my incentives is classroom coins. I do this for many different reasons. The most important reason being that they will be able to identify and count coins. They get to use their coins at the end of every month in our classroom store where they can buy different items. In order to buy these items they have to count and identify the coins. 

This is a great way for me assess their learning and a great way for them to apply themselves. They LOVE it! I have a new item each month. Last month glow in the dark bugs from the dollar spot at Target were the hot high price item. 

Another major factor in this is they have to earn the money. They have multiple ways to earn money. One of the easiest things is to bring their take home folder back each morning. Then throughout the day I give out coins to students on task and working hard. I introduce this on the first day of school and each student gets there very own "wallet" to keep their coins in. In the picture below is the wallet. I use a small folder and add the clipart with their name. 

(ps. it was hat day in this picture)

 I attached a PDF of the coins that I use if you are interested. I copied, cut, and laminated them. One important thing to know is I start out using ONLY pennies, then add dimes, then nickels, and last quarters. We have currently started using nickels this month. 

Here is a copy of the coins that I use. Click Here for the coin PDF ws.

Below is a poem that I teach to my students when I introduce money at the beginning of the year. I found this on the internet and made a work sheet for it. I also use hand motions to describe some of the coins.

This is one of my favorite math activities that I do with my students. They have a lot of fun with it as well. I give each student a "money bag" with different amounts of coins in them. They first write their estimate on the paper and then are able to dump out the coins and apply themselves. 

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Leprechaun Traps!

One of my favorite things about the month of march is having my students make leprechaun traps. On March 1st I send home the ws below. This idea came to me from my mentor teacher from student teaching.  It was so exciting to hear how the kids were working on their trap and spending time with parents, siblings, or friends to create it! The night before St. Patricks Day I have the students "set" their traps before they leave for the day. Then I "mess" up the classroom because leprechauns are naughty and like to misbehave. The Leprechaun leaves them a note in the classroom with a golden coin (chocolate candy purchased from Winco bulk section). It makes for a very exciting day! Click HERE to print your very own ws for your students.

Here are a few pictures of some traps my students last year made. They are so fun and cute!!!