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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Thinking about 2014-15


Can't believe how fast this year flew by-- It was a record in my book! The end of the year is always bittersweet but it is nice to have a change of pace, revamp activities and take a breath.... It will be over before we know it and we'll be back in the swing of a busy year!  I don't know about you but I cannot get school out of my mind during the summer. Next year I will be teaching a 1/2 multiage! It will be quite the undertaking but I am excited for a new challenge! One perk of multiage is that I will have the same group of 1st graders for two years-- however, this means a lot more planning to keep things fresh and engaging. One activity I have done since my first year is our class time capsule--my 2nd graders absolutely LOVE it! They ask multiple times when we are going to un-dig our capsule and they are always floored to see how much they grew over the course of a year. I want to be able to keep the tradition of a time capsule, so created a booklet. The information is the same in both so we can see how we change over the course of the two years but a different format keeps it new.... at least I hope! 
Depending on the age of your kiddos you could cut and assemble prior or let then try once they fill each page out.  It may require a bit of patience but I love when the work is fully "theirs." Inside the time capsule I also include a string to represent their height, a photograph, a hand tracing & letter writing page (both included) The booklet will print well on white copy paper or you can print on colored as pictured to add some spice. In the past I have had kids decorate a paper bag or decorate a piece of construction paper and wrap it around a paper towel roll. Then we pack them away in a waterproof tub and "bury it" with the help of our wonderful custodian.   Here is the original link to the time capsule packet or you can find the booklet here! Have a blast-- would love to hear how you used this in your classroom! 

Included in both packs you will find:
Cover Sheet
Portrait Page
About Me Page
Favorites Page
Goal Page
Letter to self page
Handprint page

Do Not Open Tag  



Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Rocks & Minerals!

A long time ago I shared these tid-bits on my parent classroom blog and pinned them...it was my first go at "pinning" and it was fun to see my pin shared among others. We did these same activities again this year during my rocks and minerals unit. 



My kiddos always love making these Earth representations out of clay. They are always in awe when we cut down the center and reveal the layers. I find that this really solidifies the idea that the earth is made up of several layers and helps them identify each layer. 


We also made rock cycle bracelets to remember the 3 types of rocks (Sedimentary, Metamorphic & Igneous) and to help us understand how heat, pressure & erosion play into the transformation of rocks. 
 Shiny brown Sedimentary
Orange- Magma/heat transforming rocks
Black- Igneous rock as it cools and hardens
Blue-weather and erosion breaking down into sediments  
Light brown- represents Metamorphic rocks

We learned this fun song (to the tune of row, row, row your boat) 
SEDIMENTARY Rock

Has been formed in layers 
Often found near water sources 
With fossils from decayers 

Then there's  IGNEOUS Rock
Here since Earth was born
MOLTEN lava, cooled and hardened 
That's how it is formed 

These two types of rocks 
Can also be transformed 
With pressure, heat and chemicals 
METAMORPHIC they'll become. 


Here is a link to an interactive Rock Cycle that we used on our whiteboard to better understand each part. 



Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Martin Luther King FREEBIE Literacy Pack!



I have to admit I didn't realize we had no school this coming Monday....time is flying by! Here are a few activities I have done in the past to celebrate the life of Martin Luther King Jr. and talk about the important role he played in American history. Does your school have a subscription to Brain Pop Jr.? My kids and I love it! It is a great way to introduce a topic or reinforce current learning. You can sign up for a free trial to try it out-- The video is a great way to educate students the life and impact of Martin Luther King Jr. We also do an activity with two different colored eggs to talk about equality. It always sparks meaningful conversation among my kiddos and a lasting impact about the importance of treating everyone with respect and dignity. Check out these links for other ideas! Also check out my literacy pack with activities to engage your learners! Would love to hear how you use it in your classroom!



Martin Luther King Jr.: Everything You Need | Scholastic.com