Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Are We in Trouble?

We all occasionally have to miss a day of school due to illness, workshops, or for personal matters.One of my pet peeves is when I come back and find out that my kids did not behave well for my substitute teacher.  Having substituted during my college years, I truly understand how very difficult that job is. I tried everything from work overload to threats to get my kids to behave themselves, and nothing seemed to work. I really can't tell you why kids go absolutely insane when they find out their teacher is away, but we all know they do.

For the last three years, I have offered a Reward Day to the best behaved class and the winner is chosen by the substitute teacher.  I usually let them choose from one of the class games I have on the whiteboard such as The Noun Game, Scrabble, Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader, etc. What's great is I can actually slide in some review and they don't even realize it!

Since I have started this practice of the Reward Day, I have received many complements on how "good my kids are" and  "what hard workers they are". Seriously, it's like a trip to Bizarro World! Try it! It really is great to come back to class and have the kids ask if they were the "best behaved" instead of "Are we in trouble?". 

Monday, March 4, 2013

More Interactive Notebooks

Today I have just a few pictures of how some of my notebook activities are coming along.  So far with language arts I have found that it is easier to just go page to page when you are reading a novel. Novels can go so fast that I had a few blank left side pages. With mini-lessons the left-side, right-side activities work the best. I guess it just depends on your preferences, and what resources you are using.

 I have purchased many quality reading guides from TPT at great prices. Some of my pictures are not flipped up or do not show all of the pages in the book in an effort to not step on any toes.

This has definitely been a learning process! My kids suggested that I write the page number on my handouts before I copy them, then if the pages don't get glued in immediately, or they are absent, students can still figure out where to put them. Genius!!! I will be compiling a list of their suggestions at the end of the year. I think they will have a lot to teach us!

I teach 7th, 8th, and 9th ELA so the pics are a little random.

Flocabulary lesson. Kids really like this site. Check it out if you haven't already!

Road-map to nonfiction book report activity.

A Diary of Anne Frank activity that I used post-it notes with. Prompt: imagine that Anne was not the only one who kept a Diary. Write a diary entry from the point of view of The different characters to the events that happened in the story. Event 1: Anne wakes up screaming (Mrs. Frank, Mr. Dussel)
Event 2: Mr. Van Daan is caught stealing food (Mrs. Frank, Mr. Frank). Event 3: Anne has a date in Peter's room (Peter, Mrs. Frank) Event 4. Mr. Dussel joins the group (Mr. Frank, Mr. Van Daan).

Characterization Activity

To Kill a Mockingbird reading guides. for these I temporarily stopped the "left side, right side"
and just went on to the next page.

Outsiders reading questions and venn diagram.

To Kill a Mockingbird map activity.

Urban Myths and Legends activity

Awesome Facebook activity created by Tracee Orman! Kids loved it! Her templets are high quality and I highly recommend them.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Kids Should See This!

Something a little different to get your kids writing. This is a very interesting website that has short educational videos.  They are science related but I think they would make good journal starters by having them write a response to what they just watched. They would also be a good filler for that class that has a few minuets left at the end. Just click the link below to take a peek.

Human Strength and Courage

Getting prepped to do a wrap-up to my Diary of Anne Frank unit with a quick research project. We are going to be reporting about genocide that is or has happened in recent history. I have been scouring the web in an attempt to reinforce our theme of human strength and courage and found a few photos i wanted to share.

The two items below are from http://beenflaggedoncraigslist.blogspot.com/ . This is one of my favorite blogs. The writer is fabulous and I get a lot of really funny and interesting articles to share with my kids. I highly reccommend that you check him out! Great stuff!!!

Pain is a temporary state, but if left unrelieved, becomes suffering.

Pain and suffering, whether physical or emotional, demand to be acknowledged—to be felt. 

How we deal with suffering clearly reveals the content of our character, 
and the resolve of our heart.