Monday, March 31, 2014

Happy April Fool's Day

I'm linking up with Farley for this month's currently. I can not BELIEVE it's April 1st already.




I'm also going to share with you some of my favorite activities for April Fools. 



Have you seen the lirpaloof?  This is one of my most favorite activities along with the fake spelling test.  I am so excited for tomorrow. There are so many fun pranks to use in the elementary classroom.  Do you have a favorite April Fool's day joke or do you skip it altogether?  I happen to love it because my uncle used to always get me when I was a little girl. I have very fond memories of my sweet Uh-Uh. 

Last year, I was really disappointed that I couldn't do the awesome POP spelling quiz from Mrs. Bainbridge because I looped with my first graders. Well this year I'm ready to bring back the tradition.  

Also, sweet Denise from Sunny Days had the perfect lirpaloof activity. OH.MY.WORD... I couldn't contain the laughter last year. My sweet second graders were all waving their carrots proudly singing "lirpaloof". You see we were very busy trying to catch a glimpse of this rare and elusive bird that feeds on carrots. You definitely need to give this little activity a try! It is a HOOT! THANK YOU DENISE and MRS. BAINBRIDGE for all the fun and laughter. 


Getting our carrots ready for lirpaloof searching







"Lirpaloof, oh sweet lirpaloof" 


So if you're in need of some April Fool's Day activities, grab the freebie from Denise by clicking here



Mrs. Bainbridge's April Fool's Day Spelling Test is also a keeper. Check out her post from a couple of years ago. 




HAPPY APRIL FOOL'S DAY HA HA HA !

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Super Improver Wall

I'm linking up with my great friend Tara to share some things I've put together this past week. Nothing fancy but very effective! 





Monday Made It #1
This is my current AR goal tracker. Each child has their own individual goal and they move once they make progress. I tried the vertical chart with clips but now I'm just using these FREE ones from here. I just laminated everything and used sticky tack. It seems to really motivate the students and they have no idea that some students have goals of 18 points while others may only need 4 points. I love that this makes the contest fair. They are in perfect competition with themselves. 


Instasticks Free download
I printed two slides per page and they are smaller circles :)




Monday Made It #2
The Super Improver Story by WBT-
Two students have a foot race. The faster student wins and she gets an "A" from the teacher. The slower student loses and gets an "F". Every day, they have the same race. Every day, the result is the same. After a while, the fast student loafs and the slow student quits. Of course! The grading system is unfair and doesn't motivate either kid! The teacher creates a new race. Now, the fast student only gets an "A" when she beats her previous best time. Same with the slow student. Now, each student always runs as hard as possible!




Have you heard of the Super Improver wall by Whole Brain Teaching? I needed something to help a special friend so I watched an awesome video that convinced me to give it a try. Basically a Super Improver Wall is a system that is purely positive. It's a concept that is fair because students have a perfect competitor... themselves. It helps students to visually see their behavior and academic goals. Students are rewarded with stars for showing improvements in both academics and behavior. Every child has their own personal goal so it’s an individualized plan.


Students can earn stars for many things because everyone can make progress. Students are striving to make individual improvements in any classroom activity. It might be increasing a grade on a test or remembering to be prepared for class. It can be even little improvements such as neater handwriting or staying in their seat throughout the day. The improvements are truly endless and differentiated for each student .

When students show improvement, they receive a star on their name card. 10 stars= advance to the next level. There are 10 levels in the system so children would need 100 improvements to make it to the top level. When a child meets a goal,  I am just coloring in a star on their card. I think only 2-4 students actually make it to the top level by the end of the year. If they do.... you make a huge deal! I plan on putting their picture on my wall for my future students to see.



My favorite part of the system is it challenges every kid at every level. It encourages students to go beyond their personal best. They can’t get lazy because they have personal records to beat. This system allows every student an equal chance at success. I’m noticing that with my high achieving kids I’m setting more academic goals. It’s really caused them to become motivated in meeting their goals in subject areas. I highly recommend watching the entire video right here. Do you use the SIW? I'd love to see how you use it in your room.


Happy St. Patrick's Day

Looking for a fun St. Patrick's Day treat? We made some leprechaun pudding to help us try to catch that wee little mischief- maker.

Ingredients
1 can of crushed pineapples
1 box of pudding (pistachio or banana cream)
1 container of cool whip
I cup of marshmallows















Friday, March 14, 2014

Five for Friday


I'm joining in the party to share some pictures of our week! Thanks Doodle Bugs Teaching for hosting such a fun weekly party.

The first graders performed the Interplanetary Jammin' musical. It was a big hit with the parents. I was so proud. Just curious... how many teachers do you have on a grade level? We have 9 first grade teachers so our musical was spilt up into two different nights. 







We had a special visitor all week leaving us clues and treats. We tried really hard to trap him but no luck. I used this wonderful packet to teach inferring. I *highly* recommend this for inferencing skills. We can't wait to see what happens on Monday.




I tried to blur so I don't give away too much. 



Bee Oreos from Lucky the Leprechaun 



Our trap to try and catch Lucky.



We shared why we are lucky! I loved looking at their cute responses. 






I'm trying out a new behavior system called the Super Improver Wall by WBT. I'll be blogging about it this weekend. It's all about setting goals for children and recognizing their improvements. I also do something similar for AR. Each student has their own individual goals.









Spring Break is definitely here in my hometown but just not for me! Our spring break is one week away. Luke Bryan was at my husband's beach store this past week. I'm loving his new album. 


Check out the spring break madness!



I'm off to eat dinner with the family! I'll be back later this weekend for some fun new ideas.


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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Oh the Places You'll Go







How do you celebrate Read Across America Day? Some years I go all out and others years I keep it pretty simple. The one thing we ALWAYS have is guest readers. Some even dress up and the children LOVE this day! In the past, we’ve also spelled words with Grinch glue, tried green eggs and ham, and even went on a field trip to a Dr. Seuss play.  


                      


Luckily this year we had some fun things planned. First we had the local high school drama club perform a pantomime. The kids were mesmerized. You'd be surprised at the support you can receive if you just ask and coordinate. Thankfully we had a sweet intern arrange for the high school to perform for all of K and 1st.


We also paraded around the school to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday. First grade each chose a Dr. Seuss book and dressed like the characters or theme from the story. The rest of the school came out to watch and cheer. The onlookers were encouraged to cheer and boy they did! I had some of my first graders giving high fives and trying to through out Mardi Gras beads. Everyone seemed to really enjoy our little parade around campus. It was such a fun time. We can't wait to participate again next year.







My class chose the book Oh, the Places You’ll Go! We each wore a shirt from another place. We had globes taped on our backs and held signs from our "place."





Here are some other fun ideas
Sleep Book- Wear pajamas
The Cat in the Hat- Make hats and bow ties
Fox in Socks- Fox masks and crazy socks
There’s a Wocket in my Pocket- wear handmade pockets out of construction paper or fabric
500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins- wear crazy hats
Happy Birthday To You- birthday hats, balloons, and noise makers
Horton Hears a Who- wear elephant hats and carry the flower

I've also found some awesome songs for Dr. Seuss week. I'll leave you with these fun songs.






Vancemo has tons of great books made into fun songs. The students had fun singing along to all of them.


How did you celebrate Dr. Seuss this week?

Leave me a comment and I'll send my new behavior beads to 3 lucky winners.