Always shine by using all your talents and skills!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Goodbye 2011

Magnetic Foods

Are you a Cornflakes eater? If so, you are eating a cereal that is magnetic!
I did this last year...the students and I were amazed!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Goods and Services Poem

Goods or Services Poem

Teacher (occupation)
Busy, happy (2 adjectives)
Writing, modeling, reading (3 verbs)
Teachers help other people (4 words to tell say what occupation does)
Service (good or service)

Just found this!

Cute video on You Tube for 3 states of matter :)


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Getting Caught Up

So break started Dec. 23rd, and I have been to school twice. Unfortunately, it is so cold in my classroom that I could not work long. I did not want to check the thermostat; did not want to see how low the liquid was! I thought about bringing my plants home, but I am hoping that being on the window ledge allows them to get enough west sunlight. (must admit, it is akward hearing the recess/lunch bell ring, and no one is running in the hall or trying to transition the fastest!)
Oh..when I was at school and on a few blogs, I saw the above...perhaps that can be a tatoo on all of us!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Band Aid or Lasso

Band aid or Lasso?
Do you have students who use apostrophes for everything that ends in s?I remind my kids to think if the apostrophe works as a band aid or a lasso. If it doesn't, it's not needed. I don't claim the band aid story. My students gave it to me, but it sure is clever! They told me the apostrophe is like a band aid in contractions. Since the two words were squashed into one, some of the letters popped out, and the band aid is needed to heal the spot where the letters popped out. I do claim the lasso story. When teaching possessives, I make sure the kids know the word "possess" means to own or have something. I'll get into stories of rodeos, telling them how cowboys throw their lasso and claim their cattle. I show them pictures I've googled of cowboys and lassos. In a possessive, the noun with the 's owns the following item. I even get into turning the apostrophe into a lasso and circling the next word. They practice this on their whiteboards and love to draw the lassos. Naturally, if the word they're thinking about doesn't need a band aid or a lasso, they shouldn't be using an apostrophe.
We know how these little stories help the children remember. After 34
years of teaching, I have lots of little stories and "tricks up my sleeve".
Recent brain research shows us these little stories help make the connections in
the brain so the children can build their knowledge. Plus, it's fun! (copied from another teacher)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Owl pellets

We learned about food chains, animal diets, predator/prey relationships and then had the wonderful opportunity to break open an owl pellet and hunt for bones! What a learning experience! One student found a mouse skull. All but one, wanted to take their bones home!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Elf Glyph

I absolutely adore and crave glyphs...and so do my students! Today we created an Elf Glyph! Over and over I heard students asking each other what color they had to color a section and then they try to persuade the others to color that section as they were! The responses to each others comments and suggestions to change how they were coloring a section were interesting! This is the first class I have had who have tried to influence others to change how they were giong to color a section. Next we analyzed our gyphs and talked about the results!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

MAKING Landforms

We created landforms with our bodies. Here are pictures of a river, plain, and an island.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Topic, Main Ideas, Details, etc.

I found a beautiful season graphic organizer to help us organize our thoughts and ideas about a topic, the main idea and the details to support the main idea. Additionally the graphic organizer had a space for the conclusion or summary sentence. Here is an example:

Monday, December 12, 2011

New Technology Games Added

WOW...we now have more strategic, academic, and fun games to choose from. I keep finding valuable websites that offer students the opportunity to practice their math facts and strategies.
Three sites in particular:

Friday, December 9, 2011


Creativity + Endless Possibilities= Wordle

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Starting a Christmas Tree Ornament

LET the decorations begin! We have started to get the ornament juices flowing and the crafts are beginning to spread across the back counter! My students are so eager and precious when they are delicately sprinkling on the glitter, adding the sticks, and painting the bulbs!

BUT...we still patiently wait to celebrate the true meaning of the season!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

84 blogs

WOW...I'm now following 84 blogs! It is hard to believe last year I didn't even understand blogs or have one, now I two and can't keep up with the many phenomenal educator bloggers! I'm inspired to add videos, pictures, etc. but time has been my biggest hurdle...and of course...teaching :-) I continue to be encouraged by other educator bloggers to challenge myself to add more gadgets and gizmos to my blog! :-)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Thank You Firefighters!

This weekend our village had a massive fire. 5 downtown business were effected by the fire. Slowly they are coming down right before our eyes-literally-we can see it happening out of my 2nd level classroom windows! Our village will be forever changed, on part of our history is now lost (except for photos, memories, etc.).
Today we honored the firefighters by writing them a thank you letter! My 2nd graders composed letters that made me tear. "Thank you for your service and your bravery." "What would we do with out you?" There letters were compelling!!!
Now, we move on! Now, we move forward! Now, we assist in redeveloping our village!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Santa needs a new suit

After dsguising a turkey so it would not be hunted for Thanksgiving, my students were eager to decorate or complete another activity where they get to "hide" someone or something. After reading a few blogs and searching for an activity, I came upon, the book Santa Needs A New Suit and then found a teacher that completed an activity with her students based on the book. They needed to give Santa a new suit. Well, we now have read the book and my students are happily designing a new suit for Santa (some clever ideas are in the works).

Friday, December 2, 2011

Family Journals

This year I have implemented Family Journals. Each Thursday 2nd Graders journal to their parents/relatives. They tell their parents about their week-highlights/star events of the past 5 days. They take their journals home and their parents correspond back to them!
It is an amazing and educational communication log between student/parent!