Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

I am linking up with Miss DeCarbo for...

Why I haven't done this before is crazy!! I love seeing all of the pictures and great ideas shared! So here is my picture  are my 3 pictures and question for you!! First time in linky and I break the rule:)

I made the QR code football cards for some Superbowl fun. The kids had to make the amount asked on the card. I used  a money helper mat from Ashley at Schroeder Shenanigans because some of my kids still are confusing the nickel and quarter. Once they recorded their total on the recording sheet they used their iPad to check the answer on the QR code. On the answer sheet I had made a check box with correct or incorrect. If they got it right when they scanned for the answer they checked the correct box. If they were incorrect they had to go back and recount their coins to find their mistake. They loved this and were so engaged. I asked them later when we met back at the rug what they thought about this activity. They loved the QR codes and they loved the incorrect and correct boxes. 

Do you use QR codes in your classroom? What other ways do you incorporate QR codes into your lessons? I would love to hear!!!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

101 Day

Today was our 101st day of second grade! Since the 100th day of school is a big deal in kinder and first I decided about 10-12 years ago to 101 Day. Over the years I have changed from year to year the types of activities that we do with the number 101. One year we did 101 activities. They were all sealed in individual envelopes. The kids loved it. Other years we rotated through stations. The one thing that we always do and is a big hit...the kids dress up to look like they are 101 and I dress up like I am 7 or 8!!! It is so much fun! I can not believe how creative the kids are! Here are some of my kids from today!!


Had to get the side view of her wig!!! Hysterical!!

I had 2 boys dress up as little old ladies! They are two of my hard working quiet boys! I thought it was awesome that they rocked it as little old ladies!! My favorite of the day was my two little quiet shy girls. In our reading rotations they were hamming it up...

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Sunny Sunday and Sugar

It is January 25th. The middle of winter time here in California except today was absolutely beautiful! The sun was out and I was actually sweating on my walk! I love warm weather, but this is now the second January in a row where we are having extremely warm weather for this time of year. I was hoping we would get some rain to help us get out of this drought, but it is not looking good!

So of course with the warm weather comes the drive in the car with the windows down, the panoramic roof slide back, and Maroon 5's song Sugar blaring on the stereo. Did I think I was cool?? Absolutely!!!! LOL! I am driving down the parkway on my way to the store and I have Mr. Levine singing his Sugar song!! Could life be any better??? Only if he was in the passenger seat singing the song to me!!!

These were two freebies that I uploaded from last year! Thought I would put them out there again. I let the kids use M and M's for the Superbowl Subtraction and conversation hearts for Sweet Subtraction. Enjoy and Happy Monday!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Day 5 of Insanity and An Updated Time Unit

So I finished day 5 of Shaun T.'s Insanity Max 30!! Today was a killer. There were not very many breaks at all and I may have participated in some screaming of some not so nice words!!! Thank you Shaun T. for pushing me when I felt like giving up.

I must say that this short week was a great week! The morning rotations are going strong and I really feel like the kids are making some improvements. 

Just a quick peek at the kids busy at work in some of their rotations. I am so proud of them.
I just updated my Excuse Me...What Time Is It? unit. Would love to give a few away. Leave your email and I will pick a followers later tonight!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Congrats, More on My Organization, and Insanity Max 30

I survived day 2 of Shaun T.!!! 
I am loving Insanity Max 30!! It literally kicks your booty! The best part is that it is only 30 minutes.  I do love to workout, but doing it  on my own gets really boring at times. I can run for days or do any other cardio, but when it is time for this girl to to the weights I do not push myself like I need to. Put me in a Kickboxing, Tight and Tone, or Body Pump class and I will push myself like no other. So having Shaun T. in my living room pushing me to my limits with his Insanity Max 30 is just what I need right now!!!

Debbie, Melanie, and Emily. Please email me and let me know which unit you want!!

So as promised I do have a few pictures today of my organization. As I had mentioned yesterday, I have revamped my morning language arts block. I realized I was not getting enough small group time with my students so over break I redid my morning block. We are finishing week 3 on the schedule and I must admit...both teacher and kids are extremely happy!!

So this is my rotation board. It is on my front whiteboard. I used Reagan Tunstall's Learn acronym and adjusted terms for my class. The "L" stands for loving technology. The "E" stands for enjoy a book. The "A" stands for attention to writing. The "R" stands for read with teacher. The "N" stands for new words. I then put picture icons below to remind them what they are.  Our rotations are 20 minutes long and each group does 4 rotations so I can meet with 4 groups. I do not meet with my 2 highest groups during this time. I meet with them on Tuesday and Thursday for a 30 minute block.

I start each group with our Vowel Sounds book from
  Reagan Tunstall's Flipping For Phonics Flip Books

Then we do some sort of decoding and blending activity. We finally finish with a leveled book I have specifically picked for each group. It is amazing the improvements I have seen in just a little over 2 weeks. With my 2 highest groups we have just finished reading the Big Wave by Pearl S. Buck. It is about a tsunami that destroys a Japanese fishing village. Right now these students are working on a video book review and a How to Surive a Tsunami video. 

I can't tell you how fast my morning goes. 

I know this post is getting extremely long so I won't go into all the descriptions of the activities for each of the LEARN headings. I will share only  the "L" on the board tonight and then save the others for a future post.

Under the L I have an iPad. I will write on the iPad what I want them to do. We have really been hitting Raz Kids hard. They have been making great improvements too. I have them listen to a story twice, read it twice, and then take a quiz. They have also listened to several stories from Always First with Sue Lynch. They scan the QR code and then they can listen and following along with the story on the iPad.

I made my own discussion questions to go along with the stories. After listening to the story, they can get with a partner and scan the codes below to discuss their answers to the questions. Some sample question from Tacky the Penguin are: What was your favorite part of the story? Read it to your partner and then tell them why you liked it. How did the penguin's attitude toward Tacky change from the beginning of the story to the end? Prove with evidence from the text.

I must admit that my QR Code Chit-Chat cards were quite successful! They were completely engaged in their discussions. How cool to scan and be able to answer questions verbally with your partner!!!

Well that is all for now!! I am off to bed. The past 2 nights this girl hasn't gone to be til after 12:30!!! 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Happy New Year!!! What's Been Going On and Some New Units To Give Away!

Happy New Year! I guess I am a little late for this since it is already January 20th! I have been trying to get myself more organized this year. Ha Ha...I guess I should rephrase that! I am trying to be more organized because it will make my hubby so happy!!! Bigger ha ha because I am not sure I will ever be organized enough for him. :) Seriously though... I am trying and it feels real good. Before I share some of my organizational triumphs I just had to share some photos from our December Rudolph Reading Cafe!!

Every December my second graders practice reading Christmas stories. Then they choose 2 books that they would like to read to the kindergartners. We decorate the classroom like a little cafe,  make cookies ask parents to make cookies, and serve hot coco. On the day of our Rudolph Reading Cafe the students come to school dressed in their holiday best and Santa hats. We have a host and hostess who greet the students; waiters and waitresses who take the book orders, serve the books, and finally serve the cookies and coco; we have readers who actually read to the kinders, and we have photographers to take pictures. I could go on and on, but I will let the pictures give you more details!

Some of the books read.
The menus that the kinders ordered from.
Of course the waiters needed official order pad holders...on loan from Applebee's!!

It was such a fun day and a huge hit with everyone!!

If you are still reading...I feel like I should serve you a cocktail!!! 
Over Christmas break I decided that my Language Arts block needed a little overhaul. I wasn't happy with the amount of time that I was getting to spend with my students in small groups...So I did what any other teacher would do...rearranged my morning. And here is where my husband's eyes lit up!! I organized very neatly into freshly cleaned up storage containers my Daily 5 items that I needed. I created beautiful new labels for them too. My hubby was so impressed that all the tubs matched and were stacked neatly on the counter near the kitchen. I think this may have been the first time he actually was OK with piles of school stuff laying around. I made my rotation schedule and new groups. I planned what I wanted to do for January and WOW ALL DONE!!! Just kidding! It wasn't that easy, but it was enough to get me started for the first day back. I will share more about my schedule and show some photos tomorrow, but I must say the past two weeks have been great. The kids love the new schedule and rotations. I am extremely happy because I am meeting with my kids quite a bit...4 out of the 5 days!! My strugglers are meeting with me 4 days a week and then on 2 of those days they are getting an additional 25 minutes of phonics and fluency practice in a small group too. My very strong readers are meeting with me twice a week for 30 minutes at a time. We currently just finished the Big Wave By Pearl S. Buck. They are creating video book reviews and a What to Do in a Tsunami video!! They are loving the attention and the challenge!!

If you are still reading...I feel like you need a chance for some free units!!

I just uploaded 2 new units...

I will pick a few winners by 7:00 pm pacific time tomorrow! All you have to do is leave your name, email and answer the questions: Do you watch Scandal? Will you see 50 Shades of Grey? Favorite beverage when stressed??

Happy Hump Day tomorrow!!

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