Monday, October 29, 2012

Overly engaged?

Is there such a thing as being overly engaged? If there is, I saw it today. When my students are so engaged in a lesson that they are shouting out I feel that I struggle between needing them to settle down and not wanting to squelch their enthusiasm. I would much rather have a group of students I have to settle down as opposed to a group who is completely uninterested in the lesson. This was my struggle today while doing the fact vs. opinion mini lesson. It was quite entertaining to see their differing opinions which led to wonderful conversation.  After the mini lesson students checked their posters to make sure it contained both facts and opinions and were asked to identify both.

I am still loving the election unit and can't wait until we have the candidates narrowed down to two. Each group is so passionate about their candy choice, the commercials and the debate are going to be a blast to watch. We are recording their commercials tomorrow and the debate should be in the next few days.

You can find this sWeEt unit here :)
Happy Teaching

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Saturday fun with Mr. Sketch

I had an enchanted date with Mr. Sketch this afternoon. While both of my girls were sleeping (never happens, EVER!!!) I thought I would put my NEW markers to use.  First quarter is almost over (eeek) and book reports are due. While correcting papers earlier (isn't my life is so exciting...) I noticed that my little darlings struggle to summarize.  I did some searching on the internet and found the somebody/wanted/but/so/then method of summarizing and thought that would be PERFECT!

Yay, can't wait to get this bad boy laminated! And while I had the markers out, I thought I might as well go ahead and work on a poster for helping the kiddos with fact vs opinion. In the election unit they are struggling with this concept. They are getting lost in their opinions and mistaking them for fact.  I can't wait for this lesson on Monday and to hopefully see the improvement in their work.

And while I had the markers handy I wanted to revamp my engaged learning poster. It was tired and old and I didn't staple it correctly (one staple per corner) so it was folding up. When I first put this up I thought it would be helpful and a good reminder but I honestly didn't know how much my kids would really refer to it. I can tell you we have conversations almost daily about it and what being engaged in learning looks like. The kids refer to it and feel so proud when they are engaged, yippy!

Happy weekend, I hope you have a relaxing or productive day, which ever you need more :)

Thursday, October 25, 2012


Recently, I got a new student and have been meaning to make a new name tag (that is how the students sign in for lunch) but I am quite bored with the plain black and white tags I am currently using. Voila, new name tags :)

Download for free and enjoy!


The third and fourth graders have been super busy creating campaign posters, and commercials for their candidates. They have been writing songs and printing pictures, completely dedicated to their candy candidates. One of my favorite things I have seen so far are these cute sour patch kids a group made as props for their commercial.
In order to earn a 3 (meets standard) students need to include 5 or 6 facts in their poster which will lead us to a lesson on fact vs opinion tomorrow.  We will also record their commercials which they have been working on for a few days.  Another thing I love about this unit is how easy its been to include many standards across the curriculum, and how students have been able to show they can meet the standard in creative ways like script writing or acting! However, I must mention that as much fun as this unit has been so far, we are all looking forward to the day we get to taste test the sweets :)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


I am a grades three-four looping teacher on the second year of my loop. This year I have the wonderful opportunity to start the year already knowing my fourth grade kiddos and have so much to share.  I blogged with my students last year and loved the opportunity it gave us to write for a purpose and audience.  I want to do more with it this year and also share some of the wonderful things my partner teacher and I have planned for our kids.  I will be posting some of our social studies work on elections soon. Our kids LoVe it and it has been a bLaSt to teach! They are conducting research on iPads, creating commercials, and hitting MANY of the common core state standards :)

Thanks for checking out the blog, happy teaching!