Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Giveaway and Our Valentine's Day

It is freezing in Indiana!  I just signed up to run the Indy 500 Festival Mini Marathon on May 4th and I needed to start training like yesterday!!!  It is way too cold to be running out there peeps.  It is brutal!  I can't run in Arctic conditions!  It would be like the scene from the movie Dumb and Dumber when they are riding along on their motorcycle with snot frozen to their faces.  No kidding!

Enough about that craziness!  I wanted to announce that Christina over at Apples, Books, and Crayons in having a 100 follower giveaway and she has many great prizes.  Go check out her blog.  http://applesbooksandcrayons.blogspot.com

The valentine madness has ended!  I am so glad.  It is nice to have the kids settle down a bit.  Holidays and celebrations are so fun, but my goodness they wear me out!  Here is a little peek at what we did for Valentine's Day festivities.

We made these large envelopes and did some weaving in order to have a place to put our valentines.  We also made little goody bags for all of our treats.  We used adhesive hearts to make little critters on our bags.

The students rotated through many valentine themed centers during the week.  These centers are from my own Valentine Math & Literacy Pack.  They were a big success!

We used pieces from Cara Carroll's Splat Unit.  LOVE this unit and so did my students.  Who doesn't love a good Splat book?!?!?

I saved the best for last.  My husband has been deployed the entire school year.  It has been very hard trying to teach and raise our girls alone.  My husband is thousands of miles away and managed to surprise me with these beauties!  They are gorgeous and smelled heavenly!  

I hope everyone had the best Valentine's Day!  

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Vocabulary "Word Collector"

I am a huge fan of the Daily 5 and Daily CAFE!  I am going to see the sisters in Chicago in April and I can't wait!!!  I am going to be like a 12 year old at a Taylor Swift concert!  They have really changed the way I teach.  I started implementing their practices in my room two years ago and I am loving it!  I wonder how I ever survived before the Daily 5.  

A couple months ago I was on the Daily Cafe website and came across the idea of a "Word Collector"  and thought is sounded brilliant.  I decided to try it out in my room and I am so happy I did.  I use the "Word Collector" whenever we find interesting words during class read-alouds.  The kids love picking out interesting vocabulary and helping me place them on the collector.  It is amazing how this little tool has helped.  The kids use these interesting words in our daily class discussions, in their writing, and during word work and work on writing.  

I couldn't just throw letters on a chart and stick it on the wall.  I had to make it eye appealing, so you can see what I came up with below.  I am happy with it.  Of course, the awful iphone photo doesn't do it justice, but you get the idea.  Do any of you use a "Word Collector" or something similar in your rooms?  I would love to hear your ideas!  If you think you might want the materials to make your own, I have placed this in my TPT store.  Good night all!

By the way, still waiting on that snow day!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Author's Purpose Fun

Is anyone else dying for a snow day!?!  There has been so much sickness in my classroom and in my house that I just need a break!  I feel like I am at the surface of the water trying so hard to keep from drowning.  The papers are piling up, middle of the year assessments to accomplish, and my house looks  AWFUL!!!  I don't even care to pick it up at this point!  Is any of this sounding familiar?

On a brighter note, today we used my Author's Purpose unit to review and expand on our knowledge of author's purpose. First, we reviewed the three reasons why authors write by using these three author's purpose PIEs.

After reviewing the PIEs I placed the children into three groups and they rotated to three different passages.  They read the passage together and discussed why the author wrote the passage.  They recorded their answers into an author's purpose foldable.

Once all the kiddos rotated to all the passages we came back together, discussed our findings, and displayed our answers on the board under the correct purpose.  The children did an excellent job and really enjoyed the activity!

If you would like to pick up this unit you can click on my TPT button and head on over to my store.

Have a wonderful evening blogging buddies and keep your fingers crossed for some snow in the future forecast!