old wood shabby background

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Rocket Math Drills and Celebrations

Our school uses a math program to supplement Everyday Math. We felt that the students weren't learning the basic facts well enough.

Rocket Math is a one minute drill sheet, but each child only completes the number that they are able to write in that amount of time. (A pretest determines how much they can write.)

The levels are named each letter of the alphabet. As they pass one level they move to the next. As they pass addition, they move to subtraction, then on to multiplication and finally division.

In our building each level has it's own reward. If the child passes the letter, they get to stand on their chair and the class gives them a chair cheer (really, REALLY loud screams, cheers, banging on the desks, what ever makes a loud noise!)

When  a child passes addition, they get to stand on their own desk and get their picture taken for the Wall of Fame.
 If they pass Subtraction they stand on my desk.   If they pass Multiplication, they stand on a roof outside my room. All the kids who are at recess come up and cheer them on. If they pass Division, they stand on this roof and spray them with silly string!
This is the Wall of Fame where the 2nd grader's pictures go if they pass.

Below is the Wall of Fame for the 1st graders who have passed Addition.

This is the bulletin board that changes daily as students pass a level and their rocket gets moved to a new letter. This is two classes of first grade and two classes of 2nd grade. We also put a string by the letter that shows the goal they are trying to reach by the end of each trimester. It helps them see where they need to be.

Not sure why these two pictures won't stay together!

I hope this helps some of you who feel the need to beef up your Everyday Math program.

P.S. I wanted to let you know that our service project total is at $1596! We have raised enough for the one house and now are trying to get enough money for the bathroom.

That is amazing. . . no, it's AH -MAZ- ING!
This Friday is the last day. Let's hope we can help this family out and get them a bathroom!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Holly (who was almost Holy according to my typing!) over at Crisscrossapplesauce is having a linky party. . . I must make a confession. . .. I have never done this before. . . but I'm going to join her linky party.

Why did I join this one? Who on God's Earth knows. Because this one is driving me crazy! She wants us to show our classrooms. . . but not just the classrooms, but ALL of the Good, AND the Bad, . . . . AND the UGLY!

They UGLY? Are you kidding me? Do you know what it takes for this girl to show YOU the UGLY? I am going to have to go into therapy for showing you this. I don't share my UGLY with anyone. . . . ANYONE!

So for me to post these pictures, you have to swear that you won't snicker, gasp, giggle, or sigh in shame. AND you must NOT share them with anyone!

Now, I've been teaching for many years, and I do know that many of you have rooms like mine and some people have rooms that are in worse condition. One of my analnesses. .. (is that a word?) one of my acts of being anal is that I stay late once in a while and actually put things away and straighten things up. I even rearrange things from time to time. But other than the people in my own building, I don't share my room with others. And God forbid I wouldn't ever share them with the world. . . . I still don't know why I'm doing this. Must be because it's Friday and that I want to keep a friendship going with you!

If you feel so inclined to join her, grab that button up there and go to it! She's given us an assignment and we better do what she says!!! Or Else!!

Here goes! Start at the top, those aren't so bad. . . and yes I straightened up a bit. . . I HAD to. I couldn't bring myself to be so transparent!

Each teacher puts a "HOT" book on their desk to highlight.
This is an idea to share with your students what a good book is.
That's why I have Elmer on my stand.
Behind the curtains are the indoor recess games and some of the other things I use for centers.
We have 4 Mini computers stacked in the corner with head phones.
Plus these two computers here and two more on the other wall. So I can run groups of 8 or less. One group on the computers, one at centers or seatwork, and one with me for 30 minutes each. We do this once in the morning for reading and once in the afternoon for math.
Take home books for homework each night.
AR Books for free choice reading.
Extra books like I Spy, student made books, magazines, poetry books,  yearbooks, etc.
Listening center and math centers.
Supplies needed for students.
 Now we're getting into the more cluttered look.
2 computer stations with shelves above to hide my own library, videos, and
those wonderful binders we all have so many of!
Do you recognize any of your things from blogs on my walls?

Above on the left is the sunrise/sunset chart! It's fascinating to see how the amount of daylight changes throughout the year. At Christmas time we have about 9 hours of sunlight. In the middle of the summer we have 14! That's a huge difference in daylight!

 Below is our lunch count.
 Homework Check in. . . move your name inside the green box if you brought it
and leave your name out of the green box if you didn't.

This is the REALLY bad part. . . cover your eyes with your hands and spread your fingers apart just a little to view this please!

If you have made it this far, and you don't feel faint, then you could be a true friend. . . I will be doing some therapy after this episode. . . It might be retail therapy, but it will surely make me feel a  whole lot better!


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Fractions revisited

I'm reposting an activity. . . is that allowed? I've noticed that many people are currently doing fractions and I thought some might like this fraction practice that I made.  Click here to go to that particular link Fractions with multiples
And if you find it functional, let me know pulease!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Service project and collecting money

Windy, windeeeee, WINDY day! But the sun is shining here so I can't complain at all!

Every year we get our students involved in a service project. We feel that it is important to reach out and help others. Most of our students are on free or reduced lunches so we know that we won't get a lot of money. But by teaching them that every penny counts, they soon learn that pennies add up to hundreds of dollars!

This year we are helping to build a home for a family in the Phillipines. One home costs $1,000! Yes you read that right. . . I didn't forget any zeros. . . one thousand dollars. That builds a home that is up on stilts since they get a lot of flooding. It will have one room that will include a kitchen, living area and sleeping area. (but no beds and no bathroom.) The size of this home is about the size of a small bedroom in your own home.

If you're wondering how we knew of this project, one of our teacher's daughters went to Phillipines to help with the orphanages and this is what she saw. She brought back pictures of the homes (or shacks) the families were living in. Our kids were very moved by the pictures. It just started on Friday and already I've had students bring me a bag of change, one dime, a five dollar bill and a quarter. For any amount they bring in, a heart goes up on a wall where we are keeping track of the amounts. We are hoping to reach our goal of $1,000 in 2 weeks. I'll keep you posted.


Saturday, April 14, 2012

Multicultural Day, new hair cut and a freebie on the way

I haven't really been absent. . . afterall I have been reading your blogs. . .

I have been dragging my feet this week, maybe after being on vacation for a week it's harder to get back on track. I find myself addicted to Draw Something, Hanging with Friends, and Family Feud on my IPad. arggghh!!!

I have missed doing this and all it took was one little comment from Christina and a little scrapbooking and I'm back again!

First of all last night I got my "gray washed away" (You'll need to be as old as I am to understand that line!) and got it cut shorter than I normally do. Here's a picture, but it's not the greatest.

Keep in mind, I'm not very photogenic AT ALL!!

But I do like it shorter and I do love the color! My hairstylist, beautician, magician, or whatever you call yours is wonderful with color! I try not to be too blond, but I don't like to be too dark either.

Secondly I went scrapping with some friends today and that got me in the mood to be creative! I'm secretly working a book for my niece who's graduating from high school in June. And I really need to keep steadily working on it. SHHHHH! Don't tell her and please don't let my sister know. . . I'm pretty sure she doesn't read this blog, so I think I'm safe!

Third, when I came home, my husband decided he was going to go golfing (at 6:00 on a Saturday night!) so that left me some alone time to play with my blog!

If you're still here reading, there is a fourth.

Fourth, I got a message from Christina who was just checking in with me to make sure I was ok and that she noticed that I had been absent all week. Thanks Christina! So sweet of you and just the kick in the seat of the pants that I needed.

So now I'm here to tell you what this week has been like . . . only I won't bore you with all of the details.
I do want to highlight that our school does a MULTICULTURAL DAY every year. On this one day, we invite speakers from countries all of the world to share their culture with us. We have 6 classrooms but this year we had 7 countries represented (two countries shared one room, one in the morning, one in the afternoon) They each talk for about 30 minutes to our students and tell us about their schools, climate, population, region, money language, foods and any products their country makes. We had people from Mexico, Brazil, Phillipines, Germany, Austria, Holland, and Korea. The kids get passports and they get stamped each time they enter a different country. We also have art, gym, and snack time in part of our schedule. It is a great experience for our students and we always hope that they walk away knowing how they are alike and different from other people, but not better than anyone else too.

On Monday, I will come back and tell you about a service project our students will be participating in.

I am also working on a freebie but it's not completely ready yet. Here's a sneak peak at what it will look like.  Look at the two words in the purple pot and then find the correct spelling for that contraction.

Here's the deal. I'm getting closer to 100 followers, in fact I only need 23 more. So if you help me spread the word and get a few more followers, then I will release this activity when I get to the magic number!

Now I hope you're not saying, "Dang, I wish she would have stayed away! She has too much to say when she does show up!"

I hope you're doing something you like to do tonight!


Saturday, April 7, 2012

Last day of a relaxing break.

Aaaggghhhh! Today is my last day of spring break. My last day in 80+ degrees in Florida. My last day of blog stalking any old time I want to. My last day of sitting in the sun in April. Oh woe is me.. But I have had a blast and it was a welcome break. I hope to go back refreshed and ready to finish strong on the next nine weeks. I am kind of anxious to get back to a real computer and a printer so I can print off all of your cool ideas I've seen this week. Don't get me wrong, I love my iPad, but it can't do all the things my desktop computer can do. Tomorrow night when I should be doing laundry and lesson plans you'll probably see me at my computer for way too long! Patty

Monday, April 2, 2012

VA CA news

Hey everyone! I'm in Clearwater, Florida and it's good to be here. I hear that it is fairly nice still in Michigan, but not as cool as being here. The sun is supposed to be out every day and I can't resist the sun....but I do use lots of sunscreen. Do you hear that Mom, I'm really putting sun screen on! I am reading all of your blogs and can't wait to get back and print off so many cool things that I'm seeing. (well, I can wait, I guess that's just an expression.) For excitement this morning, we found a large(2inches)cockroach in my sisters hotel room. So glad it wasn't mine! I'm reading Jodi Picoult's newest book, Lone Wolf. So far it's good, a little strange but I'm still intrigued. Next I'll read Kristen Hannah's Home Front. Thisbe my favorite part of vacations, catching up on my reading. I hope you're all doing well whether you are in school or on VA-CA! Patty