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Showing posts with label November. Show all posts
Showing posts with label November. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Past and Present FUN!

This week we are starting our unit on comparing the present and the past.

We go on a field trip next week to a nearby ranch that is still as it was in the 1880's when it was built. It's a lot of fun. My favorite thing about this field trip is that we are the ONLY one's there. The people who run this historic ranch like to work with small groups. So our 2 1/2 classes of first graders are going over the course of 2 days.

No worries about trying to find lost children. No worries about crowds. It's pretty amazing.

I will post pictures after we go.

This little trip fits perfectly with our social studies standards for the month.

So does the Our Changing Times unit.

I LOVE that this unit has been such a huge hit with so many teachers! K, 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade teachers have purchased it and used it in their classrooms. There really is something for everyone in the pack.

If you've been following me, you know all about my thematic (CHANGING.EVERY.MONTH) bulletin boards, so of course to accompany the WRITING LESSONS there are some great crafts. Here are a couple:

The huge unit includes:
*Past and Present Bulletin Board Maps
*An assortment of Teepee Black Lines
*A modern day House 3D Craft/Project and Activity
*Paddling to Get There: A writing lesson with an assortment of pre-writing plan sheets and final draft stationery.
*Native American Boy Black Lines
*Native American Girl Black Lines
*Canoe and Oar Black Lines
*Modern Transportation interactive reader and bulletin board element
*Writing Over Time - School Tools Activity and crafts ... incorporating technology into the writing process
*Life with Amazing Inventions: A writing lesson with an assortment of pre-writing plan sheets and final draft stationery.
* Black Lines for Compare and Contrast... modern and past inventions
*Thematic Vocabulary Cards

Materials for this standard are hard to find. This unit truly has everything you need to meet this social studies standard!

Of course, I truly believe in thematic teaching across curricular areas, so it is important to provide the children with more ELA and Math centered activities that allow for independent practice while incorporating our past and present theme.

Times Change does just that!
This is my newest pack and it is filled with all sorts of adorable, fun and effective goodies. If you are already using Our Changing Times in your classroom - you will LOVE this as unit!

 This unit includes:
*Label It! Nouns from the past
*Past & Present Match
*Compare with Details - Writing detailed complete sentences
*Interactive Reader - Times Change - Comparing Past & Present
*Match Up Card Game - Past & Present; Reinforcing decoding skills and word recognition
*Times Have Changed Writing Lesson - Detailed writing lesson with an assortment of pre-writing planning sheets and final draft stationery.
*Find the Feather - Fact Family (Missing Addend/Subtrahend) Card Game
*Missing Number Search - Story problems exploring algebra

You can find both units in my stores individually and today I have added them as a BUNDLE as well!

Head to my stores to check out these products and the bundle - November... DONE! :)

I'm giving this newly bundled pack away to one of my FB followers! Head on over to my FB page for your chance to win!

November is HERE peeps!! Can you believe it?!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Viola Swamp and Tickle Spots

I can't tell you why... but once November comes around, I start to feel super overwhelmed... and that sticks around until winter break.

There never seems to be enough time.

So what am I so busy with?

I have no idea.

I really don't. I'm at work until at least 5pm each night, but find myself "behind" nonetheless. How does that happen?

Each year I ask myself the same question. I've decided I'm just not a fan of November.

So there's my excuse for being bloggy absent for so long.

It's lame. I know. But it's all I got.

Our poem this month is also lame. In my opinion. Which doesn't account for much, but I thought I'd offer that disclaimer. We are an excellent first grade team. We work together on everything and have the same expectations for our students. Our monthly poem is another thing we do as a grade level.

I didn't pick this poem. I stomp my feet about it a little. BUT - the kids seem to love it. I have no idea why. It is super easy for them to memorize - that may be part of it.

I don't know where it came from. We've been using it for years.

I've changed my cards for it so I can use them with those mini-pocket charts from Target. Turns out the kids LOVE practicing things on those wee pocket charts. Thank you Target dollar spot.

SO, Miss Viola Swamp was in my classroom today. No wig. No ugly black dress. No scary make-up... just me in strict mode.

It wasn't fun - but our morning wasn't fun. It was one of the most difficult, loud and disruptive days I can remember. SO, I had to pull out strict teacher. I know, I know! But teacher peeps, I swear, NOTHING was working. Not tile moving, not penny earning, not holding out on computer lab, not threats to forward movement of angry bird, not smiley/frownie points, not the music box, not missing recess, not candy... I mean NOTHING was working. So I said, "Sorry kiddos. I'm going to have to be strict "no fun" teacher."

"No!" they said.

"Sorry. I don't know what else to do. We have so much yet to do and we are not getting through ANYTHING today." I said.

So... I started our afternoon math lesson with a stern face. No fun. No silliness. No kids involved with teaching, demonstrating or explaining the lesson. No jokes. No goofy voices. No happiness.

They were quiet. They were watching. Listening. They sat straight. Not a chair was tipped. Not a desk was knocked around into another one. Not one child needed to get up for a pencil, a tissue, to throw something invisible away or to personally ask me to go to the bathroom while I was in the middle of a lesson.

They were solemn. No smiles. No happy to be here. Not from them. Not from me. It was horrible. I lasted all of 20 minutes as Miss Viola Swamp. 20 minutes.

"This is awful" I said. "Absolutely yucky."

"It is!" they agreed.

"I would like to enjoy my day AND learn - wouldn't you?" I asked.


So we took a couple deep cleansing breaths. We danced around a bit. Shook our sillies around. A few more calming deep breaths and then I sent them to recess.

They've learned their lesson, I thought. They'll come back in better behaved. Quiet. Ready to work.

Yeah, no. That didn't happen. {cue the whah-whah sound effect}

Like I told my kiddos - tomorrow is another day.

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