Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Review Booklet and a SALE!

Oh.mi.word, y'all.  Let me be a little dramatic here for a moment.  I move into a new house in 6 days.  I go to Washington DC in 3 days for an adoption meeting.  Easter is in 5 days.  My computer DIED yesterday.  I can't even tell you how crazy things are right now.  Needless to say, I barely have time to breathe, let alone think straight.  This time of year is just a whirlwind.  Plain and Simple.  It's a good thing I have this cutie... reminds me of how blessed I am even when I think I am stressed.  Life could be much harder, that's for sure!
So, to make things a little less hectic, I started working on an end-of-the-year project a couple of weeks ago.  I want to send my kids off from 2nd grade as ready as possible... and let's face it, summer regression gets the best of us every.single.year.

Here's my plan... review skills through station work as much as possible while I still have my kiddos...  Target guided reading instruction to make it as meaningful as can be, and send my kiddos home with summer review booklets!  

I will get two uses out of THESE booklets...
1.  We will use a portion of it at the end of 2nd grade DURING school.
2.  I will send home the other portion to be done DURING the summer.

Can I force my kiddos to complete it when they are away from me?  No!  But, I can do a lot of encouraging and offer some incentives for those that bring it to me when they make it to 3rd grade!  I'm hoping that the silly glasses and bright pencil will help it seem fun :))
I love that this booklet is formatted as half-pages... it saves a lot of paper, especially when you copy it 2-sided!
 The Review Booklet includes activities for Reading, Grammar, and Math.  It doesn't cover every little thing that we did throughout the year, but I did try to focus on the important skills.  And in my opinion, any extra practice will help!  I am hoping to make a version that can be used with my incoming 2nd graders as well... so stay tuned!

OHHHH, and you can get it for 20% off along with everything else in my shop today and tomorrow!  Thanks to Abby for sharing this cute graphic with me!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

More Poetry!

Happy Hump Day, friends {Is that still a cool thing to say or am I totally out of the loop??}  We are still writing lots of poetry.  Normally I only allot one week for my poetry unit, but there are so many different types to write, so we decided to keep on going!!  On Monday we brainstormed what life would be like if we were a round object.  Then, we wrote a round poem with those ideas!  You can get a template for that HERE.  I really love when I give my students some freedom and they surprise me...they definitely think outside of the box, that's for sure!!!
 I'd totally spin my ring around if I were Jupiter, too!  
And, a hula hoop is definitely cooler if it can glow in the dark!!
 This little guy is OBSESSED with cars and trucks, so it only made sense that he wrote about being a tire.  I have learned so much about my kiddos from reading their writing!
We are now starting to use Amanda Madden's Poetry unit.  Don't you just love these little watermelons??  They look precious on my door!!
She has lots of other cute poetry ideas that we will continue to use throughout the week!!  Hope y'all are having a great week... only 2 more days until the weekend!!!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Caffeine Overload!

Is it weird that I have an ice-chest full of caffeine in my classroom?  It's been one of those weeks, if ya know what I mean!  The big kids have been testing (bless their hearts... students and teachers) and we've been a little confined in our classrooms.  My team decided to host a little snack party for the teachers, and I still have lots of Coke left in my room.  Things *may* be getting out of control when it comes my caffeine intake at this point.  Not to mention I "gave up" sodas a couple of weeks ago.  You can see that obviously went over well ;)  I also have a healthy drink thrown in the mix that has yet to be consumed, ha!
We have definitely been busy when it comes to Poetry.  Today, we made frogs from my Frogs and Butterflies unit and wrote Haikus about them.  This was no easy task, I'll tell you that much!  After several tries, we finally produced Haikus that followed the syllable rules :)  "Mrs. Lemons, if we say it fast can we make the word one syllable instead of two??"  hahahaha

Yesterday we wrote Cinquain Poems about sharks.  I've done this for several years because my students just love this activity.  It's one that never gets old!  You can grab that for FREE here!
 My kiddos also wrote cinquain poems of their choice.  We put them all onto one large chart to display in the classroom :)
 My kiddos LOVE reading each other's writing!

 And, you can't leave out Acrostic Poems!


 This is my favorite!
 We've been quite the busy ones in math as well.  We made these Area flapbooks...

 And Perimeter Cones!  You can grab that HERE!
 We also found the area and perimeter of the shapes that my teammate taped up on our wall.  This was definitely a favorite!
 And we made Perimeter Flapbooks.  One can never make too many flapbooks!  You can get that HERE!
 Now we all just need a LONG nap to recover from all this learning!!!
Before I go, I have a HUGE favor to ask!  We are trying to get at least 100,000 signatures on a petition that will hopefully help bring some sweet kiddos home from the Congo in Africa.  If you have 30 seconds, I would be so thankful if you would click HERE and sign the petition!  Joelle has lots of sweet friends that have yet to meet their forever families because they are not being allowed to leave the Congo.  These adoptions are finalized y'all, and the kids can't come home.  It's heartbreaking, but we are hopeful that the doors will open again soon!!!  Let's show them how amazing this blogging world is and blow this petition through the roof!
Have a wonderful evening!  Tomorrow IS Friday after all :)

Monday, March 31, 2014

Happy Monday!

I find it hard to believe that I even have time to breathe today let alone put together a blog post, but somehow I am pulling out my multi-tasking powers to get it done {Also known as... I drank a lot of caffeine and have energy to burn!!}!  I always fear that I'll get too busy throughout the week and won't check back in with you all, so there's no time like the present.

Today we started our poetry unit.  I don't have anything put together in a pack for poetry, I just use what I find from year to year and try to hit as many different forms of poetry that I can without wanting to pull my hair out.  I want my students writing poetry, but I'm more concerned about the exposure and giving them opportunities to realize that they can write in several different forms!  I don't get too picky, but we do have fun! 

We were supposed to start with list poems today (because let's face it... those are easy!), but as we were watching our Brain Pop Jr, I decided that we should give Rebus Poems a try.  And, let me just tell you... we had a lot of fun with them!  Both of my classes wrote original poems, and my students drew the pictures/symbols that we used in the place of words :)  HERE is a great website with LOTS of rebus poems!
I saw a monkey playing ball.
Then he ran into a wall.
The monkey jumped so high.
He nearly touched the sky.

I saw a little boy eating ice cream.
He dropped it and began to scream.
The cone also fell to the ground.
He was so sad that he made a loud sound.

In math we started Area.  It's Monday, so we watched another Brain Pop Jr.  {Those 3 minutes are the most peaceful of the day, are they not?!}

Then, I gave each student a shape, and we counted the area of the figures together.  Afterwards, my class had to line up {SILENTLY} to put themselves in order from the least amount of area to the greatest.  They couldn't move their lips at all!  It was definitely entertaining to watch :)  If I did it again I would do this before we measured the Area and then check it so see if we were right!
Of course we made our area robots like last year.  They are just too cute not to do!
 You can grab this FREEBIE here!
 Before I crash on the couch...Did I mention I was out of town all weekend??  I met up with some of my sweet friends in San Antonio for the Neon Dash.  It was a blast!

Y'all already know how much I love me some Hope King, right?!
 Two GENIUS Kinder teachers right here!  Deanna and Cara
It was so much fun hanging out with Gladys, Deanna, Crystal, Kacey, Deedee, Stephanie, Alicia, Cara, Elizabeth, and Hope!
 Bluebonnet pictures are a must!  We must not forget about Reagan!  She was taking the picture above :)
We did lots of eating and shopping (just put that on repeat and you'll get the gist of our weekend!)

 And, it's okay to be jealous... but we got to visit Reagan's classroom.  It's the most precious room EVER!  I've always admired it online, so I was super excited to see it in person!
Hope you all have a great week!!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

It's a Prefix Thing :)

I've not always been a huge fan of teaching prefixes and suffixes... I mean a lot of words sound really good if you add -re or -un in front of them.  In fact, if you look closely at our prefix chart we had some words that I had to go through and mark out later because they even tricked me!  PTL for Google, right?!

I tried really hard this year to spice things up and make them a little more interesting.  The main thing is exposing my kiddos to the fact that prefixes can change the meaning of words.  We made lots of charts!
My students make these rainbow clouds every year, but this year I decided to incorporate these bright guys into prefixes.  My original plan was to have my kiddos just write a word for the prefix on each strip, but then I decided sentences would help me know if they understand the meanings of the words they chose!

We also wrote short stories using at least 3 words with prefixes.  I gave each pair of students 2 notecards- one for the story and one for the picture.
My class is Frozen obsessed.  It's a spelling word this week which gives our spelling words a whole new level of excitement.  The amount of stories and sentences that I've read about Elsa, Ana, and Olaf is kind of crazy!  But, if it gets them writing, I'll roll with it!

 I mentioned this chart on Monday, but wanted to give you a better rundown of it.  I cut two pieces of butcher paper that were the same size.  I only glued them together at the top and down the middle.  Then, I made 4 cuts for my 6 flaps on the top sheet of paper.  The bottom sheet stayed in tact.  It was really simple, it just looks complicated :)
Like I said before, I gave each student a root word.  They stood up, read their root word to the class, and the class helped decide which prefix should be added to the front of the word.  Then, the student placed the word under the prefix.  
We have also used these activities for independent work.  Gotta take those grades at some point :/
And, that's it!  Do you have any fun activities for teaching prefixes?  I'd love to have more things to pull from!!