Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookie Rubrics... and RaNdOmNeSs!

I have a sickness.  Literally and figuratively.  Literally, because I have some kind of virus.  Figuratively, because I spent half of the day curled up with my laptop revamping my Chocolate Chip Rubric goodies to make them a little prettier and more acceptable for sharing.  :)  It turned out to be a somewhat productive sick-day, but I am soooo taking a bubble bath and a nap after this post goes live.  I have no idea if I will be at school tomorrow or not.  Fingers crossed!  I can't stand being out... unless it's a legit vacation day... and then I adore days off.

Anyway, here's the idea behind the lesson.  Rubrics are difficult to explain to students, yet they are part of their lives because we use them, our reading series uses them, and they sometimes show up on standardized tests.  Plus, if you think about it, they will be using rubrics for the rest of their lives to access their own work before submitting it for a grade to their professors and teachers.  So, this is such an important skill to teach them, and of course, like always, if you make it concrete, the wheels start turning.  :)  My good friend Tara mentioned this to me a few years ago, and then I looked all over the Internet for resources to teach rubrics with cookies.  Ultimately, I ended up making my own stuff, and now it's just a little prettier than before.  Seriously though, this is a purely magical lesson, and it totally opens the door for discussions about why we have criteria, the rating process, and ultimately allows you to look more closely at existing rubrics with your kiddos.  Plus, who doesn't love chocolate chip cookies?!  Yes, please!  If you're interested in checking out this 52-page file of "Cookie Connoisseur" goodies and a giant floor rubric, you know the drill!  You can check out the preview file HERE!  Optional plans and guiding questions are included in the file.

By the way, before I start to ramble and forget, it's not too late to enter my giveaway for the Learning Resources Mystery Hat!  It's a wonderfully versatile classroom tool, and YOU could be the lucky winner this Sunday!  Enter HERE!!

In other news, we had our Valentine's Day party last Friday.  It was a lot of fun!  I put together the little glow-stick valentines from The Teacher Wife, and the kids LOVED them.  I already picked up more glow-sticks from Target to make sure I can do it again next year!  So precious!

We {fortunately} spent some time completing some of Abby's Sweetheart Snatcher activities.  The kids were totally into it, and even my thirdsters fell for the trick.  Some of them envisioned a heart with arms and legs.  Some of them envisioned what looked like the Hamburglar.   Only one of them swore up and down that it was me...but that was mostly because I mentioned doing some sequencing practice earlier in the week.  :)  Long story short, this was so much fun!  It was great predicting and sequencing practice on a day when I knew all of my kiddos were going to be fighting to stay on task and focused.

Okay, and I just can't resist!  You have to check out how cute these Valentine's Day boxes turned out!  If I had all of the time/storage space in the world, I would totally upload all of them!  Cuteness!

In totally unrelated news, we've been working on comparing and contrasting, and this filtered into our "writing workshop".  The term is in quotation marks, because I am still trying to incorporate craft lessons into the Reading Street curriculum as much as I can, but I haven't entirely figured out how to make this authentic, yet.  I will, if it's the last thing I do, but I haven't been able to fit it all in yet.  Here's a peek at our anchor chart of the week for what RS calls, "Writing for Tests".  I usually use this as a teaching point and color-code it rather than just passing out the blank and white worksheet we are provided with.  We also spent some time filling out a Venn Diagram for a little pre-writing practice to set them up for success.  This compares my principal and I.  Of course, my favorite part is that I "like unicorns".  Let's just say, that's a really long story involving a few realism vs. fantasy lessons.  Have a great evening, friends! 

P.S.  The first two comments will get my new Chocolate Chip Rubrics file FREE!  ;)  Leave your email address, please!


  1. Super cute activites! Thanks for sharing.

    Hello Mrs Sykes

  2. i love these activities!


  3. Could you spring for the first **3**?! :) I feel your pain in the "sickness" department. Been that way for the past three days, which does not make for a very fun Valentine's Day!

    Here's hoping!!! :)

    Beg, Borrow, Steal

  4. Love that chocolate chip rubric, what a great idea!

    A Cupcake for the Teacher

  5. This is too cute! I am hungry just reading about chocolate chip cookies!

  6. Sorry you're under the weather. 40 degrees and rainy here in NE Ohio doesn't help when you're sick.

  7. The Chocolate Chip Rubric is amazing and so creative. I don't use rubrics but you are making me reconsider!

  8. I would love a copy of your chocolate chip rubric. I use this concept in my graduate class from an article I found. Could I pretty please have it even though I am not the first 2 comments.

  9. Love this idea, never have heard of this approach before to teach the meaning of rubrics.

    Where did you get that font from?? It is stinkin' cute!!

  10. I would love to get a free copy. It looks great. mary at

  11. I really like your chocolate chip rubrics. Great idea, thanks for sharing.


  12. Do you have any pictures of the chocolate chip rubric in action in your classsroom....I bought it but I am having trouble visualizing it....THANKS!

  13. This is all so adorable! I am your newest follower!

    Apples and ABC's