Friday, September 28, 2012

Nose to the Grindstone Mode

I am no different than any other teacher in America.  Let's face it.   It's that busy time of year.  Since I took the weekend "off" last weekend to go out of town with Mr. Wonderful, I'm really feeling it.  I have SERIOUS work to do today and tomorrow for school... and grad class.  I am hoping to conquer the paper mountain and get all of my lesson plans/intervention groups planned for next week by tomorrow night.  We'll see how that goes.  My ten-year high school reunion is at 7 pm, and I was the party planner, so I can't spend ALL DAY on it on Saturday.  I have places to be and people to see, so  more than likely, the work will creep into Sunday too.  Boo! Hiss!  ;) 

I feel like I've been kind of neglecting my little blog-o-sphere, so thanks for hanging with me!  Buckle up for another quick recap... whirlwind style.

We are still working on economics, and I am enjoying this unit of study a TON this year!  We even started our own Beth Newingham-inspired bank thanks to nudging from my teaching partner.  I had decided to create the "Bank" for my room... but it was really more like a cash register.  This took it to the next level, and the kiddos love it!  We're going to be writing checks for classroom jobs... and the banker will "cash" them here.  :)  Confession:  We're off to a late start! 



This is an anchor chart we created to discuss spending and saving as part of our Alexander Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday study.  We did a little Brain and Book action with this too!




We also explored our vocabulary Holly-Word style!  :)  The kids LOVE this activity... it's from my Cultivating Strategic Readers bundle.  It was a HUGE hit! (I blogged more in-depth about the activity last year... HERE if you're interested in learning more about it.) 



The Holly-Word activity was a great way to practice glossary skills in a non-threatening and FUN way.  The kids loved working in groups, teaching, and performing!  We spent some time as a class looking at how the glossary is organized in our RS books. I created an anchor chart as we looked up the word "amount" together.  (You'll notice that I left out guide words entirely right now.  I am teaching them to scan first... and we'll get more strategic later.  It's not my best chart ever... but it did the trick.  I pointed out all of the components and then underlined/highlighted what they needed for the assignment.  It helped them know what to pay attention to and what to ignore.)  I should have made this ahead of time to really clarify the directions and to avoid running out of room... and messy handwriting.  Hey!  You live and you learn.  I went back through afterward and colored in the block letters.  I couldn't resist after all.


In other news, we've been working on sequencing.  We brainstormed clue words that help us understand the sequence of a story.  This was the aftermath.  I used this with the brainstorm activity in my Literacy Aficionados pack.



If you're departmentalized, like I am, here's an idea to keep your kids straight and help them remember their materials.  My partner came up with the idea of laminating blank charts and writing in dry-erase markers.  She writes on my zebra chart... and I write on her cute frog chart so that our kiddos always know what to bring to class.  Sure, it rubs off a little bit, but it's nothing that a little TLC can't fix.  This has been a great management tool this year!  I don't know how we ever survived without it last year.

I write on Miss K's chart.  :)

Miss K writes on my chart!  Viola! :)
 Lastly, my writing anchor charts officially transferred over to the CRAFT board for display.  I love having a designated spot for writing craft lessons this year!  :) 


That's a wrap!  Now it's time to settle down with my stack of papers and put my nose to the grindstone.  I've got my relaxation candles burning to help me burn the midnight oil!  I just need comfy clothes and a sweet tea.  Then, I should be ready to go! 



I may even go buck wild and grade papers on our couch instead of in my "lair".  Husbands can come up with the greatest terms of endearment, right?!  :)  Bahahaha!  Here's to having a semi-productive, semi-relaxing evening.   You can picture me right here.  ^^^^    Have a great weekend friends!



22 comments:

  1. wow! You have been busy! It all looks so meaningful! What a great teacher you are! I wish I was in your class!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Reagan! I always feel the same exact way when I read YOUR blog! :)

      Delete
  2. Love your charts. They are so great.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Your couch looks super comfy! I love all your charts!
    ❤Teri
    A Cupcake for the Teacher

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Teri! I love your new Rainbow Words file! I just printed it last night! :)

      Delete
  4. I love seeing what's going on in your classroom. Your couch looks super comfy!! :-). Have fun at the reunion and try not to stress over the paperwork!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!!!! It IS so comfy... it's a blessing and a curse. I can very easily lose focus if I'm not careful... and just RELAX. ;)

      Delete
  5. OMGosh, Ms. Cupcake and I are thinking the same thing about your couch! I didn't mean to be a copycat, I promise!

    ReplyDelete
  6. If you consider your Glossary anchor chart to be "messy," then I'm scared to ever post an anchor chart in cyber space again! If you want to make yourself feel better, then check out my work. Now that's messy!

    The REAL Teachers of Orange County

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh geez. :) You do FABULOUS work! I just can't stand looking at my own charts when my letters are all cattywampus and crammed together. It's part of my self-diagnosed OCD!

      Delete
  7. I need to have one of those productive weekends too! Your room looks awesome!

    By the way - I am hosting a GIANT giveaway on my blog. There is a LOFT gift card and products from over 20 fabulous teachers up for grabs.

    Come by and visit me! Easy to enter... so you can stock up on some cute stuff for your classroom...and for you!

    Amy

    http://whathappensinfirstgrade.blogspot.com/2012/09/huge-100-followers-giveaway.html

    What Happens in First Grade

    ReplyDelete
  8. Everything looks great! I just moved from 5th to 3rd grade and have been enjoying reading what you're doing.
    Just curious, does your teaching partner have a blog as well?
    Keep up the good work and enjoy your weekend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I hope you have been able to find SOMETHING to make the transition easier. :) My teaching partner does not have a blog. Have a great weekend!!!

      Delete
  9. What a great post! I love all of your ideas and find them to be so meaningful and authentic. Just wanted to share that I love reading your blog! :)

    Erin
    Tales From Room 112

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Erin! You have a wonderful blog... and great resources too! :)

      Delete
  10. I would love to be a 3rd grader in your room!! Looks like great fun!

    Mrs. Wheeler’s First Grade
    Mrs. Wheeler TpT

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Megan!!! :) Can I be in your room too!?

      Delete
  11. I used Beth Newingham's classroom economy last year in my own classroom! Your bank looks great :)

    Twins, Teaching and Tacos.

    ReplyDelete