Sunday, November 18, 2012

Homework Help!

Something many of us teachers don’t want to talk about or have to do is consequence our students. I do not have an issue with receiving homework each day, but I do have a problem with the effort put into homework. I have analyzed the situation to see what I can change.

1.    I was sending home multiple-choice reading passages. Yes, I realized I was giving him or her the opportunity to bubble in and go with no effort or thought. So, now answers will need to be written.

2.    I did not let them know there were consequences to homework issues.

Now, I have started to make calls to parents and now each homework assignment is placed in the grade book.

3.    I had rewards for behavior and test, but not for homework. Now I’m going to

Give rewards for homework too!

If you have any ideas that will help solve my homework problem please share I’m open for suggestions.

 How do I get them to change?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Fun Tally Table Activity and a little Rest

      Oh my, how does everyone fine the time to teach, blog, and be a parent. Seriously, I have been working so hard to understand benchmarks, gather material, and teach it explicitly that I'm exhausted. I really figured that out today. We had a day off from school and I did not wake up until 11am. Good thing my mini me's (my twin daughters) were able to staple my papers together.

Starting off. Those are our Math Notebooks and Reader Response
 Journals in the blue bucket
Anyway, I wanted to share a fun activity my class did as we worked on MA.3.S.7.1. The students were placed in groups of 4 or 5 and each student was given a random amount of fruit loops. I told them they could only touch their own fruit loops. The students were told they needed to create  a tally table regarding the amount of each color fruit loop their group had. I seen and heard many mathematical practices being used during this time. The thinking process was evident also. Some groups immediately started to discuss how they needed to go about finding out how many each person had then add them all together. Some groups only focused on the individual count and lacked communication with the group. This slowed them up, but they eventually got on track. The students then had to transfer the data to a frequency table, create 2 questions about their data for the other groups, and explain how they created the tables.
Adding their totals together.

Making the tally table.
The students transfererd the information from the tally table to a frequency table.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Meet Jordan Our Class Pet

       It's the 4th week of school and finally I feel like I can breath again. I was scared out of my mind moving to 3rd grade. Yes, the FCAT scares me. Even though I taught 5th grade before. It's different in 3rd grade it's no learning gains, it's just you are a 3 or your not. 

        Well enough of my drama. I guess I'm going to change the name of my blog, but I will not use a grade in the title anymore. This has been a season of change our school has a new Assistant Principal, I'm teaching a new grade, and we have a new class pet.  
                                                  Meet Jordan our Leopard Gecko

In 3 short weeks he has peaked the interest of my students. They want to know more and more about him and his natural habitat and they have begun to transfer that interest to other animals. Today during small group we read about the Weddell seal in Antarctica the book explained what the seal ate but my students wanted to know what was a predator of the seal. I took the opportunity to discuss reliable information when doing research and we searched the internet and found out that the Polar Bears and Orca's were two predators of the seal among others. I'm glad they are excited to learn. I have a long journey ahead of me, however, I accept the challenge and look forward to success!

 Also, I attended a Reptile Show this weekend and I was amazed to see a baby Kangaroo.



Monday, August 20, 2012

What A Day

Oh what a great first day! I’m excited and feeling empowered.  I've gotten over my first day jitters and I’m ready to work.  I’ve realized I can’t be worried about changing a grade. The students do it every year and they survive. I was really able to teach about relating text to self today because I like Mrs. Sara Hartwell in the book “First Day Jitters” was scared to go to class the first day myself. I extended the lesson by asking the students to write what they think might happen next. And we will see as the days go by how the plot changes in my story.

Now I’m calling plays in 3rd grade, taking it one day at a time.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Don't Miss This Giveaway

Kelley over @ First Grade Fairy Tales is having a giveaway. Don't miss out hop over there today and enter.

Plus, keep an eye out for my 250 Giveaway starting soon.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Meet and Greet Plus Teacher Treats!

On Monday we back to work and Friday we are having a Meet and Greet with parents and students.  Shh! I have been decorating my class after summer camp, so I don’t have much to do. I have been thinking what should I talk about during the Meet and Greet. I don’t want to say too much because we have Open House coming up in a few weeks and I don’t want to say all the same things again. Here’s my agenda for the Meet and Greet. What should I add or take away?

Meet and Greet Agenda

1.     Introductions
2.     Expectations
3.     Class Newsletter
4.     Subjects/textbooks
5.     Supply list/Wish list
6.     Rewards/consequences

       Should I have snacks out and something for students to do while I speak to parents?

Also, PTA has been busy this summer. We have so many great plans for our students, teachers, and staff. Here’s our teacher and staff welcome back gifts a planner and a new lanyard. Our students receive a welcome back snack including a juice, chips and a treat to take home as an afterschool snack.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Made It Monday

I finally finished my teacher stool for the classroom. Sometimes I need to sit for a few minutes when I'm explaining a concept , so I might as well be sitting pretty.

I use an old stool and painted the legs pink then painted the stool black. I used a variety of scrapbook stickers and letters to decorate the stool top. I traced a dinner plate with a gold paint marker to make the circle then I used Mod Podge sealer (2 coats). Lastly I stapled two toddler tu-tu's from Micheal's around the bottom. The cost: about $25.00.

I made this as a teacher gift, I used clothes pins, glitter ,glue, and a empty tuna can. The teachers can use them as pen and pencil holders.
First, I sprayed the tuna can and clothes pins with pink spray paint.

Next, I lined on strip of glue on the clothes pins. You have to glue and glitter one side on one day and do the other side the next day.

Lastly, clip the clothes pins on the can close together neatly around the can.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Happy B-Day to Me and Celebrating Birthdays in the Classroom

Happy Birthday to me is the song I’m singing this morning. Today is my birthday. I have so many candles on the cake I could use them as a manipulative in a math lesson. 

How do you celebrate birthdays in the classroom and how do you acknowledge birthdays that are not during the school year. I have a little simple way to treat everyone throughout the year. Sometimes when I’m calling student to line up or to do an activity I call them up by two or three months at a time. I will say if your birthday is in January or February line up and so forth. I choose two months and give them a little treat. So by the end of the school year everyone has received a treat several times for being born in their birthday month.

 I know the students don’t want to feel left out. Even as an adult it’s a tiny bit saddening to see all the teachers receive birthday wishes, cards and candy at school and never have an opportunity to experience it.

Monday, July 23, 2012

The Effects of Blog Hopping

I’m tired from blog hopping. The list kept growing and I kept visiting new blogs, finding freebies, and stealing ideas. Now I’m tired. I did not complete my 2 projects for Made It Monday nor did I work on my thematic unit for my last Gifted Endorsement class that’s due on Sunday. Do you think blog hopping is a good excuse? Speaking of that project it’s longer than that blog hop list (at least that’s how I feel).

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Newbie Bloggers Blog Hop

I'm joining in the Newbie Bloggers Hop with
Janis @ Grade Three is the Place for Me  

 All you have to do is share a little information about yourself so that the rest of the teacher blog world can get to know you better!

   1. What state you are in 
My Name is Shanell Lee I live in Florida.

2. your current teaching position
I proudly teach 2nd grade.  

3. your teaching experience
I started out teaching 9th grade  at a private school then I went down to 8th grade. Later I thought I was missing out on something so I went to public school. I was a substitute for two years then I was hired to teach 5th grade later I moved to 2nd grade. I love primary, it was a journey to get here but well worth it. 

4. When you started blogging?
 I started blogging in March, 2012 after I attended a (PLC) Professional Learning Community with my team and the facilitator showed us the First Grade Parade blog. First I became a blog stalker then I knew I wanted to write and share information also.
5. Share a blogging tip/ blogging resource
Read a variety of blogs you will learn a lot that way.
Check out the other Newbie bloggers

We Have a Winner!

Congratulations  to Elizabeth from A Few of My Favorite Things
for winning the $50.00 Target Gift Card, Enjoy.

Thank you to everyone for entering and helping me celebrate reaching 100 followers.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Reflecting on Reading Practices

       This week I have been reading “Best Practices for Teaching Reading” by Randi Stone. As chapter 2 begins the reader is given 10 steps to great readers written by Susan Carter. I’m thinking seriously, if it were an easy 10-step plan we would all have a class full of great readers. I know Carter is providing guidelines not a full proof plan so, I decided I would open my mind and see what she had to say and share the list with you guys also.

1.    Expect noise and plan for it.

Me: I ask students to speak quietly so I do expect some noise.

2.    Reward progress.

Me: I over reward in the beginning to get students involved then I reward at different milestones for example, increase in fluency or mastery of a skill.

3.    Give them books they can read.

Me: I provide many books according to reading levels in my book bins and I have what I call the floating book of the week. The students pass the book around after the student reads the book and takes an A/R test on the book they pass it on to the next student.

4.    Keep it fun.

Me: I don’t know if it’s always fun but, I will try to have more engaging, enjoyable centers this year, TPT to the rescue.

5.    Partners

Me: I use partner reading and Think- Pair-Share.

6.    Groups

Me: I have three groups made up of 5 to 6 children.

7.    Location

Me: I hold small group at a kidney shape table and centers are located in different areas of the class.

8.    Comfort

Me: I have stuff animals and pillows for student to sit or lay on the carpet. I allow for them to sit where they feel comfortable.

9.    System and Procedures

Me: I had a simple system where I held 4 groups a day: On level, approaching level, beyond level, double dose. This year I’m going to implement the CAFÉ 5.

10.                  Snacks

Me: Snacks during reading, I’ve never tried that. I will try it to see how it affects stamina.

Do you include these all or some of these steps in your Reading block?

What rewards do you use in class in general?

Monday, July 16, 2012

Found a Great Giveaway

                    While blog hopping I found a great giveaway 
                       @  The Hands-On Teacher in First

       There's over 5 great prizes to win, stop by and enter.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

100 Follower Giveaway, Win a Target Gift Card

I'm so excited and I just can't hide it! That's all I actually know of that entire song by the Pointer Sisters. I've reached 100 followers and that's about how long it took me to make that little button up there. I'm equally excited when I go to Target my favorite store, so I wanted you to share in the excitement. I'm giving away a $50.00 Target gift card to celebrate.
This can make a difference if you hit up the Dollar Deals section like me!
                                               Enter giveaway at bottom of the page.

Liebster Award

 Thank you to Patti @ One Class, One Sound for awarding me the    Liebster Blog Award

The rules are:

1.  Copy and paste the award to your blog

2.  Thank the giver and link back to them

3.  Nominate 5 other bloggers and let them know by commenting on their blog

My nominees are:

Friday, July 13, 2012

It's Friday the 13th for Sure, I've seen Monsters

Ok, it was 10 at night and I’m not ashamed to say I was on my way to Target with family in tow. I heard the ding from my phone indicating I received an e-mail. When I read it I yelled with excitement. I had reached 100 followers (woo- hoo!).  However, my excitement was short lived. As I toured the school supply section I found this.

Sure, I should be excited still since this will go great with my monster theme in my classroom but, I just made this yesterday.
Finished storage box.

View from the side.

View from the top. I used Duck Tape around the sides.
It matches the clip boards and whisper phones I made two weeks ago.

I measured the compartments, cut paper to that size, and glue the label to it.

In my mind I just said, “I will make another one”.  I couldn’t say that I loud because I would be getting the evil eye from my other half who does not understand why teachers spend so much money on their class.

        Here’s two great finds from the Dollar Deals Section

These Write and Wipe Covers are going to be great for small group and center activities.

These are chair covers, I'm going to have one boy and girl star student each week.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Summer, Fun, and Learning

       Monday I started Summer Camp. One part of me was sad to lose my lazy days, but the other part of me was happy to be back doing what I love, teaching. It’s a pretty smooth day. It’s 8 to12. The students rotate, so I spend 45 minutes with each grade level 1st through 5th. I’m teaching Character Education, this week we worked on activities regarding respect. It was funny to see the children engaged in the activities and discuss how they should respect each other, then turn around and disrespect each other. I guess we have to keep working on it.

       With the 1st and 2nd graders I used the Respect song from Have Fun Teaching  the students loved it. If you have not ever visited the site check it out. The website was created by a teacher, Mark Luchauer who was given a grant from his school district to create resources for teachers. Have Fun Teaching is a website offers free worksheets, coloring pages, flash cards, activities, songs, videos and lesson plan ideas.

Here's a picture of another activity we completed about respecting ourselves, people, animals and the Earth. 

 It's funny how I went from middle school to 5th grade and I thought I would not enjoy teaching Primary. Some how I ended up teaching 2nd grade last year and loved it, I love the first graders too!