Sunday, January 25, 2015

Trade and Grade Blog HopI

My trade & grade partner was Jeanette from Third Grade Galore.
Third Grade Galore

She sent me a fantastic product for word work.
click for full product

This product had A LOT of different activities with it. Due to the time frame I had to use the product, I only did 2 of them, but plan to use more of them in the future.

The first thing I used was the smaller version on the ABC order. There are 36 cards that can be used for a full class lesson or small group. However, I chose to use the smaller version in my centers. One of my centers is ABC order. The students practice this skill every week because it's usually tested pretty heavily on the ISTEP for 3rd grade.  So this week I took the 4 students cards (2 each of the same kind.) I laminated them and put them along with the blank answer keys for my students in my station.  You could just copy a set for each student & have them cut & paste if you'd prefer to do that.

I had my students use a dry erase marker to mark off the words once they'd used them since I had laminated the lists.

The second thing from the pack I did was a full class activity that had students sorting words as to whether they were a noun, verb, and adjective.  I printed & laminated all 36 cards that came with the packet. Then I printed the large answer sheet with boxes.  

My students had not yet learned about adjectives yet, but had learned about verbs & nouns. Therefore I showed them a Brainpop Jr Video on adjectives.  Then I laid the cards on each of the desks and around the room on tables.  We kind of did a combination or "Roam the Room" and "Scoot".  I played music & allowed the students to go at their own pace as they scooted around the room to fill in their sheets.  When they were finished I collected the cards & went over the answers as a full class using my document camera. 

There  are many other activities that could have been done with this packet. The words could have been used as a whole class game of Scoot by singular or plural nouns, answer sheets were provided. The singular and plural nouns could also have been a station or individual work.  There were also several pages of sentence writing as well as a candy scavenger hunt.

I don't think you'll be disappointed with this packet!  Check out the sample freebie below.

After you've checked out Jeanette's Freebie & full product, be sure to head over to Third Grade Galore to see how Jeanette used my Missing Numbers in Multiplication game. 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Chatter Pix In The Classroom

If you have never tried Chatter Pix in the classroom you have GOT to try it! For those of you with children of your own I am sure you are well aware of apps such as Talking Tom. The annoying cat that repeats everything you say. It's funny at first until you've heard it for hours. Then the tattling starts after one child uses it to annoy a sibling.  Anyway...back to Chatter Pix. It's kind of along the same lines. My son LOVES it & has used it at our home for countess hours of entertainment.  So what is it you ask?

Chatter Pix is a really simple app to use. There are two versions, Chatter Pix, and Chatter Pix for Kids. Honestly, I haven't figured out the difference between the two apps other than the kid version has a cuter icon. The regular version does allow you to email, send to YouTube, or Facebook. The kid version just downloads to your camera roll, so maybe that's the main difference?  To use Chatter Pix you simply take a picture. Then you use your finger & draw a line over where you'd like the "mouth" to appear. Next you touch the microphone button & it will record whatever you say. When you are finished you press the square button to stop. Your picture then "talks" and repeats what you have recorded.  
Click the video to see simple instructions

My son likes to take pictures of our pets & record his voice saying funny things, but the uses for this in the classroom are endless.

This week I took pictures of students & then had them create a Chatter Pix of them saying their New Year's Resolutions.

The picture doesn't HAVE to be of a person though. A student can take a picture of an illustration & then create a Chatter Pix recording themselves reading a short paragraph that they have written.

In math class we are working on division. I had my students create division word problems & draw an illustration to go with it. They then created a ChatterPix of an illustration that matches their problem & recorded their voice reading the problem. I linked my Ipad using my AppleTV and showed the Chatter Pix recordings to my class. Of course, they love to laugh at them, but they also had to solve the problems using their dry erase boards. If you don't have Apple TV then you could use the Ipad or Ipod in a station. 

I hope you give it a try in your classroom. Here's my son's Chatter Pix. 

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Saturday, January 10, 2015

Fun With Fractions

I LOVE teaching fractions in my classroom. There are just so many hands on things that can be done & that's right up my alley.  This past week we finished up our 3 week unit on fractions. Normally I have what I call "Fraction Fest" in my classroom. I have a bunch of fraction stations around the room that I created & create a schedule for the students to rotate through them. It's always a big hit with the students, but it's a lot of work for me.

This year, I decided to try something different. Even though this is my 19th year of teaching there are some days that I feel more overwhelmed than I did 19 years ago. The demands on a teacher just seem to keep increasing, yet the time to accomplish everything, and the funding to do it keep decreasing. So...when I thought about getting together my fraction stations and what I'd need to purchase, and creating my schedule for them to rotate through I got kind of grumpy.  I just didn't think I had the energy of the time this year.  Then I somehow came across a WONDERFUL free resource that saved the day!

Hands-On Math Booklet 3.NF.1 {Fractions} FREE
Click on the picture to be taken to TPT

This hands on math booklet was super easy to prepare. Due to the way she has created it, you simply have to cut the stack in half then put one on top of the other & staple. There's no sorting of pages or timely folding necessary.  

The only thing I had to purchase was M&M's, which I actually used skittles instead due to peanut allergies in my classroom.

There are 9 different stations that the students will complete. Most of them they can just do at their desk if you wish.

 You will need:

  • Play Dough - either store bought or homemade
  • Plastic knives
  • M & M's or skittles
  • Legos (I borrowed some from a friend who has children younger than mine.) 
  • Colored paper strips (The product comes with some, but I preferred using construction paper cut into strips. It was easier, faster, and didn't require colored ink.)

Knowing me...I would have taken the time to create an organized rotating schedule more than likely.  I originally did not have these stations planned for yesterday. My counselor was supposed to come & do her monthly lesson with my class. Therefore I had no plans & had even given away my computer lab time to a teacher who needed to do assessments. So when I got the call after waiting for the counselor for 10 minutes that she wouldn't be arriving, I got that dreaded feeling in my stomach about what I was going to do with them.  Then I remembered that I already had everything I needed to do the fraction stations except a schedule. I decided to just wing it. I set the Legos on one side of the room, Skittles on a table, construction paper strips on an empty desk, and play dough on my round table. 

I passed out the booklets to each student & went over the directions for the 9 stations. My only rule was that at the Legos & the Play Dough that no more than 4 kids could be there. Then I just set them loose. It was actually a blessing that my counselor cancelled.  I would have spent unnecessary time creating groups of varying abilities, figuring out the best order to rotate etc. had I had the time. Doing it on a whim saved me from all of that work & I just got to enjoy a full hour of my students being completely engaged. It was wonderful!

I highly recommend checking out this free resource. It saved my Friday afternoon, my sanity, and....the kids actually learned something too. :) 

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