Saturday, March 30, 2013

NonFiction Fun & High/Low

Happy Saturday!

I wanted to share my 'Fun Friday' lesson (the kids all cheered when I told them no, they didn't need their reading books because it was Fun Friday! :)

This week we focused on NonFiction Text Features...of which they have been woefully ignorant of. (until yesterday!)

We first started off by making and anchor chart (of course!). I took our Social Studies book, and some other non-fiction books, and show them each of the features as I talked about it.

This is actually a remake of the chart that I made last year:

I like the one I made this year better, I think it is a little cleaner and easier for the kids to read.

After we went over what the features were, I spread out the picture books and sent them on their way.

First, I had them doing a Scavenger Hunt that I got from Buzzing with Ms. B (to see if they could recognize the different features), and then I had them do a Using Text Features that I got from Ginger Snaps (to see if they understand why they were included).

I'm going to have them finish up with focusing on one book, using the NonFiction Response Sheet that I got from Create Teach Share.

The books I used:

I put out a variety of reading levels and topics, so everyone found something that they wanted to read about!

I'm also linking up with Teacher to the Core High/Low linky for March.

~ Getting 2 Snow Days AND a Delay
~Being 90-95% sure that for the first time EVER, I will be offered a returning contract...meaning I'll be in the SAME place and the SAME grade!! : D
~Finding out that my school bestie may be joining us in 4th Grade!
~Going to see Zombie Prom with the same bestie (her daughter was in it, and they did a wonderful job!)

~Getting a look at my electricity bill! (somehow, I (or someone linked in to my line) is using up triple the amount of electricity...and it all comes out of my pocket)
~ Having to buy two new tires for my car
~Getting 2 Snow Days AND a Delay (This makes we're going a week later than first scheduled)

March turned out to be a pretty decent month! I hope April is the same!

Smiles and Sunshine,

Friday, March 29, 2013

5 Days, 5 Ways- Casual Friday


I'm linking up with Franish and Whitney for their 5 Days, 5 Ways.

Up until last month, there was no such thing as Casual Friday at my school. My principal didn't (and probably still doesn't) believe that jeans are professional enough for us to wear.

However, he has recently allowed us to wear jeans on Friday (those days when we are actually in school and don't have a teacher workshop day or a snow day!) if we pay $2.

The money is being donated to one of the Sandy Hook Victims Funds-so it is going to a good cause.

Here are my Casual Friday Outfits! (The jeans are from JCP and the skirt is from Old Navy)

Comfortable, but still stylish and nice looking :)

Today's Outfit:

Sweater: The Limited
Shirt & Pants: JCP
Shoes: Amazon

Have a wonderful weekend! (and Hoppy Easter!)

Smiles and Sunshine,

Thursday, March 28, 2013

CC for You

Hi Peeps!

I wanted to share with you a really cool website that I've recently discovered and found very helpful (not asked to do this...just wanted to share something truly great!)

I'm sure that, by now, y'all've heard of the Common Core State Standards.

and things have been coming out that are CC-aligned.

Well, I found the coolest, FREE website that has worksheet aligned to the CC.

It's called Common Core Sheets.

Not only does it have Math, it has ELA, Social Studies and Science!!

The worksheets are organized by topic, and they have TONS for any skill you could imagine.

They are also super easy to grade-as all the answers go down the side...makes it easy-peasy lemon-squeezy!

I hope you found this helpful!

Today's Outfit:

Sweater: JCP
Pants: Kohls
Shoes: Burlington Coat Factory

SO happy that tomorrow is Friday! Although this week has gone by pretty quickly, I am always happy to see the weekend come (I love my job, but I love my weekends too!)

Smiles and Sunshine,

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Workshop Wednesday- Mentor Texts

Back to your regularly scheduled education.... ;)

What's up?

It's Wednesday, which means I'm linking up with Jivey for her Workshop Wednesday series.

Today's topic? Mentor Texts!

I've previously blogged about my Mentor Text library here.

For a refresher, my Mentor Text library looks like this:

And my books are labeled, like this:

But I thought I would go into more detail about what books I have in my 6 Traits bucket, which is where I pull most of my Mentor Texts from when I am teaching writing.

A lot of my books overlap with the traits (they're usually good for more than one)-so I won't be listing the individual traits-that's another post! (many other posts!)

The Books:

I Wanna New Room; Diary of a Wombat

Weslandia; Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge; One Tiny Turtle

Sloppy Joe; Chester; Harriet, You'll Drive Me Wild!

Jeremy Draws a Monster; Memoirs of a Goldfish; I Wanna Iguana

A Tree Named Steve; Thunder-Boomer!; How I Spent My Summer Vacation

Swim! Swim!; What Do You Do With a Tail Like This?; How to Be a Good Friend

Eats, Shoots & Leaves; It's Okay to Be Different; Hello Ocean

Encounter; Substitute Creacher; Work's Adventures with Lewis and Clark

LaRue Across America; If Dogs Were Dinosaurs; LaRue for Mayor

I hope you found some new books for teaching writing!

Today's Outfit
Top & Pants: JCP
Tank: Target
Shoes: Payless

Halfway through the week! Come on Spring, come and join us!

Smiles and Sunshine,

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

5 Days, 5 Ways- Pants

Hi Peeps!

I'm linking up with Franish and Whitney for their 5 Days, 5 Ways.


Today is Pants! I choose a pair of gray khakis that I got from Kohls a few years ago. I love them because I was able to find them in petite, which means no hemming! (A petite girl's best friend!).

I wear them almost every week, so I had a lot of choices to pick from! Here are some of my favorites:
Hmmmm...There's a lot of pink and purple in there! Guess what some of my favorite colors are? ;)

Yesterday's Outfit:

Sweater: NY & Co
Tank: Target
Pants: JCP
Shoes: Payless

Today's Outfit:
Sweater & Pants: JCP
Boots: Endless/Amazon

Regularly scheduled Education-Related posts will be back tomorrow with Workshop Wednesday from Jivey :)

Smiles and Sunshine,

Monday, March 25, 2013

5 Days, 5 Ways-Tops

Hi Bloggy Buds!

I'm linking up with Franish and Whitney for their 5days, 5 ways.


Now, the top I picked I have in 2 different colors (pink and blue), so I'll show you both! This top is ANA from JCP.

Some of the looks are the same, but with sweaters, cause it's cold in Winter up here in New England!

I also love this top from Maurices...It looks dressy, but it is made of sweatshirt material so it is super comfy!

Smiles and Sunshine,

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Monster Fun

On Thursday, I had about a 1/3 of my class gone on a Chorus field trip. I faced a dilemma. What to do?

I couldn't teach anything new...I'd just have to reteach for the friends who missed it.

I didn't feel right just having the kids catch up on unfinished work-or doing nothing academic at all.

Creativity to the rescue!

I remembered this book that one of my colleagues had a few years ago, I Need My Monster.  I also remembered that I had some freebie activities to go along with it! :)

After a quick check of my picture book stock, I realized that I didn't have a copy (oh, the horror!!). Even worse, the school library didn't have it either!

What was I to do? I had a the perfect set of activities (Thanks to Dandelions and Dragonflies and 3rd Grade Gridiron!), but no book.

Enter Google (and Youtube!). That's right! I found videos of the book being read, and we did those.

 Both are great versions of this read aloud.

After we listened to the book for the first time, we did  Dandelions and Dragonflies glyph activity.

Some of our monsters:

After we finished with making our monsters, we listened to the other version of the book, and then started on the descriptive writing.

I had them work on describing their monster, as well as telling a little about their monsters (where it lives, what it likes to eat).  Their paragraphs are really cute!

I made my own monster paper for them to publish on-so the bulletin board will soon be filled with monsters and their writing.

They loved this activity, and it was the perfect fill in while a 1/3 of my class was gone.

I'll definitely have to remember to buy this book to add to my library!

Friday's Outfit

Sweater: Kohls
Tops: Maurices
Pants: JCP
Shoes: TJ Maxx

A perfect Friday outfit in my opinion, nice jeans with heels. The top is really a light purple, but it doesn't translate well in the picture. Hopefully, the weather here will warm up eventually so I can give up the sweaters!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Smiles and Sunshine,