Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Week Before Thanksgiving

Hey everyone!

I'm at work (I know...WAY too late), but I wanted to post.  I don't have a math/Investigations post ready yet, but after seeing a craftivity on Step into 2nd Grade with Mrs. Lemons' blog (something she got from A Cupcake for the Teacher).  So I headed right over to that TPT shop and happily spent $3.  Here's a picture of some finished turkeys on my hallway display.   

I'm so happy that I took the time to do this.  We listened to our Disney music, and worked away assembling the turkeys.  I had traced all of the patterns on rectangles and put them in baggies for the kids.  They followed along with me, cutting out and assembling their turkeys-GREAT practice in following directions.  The students then wrote what they were thankful for.  Some of them wrote lots and lots!!! 

This was such a successful, fun activity, and I must thank both Amy at Step into 2nd Grade and Teri at A Cupcake for the Teacher.  Amy, thanks for blogging about this great activity.  Teri, thanks for putting it together and sharing it with's adorable. 

This craftivity was so fun for my class that I am making a resolution now, to incorporate more "fun" activities like this into our plans.  Whatever happened to learning being fun?! 

In other news, I'm reading this book with my kids this week:

We read Henry and Mudge stories at the beginning of the year, so a Cynthia Rylant book fits right in.  Do any of you read this book?  What activities/assessments do you do with it?  My students will all take the Accelerated Reader test on it tomorrow, and we wrote a response to it today, but that's pretty much been it.  Do you have other favorite books to read for fall/Thanksgiving?

I know I mentioned AR (sorry, I feel like this post is ALL over the place).  My students have recently become very motivated to achieve the points levels at which they earn a prize (sponsored by the PTA).  Some teachers at my school do their own rewards within the classroom as well.  I'm about to start this, because as the students move up the levels, the point increments get bigger and bigger.  I don't want them to lose motivation.  Do you have a reading incentive program in your classroom?  How does it work?

Okay, that's all for now.  Time to go HOME!  Thanks for reading.  :-) 

Monday, November 5, 2012

Saving Science

Hello blog readers (if you are still out there-I've been gone for a long, long time),

I need your help today.  Science has become terribly, horribly boring.  Our 2nd grade students are so desperate for engaging science that they are literally digging up the playground at recess (No, I'm not kidding)!!! 

Not my students, but I think this captures how they feel.  :-(

We are about to embark upon our energy unit, and we need your help!  We are looking for engaging experiences to provide our students that will still yield a grade.  What do you do for science in your 2nd grade classroom?  What do the kids really love?  How do you grade it?  What are your sources for lessons/experiments? 

I've looked around the internet a bit, especially at the websites of two of my favorite scientists, Bill Nye and Steve Spangler.  I'm about to check out Pinterest next, but I'd love to hear your science success stories.  Please help us...BEFORE my students dig to China!

I hope to make my way back to blog land.  Maybe next week I can write a post to update you on how Investigations is going and what it looks like in my classroom.  Thanks for reading (and hopefully helping!). 
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