Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Fun, "New" Thing

Tomorrow I have my FINAL observation from Jennifer (yes, I know...BYU is done but she's not.  Bummer).  But it should go fairly well.  We are doing a shared reading lesson about heros.  Today for their journal prompt, I asked "What do you think makes someone a hero? Who is your hero?"  And then later in the day I brought out this bad boy...

THEY LOVED IT!!!!  :)  They thought it was so hilarious when I told them I grew up with these.  I had to explain how to work it but I let them go out in the hall and record what they thought about heros in preparation for tomorrow's lesson.  (Mom & Dad - thanks for getting it for me for Christmas!)  Their answers are so cute!  One kid said his heros were Jesus and Samuel the Lamanite, another said Thomas S. Monson....ADORABLE!!!!!!  I love these kids.

I'm sitting here listening to their answers and thought I should share this fun experience with you.  :)  Happy Wednesday!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Field Trip! and Teacher Appreciation Week

Pretty sure that the Field Trip this week was a big-time success.  I didn't lose any children, no one broke any dinosaur fossils, there was no bus-sickness, and they all had the time of their life.  I had several students tell me that it was the best field trip EVER!!  :)  I'm so glad they think so.

I hope this works...I tried making a slideshow out of all the pictures I took at the museum.  Not all the kids are mine.  The last two pictures are actually another 4th grade class.  I took the pics for their teacher because her camera died while we were at the museum.  And we were the only two teachers out of 5 to bring a camera.  So the others asked me to take a few pictures of their kids as well.  You'll see from a few pictures that they had LOTS of hands-on activities which kept the kids' attention for nearly 2.5 hours!  That's a lot of walking and exploring.

When we got back to school, the class was so worn out.  I'm glad I planned on a read-a-thon when we got back.  We spent 45 minutes just laying around the classroom in dim lighting, shoes off, voice quiet, and just reading.  It was a relaxing end to a fun day.  I don't know that I could handled anything else.  On the bus ride back from the Museum, the two classes on our bus ended up having a scream-singing competition with the Utah songs we've been learning.  I have to say that I'm glad they know the words, but the screaming got old REALLY fast.  I had a huge headache by the time we got back to the school and relished the quiet time to sit and read.

Last week was also Teacher Appreciation Week for us.  Our room moms decorated our doors and the school sent home a note for the students to bring little treats for their teachers throughout the week.  It listed our favorite candy, soda, school supplies, restaurants, color, etc...It was fun to see what came back and I'm so amazed by their generosity!  Here's a few of the things I got:

The last few pictures are from a sweet little scrapbook they made for me.  I may have used the word "skeewhompus" a few times and apparently they noticed!  :)  They LOVE that word now and even tried looking up the spelling in the dictionary.  I had to tell them that it's not a real word but it's used somewhat frequently.  Their answers and drawings of me were so fun to read through.  I love teacher appreciation week!!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

3 More Months!

Wait, what??  Only 3 more months.  Yes, that's right.  I can't believe how quickly this year has gone past.

Well, today was our grading day for the end of term 2.  I almost have them completed, I just have to put in comments for 12 more students and then they'll be finished.  It went a lot faster this time around since I knew what I was doing.  I still went into school today though so I could get more things finished.  In addition to nearly finishing grades, I also redecorated my bulletin board (so it's different for when parents come for conferences next week) and I rearranged/organized my classroom library.  This last project took a few hours, but I now have nearly all books labeled individually by reading level and genre and they are sorted into buckets by genre as well.  I hope that this will help some of my students find books a little easier.  They can just look up whatever genre interests them and then find one that's close to their level.

I'm super excited about my bulletin board too!  Today is Dr. Seuss's birthday so this week we did a Cat-in-the-Hat themed writing activity as well as started to draw some mini Cats.  We aren't finished with the Cats yet but I'm hoping to have those finished in time to put up for conferences on Wednesday.  We'll see how that goes.  And even if not, we'll at least have their writing up.  Here's the pictures of the bulletin board and the "new" library as well as a few other changes around the room.

This poster will hopefully make the class more aware of what their attitude is on a daily basis.  It's right on my door as they come in so it's always a reminder.

 Here's a fun little art project they did in their science class as they learned about soil.  It's their profile in soil!  :)

 I'm so tired of only having one whiteboard so I bought another little one that sits off to the side and has their reading group assignments on it.  Now I don't have to race to put them on the board each day and erase it an hour later.  This has been a real life saver!
 And finally, for a laugh, here are their new group names!  Try saying these 10 times fast!