Monday, December 17, 2012

If you wanna be a pirate...

I told my students that if any of them wanted to be a pirate when they grew up, they better learn to count money.  So, last week we learned to count quarters. We practiced counting by 25's by making paper chains. The kids worked in groups of two and had to collaborate in order to complete their chain. Their chains had to have 25 rings in it.  We hung the chains up in our classroom with labels by them: 25, 50, 75, 100.

We then gave each student a bag of quarters and allowed them to purchase a book and a candy cane from   my aide and myself . They had to count the money out for us and if they had trouble they had to count it out several times until they were comfortable counting by 25's.

The kids were proud of the books that they purchased and enjoyed the cherry flavored candy canes.

We also practiced counting by 25's on our worksheet and colored correct number of quarters to go with the price tags of toys. We talked about the dollar sign and when to use it. We talked abut the decimal and what it meant.

As always when we do our flipped activities, my students worked cooperatively and quietly.  I'm always amazed at how they love project based learning!!! It's a joy to me!  I feel confident that these kids will make fine pirates!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Best Elf on the Shelf Story I've Heard


I've really resisted letting the kids tell me Elf on the Shelf stories because it gets them all jacked up and  we have two more weeks of school until Christmas break.  I have a class this year that has a deep need to express what's on their minds even if a bomb is exploding.  They WILL finish their statement first no matter what.  One of my boys came into class and said, as he was unpacking, "You know what Scout did?"  I didn't have a clue who he was talking about and was concerned that there had already been an incident on the playground for the early arrivals.  "What who did," I asked?.
      The reply came, "Scout, my elf on the shelf." Ugh!  Okay, I would listen.  There weren't too many other kids in the room yet so I let him continue.  "He painted my nose blue," he exclaimed!  "When I woke up Scout was there with a note that said to go look in the mirror.  I went in the bathroom and looked and he had painted my nose blue in the night!  I got to get rid of that elf!"  It was hilarious.  I've not had a single kid tell me they wanted to get rid of their elf since the whole elf on the shelf thing started. I had to laugh!  The boy went on and on about how Scout had gotten into the paint box and left the lid open.  He told me that his four year old little brother also got his nose painted, but not his infant brother.  I thought to my self 'that was a good one'!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Flipped Classroom Math Lesson

 Today for our flipped classroom math lesson activity we went on a scavenger hunt.  The students had to visit seven different stations around the school, count the number of objects at each station, record the number, and then record whether there was a dozen of that object or not.  At their final station, they had to pour cups of water into a pint container until it was full then record how many cups of water the pint container would hold.  All hands on activities to reinforce the concepts of dozen, cup, and pint.  My students told me this was the best day of their life.  Just a little creative thought and a little cooperation from my fellow staff members and voila, we have great math lesson.  The kids loved touring the school and counting objects.  They were VERY cooperative and VERY quiet.  The school staff reported to me that they handled themselves incredibly well.  I was so proud of them.  If you are interested in flipped classroom lessons, please e-mail me.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Kids Convict Themselves

For our big bulletin board in the hall we decided to do a Star Search.  Since I teach at a private Christian School we are blessed to talk about the true meaning of Christmas ALL day long.  We are on the hunt for just the right star to do the important job of hanging out over the manger in Bethlehem and lighting the way for the shepherds and wise men to find their way to baby Jesus.  The kids had to fill out an application for the job.  Of course, everyone wanted the job.  They had to tell if they had been naughty or nice.  Many of the students answered truthfully before erasing their answer and circling the politically correct answer.  After all who wants to hire a star who's been naughty?!  You can get my Star Application on TPT by clicking the application below.