Friday, April 26, 2013

I met Lucy Caulkins!

Last Sunday I was blessed to attend the International Reading Association's annual conference in San Antonio and I met Lucy Caulkins!  Sprinkles to me!

Her session was amazing and meeting her was a treat!  I have written some posts about Writer's Workshop.  You can click here to read about my managment of our writing block.

I just had to show you some recent writing from my class.  I am soooo stinkin' proud of my cuties! We have come a lllooonnnggg way and I couldn't be more proud of my class!

Happy weekend, everyone!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Oviparous Fun!

Happy Saturday!  We enjoyed learning about oviparous animals last week.  I introduced it by showing my cuties this egg I found at Ikea:

I told them that there were animals in the egg that lay eggs.  My cuties made some predictions about the type of animals in the egg, then we opened it up and checked out some of the "oviparous" animals.  (They always love learning big words.)

Then we read this book from Shuna Patterson's Let's Get Crackin' Oviparous Animals unit to learn about different animals that are oviparous.

After learning about many oviparous animals, we completed a class sort of oviparous and non-oviparous animals from Mrs. Jone's Creation Station sort.

We also labeled the classroom with labels that said "oviparous" and "not oviparous".

Have a happy weekend!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Teachable moment ~ thanks to a roly poly infestation!

Happy Tuesday!  So I will admit that I was dreading today.  I love teaching kinders, but today was one of our state assessments for 4th and 5th grade - which makes for a walk on egg shells, don't even think of sneezing kind of day.  But God is good, and today was oodles of fun and smiles!  

Let me start by saying our school has had an infestation on roly polies:

Do you see all of them?  

Well, after tip toe-ing around the school, we went out for a much needed recess and my cuties were going crazy over these little critters.  I overheard many of them stating that they were living things and then described what the roly polies needed to stay alive.  This made my heart do three cartwheels because we have been learning about the needs of living things.  So one precious cutie asked if I had a jar.  I thought about then remembered that I had some old glad ware bowls in my cabinet.  

We all rushed inside and I had exaclty enough bowls for each student to have one.  Then we made a quick plan about what the roly polies would need to live.  They remembered everything we had learned the week before, so we ventured back out and enjoyed the critters.

I was so excited to see their learning transfer from the classroom to real life AND we got to take home roly polies!

So everything that led up to this perfectly wonderful, unplanned, state testing, really dreading day went like this:

Last Monday, I introduced the idea of living and non-living things by comparing gummy worms to earthworms.  My cuties really came up with great comparisons and even came up with the needs of the living worms on their own (after some guidance).

The next day, we enjoyed an egg hunt.  I placed pictures of living and non-living things in eggs and my cuties hunted for them, then recorded if the picture was of a living thing or a non-living thing.

You can have this hunt by clicking the picture below.

Then we created this living things tree and anchor chart.  (The tree will help us bridge our learning about plants are living things later this month.)

On each little card on the tree, my cuties picked a living thing and then stated what it needs to live. 

By the way, I wasn't sure what roly polies ate, so when we were trying to decide what to feed them, my cuties suggested we give them some crackers and hedgehog food - ha ha ha!  So that's what we gave them.  They really enjoyed the hedgehog food - yum!


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