Saturday, May 31, 2014

School Year Is Winding Down

It is so hard to believe that today is the last day of May. I have only 6.5 days of school with my second graders. This has been a great year, I will miss this group of students.  Like always this time of year. We are all so busy with end of the year testing, paperwork and awards day. Finishing up all of our curriculum before the last day of school. My students have been working hard all year. We have had a great time using our iPads. Technology is a major component in my classroom. Students are always working with technology. They have created many different projects with all types of technology with apps, google and Discovery Education.

This past week we have been learning about the Rainforest. Students have been learning about the layers and animals of the Rainforest. We have had fun make crafts each day. Our final full week of school will be working on an Ocean Unit. Each day we will learn about a certain ocean creature.

This week my students have been working on their Book Buffet projects. I got this great idea from The Peanut Gallery on TpT. Students had to pick a fiction book and create a project that resembles food to tell about their book. If you're looking for a fun way to share a book, this is an idea for you. Check out the item in their TpT store. Students and their parents will be experiencing the Book Buffet this Friday before we have awards. Students will get to explore a classroom full of great books in the Book Buffet. I am excited to see how great this project and buffet goes.

Soon I will have to pack up my classroom for the summer. It is always a good time to weed out things that I do not need in my room anymore. I have been trying to empty out file cabinets of old work I do not use any longer. Do you have to pack up your classroom or do you get to keep things out? Our floors have to be stripped and waxed. During the summer I am always thinking of a different layout of my room and new ways to get more organized. SO this summer I will be busy looking for new ideas and planning for the next year. I hope to share ideas here. So stop by soon. Have a great summer!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

5 Beliefs of Education

As being a part of my school systems Pinnacle Leadership, we were given the prompt to write a blog post about our 5 Beliefs in Education. This really made me think long and hard about what my beliefs are. I am very curious to know what other educators beliefs are as well. Please share your 5 beliefs as a comment below. Well here are my beliefs.

One: I feel that all children can learn. Each child will learn at their own level and speed.We are born learning as soon as we take our first breath. We learn how to eat, we learn how to roll over, we learn how to sit, crawl and walk are just a few of the ways we learn at the beginning of our lives.

Two: I feel that it is important to make a connection with your students. Students will feel valued and respected if this is achieved. Students will be made to feel a part of the group and belong.

Three: I feel that it is a responsibility for parents, educators and the community to help support the learning of a child. It is a united effort of all that come into contact with that child.

Four: Education is about enabling a student to learn by using a variety of methods to discovery of knowledge. This is obtained by using technology, explicit instruction, independent and cooperative learning. We are all lifelong learners by making ourselves be reflective thinkers.

Five: Learning is the primary goal of all students.Creating an environment that is conducive to learning for each individual. We should be challenge our students in their learning.

I would love to hear your beliefs of education. Leave a comment below.

In my classroom we are using technology is all areas of learning. We use ipads, computers, and smartboards with our instruction and independent/group work. Students love learning about a new app to create presentation on all content areas. This week we began using Pic Collage for retelling stories and grammar showing  what a noun is, an adjective, and verbs. Students have even worked with their 5th grade buddies and showed them how to use Pic Collage and Poplet.

Hope you find some ideas to use in your classroom.


Thursday, February 6, 2014

Technology Day

We are having a great time on Technology Day in our classroom. Students are using ipads throughout the day on numerous activities and apps. We just began using a new app called Spellyfish. Students work on spelling with this app. It is really useful for my students who need help with phonics and spelling skills.



Here are two that are having fun using the ipads and Spellyfish App!

Next you will see two students on the laptops using the SCOOTPAD Website! We use this daily to work on Math and Reading. I love the fact that it is aligned to Common Core and BEST OF ALL IT IS FREE!!! My students can access it at home to work on it at well. Students earn reward coins to trade in for prizes. I get a weekly progress report from the website. If you choose to purchase, you get more subjects to work on and upgrades.






Students are using the 2nd grade Fiction Comprehension App in our Listening Center. Students get to read the story and complete a Graphic Organizer. It also helps them with their fluency.



Our classroom favorite is Toontastic!!!! 







Students plan out their stories scene by scene. Scene One is the Setup. Student pick setting, characters and the mood. Student animate the character and record their voice.Scene Two is the Conflict. Student create the problem in the story. Scene Three is the Challenge. How does the character handle the conflict. Scene Four is the Climax. This is where all the action takes place. Scene Five is the Resolution. Does the characters will over the conflict or are they defeated? We used a great resource from Tina's Teaching Treasures on TPT. It has graphic organizers to help students create their stories with characters and scene from Toontastic. Once the stories are completed I will post their videos. Also on the app it has ToonTube that is where you can view your video along with others that have shared videos. You can check out amazing videos that others have create and use them in your classroom for examples or even as an edition to a lesson or activity that you are teaching. It is a great resource.




Monday, December 16, 2013

Classroom Activities This Week

This week we are having fun getting ready for our holiday break. We have been working on writing about our Holly Days!!! Here in picture you will see the holly leaves with students writing about their holiday with their families and their traditions. This is always a cute display that I have my students to create each year.


Next, my students did a GREAT job creating their winter snowman pictures. They are hanging in our hallway for all to see. Students will be writing a story in class to go along with their picture. 

I think they turned out fabulous. I love snowman. SO any chance I get to make something with them I do!!! This activity was in our ART center. My students always look forward to what I have each week for them to create in my ART center.

So being that I LOVE SNOWMAN. I have my door as one. A few years ago, I made my door into a snowman and the ladies on my grade level wanted one too. So this year this is my door. Each teacher on my grade level has one just like it in a different color.
Mine is LIME GREEN cause that is my favorite color.
Let me know what you think.



This is such a busy time for year. I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!!


Friday, December 6, 2013

Technology In Our Classroom

My classroom is very lucky to have ipads, smartboard and laptops for students to integrate technology into our everyday learning. I love technology and use it in all aspects of my life. It is also used in many ways in my instruction with my students. Every day lessons I teach, I use some type of technology. It may be the smartboard lesson. We use many ipad apps for all subject areas. We use laptops and desktop computers in centers.

Here is a list of some of our FAVORITE APPS to use!

 Here is one that students made!




We love Sock Puppets. We used this app to tell about Helen Keller. You know technology and its quirks. It will not allow me to post students video. But here is a look at the app.

Students are using ipads daily in centers. Here you can see then using one of our fun apps Word Ball.
They have to build words as fast as they can before the letter balls disappear. We have even used this app with our 5th grade buddies that come to our class on Wednesdays.

   
Students have a blast with Rocket Speller to practice working with words.



                                  
                       

 Big Cat stories are AWESOME!!
We use them in our Listening Center. Students listen to the story being read to them. Then they read it them self and complete the Listening Center Sheet with comprehension questions about the story.

QR Codes are used through out our learning. We used them with Math, Reading, Science and Social Studies. Students love to scan the code and see what it contains. It maybe just to check their answers. To watch a short video segment on Plants and complete a comprehension activity. It can guide them to an app or website to go to for the lesson. QR Codes are a great way to get student active in their learning. This is the app that we use for it.


Students in my classroom love using the ipads. We use the Showme app to display how to work out math problems during math block. Students can show their thinking on ipad and share with the class. 

During our geometry unit we use the GEOBOARD APP instead of  geoboards.
Students really enjoyed using this app instead of the old geoboard with the bands that snap and break. They really understood how shapes are created with the bands and how a rectangle and square have right angles.

I hope I have given you some ideas and apps that you would like to try in your classroom. We are always working with apps to find the best ones. All the apps here are FREE!!!! I love to use the free apps, that way my students can use them at home also. 

Please leave a comment below with any apps that you love to use in your room. I am very interested to hear what works for your students. Share any lessons or activities that you do with the apps or technology in your classroom.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Our Elf Has Arrived!!!

Today, we were surprised by the arrival of our classroom elf. Students couldn't believe that we had been sent an elf from the North Pole. We got to decide as a class a name for our elf. Each student submitted a name and a reason why. Then as a class, we voted on a name. So the name of our elf is.........CHARLIE!!!!

The next day, Charlie the elf was in our highlighter tub with highlighters all over the floor and he left a note saying HI!!!! SO we are off to a great start with a naughty elf. 

Then today, we found him like this in our classroom. 


He had a fun time with my tape dispenser and was tangled up in the tape. But he did leave all of the students a candy cane. 

Wonder what he will be doing tomorrow?????
Check back to see Charlie the elf and what he is getting into.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Getting Back Into The Swing Of It

Hello fellow educators!!! Sorry it has been a while since I have made a post on my blog. It has been a crazy start to my school year. I had moved back to 2nd grade with a whole new classroom make over. To top that off, our grade level was flooded with 2nd graders. I have 25 kiddos and we just got another teacher to make our grade level have 6 teachers. So now after all of that I am with 21 kiddos now. Then this week I had a student to move. Now my roster is sitting at 20, WHEW!!!!!!!

Now, since we have settled into our new roster and getting the students that moved into the new teachers room placed and started. I now feel like I can begin my year. Wow, it to say the least. It has been an emotional ride. Having to let students from your room go it very hard. I had already became attached to them.

On to better things, my classroom is doing GREAT!!! I feel this is one of the best group of kids I have ever had. The students do a fabulous job or working together to build a real classroom community.

My students love using the ipads on daily basis. We use them with math, writing, reading, centers, whole groups, guided groups and this week we are having 5th grade buddies coming to work with us too.

Scootpad is a great app/website that my students use to work on reading and math. They can also access their account and practice at home. It will give me a message about the weekly progress made by my students. I suggest you go check it out and see if it may be something for your students. You can assign what grade level you need. It is Common Core aligned.  It is amazing how the kiddos love it.

Come back soon to check out all of the fun and amazing activities my students will be working on. I look forward to hearing your comments on your classroom. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Getting Ready For First Day Of School

As many of you are doing as I am, getting your classroom ready for the first day of school. I always get excited at this time of year. Planning my classroom for my newest group of kiddos. This year is even more exciting since I got to move back to 2nd grade.

I will post a few pictures of my classroom and will display more as the days go and first day of school comes and goes.

Here are pictures of my classroom before I painted!!!!
 old paint and board



Now for a look at my room with a FRESH NEW PAINT JOB!!! I love the LIME GREEN board. Painting the classroom gives it new life. I love how it looks.


This is much better!!!!!


I use two shades of blue in my classroom. The front and back walls are the darker shade of blue with the two side walls being the lighter blue. I think it turned out great. Cant see in this picture but I even repainted the black baseboards too!!!


Here you will see some must haves I had to get for my room. I got the ORANGE lamp. Got the BLUE broom that matches one of the borders in my classroom and hallway. The chevron fabric is my curtains that I am putting in my classroom. My overall theme is the DOTS ON TURQUOISE!!!

Here is the start of my LIME GREEN bulletin board that I love!! I have my calendar on one side and the side you cant see has my Job chart. I will be adding my Daily 5 in the middle.

So there you can see that my room is coming along. I am very pleased with the progress. Come back to see more of my room and get some ideas for yours.

Before you go come check out this great FREEBIE at my TpT store.


I am using this for student to house their ipad work until completed to turn in. 




















Tuesday, July 23, 2013

TPAK and Apptivities

Today in Pinnacle training, we were instructed on TPAK and Apptivities. Apptivity is a great way for integration of technology. Teacher will setup an Apptivity for students to create using apps that are suggested by the teacher. It is broken down by Brainstorming, Research, Interview, Compare and Organize and Share! It includes an app vault for students to use for the apptivity. This is for sure an exercise that I will be using in my classroom with our ipads.

TPAK is a great resource for educators to think about their instruction and using technology. By connecting Content, Pedagogy and Technology seamlessly into your teaching. It is easy to put technology into our day to day learning but the importance of using the technology. The outcome not the technology tool is at the front. Think back to the content that we are wanting our student to achieve then work on technology integration. I feel that this will make me think more about what I am doing and why.



Sunday, July 21, 2013

Technology and Education

During my career as a teacher, I was chosen for our school districts Pinnacle (technology) program this past year. As being a pinnacle leader, we were given ipads to use in our classroom with our students. In my classroom I had 22 students with 6 ipads. Having the ipads opened up a new resource for my students to use in their learning and creativity.


Using apps with the ipads was a great way to meet the needs of my students. Students worked in groups, with a partner and alone on numerous apps and our classroom kidblog. The ipads were used every day by the students. Kidblog was a part of our morning work everyday. Using the ipads with STEM was very beneficial for my students to discover and share with each other.



In my room, our favorite app was Toontastic. My students had the most fun with this app. Students worked collaboratively in groups with a leader. The groups were assigned different tasks each time. My favorite activity was for them to create a script for a story layout about bullying. There is one of these videos displayed on a post here on my blog.


We also have lots of fun using QR codes. My students always enjoyed the excitement of what would be in the code. A video, a link, a picture or answer to a question.


My classroom loved using the ipads in their learning. Using technology is a major component of my teaching. We used our school computer labs to work on project based learning. Students research about a county they choose. Did a presentation and were evaluated by their peers. Students made a powerpoint Biography that was shared with the class. At the end of the school year, students had to CREATE a newspaper. We used Microsoft Publisher for this. They had to create the layout, theme or newspaper and complete a full page with head line, articles with photos and share with class. My students really got into this one. Most of the boys in my class did it on Minecraft.


I would love to hear about ways you integrated technology with your students and what apps, or programs you use. As I head tomorrow for my 2nd year of Pinnacle. I am excited to see what new resources we will have to use with our students this coming school year. Here is to a new year or endless opportunities to reach every student that enters our classrooms. Happy learning!!!!!!