Saturday, March 23, 2013

Woolbur: Lesson on being Different

One of my favorite books to read in the spring is Woolbur by Leslie Helakoski In the story Woolbur is a sheep who is not afraid of being different.  This week we used this book to stress the importance of being different.  Our Morning Meeting are only about 10 minutes a day so we really had to break this lesson up.

Day 1: we read the story. On a side note one of our focus this year is text dependent questions (going along with common core), so with that we created a couple text dependent questions to go along with the story.  1. What is the main idea of the story?  2. How did Woolbur interact with the other characters in the story?  3. How do you think Woolbur's parents felt about him being different?

Day 2: we made a circle map that included all the different ways that Woolbur was different.

Day 3: we made another circle map on ways that we are different.  My kiddos came up with some interesting things that make us different.

Day 4: We did a 4 minute write. Each student had to write 1 or 2 sentences about what made them different.  Then they got into groups based on the shape on the top of their paper and shared what they wrote.  To grab your free copy of the writing paper check out my TpT store.

My kiddos loved this book and really understood that everyone is different and unique.

Addition! Addition! Addition!

This week we wrapped up our unit on Addition. Here are some of the cool things we did.

Shakin' Addition!! Inside each water bottle are two dice and some glitter.  Students shake the bottle to move the dice and then look at the bottom to figure out what they landed on.  Students would then record the numbers on their recording sheet and add them together.

Sharks!! This is a favorite in my classroom.  My students begged me to play this one just about everyday.  It comes from Heidi's Song. I photocopied the sharks on card stock and put them in sheet protectors to make them last longer. To play students roll a dice and draw that many teeth on the top of the sharks mouth.  Then they roll the dice and draw that many teeth on the bottom of the sharks mouth.  On his tail I would have them write the addition sentence to go along with it.

Searching for Gold!! With common core students are required to be fluent with math facts 0-5 so I created this game to practice that skill. You can find it here at my TpT store.  Students draw a card from the deck and solve the addition problem but they have to be careful because the Leprechaun is somewhere in the deck trying to take their gold.  The students loved it!!!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

I'm Bumabaloo

Today I had the pleasure of having a good friend of mine come in and teach a lesson for morning meeting.  She read a great book called I'm Bumabaloo by Rachel Vail.  In the story the little girl gets very angry or as she says Bumabaloo. The story tell what she does when she is Bumabaloo and how she calms down. 

To discuss the book students used different active learning strategies. To start with the students made a circle map to predict what they thought Bumabaloo meant.  Then they read the story and added to the circle map.  The main idea of the story is how to deal with anger.  So after giving students 5 seconds to think of something that makes them angry she had them stand up and put their hand in the air.  Their job was to walk around with their hand in the air until the music stopped.  When the music stopped they gave a silent high 5 to the person closets to them and shared something that made them angry.  When they were done sharing they would put their hands back up and the music would start again.  My kids loved sharing this way so much that I am currently brainstorming other ways to include this in my lessons.

After sharing what made them angry they discussed different ways that they could deal with their anger.  Not part of this lesson but a great social story to read is Tucker the Turtle.  Which can be found on CSEFEL

To make sure they understood how to clam down and solve their problem she sent everyone back to their seats to write how they could solve a problem that made them angry.  The key was that each student had a different shape on the top of their paper. When everyone was done writing all the hearts, circles, squares, and stars (the shape on their paper) got together and shared their solutions. This was a great way to mix kids up and get them talking to more classmates then those at their table. 

This was such a great lesson that when it was time for students to pick new books for their book boxes everyone wanted a copy of the I'm Bumabaloo story. 

STEM: 3D shapes

With common core came many new things.  One of them being STEM.  Which I have completely fallen in love with.  I love the fact that students get to use what they know to solve real problem.

We just finished our unit on 3D shapes and decided to do a STEM activity to tie everything together.  During the unit we talked about cones, cylinders, rectangular prisms, cubes, and pyramids.   We describe each shape and compared the faces and vertices.  They had a very good understanding of what 3D shapes were.

To start our STEM project we read Jack's House by Karen Magnuson Beil and pointed out that builders use 3D shapes when they build homes. There task was going to be to build a house out of spaghetti and marshmallows that a small doll could live inside. We then demonstrated how they could use the spaghetti as the edges and the marshmallows as the vertices. 
After answering a couple questios about how many people in a group and where could they go we let them go.  Each group was made up of 2 or 3 students of their choice.  We gave each group a handful of spaghetti and marshmallows and let them explore.  It took many tires but eventually they got.  Here are some pictures of what they came up with.

When everyone was done they had to show the class the house that they built and tell what 3D shapes they used.  They had so much fun and still talk about all the shapes they can make.  What STEM projects have you done in your class?