Today I'm sharing a few bits and pieces from my classroom and life. I've got a bit of spontaneous greatness, some adorable student creativity, one of my favorite reading strategies, and a piece of advice I got in the teacher's lounge. Visit the Show and Tell Tuesday link up for more great classroom tidbits.
We learned to add and subtract 10 from any number a couple months ago. This week I tried to introduce a game using the skill to some of my more advanced students, and it became very clear we needed some serious review. I set the game aside and broke out the cubes. After a quick lesson, most of the kids seemed to be remembering. When it was time for my next group, something came up and my attention was needed elsewhere. Not sure what to do, I handed the cubes to a couple kids and asked them to teach the next group what I had just taught them. It worked beautifully! They were engaged like this for the whole group time!
Our building is slowly transitioning from PBIS to Responsive Classroom, which I've written about before in posts about morning meeting and teacher language. During this transition, our official school-wide expectations have been a bit ambiguous. Recently we rolled out "BARK." (The bulldog is our mascot.) B-believe in yourself, A-Achieve new goals, R-respect our community, and K-keep it safe. To help my kids remember, I put some motions to the words. Believe in yourself is giving yourself a hug. Achieve new goals is climbing a ladder. Respect our community is clasping your hands in front of your chest. Keep it safe is just making your body into the shape of a K. We went over these at the end of the day before packing up, and one of my students got really into it. She decided to do "the K walk" all the way to her locker. Her best friend joined her. The next day, it caught on, and I had 20 kids doing the K walk to their lockers. It made my week!
I had a major breakthrough with a couple beginning readers this week. I broke out these CVC word blending roads, and they started decoding! They were so proud of themselves! This strategy has never failed me! Once kids have their letter sounds, this bridges the gap to decoding. If you have a couple kids you think would benefit from this, you might want to check out my post, Teaching Tips for Blending CVC Words.
I'm concluding my show and tell with a non-school related picture. This is my dog, Java (named for coffee, not computers). He's about 14, and not doing so well. He can't see anymore, and his hearing is not great either. Unfortunately, he's also starting to have a little bladder trouble. I tried getting some dog diapers, but he took them off or they slid off. I was talking to one of my teacher friends about this problem, and she suggested a bandana. I folded up a cloth baby diaper for a little extra absorbency, and he kept it on! It definitely looks cuter than a dog diaper! Teacher friends are such awesome resources for all of life's challenges.
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