Sunday, September 25, 2011

Community Workers

Last week we studied community workers during Social Studies.  I made some new cards where the kids matched up the picture, the name of the worker, and a short description.  I used these in a whole group first but then the kids used them in small groups.

You can download your copy here:
Community Workers Bears

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Math Centers

   Like many teacher bloggers this past summer I read Debbie Diller's newest book:  Math Work Stations: Independent Learning you can count on K-2.   I've used math centers in the past but only when I've taught Kindergarten.  I started realizing how they would be a great concept for Second Grade also. 
     My biggest "ah-ha" moment while reading the book was that center groups didn't have to consist of 4 to 6 children.  The centers actually run smoother with kids working in pairs.  And while I have to more centers this way I'm loving it!   I paired my kids up based on ability, and behavior.  So one group may be a child who is high in math paired with a child who is low in math.  Another group may be a child that tends to be distracted and off task paired with a goodie-too-shoes who will work to keep them on task. 
    We've been working in the centers for the past two week.  My goal is to eventually be pulling intervention groups during this time.  

   This is where I'm housing my centers.  The numbers on the drawers match the center number the child will be working at.  I cut the numbers from vinyl using my cricut.  

This is our rotation chart. 

 This child is graphing the coins rolled.

    X-tra math on the computer.  This is not one of the actual centers.  Every child does this program daily.

Doubles game

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Urban, Rural, & Suburban Flipbooks.

Last week we were working on communities.  I love this flip book we make.  It's real simple...just two sheets of construction paper folded to make steps.  The kids draw the example of each type of community.

This little girl is very gifted.  I love how she differentiated on her own with a description of each community.  Too cute!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Birthday Display

     Over the years I've done several different birthday displays.  I started off using pre-made posters, then moved to pre-made bulletin board displays, and then moved the bulletin board displays to a wall.  This year I decided to do something different.  Sticking with my safari theme I created a picture display.  

   I stole this idea from the fabulous Erica Boher. 

    Her birthday display can be found here on her blog.  

    I love this display.  I'm thinking it's a keeper.  
    I cut the letters for "Born to Be Wild" using my cricut and some cut animal print scrapbook paper.  I'm posting my number cards and my month cards I made for the display.   

Saturday, September 10, 2011

More Habitat Resources

As I am!  Back and posting again. 

   In second grade we've finished up our habitat unit.  The kids were divided into groups (learning partnerships) to become an "expert" on their assigned habitat.    We began by researching our habitats on the school's laptops.  We are blessed at our school to have a mobile lab.  The lab has 30 or so dell touch screen laptops.  

     Enchanted learning is an excellent website to use for habitat research.   Check out their website at    I quickly show the kids how to navigate the website and they really take off on it. 
     You can see the form the kids use for their research in the picture above.  You can access it at this link:
Habitat Research Form

   After researching via the web, I give the kids a day to research the old fashion way.  Yep we still use books in my classroom.  :)

    On day three & four the groups work together to color and add animals to habitats that I drew out.  My document camera came in very handy as I projected a worksheet to trace the backgrounds.  
These are really poster sized.  They look smaller in the pictures.  

     Next comes time to turn our research into paragraph form.  At this point in the year my babies aren't ready to write paragraphs...or at least what I consider a paragraph.  So I created a fill in the blank sort of deal for the kids to create their paragraphs.

Habitat Paragraph Form 

After editing their paragraphs, they were rewritten.  The last day of our unit was spent drawing the researched habitat and painting it with water color.  Here are a few examples.  I realize they are not perfect.  The point is the kids worked hard, they learned a ton, and were super proud of their accomplishment.  

 Hmm...that may be flying elephants?

 And that's it...habitats according to Mrs. Jones.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Quick Catch Up--More to Come

    I hate looking at my blog and seeing that it's been almost two weeks since I've last posted.  Good news is that I feel like school life is finally getting into a routine and I have a bunch of stuff to post on here.  I plan on taking my camera to school tomorrow so hopefully I can document some of the stuff going on in our classroom.  I have high hopes to get ahead on some blogging this weekend.

      I realize I have been such a slacker blogger.  I figured no one was checking this lil ole spot anymore.  Imagine my complete unbelief when I realized that Mechele from Barrow's Hodgepodge nominated me as one of her top ten favorite teacher blogs. 

Top 10 TBA

Here's my comment that I left Mechele because it best sums up how I feel:

Stephanie said...
As Junie B would say "wowie, wow, wow!" I feel like the fat geeky kid who the cheerleader stops to talk to. :) A cool blogger likes me. For the record I think your blog is pretty awesome also.

It was a huge encouragement to me and a small kick in the pants (or my case skirt :) ) to get busy on the ole blog!   Thanks again, Mechele. 

    So here's to happy skies and some new blog posts heading our way!   :)