Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow........sheesh!

Funny how snow is so peaceful and pretty in early December, and annoying and unwelcome in mid-March.  It's been a long one up here in the north land!  Surely spring is just around the corner....
And that's all I have to say about that.

I've added a new category to my subplanners store: "Activity Centers for Homeschool or Classroom." They are the same themed full day subplans minus forms, scripts, and common core standards.  Click here to see a listing of all themes included.  The product previews show every page included in the download so you'll know for certain if it's going to be worthwhile for your kids.   There are centers for grades K-6, just like the subplans.

In the meantime, stay warm and dry and soon spring will actually come out from around that corner!

Be well today and always,

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Let’s have one day for girls and boyses - when you can make the grandest noises - screech, scream, holler, and yell, buzz a buzzer clang a bell......... Shel Silverstein

I've been thinking about how hard it is for kids to sit quietly and still all day long in a classroom, especially in this endless winter we find ourselves in!  Remember when it was us sitting there?  Staring at the second hand as each and every second got ............ L    O    N    G    E    R............

As teachers we want to keep kids busy and productive with as few disturbances as possible, but breaking up the day now and then with games doesn't have to be nonproductive.  For example:

Idea #1 - keep a jar full of "acting out" strips from your current shared reading book or any curriculum unit that all the class participates in.  At a needed break time, announce "time to act it!"  A volunteer comes forward, picks a strip, acts it out, others guess.

Idea #2 - take a hallway walk for exercise and while you're at it:   count and name the shapes you see; count how many D-words or L-words or Ch-words you see; find 3 things that rhyme with "store;" mentally add up the room numbers; estimate the length and width of the hallway and then measure it for real; possibilities are endless!

Idea #3 - Another jar full of words and/or sentences and have a volunteer come forward and set up hangman blanks and have the class guess the letters.  Always works best when the words/sentences connect to your current studies.

Idea #4 - Play telephone.  Kids line up in two lines and all face the back of the room except for the first person in each line.  You show these two line leaders the same word (from your ever-ready jar!) then signal start.  They whisper the word to next in line, next, next, next until the last one comes to the board and writes whatever he or she "heard" by the time it got down there. 

After one of these opportunities for "buzzing a buzzer and clanging  a bell" your kids just might be ready to settle down to do some work. 


Be well today and always,