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Friday, January 31, 2014

100 Days of School and Valentine's Day Freebie

Yay! Our 100 Days of School celebration was a success! Thanks to Pinterest, I managed to put together a short list of activities almost in no time. I did try to come up with some original ideas, but the ones that I found were too adorable :)
We made some cool glasses! I used a  wonderful template from Scholastic. The activity took a little longer than I planned (yep, a couple of hours). Kids really took their time coloring their glasses to achieve the best results. They turned out great, don't you think? They even made a pair for me :)

I know, I seem a little tired on this picture. It was taken towards the end of the party :)

We made self-portraits "If I were 100 years old..."

No party will be complete without treats. I filled 18 sandwich bags with some candy and added colorful labels that I made the night before. 

And now... the promissed Freebie! Click HERE  to download it from my TPT store. I hope you like it! :)

Have a nice and relaxing weekend!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Huge February Giveaway! Enter to Win!

It' s Giveaway time! 

I am very excited to be a part of a huge February Giveaway hosted by Carol over at Carol's Garden for recently hitting 100 followers at her TPT store!

One lucky winner will receive all the awesome products on this list! Pretty amazing!

The giveaway will begin today, January,30th and end on January 10th. Enter through Rafflecopter below! Good luck!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Art-Science Integration: Food Chains and Food Webs

I love integrating Art into our Science lessons!
I always try to include activities that address a variety of learning styles, because each student learns differently. And I think Art does the trick.
We've been learning about food chains and to put my students' knowledge to use, I decided to get them to create food chains of their choice.

This is what the final result looks like:

For this activity, I divided my class into small groups and gave them a printable of animal clipart.
Next, they needed to choose 3 animals from the selection, add a producer and draw their food chains on paper in proper order.

This last group forgot to draw a fly as the primary consumer.
They realized it right after they painted the frog :)

I used this anchor chart to introduce a lesson about food webs. I glued a few animal pictures and together we worked on identifying the food chains. We used different color markers to show each food chain. 

Have a relaxing Sunday!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

No Spill Painting Cups

What child doesn't like to paint?

I teach Art to my 3rd graders among other subjects and tend to avoid this kind of activity. The reason is obvious: it gets messy! :) They accidentally spill the water out of their cups while painting and when walking to the bathroom to have the cups washed. They spill water all over the tables, floors and even themselves. It sounds funny, but it can be disastrous. Here is the solution I've come up with. I simply turned the regular cups with lids into the painting cups. No more messes!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Huge February Giveaway!

I am very excited to be a part of a huge February Giveaway hosted by Carol over at Carol's Garden for recently hitting 100 followers at her TPT store!

One lucky winner will receive all the awesome products on this list! Pretty amazing!  Carol's giveaway will begin January 30th. I'll keep you posted! :)

My product "Karate Multiplication" is number 2 in the bottom right.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Learning Multiplication Using Karate

This and the next month our main focus will be on Multiplication.
For our Multiplication Unit I am using my "Karate Multiplication" Packet. It was created with the purpose to spark my students' interest in learning times tables.

The idea is that they "receive a new belt" after achieving another level in multiplication. I've been using this activity with my 3rd graders for 4 years now, and it WORKS!(The packet was created about a year ago).

It motivates them to practice and memorize the facts. They can't wait to get to color their newly "received belts" in their mini-books and share the good news with their family and friends. I remember, last year one girl from my class came to school wearing a real Karate belt :)

Here is our bulletin board all set up for the study of Multiplication (everything on this board is included in my packet). This year I laminated the letters and the posters so that I can use them again the next year. I know I will :)

Today my students earned their first belts for passing the quiz on multiplication by 1 :)

You can find this packet in my TPT store

Happy teaching!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Five For Friday Linky Party

What a great and busy week! I feel like my productivity levels have increased and I am accomplishing so much more this semester as far as school is concerned. Hope it lasts. :) Still have to work on getting the household run more smoothly. You know, cleaning, cooking, laundry, etc. Have to work on this one. I've linked up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to share with you my weekly five.

I found how effective Book Report Projects can be. Children have so much fun creating them and presenting in class. They really enjoy being in the spotlight. For this project, they had to read a fiction book of their choice and select 5 objects to put in a bag or a box that reflect their story. 

If you assign Book Report Projects for your students, I'd love for you to share your favorites. 

We began a Multiplication Unit this week. As it is quite a difficult concept for the 3rd graders to grasp, I try to incorporate some hands-on activities to help them understand the connection between addition and multiplication. Here is an excelllent activity that I found on TPT. It's called Fishbowl Multiplication by Laura Candler. It is fantastic and absolutely FREE! I used it with my students, except I changed the game board and had Cookie Jars with cookie cereal instead of fishbowls, as I couldn't find any small objects to be used as fish.

The idea is the following: students randomly select an addition sentence, arrange the correct number of objects into groups, find the matching multiplication sentence and finally, count the total number of objects in the jars. 

I love using dictations with my students. They are an excellent way to practice listening, writing and spelling. Every Monday I send a dictation passage home as a part of the homework packet for the students to practice writing. We do some practice in class as well. We select the most difficult words from the passage, put them in alphabetical order, write them backwards, play a spelling game "Boys vs. Girls"(they especially like this one), etc.


This is me :) Playdough creation by my students! It's impossible not to love them! 

Great motivational quote by venspired.com

                                     I always need to keep this in mind. Even though it isn't easy right now and I'm at the end of my rope, this is why I put myself through it all <3

Thanks for stopping by!
Have a relaxing weekend!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Five For Friday Linky Party

I was sooo excited to get back to my classroom last week! And, apparently, so were my students! They all ran to me and gave me lots of hugs as I was entering the school. I really missed those little munchkins. They are just the sweetest group ever!

I know, it's kind of late, but I couldn't wait until next Friday to share with you what was going on in my classroom last week. Link up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to share your weekly five.
We made a calendar for a new 2014. Children really enjoyed filling out the "Important Dates" section for each month of the year with everyone's birthday and holidays.

We also did some creative writing about winter. I wrote a list of some winter words on the board to give them more ideas and to help with their spelling. Most of these children have never seen snow. So they kept asking me questions like, "What does the snow feel like? Is it heavy? Is it wet? Where does the snow fall from?" So cute. :) 

In Science we talked about how animals get food. We observed the pictures of animals and looked at the shape of their teeth. They learned that the shape of an animal's teeth matches the food it eats. We made mini books where my students drew animals of their choice, described the shape of their teeth and labeled what that animal's diet is most likely to be. It was a fun activity, and they did pretty well, I think. :)

Our new "Honesty" Bulletin Board Display. Its purpose is to show how much I appreciate when they tell the truth. When I observe a student in the situation when he is being honest, I will draw a star (or place a star sticker) below his name.

My new Classroom Seating Chart.

Thanks so much for stopping by!