Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Graphs Galore-Lot's of FREEBIES!!!

The last few weeks my busy bees have been learning all there is to know about graphs...we have been learning how to read graphs, about the different types of graphs, how to collect data, about the different types of data, and finally we ended our unit by collecting our own data and creating our very own graphs! (which turned out adorable btw!)
Our textbook doesn't have all that much on graphing, and the things it does have is not all that much fun so I spent loads of time scouring TPT looking for fun ideas...and as always I found them!

I started with this PowerPoint to introduce the different types of graphs (I had to make some tweaks to it because the fonts didn't mesh with my computer or something)

Then I used this adorable packet to review tally's and reading graphs and data tables.

I also wanted to add a little motivation (which in my classroom always seems to be candy) to the mix. I came up with 2 candy graphing activities. The first one we did completely together and the second one (which was identical except different candy) was for them to do on their own. You can get a FREE copy of this graphing activity here
Next I introduced catergorical and numerical data using a powerpoint I created. If you want a free copy you can get one here
After spending lots of time talking about categorical and numerical graphs and coming up with LOTS of questions that would result in each type of data I had to come up with 2 different questions to ask the class, one that would result in categorical data and one that would result in numerical data. I gave them some time to survey the class and record their results in a data table. After everyone collected their data they were free to create their very own graphs. I put together a data collection packet to keep them organized during all of this and if you would like a free copy of that you can get it here

This project required quite a bit of assistance at first, but by then end they really got the hang of it and produced some really great work! Here are some of their graphs:
Hope you are able to take advantage of one of the freebies!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Research Project FREEBIES!

It's the last week of school and my brain feels like this:

HOWEVER...it is the LAST Monday of the school year AND Manic Monday over at Classroom Freebies which means lots of new freebies for me to check out and a freebie to give away!

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Making the switch from 5th to 3rd has been much easier than expected...I have high expectations for my kiddos, but they never seem to let me down. When I started our first research project I worried that it would be too much for them and they would struggle. Boy was I wrong...my kids not only did a fabulous job with the research project, but they LOVED it! They loved it so much that we did 2 research projects this year.

Our first was an animal research project where they chose an animal and spent several days researching, taking notes, and then they writing a paper (in class with LOTS of assistance) and then they made a diorama at home showing me their animal in its natural habitat. The papers turned out fabulously and the dioramas...WOW!

If you would like a copy of the note taking form the kids used and the rubric for the diorama click HERE and HERE

For our next research project the kiddos chose a state (since we study the regions of the United States I thought this would be a good way to wrap things up) I had the kids take notes on a form very similar to the animal research, but their project was different. They had to create a poster of their state...and these turned out really cute as well.

The copies for this are HERE and HERE
Hope these are helpful! As always let me know if you have questions or need anything else!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A blog award? Me?

It is truly the little things that can make my entire day...so yesterday when Darleen over at Third Grade Love gave me the One Lovely Blog award I was all smiles! I adore her blog so if you get a chance go take a look!!

There are a few rules to receiving this award:

1) Follow the person that gave you the award
2) Link back to the person who gave you the award
3) Pass on the award to 15 new bloggers

Not only will you make someone's day, much like Darleen made mine...but it's a great opportunity to stumble upon a fabulous new blog!!

The amazing blogs I have chosen are all ones that I follow and regularly get great ideas from! Take some time and check them out!!

Classroom DIY
Confessions of a Teaching Junkie

Spend a Day in Second Grade

Thanks again Darleen!!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Odds and Ends...and if you make it a FREEBIE!

This picture is just the story of my life right now...I'm usually really good about getting out of school by 4:30 or 5 {at the very latest} but these last few weeks between adopting a new textbook series in reading {and having to inventory and get rid of our old} trying to de-clutter my room for my big move in a few weeks, and all the other fun end of the year odds and ends I have been stuck at school a little bit later {and even some weekends} Luckily for me I have a fabulous co-worker who reminds me when I have been here too late...however she left this note at 5, so I am not sure what that says for her :)
Last week was teacher appreciate week, and let me tell you our parents go all out here at my school. Every year they choose a theme and decorate the entire school accordingly. This year's theme was Wizard of Oz...and WOW every year is pretty fantastic but this year was above and beyond. 
This is outside the office...yup those are life-size cardboard cutouts of the characters! The rest of the characters were spread out around the rest of the building.
On Friday evening after we all leave the parents come up to school and decorate our doors so when we come in on Monday we have a nice little surprise. This was my door this year and I was EXTREMELY grateful that my parents kept it simple! As I walked down the hall I saw Wizard of Oz characters on other teacher's doors with their faces taped to it. The only thing I could think was "Please don't let my door have the wicked witch or a munkin on it with my picture!"
When I walked in I had my very own yellow brick road and "ruby red flip-flops"
The parents also spoiled us with a special classroom treat delivered to our rooms!
On Friday all of the kids brought red "ruby red slipper" gifts to put it into this adorable basket. I might be slightly spoiled by this class ;)
 Another big event we do every year at my school is a parent appreciation luncheon. Since I had such fabulous parent helpers this year I wanted to do something a little extra for them.
I went to Bath and Body Works and was able to get 4 for $15 on their fabulous hand-soap
I got tissue paper wrapped them up and put them in plastic goody bags, added a bow, and a note that said: Thanks for lending a "helping hand"
Here is a close up shot...don't mind the mess around it :) I was going to make the little note cuter but I ran out of time!! We had our luncheon this morning and the moms loved their gifts!

If you want more great ideas for end of the year gifts head over to Swimming Into Second and check out her linky party!

FINALLY...with 4th Grade Frolics as my inspiration I put together an end of the year scrapbook for my kiddos. I explained the project to them today and they are so excited to get started, and I have to admit I am excited to read what they write. It's always interesting in this class! Go check out Tara's adorable *free* memory book or if you would like a copy of mine you can grab a FREE copy here.

Also as you may have noticed my blog underwent a little make-over today thanks to Alicia at Dream Like Magic I am LOVING the new design!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Manic Monday- Classroom Freebie Style

I'm still relatively new to teaching 3rd grade so ANY freebie I can get is always well appreciated! When I found Classrom Freebies I was THRILLED! Every Monday they have Manic Monday where teachers post lots of amazing freebies! I've been taking advantage of freebies for quite some time now, so I figured it was my turn.
I'm sharing a powerpoint document that I used to help my kids write introductions for their narratives. It includes different "hooks" you can use and examples of how you can use them. I had to save it as a PDF to protect the clip art...so hopefully you are still able to use it! The picture below is just a few of the slides to give you an idea of what it looks like.

To get your free copy click HERE
I also have this at my TPT store if that is easier for you to download

Hope you enjoy the freebie...and if you want to get in on the action or get some amazing freebies of your own... head on over to Classroom Freebies

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Summer Bucket List

At the beginning of every summer I start with a to-do list a mile long...and inevitably I wait until the first week in August to begin. This summer is going to be different...hopefully :) Maybe by posting all of the things I want to get done here it will hold me accountable (riiiiiiigggghhhht)

Here are the thing I would like to WILL get accomplished this summer:

1) Decorate my classroom- I am HOPEFULLY in my final resting place (one can only hope after 5 moves) so I really want to jazz the place up. Thanks to pinterest and a fellow teacher I will have the ideas and motivation to get it done this year! I want to add cute banners to my windows, hanging poms, and a super cute welcome sign for outside my door. Here is my inspiration pinsperation ;)

2) Get familiarized with our new reading curriculum. Our school just adopted Lead 21 and it's a big change for us. I will get my teacher's manuals at the end of May and I am hoping to get a reading focus wall set up and ready for the beginning of the school year.

3) I have some...or a million pinterest projects I would love to get completed. I WILL get a few of them done at least :)
Source: bit.ly via Heather on Pinterest

Now not EVERYTHING on my summer bucket list is school related...this girl is going to take advantage of the entire summer off :)
4) Lay out at the pool with my friends (thankfully I have a big group of friends who are teachers)

5) Go on a trip with my mom (we are planning on going to Chicago for a girl's weekend)

6) My closets- organize and throw things away!

7) Baseball games...lots and lots of baseball games!

8) Get ready for my half marathon this fall...this summer will give me plenty of time for those long runs

Here is to hoping I don't wait until the last minute to get my bucket list complete ;)

If you want to make a summer bucket list click on the image at the top of this post to join the linky party!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Multiplication Madness

So who is counting down the days till summer vacation? Or better yet...who isn't? I love my group of angels this year...but even the best class tends to get a little wild with only 10 school days left! With that said I don't have much energy or brain power to type much today so I will just leave you with a multiplication packet I used a few months ago with my kids. Multiplication is such a huge part of 3rd grade and it's always more fun to practice with games than the traditional drill and practice :)

If you would like a copy of this packet it's avaliable for purchase at my TPT Store or if you are one of the first 5 people to follow this blog and leave a comment with your e-mail address I will send you a free copy!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Book vs. Movie

What is better than movie day in an elementary classroom? Movie day and donuts!!! We just finished reading "The Tale of Despereaux aloud and the kids begged me to let them watch the movie in class. I'm not big on movies...but with it being the end of the year I figured it would be a great learning opportunity break for the teacher!

I of course couldn't let them just watch the movie with nothing educational attached to it so I created a worksheet (that can be used with any book/movie combo) for them to fill out when they were done.

If you want a copy of the worksheet you can download a FREE copy here from my TPT store!