I hope everyone has wonderful plans for this Memorial Day weekend. I know I have bbq in my near future. That makes me happy, very happy.
I wouldn't be a proper military brat (Marines) if I didn't give thanks to all the men and women who serve, have served, and have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. I hope we can all find a way this weekend to remember our country's heroes.
I know that my posts have been few, and far between, lately. But, CST testing is over! My team and I nearly did a happy dance after we turned our tests in. It honestly feels like I'm breathing for the first time since August. It feels like I lost the 30 pounds that I keep saying I'm going to lose. Quite simply, it feels marvelous. Now, can the real teaching begin? Don't get me started. :)
Anyway, keeping it simple and basic, I thought I would just share a little idea that has helped me out in my classroom. I love singing and chanting with my students to help them learn important concepts. I have many, many, different songs and chants that I use for math and language arts. From money and time, to compound words and synonyms, my kids and I have a blast "singing to learn"! Click on the link below to download one of my kids' favorites. The Compound Word Boogie by Roseanne Patenaude.
Now, I do loooove to be organized. I really do. But, teaching is messy business. Am I right? Sometimes, my favorite learning song gets lost in pile #13 (this is the pile behind my sliding white board that allows the "i l l u s i o n" of organization to continue). Well, I will get to that pile. Someday.
Anyway, sometimes I need one of these songs, like ASAP. I didn't plan on using it. But, the teachable moment has presented itself...and is tapping its foot waiting for me to find my song. Curse you pile #5 !
Before you ask, "yes", of course I have files. But, we can all imagine what happens to 27 2nd graders when we stop teaching to pull something out of a file. Besides, that file is somewhere in pile #11.
So, after a couple of frenzied searches, I finally made my own "always-at-the-ready" reference book. All I did is copy all of the songs I typically use during the course of the year, stick them in plastic page-protectors, and join them together with a ring clip (I know these have a different name, but for the life of me, I can't remember it right now.). I keep a separate book for math and ELA in the front of my room, near the docucam. This "book" has grown over the years to also include important study guides and reference materials I have either created, found, or been given. I really love it because I'm always ready now. Bring it on teachable moment! In fact, I loved it so much that I keep another set at my small group/intervention table. If I need to refer to a study page or song to refresh a student's memory, it's right there. Coins? Got it! Counting by 5's? Hundred Chart is at-the-ready!
Anytime I find a new resource, I just make an extra copy for my "book" before I file it away.
This year, I have also been using it to keep the pieces of math activities we are using together, and ready to go. Like this "Regrouping or No Regrouping" little sorting activity I found on TPT.
I hope this long-winded, but simple idea, can help someone out there.
Gee, I hope someone makes it to the end of this post.
If you get a chance this weekend, stop by my Tpt store. I am having a 20% off sale all weekend long! Click on the flyer to take you there.
Until next time,