Friday, April 11, 2014

5 for Friday

So, for indoor recess (which we were having quite a bit of there for a while) my students have really taken to doing kid's dance videos. I didn't know how it would go the first time I told them what we were going to do, but they LOVED it! AND I must say, it brings me pure joy to watch a group of 7 and 8 year old's dance their hearts out! It is hilarious and they all just look so happy doing it! HEHE! This week, we came across a "What Does The Fox Say?" dance video. HILARIOUS!!! They begged for it and then they knew ALL the words to the song. This song has become too popular. I believe it was the lovely Ellen Degeneres who introduced us. Can that woman make anything have world fame? Anyway, here it is if you want to try it out with your students.

In math this week we are working on Bar Graphs and Line Plots. I love graphing! I find teaching graphing to be ok..... Anyway, we did a bar graph with Smarties candy this week and they really enjoyed it. Who doesn't enjoy an activity where you get to consume candy afterwards? The graphs themselves are so fun and kids catch on, but what I struggle with every year is this graphing question...HOW MANY MORE...??? If anyone has suggestions about how to teach the "How many more green smarties are there than yellow smarties?" I am open to suggestions. They always just want to tell me the higher number. And of course, this issue carries through to story problems...HELP!

I don't know if it is like this in other states, but in North Carolina they have switched cursive handwriting to the 2nd grade curriculum. Last year, I must say, I did not do a good job of teaching it. This year we have been ON IT!! The kids are doing awesome! I am impressed by how well they are doing and how excited they are about this. I will list the 2 resources I have been using below. I teach them 2 letters a week from each group of letters and when we finish with each type of letter I do a review of those. We are almost done with all of the lower case letters. I am going to send home a cursive review to do over Easter Break and then we will knock out the upper case letters once they return.

Cursive Letters grouped by shape 
I use this to teach each letter initially.

Cursive Review
This is a packet I purchased on TpT. Last year I used it as my primary teaching tool, but this year I have used it for review and I have really liked it. It gives the students a chance to grade themselves and edit their own work by using the checklist on each page.

SOMETHING THAT REMINDS ME WHY I DO THIS JOB!!!-I have a darling little girl in my room who really struggles. She has some learning issues and it is a challenge for both of us everyday. She came to me in 2nd grade reading on a Kinder level(barely) and having a fluency rate of 29 wpm. (If you don't know, by the end of 2nd grade this should be yeah....that is a huge difference.) After lots and lots and LOTS of hard work and determination there have been HUGE improvements. I just want to brag and say that she read a 2ND GRADE LEVEL (woohoo!) passage to me this week and got 53 wpm AND 90% accuracy!!!!! The BEST thing, however, is that she is PROUD of herself and is starting to believe that she is good at reading. She even set a reading goal for herself!!!!!! I am going to say that this is probably in my top 5 things that has happened this school year.

And something fun this week-Our AR celebrations! We had a big dance party for our yearly AR celebration. Everyone in the school got to go and there were snacks and drinks to celebrate our LOVE of reading and how much we've grown throughout the year!! And I had to bring a little something extra for my students who met last 9 week's AR goal. They got to have a little extra recess Friday afternoon and some ICE CREAM!!! Most of my students really just love reading and I could have probably saved myself the money from the ice cream, but lets be serious....who wouldn't like a tasty treat on a beautiful Friday afternoon? (So, maybe I just wanted a reason to eat ice cream....)


  1. What does the fox say is my firsties FAVORTIE Just Dance!!!
    Keep Calm and Love First Grade

  2. OMG! I am so glad to have found your blog - the title of it made me laugh out loud. Way to keep it real. I teach 2nd grade in Georgia and believe me, we gotta keep it real from time to time. :)
    - Sydney
    Lessons Learned

  3. My students love the Just Dance Videos for Brain Breaks!

  4. I love the idea of doing kids' dance videos for indoor recess! We've also had our fair share of those days with the snow and with spring finally beginning here, I'm sure there will be more on the way. My students have been randomly dancing in class all week long and they constantly sing this song, so I'm sure they'd love this!

    Teaching In A Nutshell