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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Crazy Week and Polarrific Day!

Well..... Can you tell I went back to work last Tuesday? After my five week break it was hard to wake up early. No more 3:00 am bed time for me. I was eager to see the kids, but not ready to say good bye to my beauty sleep.
The kids came back looking bigger, excited to see me (I think), and ready for round 3. 
Quarter three here we come!

Friday was crazy. We had some ugly frozen rain coming down, school dismissed 3 hours earlier. My front steps were perfect for ice skating.
Monday we did the same thing, but instead, we had a 3 hour delay. This time there was no ugly weather...we just like to go to school late :) A lock down drill in the middle of lunch (that was fun), and a long staff meeting at the end of the day. Can you say loooong day?

After creating the NonFiction Polar Bear Folders, I wanted to share with my kids more about these amazing animals. 

The question will I share all I read and learned about polar bears? 
So I came up with plan A, B and C, and we ended up doing this:

You can find it here
We used it in 4 different ways:
- Groups of 2-4 working together, reading the cards with the shortest sentences and creating a book with facts (half sheet).
- Groups of  2-4 working together. They got to read the longer sentences and created the bigger book version of facts.
- A group of 4 boys collected books from the library and gathered facts for their A-Z Polarrific fact book.
- All the materials are in a container and ready to be used during our daily five rotation called Read to Learn.

We finished them today. It was Pollarrific!

It is your turn to get a free copy. I have included 44 facts about Polar Bears in this product. I will send this product to two people who leave a comment including a Polarrific Fact about Polar Bears. I will let my students pick the two most interesting ones. 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

D.C. Picture Overload

Back to business friends.

Our trip to D.C. was a grand success. The kids really enjoyed every minute of it. 318 pictures to prove it :) The drive was super easy. The kids were not so good on the way up...too tired from school.

We came back and I got sick. Fever, chills, fever, chills, repeat that for two whole days. I got out of bed to take a shower and finally to visit the doctor.

Went back to work today...three workdays. The kids return Tuesday and I cannot wait to see them. Really.

Ready for pictures?

When you are married to a spent HOURS in a museum full of flight stuff. 

We are hoping to return soon and see more! 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

On our way to D.C. and Giveaway Reminder

It is almost Friday!!!!  I bet you guys are happy to know Friday is just around the corner.

We contemplated going skiing once again. Instead we will be going here:
We are waiting for the kids to come home from school and begin driving. From what I read it is about a 4.5 hour drive from where we live.
I have not been to D.C. since 1995. I remember not understanding a thing back then!
This time I will get to read, teach my kids, and take a ton of pictures. My camera is packed and charged. The kids suitcases are almost ready- waiting on some undies :)

Please remember to enter here for the giveaway that ends on Sunday the 13th.

Let the fun begin!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Polar Folders...Nonfiction Text Features

Happy Monday friends! I know many of you went back to work today. I bet your kiddos were happy to see you.

My own two also returned to school. My real vacation begins today!  I have a week and a half left and needless to say I am looking forward to working on my long to-do list. Hubby is home for a few days (hallelujah!) so I get to spend time with him and have him watch the kids while I do some fun things.

School related...

Before we left for winter break we worked on creating our Polar Folders.
It was time to learn about Text Features and I wanted to make something they could refer back to at any given time in an easy way. I want it accessible. It is easier to open a file folder, than trying to search inside a composition notebook.
I taught 13 text features. One a day. We learned a definition of the text feature, but more importantly, we talked about what we learned from each text feature. I wanted them not to ignore them! They do have so much to tell.
The kids picked their own nonfiction book, based on interest and reading level.
I taught a text feature. Students looked for that text feature in their book and using the booklet sheets they recorded what they learned from the text feature of the day (no pictures). It was so nice to see them make the connection between the text feature and their actual learning.
I created THIS for our Polar Folders. Text Features are something I will review once we get back, but the Polar Bear Edition was well received :)

I hope you love it!  All you need are file folders and THIS :)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

One Sharp Winner and a Time Capsule (Freebie)

Thanks to all of you who entered my Sharp Pencil Giveaway.  Visit Classroom Friendly Supplies and show Troy some love by purchasing a red, black, green or blue sharpener.  You will love it!

Jaime P. gets to take one home :) 

I made a  Time Capsule recording sheet for my students. I will be using it once we go back to school on January 22. Don't hate me. You get long summers. I get 3 weeks off.

Maybe you can use it and love it? I'd love a comment :) 
 Download here.