Thursday, June 30, 2011

I love new blogs!
My friend Deb has a great blog called The Art of Teaching. Go check it out. Christine

Sunday, June 26, 2011

My Brother Sam is Dead part 2

Tories? Continentals? Loyalists? As readers we became so confused about which side the characters were on. So many unfamiliar terms were used that it became necessary to hang this chart in the classroom. We referred to it often while reading the novel My Brother Sam is Dead. Christine

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Learn about the battle of Lexington and Concord

I got a class set of Let It Begin Here! by Dennis Brindel Fradin from Donors Choose several years ago. In the proposal I promised I would read the book on Lexington Green to my 5th graders. Here I am, three years in a row! We study the American Revolution for weeks and read the book first in class. The children love comparing the drawings in the story to the buildings surrounding them on the Green. Its a great field trip and a wonderful experience. The next stop is Concord bridge and then Battle Road. I love playing tour guide for the day! Christine
Let It Begin Here!: Lexington and Concord: First Battles of the American Revolution

Friday, June 17, 2011

Sqworl is such a great site to use as a search engine for teacher blogs and websites. I liked this one: Teachers bag of tricks. Christine

Monday, June 13, 2011

Learning about JFK

Here we are at the JFK museum
Before our field trip to the JFK Museum, my fifth graders needed to add a great deal to their background knowledge about our 35th president. I normally have my students write a report, but this year we tried something new. Every child made a lapbook about the president. If you don't know what lapbooks are( I had never heard of them, but they are very popular with homeschoolers) here are some great sites that show quite a few examples.
The first thing I did was use stickies to map out where I would put the different things I would make on the lapbook. I wanted a variety of items that would pertain to a biography like: family photographs, flip books, a map, a timeline. I had the children use stickies to "plan" their books before doing anything. We brainstormed a variety of things that you could use in the lapbook, and I provided lots of materials (presidential seal, pictures, flip books, the link is down below).

Here is my model w/ stickies
Each child did write a report, so we decided to glue those on the back of the flipbooks. They stand up, so they are great for display. They came out really terrific! Christine This is another site I used for templates.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Website to share
I really like the comprehension and fluency ideas on this teacher maintained website. She also has help for reading coaches. Christine

Saturday, June 4, 2011

My Brother Sam Is Dead

I LOVE  when the characters in books have to make tough choices. I use this graphic organizer to help the children see the pros and cons of each decision. It really makes the students think about choices and decisions that characters have, and that we have in real life.We are currently reading My Brother Sam Is Dead and some tough decisions had to be made by Tim and his father.  Tim had to really think: What will be the consequences of each decision? At the bottom of the graphic organizer the children put the actual decision that was made. Another story that I have used this activity with is Island of the Blue Dolphins. Should Karena really jump off that boat? Christine