Saturday, April 30, 2016

Poems of Silliness: Challenge Complete

Today I finished my Thirty Poems in Thirty Days over on the Poems of Silliness blog.Some years I didn't get a chance to use my challenge during April because of Spring Break and testing.  It works well as an end of the year writing unit.  I have included the rubric I use to grade poetry writing projects.

Here are the links to the last few years of challenges:

April 2016--SAT Vocabulary
April 2015--Word Families
April 2014--Nouns
April 2012 & April 2013--10 Poetry Forms

Happy Writing!


Friday, April 29, 2016

Odd One Out Number with Support for English Learners

Earlier this year I covered a maternity leave for an English Language Learner teacher.  A few years ago, I had learned G.L.A.D. strategies for helping students acquire language.  Recently I finished the S.I.O.P. training to get even more tools to teach this population. As a result, I have been reviewing many of my products in my Teachers Pay Teachers and my Teachers Notebook stores and creating new resources.

English Language Learners need as much practice as possible reading, writing, speaking, and listening in English.  When I design small group activities, students have more opportunities for interaction.

Odd One Out is an activity I developed for students to practice their math vocabulary.  A group of three or four students gets a half sheet like the one shown above and students discuss which number does not belong.  They record their answers on a sheet of notebook paper--one per group.

How I would adapt this lesson for ELLs is to make sure they know what vocabulary words they need to use.  For the sheet above in a fourth grade classroom, I would have them work on factor, multiple, prime and composite.  This ensures they practice the academic language used in Common Core.

To download a freebie with four activities like the one shown above, please click here.

My full Odd One Out product is available in my Teachers Pay Teachers store and my Teacher's Notebook store.
This 22-page packet has 16 geometry sets, 22 number sets, and 6 money sets.
Happy Friday!

Monday, April 25, 2016

People of Integrity from the Other Side

Several years ago I wrote a post about how I prepare my students for good behavior with a guest teacher.  I had them keep a list of other students who are doing the right thing when I am not watching.

Now, I'm the guest teacher.  I have found that keeping my own list of students who are behaving well helps me.  I am focusing on the positive.  Most students want to be on the list.  The host teacher also has a positive report and can use that with whatever reward system is in place.

I also find that it forces me as a substitute to learn the names of all the students in the room--especially the quiet ones who don't demand attention.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Quote of the Week -- April 24, 2016

The greatest accomplishment is not in never failing, but in rising again after you fail.

Vince Lombardi

Have a good week,

Friday, April 22, 2016

Create a Map -- Freebie for Friday

Here is a two page mapping activity where students read and follow directions to complete the map shown above.  The first page is a blank map with a key.  The second page gives the directions to use the symbols and create the map.
I used a similar activity when my students created a setting for their legends.  You can read more about Mapping the Setting here.
To download the activity shown above, please click here.

Happy Friday!


Wednesday, April 20, 2016

The Secret Life of Squirrels by Nancy Rose

Nancy Rose took several cute pictures of squirrels and created this picture book.  My favorite part of this book is the author notes explaining how she got the squirrels to cooperate.  She inspires young photographers to take their own pictures.

For an explanation of my rating scale, click here.
Find me at Goodreads.

Monday, April 18, 2016

The Importance of Copyright Protection

This is supposed to be a sweater.  It's not going very well.  This is attempt number three.

My goal this year is to crochet a sweater that I can wear in public.  I found these directions on the internet, and they don't seem to be complete.  I had to go to the local yarn shop to get suggestions for yarn and fitting.  I'm tempted to ditch this project for the crochet along pattern the shop is sponsoring.

I know I will learn better if I have an expert to guide me, a group of fellow crocheters for support, and most importantly, a professionally designed pattern.  A sweater I can wear proudly will be worth the extra money I spend.

Recently I read how designers find it difficult to get paid for their work, because of how easy it is to share them for free on the internet.  A well-written design takes time and talent.  They deserve to be paid.  Once people would use a copy machine to make duplicate patterns to distribute.  Now that most patterns are published digitally, they are frequently posted by others without permission.  

Copyright protection adds value to the work of all writers.  It doesn't matter if it's an article, a novel, a pattern, or curriculum. 

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Quote of the Week -- April 17, 2016

Nothing makes your sense of humor disappear faster than having someone ask where it is.

Ivern Ball

Have a good week,

Friday, April 15, 2016

Developing Vocabulary with Terse Verse

Several years ago I started a collection of Terse Verse to use in my classroom.  I went a little crazy and created three volumes with 105 Terse Verse each.

A Terse Verse is two rhyming words that answer a riddle.  For example, "What can I see without my glasses?" "A blurred word." My students loved sharing jokes and riddles after cleaning up at the end of the day and these were popular.

To download a free sample of Terse Verse Volume 1 from my Google Drive, click here.

To purchase the full 105 Terse Verse Volume 1, visit my Teachers Pay Teachers store or my Teacher's Notebook store.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Mogie: The Heart of the House by Kathi Appelt

Mogie: The Heart of the House will melt your heart.  Mogie has difficulty finding his role in life until he enters a Ronald McDonald House.  Mogie is based on a true story.

This is an excellent read aloud for all ages--especially when teaching theme.  Finding ones purpose in life is a clear life lesson.  Students can find evidence from the text to support the theme using this printable form.

For an explanation of my rating scale, click here.
Find me at Goodreads.

Monday, April 11, 2016

The Problem with Plagiarism

As a substitute teacher, I have taught several sessions in the library.  I have been teaching research skills to third through sixth graders.  A consistent theme is the problem of plagiarism.

As a writer, I want students to respect the work of others.  People put time, money, and effort into their words and images just to have them used by others without credit or pay. I have credibility with students when I share that I blog and have had my work used without attribution.

Turning in someone else's work as your own is cheating.  Using their art without paying is stealing.  This could be copying words and images from a website, watching pirated videos, or downloading "free" games from an illegal source.

When I tell them that I have had people use my writing and art without giving me credit, they want me to sue.  I explain that usually I send an email to the offender and that takes care of it. (I'm sure it's happened other times, I just haven't caught it.)

As a teacher, I have a responsibility to set a good example.  When I plan my lessons, I need to use legitimate sources.  I need to know what constitutes fair use and stay will within the limits.  

Fines are expensive. Your reputation is priceless.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Quote of the Week -- April 10, 2016

There is no elevator to success....
You have to take the stairs.

Zig Ziglar

Have a good week,

Friday, April 8, 2016

Five Senses: My Favorites

During my time working with English Language Learners, I developed graphic organizers and sentence frames to help them acquire both conversational and academic English.  The graphic organizer shown above is one I used when I was teaching a unit about the five senses.  We learned about what body parts are used for which sense.  This organizer may also be used to brainstorm a piece of writing.

To download Five Senses: My Favorites, please click here.

I am in the process of expanding the Imagery 2.0 product in my Teachers Pay Teachers and Teacher's Notebook stores.  
Here is the link to Imagery 2.0 in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.
Here is the link to Imagery 2.0 in my Teacher's Notebook store.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

This is a Moose by Richard T. Morris

This is a Moose by Richard T. Morris features a moose that is staring in a film.  An off-scene director complains when each of the animals behave out of character for real animals.

I remember having a discussion with a group of first graders who were convinced that penguins lived in igloos.  That's what they learned from cartoons.

I created a one-page organizer for students to compare what they know about animals in real life compared with how they behave in the book.

For an explanation of my rating scale, click here.
Find me at Goodreads.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Why I Still Blog

It's been five years since I started blogging and sharing my ideas on Teachers Pay Teachers and Teachers Notebook.   Originally I thought I was going to be a voice for teachers and make a difference in the profession.  I can't say that I have made the type of impact I hoped to.  I burned out of teaching a year ago and took an extended break.  I have returned as a substitute teacher and I see my colleagues exhausted physically and emotionally from the same factors that caused me to quit.  It's discouraging.

I certainly don't blog for the money.  (Enough said.)

Yet, I'm not ready to quit.  I am content for now to promote the type of teaching I believe in--the type of teaching that has worked for me. I have found it easier to share what I love instead of gripe about what I hate.  (Okay, I do post the occasional rant.)

I hope Artistry of Education helps others even if it is one teacher at a time.  I know that small efforts over time can add up.

Just in case you aren't a regular reader, here is my weekly schedule:
Sunday: Quotes
Monday: Random Thoughts
Wednesday: Book Reviews
Friday: Freebies

Thank you for joining me on this continued journey,

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Friday, April 1, 2016

Sentence Frames: Cause and Effect

I have been learning more strategies to help English Language Learners in the classroom.  Today I wanted to share some sentence frames I used to help ELL groups with cause and effect.

When teaching students who are new to English, one strategy is to have a set of sentence frames to practice listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Sentence frames provide students some of the words they need to show they understand the content.  These sentence frames are in pairs to show that sometimes the cause is at the beginning of the sentence and sometimes it is at the end.

To download Sentence Frames: Cause and Effect, please click here.

Happy Friday!

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