Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Unity and Civil Rights Movement

We have been studying the Civil Rights Movement for several weeks. My students have had some thoughtful discussions. I am so proud of the love they have show to one another all year. Today, during a teachable moment, we decided to investigate the various hues of skin in our classroom. What a beautiful picture of diversity. I am proud of how far we have come in the last 50 years, and cannot wait to see what positive changes are in store for the next generation.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Free Decimal Number Line

I love letting my students create a decimal number line during our fraction unit. My students work together as a group, they color each decimal from zero to one. This helps them visualize the decimal in relation to the whole. They attach the colored decimal squares in order on a piece of 3 inch receipt paper. Click here to get your FREE decimal Number Line.

I also have a version that may be printed Decimal Number Line available in my TpT store. After students create their own number lines, I like to have this version for the neatness and accuracy. 

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Division Freebie

I know many of you are teaching division with partial quotients right now. I have always found it helpful if my kiddos have a graphic organizer to keep their numbers straight when first learning this skill. Click on the pic below to get your free partial quotient division graphic organizer.

In my TpT store I have a set of division printables that great for instruction and assessment. This set is available with and without an answer key box at the bottom of the page. My student find an answer box helpful when self correcting. They tend to identify and correct their own mistakes when using an answer box.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Easy Way to Get Students to Pay Attention!

Imagine your students wanting to increase their vocabulary knowledge and actively listening to every word you say. Sounds like something out of science fiction, right?  I thought so too; until I started playing a simple game with my students.

This game is quick and easy to implement. Simply select a word frequently used by you and your students---such as good. Then, create an anchor chart of the synonyms of the word you selected. Whenever students hear you say the word or one of its synonyms, they should immediately say “ding, ding, ding.” Students will be allowed to toss a soft ball around the room until it drops or until a specific time limit is met. The student that says “ding, ding, ding” will begin the game. I also have a rule that if the ball is thrown to someone standing the game is over. My students love this game!! I have even had students comment how intently they are listening to me now.

I also have some other synonym and antonym resources available in my TpT store. 

For this synonym writing resource students write a story about a picture using at least 5 words from a word box. Afterward, they use a provided thesaurus, to select synonyms for the words they select. One of my students asked me if she HAD to change the her word because it wouldn't make sense. Let me tell you my heart melted. That it the exact type of thinking I desire!!!

 This set of antonym bump games are a hit with my students!

My snowball fight games are an all time favorite!!

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Best Multiplication Facts Game!!

I love coming up with new math games. Hearing my students beg to play a game or complain when it’s time to stop playing is one of my favorite sounds. I seem to create a ton of multiplication games in an attempt to make learning these facts fun for my students. This year, I have created my most successful game yet and I just must share.
It is called Badger Shuffle. This game lets the students practice a specific multiplication set such as ___ x4. You begin by having the students put their chairs in a large circle, then removing one chair. Next, you will write one product on and index card for each chair. Only use the products for the set you want to practice. For example, if you are practicing the x4 set, you would write 4, 8, 12, 16, 20… This is VERY IMPORTANT, you will need at least two of each product. Depending on the number of students playing, you may not be able to practice all the products during one game. You may want to leave off x1, x11, x12 if you have too. Once you make the cards, tape them to the back of each chair. Click here to checkout my ready-made chair cards available in my TpT store.

The student without a chair sits or stands in the middle of the circle. This student calls out a multiplication expression from the set you are practicing. For example, 4x6. Then, the students who have the product of that expression taped to their chair, must get up and swap seats. Students may not remain in their seat and they may not return to their original seat. There should be at least 2 students with this product. The student in the middle will attempt to take one of the seats while the players swap. At the end of the shuffle, someone will be left without a seat. This student will call out a multiplication expression and play continues. Click here to get Free a PDF of the directions.

Not only do my students love this game, they really do learn the set we are practicing. When an expression is called out, they immediately say the product. This repetition is perfect for some of my learners.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Place Value Daily Practice

Place value is one of those skills that help build true number sense. Giving students time to compare numbers and justify their answers increases their place value understanding. I have a set of 7 questions I like to use with my students. I call these questions the Sweet Seven. Students paste a copy of the question in their journals. Then, I provide them with three numbers to evaluate and answer in their journals. The numbers I select increase in difficulty as my students' skill level advances. Click here to get your FREE copy of the Sweet Seven!!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Review with Hot Potato

My students enjoy playing Hot Potato to review. Not only is Hot Potato a fun game, it works for any subject! All you need a soft ball to serve as your "potato" and kid friendly music. Begin by setting some ground rules for the students. I tell my students the boys must throw to a girl that is seated and the girls must throw to a boy that is seated.

I usually make it a competition between the boys and girls because fourth graders love it. You can play without competing or you can compete by groups.

Play a kid friendly song and let the students begin tossing the "potato." When the music stops, I ask whoever touched it last a review question. I also ask a question to everyone that sits in that same position at the other groups. This allows me to ask several questions at once. It also give me a chance to check in or to assess kids that normally avoid answering questions. You could ask everyone at the group a question instead.

Play a couple of rounds prior to giving a test.