I'd like to talk about ideas. Where do you get your great ideas? I have to be honest and say that most of my ideas are stolen from other teachers. I prefer to say that they inspire me, which is so true, and I then use their ideas because of how great the ideas are. Looking through blogs and seeing what other teachers are doing always gives me that excited, bubble feeling inside. I often feel re-energized and think 'I could do that, too!'
Since it is the beginning of the year, I wanted to reflect on some of those great ideas I did last year and give credit where credit is due. Many of the ideas I altered slightly to fit my style and my students.
Take a look.
Idea: End of the year gift: Personal Wordle
Source: Confessions of a Teaching Junkie
Comment: My students spent time at the end of the year writing one word to describe every classmate. It was a challenging task for some of them. I loved seeing the students reach for the thesaurus and work hard to find just the perfect word to describe their peer. Many of my students came up with words that I hadn't even thought of. I love this when it happens. After I collected all the adjectives they chose for each other, I made wordles for each student. Following this, I downloaded the wordles and created DVD covers for my students. These were the covers to the class DVD I made of all their grade three photos.
Idea: Non-Fiction Reading Marathon
Source: Fabulous in Fourth
Comment:This was a cool idea. My students loved the idea of having a marathon. I made a few changes to the version found in Fabulous in Fourth by shortening the time between stops. I did make the mistake of providing non-fiction books that were not long enough. In the end, the students were really proud of their work. I hope to try the fiction reading marathon as well this year.
Idea: Making 3-D Shapes with Manipulatives
|Photo taken from Learning Ideas-Grade K-8|
Source: Learning Ideas - Grade K-8
Comment: After studying 3-D shapes I gave them the task of building a few 3-D shapes. I began the lesson with these posted on the SMARTboard:
Choose 2 questions and build the 3-D shape.
1. What shape has 8 edges and 5 vertices?
2. What shape has 8 edges and 8 vertices?
3. What shape has 9 edges and 6 vertices?
4. What shape has 6 edges and 4 vertices?
The student had to build the shape and then name the 3-D shape. Many of my students were able to complete all four shapes even though they were only required to finish two. A few were only able to figure out 1 or worked the entire time on 2 questions. It was a great assessment of their understanding of the concept.
My students loved the idea of using candy as a math manipulative. Instead of pretzels, I used toothpicks. I found that this was easier for the students to connect to the candies.
Idea: Self Portraits
Source: I am not sure where I got this idea, but it wasn't mine. If I remember or come across the site, I will be sure to post it.
Comment: Since I don't have the source, I'll explain how the students created these pictures.
1. Print off a picture of each student
2. Provide a transparency for each student as well as a thin permanent black marker. Tape the picture to the transparency.
3. Have students outline their faces on the transparency using the marker.
4. Provide paper for student to paint and create a background.
5. Use black construction paper to create a frame.
6. Carefully glue the edges of the transparency onto the background and stick it in the frame.
I also had students write simile poems as a way to describe themselves. We posted the poems with the pictures to create a hallway bulletin board.
These are just a few of the ideas that I wanted to share. I am looking forward to another year of blogging and collecting more ideas.
It's good to be back!