Sunday, November 17, 2013

Quiet! We are trying to learn...???

This little group of littles are keeping me hopping, but I'm starting to see a glimmer of hope. 
We are making progress. 
Almost all are at least to grade level reading (decoding) and numbers are beginning to take on meaning. 
Writing is a different story but we are trying. 
It's hard to have enough time to teach to groups. My littles are, well little and everything takes longer for them. And my olders are having difficulty rising to the level they should be working when others are not. But last week I begin to see an excitement stir in their minds and no it wasn't left over Halloween candy or the fact that it is one week before Thanksgiving break...they were actually uh...thinking on their own! 
They were saying things like "If this, they it has to be that." or "I am finished may I do ..." I couldn't believe my ears!

I have been struggling to get sentences that contain more than 3 words.
 I've done guided writing, used various organizers, drawings, etc. 
Then finally it dawned on me I can't teach them to write until they think of themselves as writers. 
So I created little books and told them they could write anything but they were to take their time and only do one page a day. 
And they had to draw a picture to go with what they wrote. 
I think the lack of structure has at least allowed them to have the desire to write in their journals. I haven't exactly looked in them yet so I may be crowing to soon. But at least most of them are choosing that center. 
Second most popular to read to self!

Something that has helped the noise level in our class is head phones.
I have a class set of them
Got them at a local hardware store. It's the kind machinist use to help protect their ears from the noise. The kids love wearing them and they in turn don't talk so much. AHHHH!

In between school stuff, report cards, awards ceremonies, 
spelling bees (yes even though they are not sure what words are yet!), 
and my observation....
And then there's the baby showers and baby shopping, (only 7 more weeks),
we managed to have...

 our pumpkin investigation day.
How high is it?

Do they weigh more or less?
How big? How many ribs?
BTW did you now that pumpkin with more ribs have the most seeds!
How many seeds in this pumpkin?

I've used this for 2 years now and the littles feel so big having to write down their findings.
by Cara Carroll

We also finished our spider unit

But didn't get to our bats... maybe later in the spring??
But I did add the 2nd 100 fry words to my Detective word wall sets.

and in addition to my Rain,Rain, Go Away Game for practice with
 'ai and ay' words,
I have created a new packet with many different and differential teaching activities

ai or ay? Activities that Teach the Difference 

And for sticking with me through my catch up blogging,
 here is a little
 freebie song/cheer
from this packet

Thank you for stopping by and following the ramblings of a
 1st grade - soon to be grandma- teacher.

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