Saturday, March 12, 2016
Another station that the students may choose to work in is an Art Career Station. In this Art Based Station, the Kindergarten and First Graders choose a Bubble Map to record various art careers on. As they take notes, they discuss the jobs with their tablemates. For second through fifth graders, they choose one specific art career and record it in the middle of their Thinking Map. They then brainstorm various tasks that job must do. They record their thoughts about that career on the Thinking Map.
On most Fridays, the students work in Art Based Learning Stations. One of the stations is Artist Research Writing. In this station, the students choose an artist to read about. The artist cards that I provide are from Teachers Pay Teachers and can be found here. There are several sets of these available. After reading, the students write key facts about their artist on a Thinking Map, typically a Circle Map. They then use the Circle Map to help them write sentences to summarize the information read about the artist.
Saturday, May 3, 2014
We visited the computer lab on Thursday so the students could research an inventor of their choice on their own. We use PebbleGo as our main online research tool. I love PebbleGo because the students can choose to have the information read to them and the words are highlighted as it is read which naturally leads them to read along. There are also historical videos imbedded within the biography section. After choosing an inventor to research, the students listened to each section and recorded at least two facts per section on their student-created Circle Maps. Next week they will use their Circle Maps to write a research paper independently. They will get to share their papers with their classmates and become the "expert" on their inventor.
Sunday, April 27, 2014
As a part of our lessons on fiction story elements and our author study of Eric Carle, we compared the stories The Mixed-Up Chameleon and The Foolish Tortoise. Using a Double Bubble Map, we started with how the two stories are the same: author, problems, solutions, setting, animals, reptiles, etc. We then talked about how those things are the same, there are differences between them. We color coded the parts to show how although they have elements that are the same, the author used them differently to create two unique stories.
Tuesday, April 22, 2014
In writing the students created paper eggs using patterns and paint. They then wrote descriptive papers about their eggs. We numbered each egg and then mixed them up before hanging them on the bulletin board. The students then put a folded flip card with their number next to their egg writing. Each student took turns reading their descriptive writing to their class to see if they could find which egg was theirs. They then flipped the number card up to confirm their guess. When the guesses were incorrect, we discussed the importance of using good descriptions when writing to give the reader, or audience, a visual of what the author is talking about.
In reading we learned about various types of media and the techniques used in each to convey the author's purpose. The students learned about internet sites, commercials, pint ads, and product labels. In one lesson, they designed their own print ad using techniques we learned about. In other lesson, they created a "pie" diagram to define the three reasons author's write: persuade, inform, and entertain. In another lesson, they chose two types of media and compared their techniques on a Venn Diagram.
Sunday, April 6, 2014
The students created Tree Maps on the computer using Pixie 2 for 3D shapes. After adding the 3D shapes under each branch, they then searched through the stickers to find real life examples of the shapes.
We read The Copycat Fish by Marcus Pfister and then the students retold the story in order as a class using a Flow Map. The students then individually retold the story on a foldable focusing on the beginning, middle, and end. They also colored a Rainbow Fish to go along with their work.
We read Fred and Pete at the Beach by Cynthia Nugent to practicing retelling stories in order. As a class, the students retold the events on a Flow Map using Interactive Writing. With Interactive Writing, each student gets a chance to write while the rest of the class helps them with word order, spelling, and punctuation.
We spent two weeks on our ocean theme. To start our theme, we read Dory Story by Jerry Pallotta. As we read, we talked about food chains and animals interdependence on one another. After reading, the students wrote the order of the food chain on a Flow Map. They then illustrated their favorite part of the story.
Saturday, February 22, 2014
The students used their questions they had about space from a previous lesson and then worked in small groups to find answers using a variety of sources. They recorded their answers on a Circle Map. They then used the Circle Map to help them write about the facts they found on a non-fiction text feature template. They wrote details and drew pictures including captions.
The students wrote sentences to explain what they would do if they lived in a snow globe. They then created a snow globe out of construction paper and illustrated at least one thing they would do.
Sunday, December 22, 2013
In writing we researched and compared the role Santa Claus plays in The United States, Germany, France, and Mexico. As a whole group, we charted our findings on a grid for who the gift giver is, what he looks like, how he travels, when he comes, and where he leaves gifts. The students then took notes on their own copy of the grid. Using their notes, they chose to countries, and their version of Santa Claus, to compare on a Venn Diagram. After completing the Venn Diagram, they added heads, hats, legs, and arms to the Venn Diagram to look like Santa. Later in Social Studies we compared even more of the traditions of each country. We also looked at the traditions of Hanukkah in Israel as a part of our Social Studies lessons.
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
The students worked on using their Thinking Maps to come up with more details to describe objects. This time they described a bat. Instead of just adding details like "black" to describe its color, they had to add more details like "black like coal" for more complex sentences. After writing, we had a short art lesson on how to draw a bat hanging upside down. I think they did a great job!
The students used Thinking Maps to organize their ideas of how to describe a pumpkin. They then wrote three sentences using those Maps. Each week I model for the students how to use Thinking Maps to help them with their writing. Then they write independently for the first three days. On the fourth day, I sit down with each student individually to do one-on-one editing. When I see an area that needs to be corrected, I ask the students a guiding question such as "What goes at the beginning of the sentences?" and they answer. I think this helps them take more ownership and leads to better writing the next time. After we edit together, they go back and rewrite a final draft which is what is displayed in the hallway. While I work with students one-on-one, the other students are working in Daily 5. Occasionally I will have an independent art project that they can do to go along with their writing.