Wednesday, July 27, 2016

O is for Octopus

Teachers need to feel like they have eight arms.

One of the hardest thing to teach my student teachers is that they can’t have tunnel vision. They need to be able to multi-task and be able to do many things in a short amount of time.

It is important to prioritize the needs of the class and the school. This involves practicing effective time management.

During a class period I would have to do things like: greet students,  take attendance, pass out graded work, teach a new assignment, pass out new assignments, worked with students who needed help, dealt with classroom interruptions from other people, collected finished work, assigned homework, give feedback to students and all of this was done usually in a 50 minute period.

One of the things that I have done is to make sure that I can answer my students’ questions when they need me. But it is hard when many hands go up all at once. So, what I did was glue green and red foam board together. Then I cut small 3 inch squares from them. On the green side, I used a marker and wrote OK. On the red side I wrote Help! This square stayed on the corner of their desk. It stayed on the green side until they needed help. Then they turned it over to the red side. As I walked around the room I was able to see which students needed help. They didn’t get tired of keeping their hands raised which sometimes kept them from working. They also knew that they didn’t have to keep watching me so they could get my attention when I finished helping another student.

I was amazed at how this helped control behavior problems in the class and also helped my students have more success.

This procedure also helped me when I was interrupted by a message from the office or a phone call or the many other things that would draw my attention away from a student. 

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

N is for Nutrition

Nutrition is important and I don’t think we talk to students enough about it. I see too many students who are overweight or just don’t eat right.

A fun activity would be to have students get in groups and pretend they are the parents who are making up a week’s menu for their family dinner. Using the New Food Pyramid, they need to figure out what they will eat and then find the menus for them. Each meal would need to have a calorie count including protein amount, carbohydrate amount, sugar amount, and sodium amount. Then they would total these amounts for the week. It would be fun to see who could come up with the most nutritious meals but with the least amount of calories, carbohydrates, sugar, and sodium.

I think it would be useful to cook some vegetables and have students taste them if they never had them before. Too many students say they hate vegetables but maybe they never tried them before.

Another activity would be to have older students do some research on nutrition. Have them find out if protein is important. What are the dangers of too much salt? Then they can share their findings with the class.

What activities would you do to teach nutrition? Please share.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Back of the Book Blurb #18 Challenge

From Sioux's Page, Sioux offers this challenge.
She posts a picture and you need to imagine it as a graphic for a book. You choose the genre and book title, and then write a blurb that might appear on the back of the book.

·                The blurb should be 150 words or less (not including the title).
·                The genre is wide-open.
·                Each blogger should include their blurb on their own blog, and link back to this post.
·                Have fun with it. Go to the other posts and comment on the other blurbs. 
·                You can do fancy techy things with the photo.

(Join in if you dare...! It sounds like fun! I think this would be a lot of fun to do with students especially since they would be expected to write 150 words or less!)

The Wolf

Mabel loved going for walks and when she went to the dog park, she loved to check out the new dogs that visited. So far, none had appealed to her until one day she saw the dog of her dreams! She saw him from a distance because he was leaving the dog park as they arrived. The next few visits, her dream dog wasn’t there. Then one day, she saw him. She couldn’t wait to get a good sniff and her dream would come true! She ran up to his hind quarters and sniffed but something just wasn’t right. Then she came around to the front of him and was speechless! It was a wolf in sheep’s clothing! Her dream dog was an imposter! Well, she was going to let him have it! Read on to find out what Mabel did next and why he was in a costume.  (149 words)

Friday, July 22, 2016

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 7/22/16

Here are some interesting sites that I’ve found this week, thanks to my PLN. As a teacher, I feel we have to keep up to date concerning research in our field and current issues in the education system. I hope some of these inspire you, inform you, and even have you asking questions. Thank you for coming by and visiting!

Note: Each resource is labeled with a level and subject area to make it easier to use.

Levels:  E: Elementary; M: Middle; H: High; G: General, all levels; SN: Special Needs; T: Teachers

Subject Areas: LA: Language Arts, English, Reading, Writing; M: Math; S: Science; Health; SS: Social Studies, Current Events; FA: Fine Arts; Music, Art, Drama; FL: Foreign Language; PE: Physical Ed; C: Career; A: All

Character Scrapbook – “Use this reader's response activity to analyze the characters in any book. Print and collect your scrapbook pages.(L:E; SA:LA)

Map Game – “Provide as many questions (clues) and answers (locations) as you like to create a virutal 'treasure hunt'. When you are finished you can save the game and share it with others. Players have to use each clue to collect the 'coins' that appear in each of your secret locations.” (L:M,H; SA:SS)

Mindshift Teaching Strategies – great selection of articles featuring interesting teacher strategies (L:T; SA:

Bill of Rights – A TED-ed lesson; Why wasn’t the Bill of Rights in the Constitution (L:G; SA:SS)

Epic Hero Poster – free poster (L:G; SA:LA)

Original photo by Pat Hensley