Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Halloween Activities

Before long, it will be Halloween and students will be excited. Rather than try to fight them on the excitement, I like to plan some activities around Halloween. Here are some suggestions.

Language Arts:

Cut out large pumpkin shapes from orange construction paper. Have the students decorate the pumpkins with markers or crayons. Cut out a smaller version of these from white construction paper.  Have students write a story on the white shape and glue it to the undecorated side of the pumpkin.

Writing Prompts:
·      My favorite Halloween Costume
·      My Name is Peter/Penelope the Pumpkin…
·      The Scariest Costume
·      A Scary Story

Cut our pumpkin shapes from orange construction paper and pumpkin stems from green construction paper. On the pumpkins, write math equations and on the stem, write the answers.
Have the students match the pumpkins with the correct stem. You can even make it self-correcting by labeling them with matching numbers on the back.

Write Halloween themed math word problems.

Have students do price comparison shopping for pumpkins. Have students figure out the cost per pound. Have students find the cost of multiple amounts of pumpkins.

Social Studies:

Find out the origin of Halloween.

Find out if other countries celebrate Halloween and how do they celebrate it.


Make orange slime with cornstarch, water, and food coloring.

Make a sizzling cauldron using food coloring, baking soda, and vinegar.

These are just a few activities that students enjoy. There are many other activities that you can find online.

What is your favorite Halloween activity for the classroom?  Please share.

Photo by Bekir Dönmez on Unsplash

Monday, October 22, 2018

Wonder League Robotics Competition

I recently received an email about this competition and wanted to share the press release with all of my readers.

International Coding and Robotics Competition Provides Children Opportunity to Utilize Coding Skills on Global Stage

Fourth annual Wonder League Robotics Competition gives young inventors the opportunity to learn and demonstrate STEM skills from their school or home

San Mateo, CA. – October 11, 2018 – Wonder Workshop, creators of robots used in more than 20,000 schools worldwide, has launched their fourth annual global robotics competition. The Wonder League Robotics Competition provides children a global stage to learn and demonstrate 21st century skills, without worrying about a fee or travel – making it accessible to children in every part of the world. Last year, the Wonder League Robotics Competition drew more than 22,000 participants – with 47 percent of the participants being girls – making this a unique robotics platform that draws nearly as many boys as girls.

“For the past three years, we have seen thousands of teachers and parents successfully engage children with robotics and computer science. The competition provides an opportunity for all students to explore coding and robotics while learning the vital skills of collaboration and design thinking through hands-on activities,” said Vikas Gupta, CEO and co-founder of Wonder Workshop. “This year, we are excited to expand the competition to middle schools and bring them the same excitement and sense of achievement that we have seen in elementary schools worldwide.”

Dash, Dot, and Cue, the programmable robots used in the Wonder League Robotics Competition, are popular among parents and educators looking to introduce coding and robotics through project-based learning. Participants in the competition, ages six to 14, develop problem-solving, growth mindset, and creativity skills while learning to code. Each team consists of one to five members and is supervised by an adult coach. This year’s competition will feature five challenge-based missions, followed by a final invitational round where teams compete for three grand prizes of $5,000 STEM grants. Each story-based mission offers challenges of varying difficulties to create a scaffolded, team-based experience. All five missions will be available beginning today.

The opportunity to participate in a global competition allows students and educators to connect and trade best practices from across the world, spanning the 63 countries competing in the 2017-2018 Wonder League.

“I can't believe how much we learned this year. The growth of our team was enormous. The children absolutely love participating in the competition,” said Lisa Morgan, a 2017-18 coach from Bloomfield Hills, Mich. “They learned to work together, listen to other ideas, speak up, share, problem solve and persevere and never give up. This activity was my favorite part of my year too!”
Registration is open until December 31st, 2018. Those interested in learning more can do so by visiting https://www.makewonder.com/education/robotics-competition/.

About Wonder Workshop

Founded in 2012, Wonder Workshop’s mission is to spark creativity with kids of all ages, inspiring lifelong learning through our clever robotics platform. We are committed to helping children succeed in the 21st century and developing in-depth experiences that balance fun and learning, promote collaboration, and provide enduring value to both girls and boys at home and in the classroom. Our award-winning robots are used in more than 20,000 elementary and middle schools worldwide. ”

Friday, October 19, 2018

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 10/19/18

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

Words of the World – videos discussing the origin of words (L:G;SA:LA)

Voicepods – text to speech (L:G;SA:A)

A Parent’s Guide to Instagram – “We know that as a parent it may be hard to understand the changing digital landscape and what your kids are doing online. That's why we've created this resource. We're here to fill you in on what Instagram is all about, give you some conversation starters for you and your teen, and show you some of the tools that are in place to keep your teen safe.” (L:G;SA:A)

How Plastic Recycling Actually Works – “What happens to plastic bottles when you recycle them? Do they get made into fresh bottles, or do they become something else? This week on Reactions, learn why it's easier to turn bottles into workout shirts than it is to fully recycle the plastic.”  (L:G;SA:S)

Atlas of the Historical Geography of the United States – “Here you will find one of the greatest historical atlases: Charles O. Paullin and John K. Wright's Atlas of the Historical Geography of the United States, first published in 1932. This digital edition reproduces all of the atlas's nearly 700 maps. Many of these beautiful maps are enhanced here in ways impossible in print, animated to show change over time or made clickable to view the underlying data—remarkable maps produced eight decades ago with the functionality of the twenty-first century.” (L:H;SA:SS)

Original photo by Pat Hensley