Friday, November 25, 2022

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 11/25//22

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

City Access Map - “The 15 Minute City is real! Cities all over the world are working to provide their residents with services that are accessible within a 15 minute walk. But, which cities are leading this change? Which cities need to invest in public infrastructure to improve access to services for their residents?” (L:G;SA:SS)

The Deep Sea - a visual of the animals in the deep sea (L:G;SA:S)

Library By the People - “Help transcribe Library of Congress documents. Volunteers create and review transcriptions to improve search, access, and discovery of these pages from history.” (L:G;SA:SS)

Energy Transfer in a Roller Coaster - “In this interactive lesson supporting literacy skills, students watch videos and use an interactive activity to learn how energy moves roller coaster cars along a track. Students develop their literacy skills as they explore a science focus on the transfer of energy between potential and kinetic energy. During this process, they read informational text, learn and practice vocabulary words, and explore content through videos and interactive activities.”(L:E,M;SA:S)

Geoquiz History - “How well do you know locations of heritages and war battles?” (L:M,H;SA:SS)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Happy Thanksgiving


Today is Thanksgiving Day in the United States. I have so much to be thankful for! Today I will spend the day with friends and family and reflect on all the blessings I have in my life. Whether it is Thanksgiving Day or not where you live, I hope you have time to do the same.

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Blocks Rock! - A review


I was contacted by Katie from Blocks Rock! about looking at this game and sharing what I think about it. I am not being paid to write this review. Blocks Rock! is a STEM toy and educational game. 

Blocks Rock! Is a game for children 4 years and up. It comes in a carrying case that includes 24 wooden blocks, 2 decks of cards, and a bell. Today (Wednesday, November 23, 2022), they are offering a $20 discount on this game.

When I opened the game, I was impressed with all of the different shapes and colors the wooden blocks come in which I think would appeal to kids of all ages. There were two packs of cards - one for beginners and one for intermediates along with a separate package for preschoolers. I also like to have students handle concrete material when learning a lesson because I think it helps them retain learning this way.

The preschoolers can look at the cards and place the blocks on the cards to match the design. This would be a great way for children to learn colors, shapes, and matching.

The beginner cards have designs that are flat or need to be built up. I like this extra dimension added to it. Depending on the learner, the teacher could just start with the flat designs, then only the building designs, and then mix them up. In this game, the blocks are divided equally between two players. A card is turned over and each player uses their blocks to copy the design on the card. The first player to complete the design will ring the bell. If it isn’t correct, the players continue and ring the bell when they think they have it completed. The one who completes it correctly first gets to keep the card. The one with the most cards wins.

I think this would appeal to students of all ages just because it is fun! I believe any game that exercises your brain is good for you! Older students would be challenged by the time factor more than the colors and shapes. It would also be great to use with students with special needs who have learning difficulties. This would be a concrete learning tool for students to learn colors and shapes, match designs, and improve spatial skills.

I would highly recommend this game for children. It is durable and easy to store. It would be great in an elementary school classroom or even the school library. Parents who homeschool their children would also find this a great learning tool!

If you use this in your classroom, please let me know what you think!

Original photos by Pat Hensley

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Believing In Others

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In Believing In Others, Rushton features celebrity Dwayne Johnson and the football coach who changed his life.

Rushton gives the following prompts to accompany this video:

“Have you had a moment where people saw you one way, but you knew that there was much more to you than they thought?

Have you had a moment where you realized you were wrong about someone else? What helped you understand your mistake?”


I like to think that this is why I became a teacher. I want to make a difference in someone’s life. I want to look past their defensive behavior and see the deep-down goodness in each student. This is something I would like my students to feel when they interact with others. I want them to see that they can make a difference in someone else’s life also even if they aren’t a teacher. The best way to influence students to act this way is to model my own behavior.

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.

Monday, November 21, 2022

HAL Rotterdam

Click here for pictures!

This was our first cruise since the pandemic hit 2 years ago (our last cruise was in November 2019). We were supposed to sail on the HAL Rotterdam for an 11-day cruise beginning on Wednesday, November 9. Unfortunately, Tropical Storm Nicole was heading her way to FL and Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale) was closed on the day we were supposed to leave. We were told to be at the port on November 10 by 4pm. This is the first cruise that we have ever had delayed. We watched the Port Everglades webcam and watched the ship arrive at the port at 11am.

 

The ship can hold 2668 passengers. Our captain was Bas Van Dreumel, the hotel director was Wessel van Oorschot, Food and Beverage Director was Saurabh Vaishampayan and our Cruise and Travel director was Karlijn Verpalen. We were at Table 202 on Deck 3 Dining Room and our servers were Eka and Ipan. Even though we are at a table for two, there is another couple at a table next to ours that was so nice to talk to at dinner. They were Sharon and Doug from Dallas, TX (see picture). Our cabin was 11053 and our cabin stewards were Dada and Nocodemus. We enjoyed ourselves and glad to be cruising again!


Day 1 Thursday, November 10, 2022, Embarkation

We watched the ship arrive at Port Everglades at 11am. We left the house at 1pm and arrived at the port at 2pm. We got on the ship by 4pm. We went to our cabin to get our keys and meet our cabin stewards (Dada and Nicodemus). I was surprised that our luggage was already there! After that, we went to find some lunch. I had pasta from the pasta bar and Don had fish. Then we had to go to our muster station (Deck 3) to get our key cards scanned. We walked from Deck 3 to Deck 11 where our cabin is. While we unpacked our suitcases, we watched the safety video. After that, we went to have dinner on the Lido deck, and I was excited to get my sirloin steak there. Then we walked around the ship. There was a sail away party on Deck 10 at the Panorama Bar at 8pm and there was a great turnout. Ruth (and her husband Larry) organized the party, and she was the perfect hostess! We also met Dorothy and Keith (Macon, GA), and Connie and Tom (central FL) and others but I can’t remember their names. Then we went back to our cabin, and I had no trouble falling asleep!

 

Day 2 Friday, November 11, 2022, Sea Day

I was up by 5am and sat on the Lido deck working on my computer, reading, or knitting until Don joined me. I had an omelet on the Lido deck and then we decided to go to the dining room, so I had French toast there. After breakfast, we walked on the jogging track. At 11:15, there was a lecture by Karlijn about The Deep Blue, and it was excellent. She talked about sea turtles and sunken treasure. Then we went to lunch on the Lido deck. I went to the Cabin Crawl at 1:30 (Don took a nap) where people volunteered to let us look at their cabins. Ruth did a great job organizing this with a sign to keep us all together and a list of the rooms for everyone to have in case we got separated. After that, we got ready for Dressy night and headed to the Billboard Onboard bar for Happy Hour (50% off). Don had vodka on the rocks, and I had a bloody Mary and it cost $10.33. We met a nice older man named Art who talked Don’s ear off about the Navy. At dinner, we ate with 2 other couples in the dining room. Karen and Steve were from Canada near Niagara Falls. The other couple was from Peachtree City, GA. After dinner, we went to the show Humanity by The Step One Dance Company which was very good.

 

Day 3 Saturday, November 12, 2022, Grand Turk

After an early breakfast, we got off the ship and went snorkeling at the beach right by the ship. We didn’t rent any chairs (I heard the guy tell this couple they were $30) so we just set our stuff in the sand. After 2 hours of snorkeling, we went back to the ship and cleaned up. Then we sat by the pool and relaxed (reading) until lunch opened. After lunch, we went back to the room and watched Romancing the Stone on TV and napped. We went to Happy Hour before dinner again. We went to our correct table for dinner this time and had a table for 2. Beside us was another couple from Dallas – Sharon, and Doug. They were going to charge Doug $8.50 for a shrimp cocktail, so he canceled that. After dinner, we decided the Captain needed something to brighten his day so we gave him one of my knitted gnomes. Then we went to the Captain’s reception by the pool and met Ruth. She is the Group and Events Director. She told us that the critically ill people were not from the same cabin but were in the hospital at Grand Turk and were much better.

 

Day 4, Sunday, November 13, 2022, Sea Day

The morning started off exciting! Around 5:30am, they closed off the back deck on Deck 9 to prepare for an emergency airlift off the ship. Around 6:30, we didn’t see the actual airlift but you could see the wind from the helicopter causing the artificial trees to really whip around. Later in the day, the Captain announced that three people were airlifted – the sick passenger, travel partner, and doctor.

 

We ate breakfast in the dining room and had a nice time with the other people. Then we walked on the jogging track until it was time to go to the lecture Unexpected Heroes which talked about the love and talent behind sports in the Caribbean. After lunch on the Lido deck, we went to another lecture – The Caribbean Spirit that told the story about rum. By then it was time to prepare for dinner and go to Happy Hour. For dinner, we had prime rib and it was very good. After dinner, we went to the show Timeless by Cantare which was 4 nice-looking men singing love songs. I enjoyed it more than Don of course!

 

Day 5, Monday, November 14, 2022, Barbados

We got off the ship around 10am and walked downtown. It was very breezy but hot in the sun. We walked along the water to the historic bridge and then around the town back to the ship. We walked about 6 miles. I stopped at this store and bought a Coke No Sugar and a White Rock Ginger Ale for $3 US and got .80 back in Barbados money. We were told that the exchange rate was $1 USD to $2 in Barbados currency. When we got back to the port terminal, there was a free shuttle back to the ship so we took it. We were back on the ship by 12:45 and went to the Lido deck for lunch. After lunch, we sat on the deck and relaxed until it was time to get ready for Happy Hour. After dinner, we went to the show theater to see the movie Top Gun: Maverick at 8pm and it was a really good movie.

 

Day 6 , Tuesday, November 15, 2022, Martinique

We arrived in Martinique at 7am. We walked around town until 10am. People were not overly friendly here. When we tried to buy a soda in the grocery store, they wouldn’t take US dollars. We sat on the deck until lunchtime and returned again after lunch. Before happy hour, I went to get our luggage tags for disembarkation and was able to pick the group according to the time we wanted to get off the ship. We had happy hour and then dinner in the dining room. We went to the show In Tandem by The Step One Dance Company. There was this cute little girl who just had to dance in the aisles and was enthralled with the dancing!

 

Day 7, Wednesday, November 16, 2022, St. Kitts

We got off the ship at 8am and walked around until 11am. We bought 2 sodas for $3 in the grocery store. Then we found the Fabric Store (Church St. and Cayon St.) where Don buys his postcards. The artist wasn’t there and was told she was quite elderly and didn’t come down much anymore. Then the lady in the store offered to take the four postcards ($1 each) upstairs to her and asked her to sign and date them. We walked near the cricket stadium, and the police car stopped us telling us we shouldn’t go any further and suggesting we go back to the tourist area, so we did. We walked around some more before finding a post office. The girl was so nice and patient with figuring out how much each sheet of stamps cost in US dollars. Don ended up buying $32 of stamps. We returned to the ship for lunch and sat on the deck until happy hour. After happy hour we went to dinner and the show which featured the illusionist, TJ Tana.

 

Day 8, Thursday, November 17, 2022, St. Thomas

We got off the ship in St. Thomas at 8am and walked around until 9:30. We went to the Pueblo supermarket to get some soda for $1. This was the first time I saw a diet Pepsi on the whole cruise! We got back on the ship and relaxed on the deck until lunchtime. After lunch, we relaxed on the deck until it was time for happy hour. After dinner, we went to the show All In by Cantare. I enjoyed the four men singing better than Don did. Then we went back to the room and finished watching Aladdin with Will Smith. We also watched a movie called American Underdog that told the story of Kurt Warner, a pro football player.

 

Day 9, Friday, November 18, 2022, Sea Day

Today was a sea day so we didn’t do much. I partially packed my suitcase today. We sat on the deck and relaxed all day until happy hour. After dinner, we went to the show Musicology featuring the dancers.

 

Day 10, Saturday, November 19, 2022, Half Moon Cay

We were going to get on the tender at 9am but then it started raining. Instead, we sat on the deck and relaxed all day. I did go to the NY Deli and got us 2 bagels. They scan your card but it doesn't cost extra. Then they give you a device that vibrates when your order is ready. At 4pm we went to the enrichment lecture The Origin Story which told the history of Holland America and it was very well done. After dinner, we packed our suitcases. Then we went to the bar for a drink before coming back and putting our suitcases out in the hallway. We watched movies until bedtime.

 

Day 11, Sunday, November 20, 2022, Ft. Lauderdale

We had breakfast at 6am and then we got off the ship at 8am. I liked that we could choose what time we wanted to get off the ship and got the luggage tags for that time. It was well organized for getting off the ship and we got our luggage quickly. The line for customs was fast because we didn’t need to show our passports. They used face recognition machines and then we were done. Parking cost us $150. We were on I-95 by 8:30.


Changes we noticed:

  • Turn-down service in the evening for your cabin has to be requested and is not automatic.
  • The Lido deck didn't have as much variety as it used to have.
  • The dining room dinner sound (xylophone) isn't used anymore.
  • After dinner, there used to be a guy in a bellman's uniform that passed out mints, ginger, and dates but not anymore.
  • We didn't see on the dining room menu the following items: Beef wellington, creme brulee,or baked Alaska.
  • The shrimp cocktail was an extra $8.50 if it wasn't on the dinner menu.
  • The pasta bar on the Lido deck was there but the guy didn't really make any fresh pasta for you. He told you to get what was already there.
  • There was only 1-hour happy hour in 2 specific bars each night and none in the Crow's nest.  

Things I Learned:

  1. To get on the internet on my computer I have to go to: http://navigator.hollandamerica.com
  2. The internet was $179 for the premium package.
  3. There was no movie theater on this ship.
  4. They will turn you away from the dining room if you have shorts on.
  5. On some ships, the Lido deck service is better than the Dining room but we enjoyed the dining room on this ship.
  6. I like happy hour with 50% off better than the old $2 off the second drink or 2 for 1.
  7. I don’t mind missing ports if it is for a medical emergency. I am always thankful that that emergency wasn’t for me.
  8. I need to bring heartburn medicine for Don when we travel.
  9. There was Dim Sum and fresh stir fry on the Lido deck for lunch every day.
  10. I love having an omelet made for me every morning!
  11. It was easy to walk into town when we got to Barbados.
  12. Barbados – 2 sodas cost $3 USD.
  13. You cannot wear anything with camouflage when you get off the ship in Barbados.
  14. Martinique was not very friendly, and they don’t take US dollars.
  15. St. Kitts – 2 sodas cost $3 USD.
  16. St. Thomas – Pueblo supermarket – Diet Pepsi was only $1!
  17. We like the cabin on deck 11 which opens right out to the jogging track.
  18. Don't always depend on the menu on the Navigator app. The last night's menu was wrong.
    Original photo by Pat Hensley

Friday, November 18, 2022

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 11/18//22

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

How to spot a counterfeit bill - Authentic dollar bills are equipped with many security features to make them difficult to forge. But that doesn’t stop counterfeiters from trying to fool people with fakes. Luckily, anyone can help catch a counterfeit; all you need are a few simple tools and a bit of chemistry. Tien Nguyen details the chemistry behind counterfeit cash.” (L:G;SA:S)

The Writer’s Workshop
- TED-ed videos that inform writers (L:G;SA:LA)

Homework 101: The Ultimate Guide for Students & Parents - “If you want to know how to do homework quickly, efficiently, and without suffering, keep reading this article by Custom-Writing.org. We’ll tell you how to stay on top!” (L:G;SA:A)

November/Thanksgiving - wakelet curated by Terri Eichholz (L:G;SA:A)

American Crows and Common Ravens - “How good are your crow and raven ID skills? American Crows and Common Ravens are both large, black birds in the corvid family with a lot of similarities. They’re easiest to identify by sound, but if you’re not in a position to listen in there are also visual cues that can help you make an ID.” (L:G;SA:S)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, November 17, 2022

Fidgeting

Another question, on an education forum that I participate in, was asked:

“Hi, I am a student teacher in a kindergarten classroom. A student in my classroom struggles with focusing and sitting still during class and tries to seek my and my cooperating teacher's attention during instructional times. She will call out in class and is unable to keep her body still, such as whipping her head around and stretching her legs and arms on the carpet. She also will touch anything around her such as her pencil box, basket, chairs around her, the carpet, and more. This is also a problem when the class goes to specials, as well as walking in the hallway. My teacher and I have tried providing her with a fidget tool however she did not use it properly so it was taken away from her. She distracts the students around her with her behaviors and her disruptions deprive the other students of their learning. We try to keep her seating close to us and use positive reinforcement with her as well. If anyone has any suggestions please let me know, thanks!”

As I’ve mentioned before, I think a token economy for the class would work effectively with this student and others. At first, you may have to really look hard to catch her acting appropriately but that is the time to reward her. Giving her frequent rewards at first may help her show appropriate behavior more often and then she can be weaned to more infrequent rewards. I would give all the students a blank index card with their names on it at the beginning of each day. I carry a hole puncher and each time I catch the students acting appropriately, they get a hole punched in their card. If students are acting inappropriately, I can decide to ignore it or circle one of the holes with a red pen. At the end of the day, we count how many holes are punched and subtract any circled hole to get the total reward points.

I would have a prize box set up so students can buy items with their points.

I would also try different fidget tools because not all of the tools are a one-size-fits-all type tool.

I have also used wobble stools that have helped active children. These were extremely helpful during whole-group instruction. I just made sure the stools were at the back of the group so they didn’t distract others.

Last, I would call the parents/caregivers to see if they see this behavior at home. If so, they may use strategies or tools that would also work in the classroom.

What advice would you give this teacher? Please share.

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Out of Seat Behavior

Another question, on an education forum that I participate in, was asked:

“I am a secondary teacher in the EC setting. I have a student who is constantly displaying behaviors that are interrupting my class daily. He also find a reason to get out of his seat and also talk across the room during instruction. He has a BIP in place but nothing is really working for him. We have even modified his day due to all the major incidents that has happened. Some of the things I have tried is to give him choices, allow him to work then break for 10 mins, allowed him to access YouTube to listen to music, and choice of chips/drink/candy at the end of each week if he does well with his behavior cart. He also receives social skills during class time. Do you all have anymore suggestions on what I can do to help him be successful?”

Has a conference been held with this student to ask him why he is doing this? Has he had input into what would help him not exhibit this behavior? Has he given input into what rewards he would be willing to work for?

Many times I see teachers create a behavior plan that works for the teacher but not the student. At this age, the student should have input into a behavior plan and work towards self-monitoring his own behavior.

He might be getting out of his seat because he is anxious about the assignment. Is there a way to give him a visual schedule of what to expect during class? In my class, we had a regular routine and if the student knew what was going to happen, this helped lower his level of anxiety.

Also, I would start off with a more frequent reward rather than once a week. A daily goal and reward would help the student get into the habit of appropriate behavior. Eventually, he could be weaned to weekly rewards. If he starts off with a weekly reward and never earns it, he is set up for failure.

What advice would you give this teacher? Please share.

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Expanding the Audience

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In Expanding the Audience, Rushton features Matt Maxey who has profound hearing loss. He didn’t learn to sign until he was 18 and now is translating hip-hop music. Rushton gives the following prompts to accompany this video:

“When you do school work, who is the audience? What happens if you expand that audience?

What causes do you care about? Animals? Climate? The homeless? How can you help expand the audience of those who can make a difference with those causes?”


This reminds me that when we speak or write, we need to consider who our audience is. We need to look at age, abilities, and environment. It would be fun to have students write or tell a story to a specific audience. Have students compare their stories to each other.

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.

Monday, November 14, 2022

Dealing with Distractions

Recently on an education forum that I participate in, this question was asked:

“I am currently student teaching in a 2nd grade classroom with students who are easily distracted by any stimulus that is in or around the classroom. Adults coming into the room, students outside at recess, or noise in the hall are common distractions. I feel like I verbally redirect the students often, and depending on the day, it sometimes works and other times it does not. I am looking for non verbal cues or signals that might help redirect the students to get back on task. When the volume of the classroom is too loud from ongoing conversations, I am trying to not add to the chaos, instead find a calm manner to redirect the students.”

I have used a token economy where each student is given an index card with their name on it. Each time the students act appropriately, I would use a hole punch to mark their cards. You could also just use a pen and make a star or an initial instead. At the end of the day, students turn in their cards for a daily reward. Eventually, I would wean students off daily rewards and go to weekly rewards. This was a very effective technique and was successful with most of my students.

Another tool I use is headphones. These are available for all students. They can wear them so they don't hear a lot of noise to distract them. 

I also played a lot of soft music in the classroom while the students worked on assignments at their seats. This helped keep them from being distracted by other things happening around the room or other interruptions during class.   

What advice would you give this student teacher? Please share.

Friday, November 11, 2022

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 11/11//22

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

Play Your Dates Right
- “Simply guess if the event on the right came before or after the one in the middle!” (L:H;SA:SS)

Mapping History - “The Mapping History Project has been designed to provide interactive and animated representations of fundamental historical problems and/or illustrations of historical events, developements, and dynamics.” (L:T;SA:SS)

Coco Material - “Discover CocoMaterial, the Open Source hand-drawn illustration library with 2,489 images. Customize & download!” (L:G;SA:A)

Around the World with Google Earth - “Google Earth is a great tool for history and geography students to use to learn about the world. In this seven-part activity students build Google Earth tours (projects) while solving a series of fun geography and history trivia challenges.” (L:M,H;SA:SS)

Classroom Zen - “A Calming Way to ManageClassroom Noise” (L:T;SA:A)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Veterans Day


In 1938, November 11th was made a legal holiday to celebrate Armistice Day. This was the day that WWI ended. In 1954, it was Armistice Day was changed to Veterans Day. Veteran’s Day is a day that we honor all the men and women who served in the US Armed Forces.

So, tomorrow, when you see someone who is a veteran, please thank them for their service. They gave up years of their lives and sacrificed a lot to protect us.




Wednesday, November 9, 2022

The Great Thanksgiving Listen


The Great Thanksgiving Listen encourages young people—and people of all ages—to create an oral history of our times by recording an interview with an elder, mentor, friend, or someone they admire.

With permission, interviews become part of the StoryCorps Archive at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. More than 650,000 people have participated in StoryCorps to date, making it the largest single collection of voices ever gathered.


Since 2015, thousands of people from all 50 states have participated in the Great Listen. Preserve your own unique oral history with a loved one and transform the holidays into a time of intergenerational sharing.”


Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Halfway Between a Drone and a Plane

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In Halfway Between a Drone and a Plane, Rushton features George Steinmetz, who uses something he describes as a “flying lawn chair” to take amazing photos.

Rushton gives the following prompts to accompany this video:

“In this video, Steinmetz talks about what he has seen across Africa from this flying machine and shares stunning pictures that he has taken.

What would people see if they looked at your community from several hundred feet in the air? Would they learn something important about what is valued by you, your family, and the families of those around you?

Without leaving the ground, how might you gain a different perspective on the places you are each day?”


I loved seeing all the photos because they were truly amazing. Students would enjoy seeing them too because I believe it would open their eyes to all the possibilities that the world offers. It also lets them see other places around the world. I like the idea of how something looks different from a different perspective so it would be fun to have students take photos or things around them from a different perspective than the normal view. They could experiment and then share their results with the class.

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.

Monday, November 7, 2022

Election Day


Tomorrow is Election Day in the US. I urge everyone to go vote. I don’t care what side you are on and what you believe in - please go vote. All this arguing, complaining, and dissatisfaction means nothing if you don’t go vote. That is how you have a chance to have your say - with your vote. 



Friday, November 4, 2022

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 11/4/22

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

Word It Out - “Transform your text into word clouds!” (L:G;SA:A)

Student Interactives - “Engage your students in online literacy learning with these interactive tools that help them accomplish a variety of goals -- from organizing their thoughts to learning about language -- all while having fun.”(L:G;SA:LA)

Meet Your Tonsils - “Has your doctor ever asked you to stick out your tongue and say "ah"? They're probably checking out your tonsils! But what are your tonsils, and what do they do?” (L:E;SA:S)

Create a Canvas - “We’re excited to share our newest tool: Canvas! Canvas resources are just as they sound: a blank space for you to express your own creativity and make your Learning Lab collections more personalized and aligned to the needs of your classroom. With Canvas, you can create unique combinations of images, text, lines, shapes, and templates to appear as a single resource in your and your students’ Learning Lab collections. And, Canvas resources can be copied from one collection to another, so you can build upon the work of your friends and colleagues.” (L:T;SA:A)

Applications of Math - by topic or industry (L:T;SA:M)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, November 3, 2022

Math - Counting

On the education forum that I follow, this question was asked:

Hello. I am a pre-service teacher in a first-grade general education classroom. There is a student in the classroom who needs one-on-one assistance with all their math lessons. When the student counts, they always omit the number 15. What can I do to help this learner with their counting and omission of the number "15." Thanks.


Try using an egg carton that holds 18 eggs. At the bottom of each section, write the numbers in order. Have the student place an item in each section in order as they count the number that is shown. The more they do this, they should be saying the number “15” each time and eventually won’t need to look at the numbers written.

Another activity would be to make a hopscotch-style grid with chalk on the ground. Write the numbers 1-20 in each square. Have the children say the numbers as they hop to each square in order.

Another activity would involve plastic solo cups. Write numbers on the outside of each cup and have the student put the cups inside each other as they count the numbers in order.

What other activities could you suggest? Please share.

Wednesday, November 2, 2022

2022 Goals Review for October

October was a very productive month. Hurricane Ian came through and took down a huge oak limb in our backyard. It took 2 weeks to get all the debris cleared up. 

1. Lose 5 lbs. – My weight went up and down this month.

 

2. Finish my national park blanket. - complete! I also finished my Camp Along Blanket.

 

3. Year of the Gnome - knit at least one gnome a month. Completed 10 gnomes.

 

4. Knit a sweater. - Complete!

 

5. Yarn - more out than in (use more yardage than I buy) – I finished my Camp Along Blanket which used a lot of yarn, but then I went to SAFF and bought more yarn. I still think I can accomplish this goal by the end of the year. I have a sweater on the needles that I hope to finish in November and I will probably make 2 more pairs of socks.

-Yarn used - 12869

-Yarn bought - 13990

 

6. Design 3 new patterns. – Completed 2 designs. Finished one sock design and a cowl design. I’m working on a colorwork mitten design.

 

7. Learn something new. -  Complete! I’m mosaic crocheting a blanket and dabbling with watercolor painting. I also added embroidery this month which I haven’t done since I was a child.

 

8. Read 12 nonfiction books - read 11 books so far.         

-A Serial Killer's Daughter: My Story of Faith, Love, and Overcoming by Kerri Rawson

-Chinese Cinderella: The True Story of an Unwanted Daughter by Adeline Yen Mah

-Captive: A Mother's Crusade to Save Her Daughter from a Terrifying Cult by Catherine Oxenberg      

-That Time of Year: A Minnesota Life by Garrison Keillor

- The Cat I Never Named: A True Story of Love, War, and Survival by Amra Sabic-El-Rayess, Laura Sullivan

-The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz

by Erik Larson

-Live Fearless: A Call to Power, Passion, and Purpose by Sadie Robertson

-Battle of Brothers: William and Harry – The Inside Story of a Family in Tumult by Robert Lacey

-The Opposite of Fate: Memories of a Writing Life by Amy Tan

-Going Solo by Roald Dahl

- Mary Poppins, She Wrote: The Life of P.L. Travers by Valerie Lawson

 

How is your progress toward your goals? Please share.

 

Photo by Adam Winger on Unsplash

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

One Thing Leads to Another

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In One Thing Leads to Another, Rushton features the first subway system in London.

Rushton gives the following prompts to accompany this video:

“There are loads of interesting elements to this story, but for the moment, let’s look at some of the things that happened as a result. What do you remember from the video?

Now imagine some new thing or activity that would address a problem at your school. If it came to be and was successful in handling the problem, what else might happen? Would that create a new opportunity, or generate a new problem, or both?”


I never knew how the subway got started and I found this very interesting. I think students would also. I also like the thought of having students look at a current problem that exists around them and brainstorm ways to solve the problem. If students were in groups, they could come up with a solution, but also suggest what drawbacks this would cause. When presented to the class, others might add more drawbacks or come up with ideas to overcome those drawbacks.

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.