Friday, January 31, 2014

The Never Ending Winter!

I'm on my fourth ice day! FOUR in a row! What started as a nice, relaxing break has resulted in some serious cabin fever. Finally, it is 60 degrees today so everything is melting and going away! However, PSA to my fellow Southerners - You HAVE to clean the ice off the top of your car too! Driving behind a car with 1 inch thick chunks of  ice flying at you is a little too much like Frogger for my liking.

Here's a glimpse at our ice:

The inch of ice that I had to get off of my car!
Needless to say, I'm looking forward to Wednesday, when it is going to be 75*!

During my four days off, I finally had the opportunity to finish quite a few of my pending TeachersPayTeachers products and I'm happy to say that they are all posted!

Science Non-Fiction Readers
I had a real need for non-fiction passages for my students in Science. My students read the passages, complete a vocabulary/note taking assignment and then we can move to our hands on activities. It's great and is saving a lot of time that we used to spend writing notes. We've started stations in Science too (stay tuned for more about that) and these are great! You can check them all out here:

Start by checking out my free passage introducing Ecosystems Hierarchy.
Non-Fiction Science Readers: Ecosystems Hierarchy
The other passages are listed at a discounted price of $1.50 for a limited time only! Check out the other passages here: 
Non-Fiction Science Readers: Competition and Adaptations       Non-Fiction Science Readers: Food Chains
 Non-Fiction Science Readers: Organisms' Relationships              Non-Fiction Science Readers: What is an Ecosystem? 
OR Make it easier on yourself and get all of the Ecosystems Non-Fiction Readers for a discounted $5.50:
Non-Fiction Science Readers: Ecosystems Bundle

5.NBT Exit Slips
I also got to work on my math while on this extended staycation! The 5th Grade Numbers and Operations in Base Ten Common Core Standards cover place value, multiplying and dividing whole numbers, rounding decimals, and adding, subtracting, multiplying, & dividing decimals. There are 34 slips aligned to these standards. Each slip is a brief, 1-4 question assessment and is labeled with the corresponding standard. It also has the answer key, because we all know grading papers takes WAY too long as it is! Check them out here:
5th Grade Common Core Exit Slips Assessment 5.NBT

As nice as it was to have a break and get things done around the apartment, I can't wait to get back to my kiddos on Monday. I'm sure their parents will be just as excited to send them back to me!

What did you get done on your days off? 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A Day in The Life

SNOW DAYYYY! Our second day off in a row has given me lots of time to blog. :)

I have loved taking a glimpse at everyone's schedule recently. It's so interesting to see how different our schedules can look, even within the same state. I've decided to join in on the fun that Aimey at Where The Wild Things Learn is hosting!

Morning Procedures: Students enter the room, unpack, mark their lunch choice with a tally mark on the board, and read a book. The morning announcements also start.

Enhancement: Our students rotate through PE, Art, Media, Music, and Exploration Stations. During Exploration Stations, all of our enhancement teachers get together with all of 5th grade and they complete fun, collaborative projects. This is my planning most days. Wednesdays we have our PLC meetings during this time. 

Math Blocks 1 and 2: I teach 2 Math blocks and 2 Science blocks while another teacher teaches 2 Reading and 2 Social Studies. For Math, I use Math Workshop (obviously, if you've read my blog AT ALL recently). For more on my math blocks see Math Workshop Structure.

Lunch/Recess: I love lunch and recess! We rotate lunch duty which we share with a TA. Every 4 weeks, I have lunch duty instead of recess duty. The other weeks, I have recess duty. 

Science: I teach my Homeroom Class Science for 4 1/2 weeks. Then, we switch and they go to Social Studies while I teach the other HR Science. 

Pack-up: Students return from Science/Social Studies and pack up. When they finish packing, they open their agendas on their desks for me to sign. After I sign, they can use the restroom and eat their snack. As all of this chaos is going on, I put on CNN Student News. The kids LOVE it! It's a nice time for us to take a break before our last hour. 

Intervention and Enrichment: This is a crazy time of day. Some students are pulled for extra Reading instruction. I pull 2 groups (one on Monday/Wednesdays  and one on Tuesdays/Thursdays) for extra Math. Some students participate in school clubs (Battle of the Books/Science Olympiad). And then there are the left overs. For a while, we were doing book clubs during this time. Until the students grew tired. Now, our students do Mastery Club by Mrs. Renz. It's FANTASTIC! On Fridays, we present. 

3:45 PEACE OUT STUDENTS! Once every 4 weeks, I have car rider duty. If I don't have car duty, we walk our students to the buses and hope that there are no problems so they pull away fast!