Wednesday, September 28, 2011

New Bloggy Button!!!

Here is my new bloggy button!!!!! Please grab it and replace the other! Thanks so much! :D

Tales of Frogs & Cupcakes

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Under Construction

I broke down and paid for a blog design--creating my own design has been on my to-do list since January. Realizing that it would never get done with everything else I have to do each day, I decided to buy. I love how it came out!!! Please excuse the mess as I (slowly but surely) get all of the elements in the right place. Busy busy busy night! Thanks!!! :D

Science Week! Day 2: Favorite Videos and Websites

The online resource I use most often is BrainPOP and BrainPOP Jr. (You actually have to have a subscription to use these sites.) This site has AWESOME videos that each come with a quiz (online or print-out), vocabulary words, and several activities (including extensions). BrainPOP is geared toward the older grades (4th and up) and BrainPOP Jr. is for the lower grades. However, I use BrainPOP Jr. for my 4th graders sometimes because the terminology is a little easier for them to follow.

Gamequarium has a bunch of games (for ALL subjects). However, the quality is kind of a hit and miss...

I just came across this one and I really like it! has a few games that are narrated by the robot you see on the screen. The graphics are easy on the eye and the content is fairly appropriate for my students. The link is below.

Who could ever tire of this guy??! I l-o-v-e his videos and my kids are always excited to see his videos, even though the ones we watch are like, 20 years old. Bill Nye's videos have a way of explaining science (and even math) principles in an entertaining and simple fashion. I heard that he has a new series, but I haven't seen them yet. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Science Week! Day 1: Favorite Books

Day 1 of science week is about literature. I taught science my first 3 years, did not last year and am teaching it again this year. Unfortunately, the 1-year break caused me to forget a lot of the books I have used to teach science! However, there are a few I can recall. I want to share books that aren't quite as popular so that we aren't all posting the same ones (except, of course, Science Verse):

My all time favorite science book to read to my students is Science Verse by Jon Scieszka (Math Curse). Some of the concepts and terminology used is a little above my kids' heads, but they still enjoy it!

My Light by Molly Bang discusses light and energy, all from the sun's perspective. The illustrations are absolutely beautiful!

This book is also by Molly Bang (beautiful pictures in this book as well). This book describes the process of photosynthesis in a very easy-to-follow manner.

We actually don't get into ocean explorers much. In fact, our TEKS (standards) changed last year (the year I didn't teach science) so I am not even sure if we will even talk about explorers. That being said, I came across this book last year (the librarian was giving it away as a freebie) and really enjoyed it myself. I just knew that if I ever picked up science again that I would use it in my ocean unit. The pictures are beautiful (common theme of the books I read!) and the story of Jacques Cousteau is told in an interesting and easy-to-follow manner.

 Seymour Simon has tons of books that cover practically all areas of science. All of the books (that I know of) are non-fiction and include great information and vivid photographs. I would not use them as a read -aloud (unless it was only a few pages) since they can get fairly lengthy, but instead have them available for the kids to read/look at independently.

Rosalind Mist has a super series on the planets and other celestial bodies. Again, fabulous and vivid photographs and wonderful information.

(You may have noticed the two things I value in books--pretty pictures and easy-to-follow format! Keeps my kids' interest!)

I can't wait to see what books all of you post!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Math/Science Notebooking Part 4

Part 4 of this series is dedicated to assessing notebooks/journals. I give a notebook grade at least once every 6 weeks. I feel that it is important to not only ensure that students are following directions and organizing their journals in the same way the teacher is, but also to certify that the information in the notebook is accurate (for future reference). This task could become rather cumbersome with my 50-60 students. To make the notebooks easier to assess, motivate my students a little more, and avoid being subjective in grading, I developed a rubric. (I haven't formally used a notebook rubric one in the past so I am excited to get to use one this year!) Feel free to download your free copy of each rubric by clicking on the picture:

Versatile Blogger Award

I am HONORED to receive the Versatile Blogger Award from these two ladies:
Thank you SOOOO much! I really appreciate it!!! Definitely put a smile on my face!

I must now:
1. Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog. (Done)
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Nominate 15 other blogs that you've discovered.

Here are 15 blogs you need to check out!!:

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Guided Math

Fabulous 4th Grade Froggies

Visit Sunny Days

Monday, September 19, 2011

Pirate Place Value Bulletin Board

We just finished studying place value a few days ago! As one of our ending activities, my students made these super cute pirates to demonstrate what they learned. Here is my example:

Each student picked a number that had 7, 8, or 9 digits (since we go up to hundred millions). The students wrote their chosen number in standard, word, and expanded form on the designated part of the pirate. The template included everything except the the eyes and nose of the pirate (so the students had to create their own). Below are pics of the bulletin board and some student examples!

My template is actually part of my Pirate Place Value Activity Bundle that I just posted to my Teachers Notebook store. Feel free to check it out!

Pirate Place Value

I am so excited to announce that my Pirate Place Value bundle is ready! The package includes 5 place value games, 3 sets of exit slips, 2 pre-assessments, 1 art project, and vocabulary cards and posters--all place value and ALL pirate-themed!

Click on the picture to check it out at my Teachers Notebook store!

As always, the first 3 people to comment will receive a free copy! :D

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Pirate Place Value Activities

I am just about ready to post a place value activity package to my Teachers Notebook store. The package includes 5 place value games, 3 sets of exit slips, 2 pre-assessments, 1 art project, and vocabulary cards and posters--all place value and ALL pirate-themed! I have to take a picture of my art activity for you (doing that tomorrow) and then it will be ready! I am very excited about this--I used each of these activities in my own classroom and had wonderful results! Be looking for it tomorrow around 7:00 p.m. (CST). As always, there will be freebies!

Also, don't forget about science week next week! Be looking for posts throughout bloggy world!

One more thing--my Notebooking Series should pick back up again this week. I am between grad school classes so I will try to do what I can with all this "free" time I'll have!

Thanks for your interest!!!! :D

Expanded Form Cards Activity

I posted an activity that I use with my kids in conjunction with Expanded Form Cards to my Teachers Notebook shop. (This activity was created with my friend that I created the expanded form cards with; it was also part of our place value unit we made together.) The activity is available for FREE! You can click on the picture to get it.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Science Week is next week!


Be looking for some awesome science ideas next week! I hope to participate as much as I can, especially for freebie day!

DECIMAL Place Value Notebook Package Now Available!

I am happy to announce that I just finished my Decimal Place Value Notebook Package! I know that there are more grade levels out in blog world that do not cover decimals than do, so I hope it will at least benefit those who do! All activities are designed to help students become familiar with the decimal place values.

Click on the picture above to check it out! As always, the first 3 people to comment receive a free copy. :D

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Math/Science Notebooking Part 4 UPDATE

Part 4 is coming real soon. I will have a decimal notebook package available at that time. You can expect a post sometime before Wednesday! Thanks for your interest!!!!

UPDATE: So it's Thursday and I do not have a post ready yet. It's been a hectic and crazy week so hopefully by the weekend :D

Math Magic Tricks

Isn't math just fascinating?? The way numbers work is just mind-boggling to me. I LOVE it! Ever done those little tricks, like pick a number, do this, this, and this to it and it will always equal this?? (It makes me wonder WHO IN THE WORLD had time and energy to sit there and figure those out.) Well, I took a few that I've come across and put them together as a task card center. The activity will be great to use for fast finishers or enrichment.

Download your free copy from my Teacher's Notebook store by clicking on the button below!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

My Top 10 List

Visit this post at TBA to learn more about the Top 10 Blog Awards! I received an award from the following super awesome blogs--thanks ladies!!!! You made my day!!!!!

The Teaching Thief

Here are a few that would be on my Top 10 list, in no particular order:


Fabulous 4th Grade Froggies

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Guided Math