Sunday, May 5, 2013

Fishies, Sharks, && a 6 Year Old Mob. . .This is the Way I Live!

As usual I was a slacker and never came back to blog land on Tuesday like I posted I would...but if you've ever had one of those weeks where you wake up tired and struggle to keep your eyes open all day. . .yeah you know how it is! Part of it is being a teenie bopper at heart and having to stay up late to catch my favorite shows. My husband thinks I'm crazy to the umpteenth degree, but I love me some Awkward on MTV. The other part is trying to maintain my sanity in a room filled with coo coo 6 year olds that could talk all day long. . .all 7 hours. . .without taking a breath. I love, love, love them to pieces, but at this point in the year they're over each other and I'm over the squabbling about everything under the moon. I can't be the only one having to solve a gazillion pint sized arguments every day, right?  We also had our highly anticipated field trip to the aquarium this week. When every single kid falls asleep on the way home you know the field trip was a success! They were a little waaaaaaay hyped up, I spent $18 on shrimp for them to feed the stingrays, and I think the seagulls ate more of the lunches than the kids did, but it was a great break from the every day life at school and the perfect intro to our Oceans unit.

Anyway, this week for our read alouds we focused on story structure (beginning/middle/end) and a review of story elements (characters/setting/problem/solution). This year our school implemented  Interactive Read Alouds within our ELA curriculum. With this comes selecting books that are directly tied to a specific skill. You also have to create sticky notes for stopping points within the book to practice your skill. As you can imagine this can get pretty overwhelming so our grade level devised a plan to have teams of 2 select the books and create the sticky notes for these books that the entire grade level would then use. It cuts down on the amount of work that each of us is already required to do each week. We took the exact same approach last year when we implemented the Math Common Core Standards and it worked just as beautifully. I know I've said it before, but I can't say enough how lucky I am to have such a fabulous group of ladies to work with. The books that we selected are pictured above. They were all a hit with the kids...especially Smelly Socks. They though it was absolutely hands down the most hilarious thing they've ever heard.

Writing was also a hit this week. We've been working on opinion pieces for the last few weeks and they're really starting to get the hang of the dreaded "closure sentence." This has been an uphill battle trying to make some of my loves realize that your closure sentence isn't providing another reason for your opinion. We primarily worked on writing opinion pieces about the best pet. Did you know that snakes will cuddle with you while you read them a book at night? Not for everybody (definitely not this girl), but to each their own! We also wrote about our opinions on our field trip to the aquarium. . .the escalator scored major cool points...and of course so did the sharks. I had big plans to blog about the writing process for our opinion pieces, but I accidentally sent home their writing (dodo bird moment) so I'll try better next time.

Of course no week can be complete without some celebration time. One of our first grade girls is getting married in June/moving to Florida and a happy hour party in her honor was just what the doctor ordered. We had high hopes to sit outside at a restaraunt with a dock and soak up the sun. Instead, there were hurricane style winds and it was freezing so we settled for a semi-outdoor room on the dock...still effective and tons of fun as always. Have I mentioned that I love my grade level??

There are officially 4 weeks of school left so the biggest celebration is yet to come and there's still tons of work to be done. My brain hurts thinking about all of the to do's on my teacher list. Here's the line up for this week:
Math: Fact Families
ELA: Facts and Opinions

Theme: The Ocean
Writing: Review (Opinions/Descriptive/Narratives)

With the weekend coming to an end (too quickly as always) and a to do list still a mile long I've got to get down to business and get off the laptop for the day. So until next time, live, love, teach!

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