Sunday, September 15, 2013

A Peek At My Week and Classroom Pictures Part Two

I am back to share part two of my classroom pictures, but first I want to link up with Jennifer at Mrs. Laffin’s Laughings for her linky A Peek At My Week.
Math We will continue working with place value to 1,000,000.  This week’s big focus will be rounding numbers to a quick review on comparing whole numbers.  My students have done a great job with their interactive notebooks and have begun picking up speed with the cutting and gluing that is involved.  Math rotations are going well and will continue this week.
Reading For the next two weeks, the focus during reading will be drawing conclusions.  Chris Van Allsburg’s picture books lend themselves well to drawing conclusions.  Not only are his books well written and illustrated, both the girls and boys love reading and hearing his books.  I will be reading 7 of his books to my class over the next couple of weeks.  We will also complete an author study on him.  Look for a blog post at the end of the month to see how this evolved in my room.  Since testing has ended, I will also begin pulling guided reading groups.
Word Study Last week we worked on closed syllable words and this week the focus will be on open syllable words.  My students will recite, write, break apart, and complete speed drills on 20 open syllable words throughout the week.
Writing/Grammar We will discuss sentence fluency and word choice.  My students will revise a rough draft from last week with making at least 5 revisions based on sentence fluency and word choice.  We will also identify simple and compound sentences in their writing and in the books they are reading.
Social Studies Do you know about the neighborhoods in Washington, D.C.?  My fourth graders will know about them by Friday.  They will also study a historical map of the nation’s capital.
Now for more classroom pictures.  If you missed part one, it can be found HERE.  Here are a few pictures of my CAFE board. 
Under it you will find picture books that I have used during the week for read-alouds (The books below were used for making predictions.), the reading responses file holder, and a book of nonfiction text features. (I also have a box of tissues, hand sanitizer, and hand wipes in this corner.  You will find these items in each corner of my classroom.)
The reading responses holder contains hanging files of the most commonly used book reports, reading reflection sheets, reading logs for our classroom and at home, and reading most frequently used graphic organizers.
In the corner of my classroom you will find our Smarty Pants.  I saw this on Pinterest about 3 summers ago and my students love it each year.
I will be posting the last of them tomorrow, so I hope you will return.  As always, thank you for stopping by today!
I look forward to reading and responding to your comments. 

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Classroom Pictures 2013 - Part One

WOW!!  I haven’t posted in so long!  Life has gotten to me and I have been just trying to stay afloat.  I hope things are settling down a bit and I am able to begin sharing again. 
I hope you will find this post interesting enough to make it to the end.
Today I wanted to begin by sharing some pictures of my classroom with you.
Here is a picture of my front door.  I have a camping theme this year.  Each student has a tent.  There is a circle on it with their name and a picture of a campfire.  I will place their picture in the front of each tent.  I didn't want to post there pictures online so this is before the pictures.

Next up is a new addition to my classroom my word wall pockets. 
I have always had a word wall in my classroom, but in previous years it was a basic one with the letters of the alphabet across a wall with words listed under the alphabet.  I teach 4th grade and the words can become pretty numerous and the wall would become overcrowded, which led to students not bothering to locate the words they needed.
I was happy to find a picture on Pinterest of library pockets being used to hold word wall words for an intermediate class.  I immediately decided this would be a solution for my word wall issues. 
My mother makes all types of things (purses, bags, curtains, blankets, etc.) with old jeans.  She had a pile of back pockets that were perfect for me to use for my word wall.  I just used my Cricut to add letters to the front of the pockets and small magnets on the back to hold the pockets on the cabinet.
Jean material can be found throughout my room (curtains, background material for boards, seat pockets, and pillows).  No matter what theme I change to each year my jean items fit in just fine.
Here is a picture of my new word wall!
I love it and even though it only has two weeks’ worth of words in it, my students are actively using it. 
Here is a close up picture of one of my word wall words.
This is a picture of my Overused Words Chart.  If you want to find out more about how I use it I posted about it HERE.  If you would like to get a copy of the words, they can be found HERE
This is my “Camp Rules” Board.  Sorry for the glare on the tree.  I laminated it for durability, but it doesn’t do well for pictures.
On this board you will find our classroom rules.  After we discussed and agreed on the rules, each student signed in agreement and I hung it under our “Tree of Knowledge”.  I call it the “Tree of Knowledge” because each week students place sticky notes on the tree that reflects on their learning from the previous week.
You will also find our fire drill produces, school’s Definition of Bullying, I-Statement, Consequences, and Apology of Action mini posters on this board.
Under the board is our compliment box, container of passes, and picture books that I have read that discuss goals, decision making, and characters with positive personality traits.
Students are encouraged to put compliments in this box when they see their classmates going beyond the call of duty.  Each week I read about 5 compliments and the students get to wear the compliment around their wrist throughout the day.

We go to the restroom twice a day as a class, but there are always other times when students need to use the restroom.  I don’t know about you, but I sometimes forget that I gave a student permission to leave the room.  This is why I have the classroom passes.  Students are to leave the pass on top of their desk.  I can quickly take a look around the room to see who is out and why.  I have bathroom passes, a nurse pass, an office pass, and a pass to another room.
Each year my mother makes me new restroom passes to match my classroom theme.  Here are some pictures of my new passes.
One more thing for today SmileMakers so generously allowed me to test out their Deluxe Yacker Tracker in my classroom.  After two weeks of testing, I think it is a wonderful way to keep my students voice levels down during cooperative learning groups.
It comes with a remote control and an optional plug.  You have the option of having the programmed sound go off if the noise level reaches too high or you may opt to record your own sound.  You can adjust how sensitive you want the tracker to be and the amount of time between the caution light and the stop light.
I began using it on a low shelf plugged into the wall, but found that even on a low setting it went off before I felt as though my students were too loud.  My students were just too close to the tracker.  After adding batteries and placing it on top of a cabinet it is working perfectly for my classroom.  By having a remote control, there really isn’t a need for me to reach up to operate it.
It is a great addition to my room and my students quickly lower their voice levels when the caution light and sound signals they are getting too loud.  I love that I don’t have to stop what I am doing to remind them to use inside voices.
Well, this is it for me today.  I hope you will come back tomorrow, so that I can show you more of my classroom.
Since it has been almost a month since my last post, I will randomly select one winner from comments on this post.  The winner can select two items from my TPT Store. You have until Monday, September 16th to leave a comment.
Comments and questions are truly valued!  Thanks for stopping by my blog!