Friday, January 16, 2015

Five for Friday- Winter, Messy Charts, and RTI

It's time for another Five for Friday post.  I am linking up via Doodle Bugs Teaching.  Be sure to check out the other teacher posts as well!
This week was a bit more challenging than some weeks.  I have realized that it's time to spend a bit of time going back to the basics and working on some team-building and self-regulation strategies.  My dear teacher-blogger friend Shelley over at The Write Stuff had some great words for me and also sent me her fabulous Self Regulation Station.  I am so excited to put this together.  I plan on using it to guide part of our morning meeting check in, as well as for check-ins for students who need it throughout the day.  One of the fun activities we did this week was paint these windy day snowmen.  I love how they turned out!  

We have been reading a lot of lovely winter books lately.  One of the books that I read every year is "The Mitten Tree."  It's a very sweet book about an old woman who notices that some children of the children who are going to school don't have mittens.  She knits mittens for them and hangs them on a tree, but doesn't tell the children that she is the one who is putting them there.  She gets great joy from seeing the children wear them.  At the end of the story we learn that someone else is helping to spread joy by making sure that her knitting basket is always filled up with balls of wool so that she can continue to make mittens for the children.  

After I read the story to the children we chatted a bit about the kindness and generosity aspects of the story.  Then we moved onto a descriptive writing and drawing lesson.  I had some of the students come up and design a mitten, other students to color in the mittens, and then other students to use descriptive words to describe the mittens.  We practiced reading the sentences and then the students went to their own writing books and designed their own mittens and described them.  The students really enjoyed it, and it was a good way for me to quickly see who understood the concept of descriptive sentences.  I will definitely do this type of lesson again with another theme.  

Here is a picture of the chart we made.  I especially wanted to include it in this post because of how "real" it is.  My charts are not all pinterest-worthy, that's for sure!  Here we have messy printing, a dying marker, and missing words!  It's real life :)

We've been working on subtraction in math.  I have been enjoying using the student mini-white boards and the smart board for practice.  We also do practice using my Dino Addition and Subtraction pack.  I haven't been doing them as drills, just as practice pages.  We have also been doing some dice games in a center format.  Some of my students are ready for Subtraction within 10, so we will start that with those students this upcoming week. 

 Dino Dash
Today I had the privilege of hearing Tom Hierck present on RTI.  It was a motivational and informational day.  

It's time for the weekend.  It's going to be filled with chores, family time, and hopefully some relaxation as well.  I hope you all had a great week, and thanks for stopping by!  


  1. I hope you had time to relax over the weekend
    Paula from Paula’s Place and iSURF Maths

  2. I love that book "The Mitten Tree" and I love that your chart just the way it is! =)

  3. I will have to grab that book! It looks so cute! Our weekends are about the same, family time and chores :) and a bit of sleeping in! Glad I found your blog, have a great weekend!

  4. I had to come check out your blog. You do a wonderful job! I love the Mitten Tree and have missed reading it the past few years.
    Purposeful Teaching and Learning