What. A. Week!
I first got my students last Friday. It was so cute. The principal, counselor, and instructional specialist, and I went to each 3rd grade classroom and made our big announcement. We went in cheering and playing musical instruments that I had. The kids were so excited. We did a drum roll as we called out each name, and all the students cheered. They joined us, and then we formed a conga line parade down the hallway to the next classroom. Everyone was all smiles and so excited. It was the cutest thing!
It’s been a while since I taught all day long. In Korea, I had a LOT of down time. On Monday and Tuesday, I went home simply exhausted. And my feet were killing me.
I’m joining up with Doodle Bugs to share with you a little about my week.
I have been blessed that my principal gave me 5 days to get my classroom ready and observe my fellow 3rd grade teachers and their classrooms. It was such a blessing. Here are just a few pictures of my classroom. I will definitely post more later!
I introduced Whole Brain Teaching to my kiddos, and they LOVE it! Have you ever heard of it? If not, go to YouTube and search “whole brain teaching” or “power teaching”, and you will find a number of videos on it. I plan on posting a few videos later, especially of my students acting out our rules. I first need to make sure all of my students can have their picture taken.
Here are our rules. I changed rule #3 from “raise your hand for permission to leave your seat” to “keep your hands, feet, and objects to yourself” since my students are always moving around. And man oh man, have we said our rule #3 over and over again because my students somehow do not like to keep their hands to themselves.
They are all a part of my Star Wars Themed Classroom Decor Pack.
I introduced the scoreboard too.
They LOVE LOVE LOVE beating me! And boy, they do not like it when I get a point. Of course, I play it up and do my dance moves when I win.
To tell you a little about the scoreboard, every time the class as a whole does something right, they get a point and say “oh yeah”. Some examples are: coming into the room quietly, walking down the hall, lining up, standing up, everyone following directions, etc
And every time they do not do something right, I (the teacher) get a point and they all give a “mighty groan”. Some examples are: talking when they shouldn’t be, not following directions, lining up loudly, etc
At the end of the day whoever wins gets a one-minute party. If I win, I do a little victory dance and they sit quietly at their desks for one minute. If they win, they get a one-minute party where they can chat with friends, sit on their desks, dance, etc….whatever I want it to be.
I LOVE it!
And this was her today laying on my lap because I don’t feel well.
She is an absolute doll. There have been some minor scuffles as the dogs are figuring out their place in the pack. So far so good! She looks like a completely different dog.
Her name was Lois at the shelter, and I renamed her Lola Belle…Lola for short.
Years ago I took a class in graduate school called “Poetry in the Classroom”. It was my favorite class. Ever. I still use what I learned in that class.
One of the things I learned is that you can sing poetry. Did you know that? Especially any of Jack Prelutsky’s poems. I LOVE Jack Prelutsky’s poems.
This poem is the absolute favorite of all my students. Including students that I had over 15 years ago! I posted this picture on Facebook, and several of my former students still remember singing it and can still sing it to this day. Now that’s making an impact! It sure did make my heart smile!
This poem is sung to the tune of “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad”. His poems can usually be sung to one of these songs:
I’ve Been Working on the Railroad
Are You Sleeping
On Top of Spaghetti
There are more songs, but I need to look them up. Try it!
I also introduced one of my favorite reading strategies to my students. It’s called “read and cover”, and it can be used with ANY reading material. It improves comprehension, and that makes me a happy teacher. It can also be shown to parents as a simple way to work with their child in reading.
Basically, you read a paragraph, and then you cover the paragraph with your hand.
As you are covering the paragraph, you think about everything you read in that paragraph. I had my students tell their partners what they remembered. Then you uncover your hand and look at the paragraph, seeing what you remembered and what you forgot. They love seeing how much they remembered, and they got better each time.
Such a simple strategy, and it works!
Since this was the first time my students had ever done a reading passage, I wanted to make it somewhat interactive for them. They even came back the next day and told me that they showed their parents.
How was your week?
I am currently sitting on the couch with Lola. I have my box of Puff’s Kleenex with lotion beside me. I feel like absolute crud. Head pounding, nose running, throat hurting, etc. What I thought was just allergies has now turned into an infection. Lovely. What a way to celebrate my three-day weekend.