Monday, January 20, 2014

January 13-17, 2014

Of course, Little Miss E. snapshots.... 
I always take close ups so decided to snap that picture on the right to show her true size.  :-)  She was 6 weeks this week and weighed around 8 lbs.  She was 6 lbs 3 oz. when she was born.  

 We drive quite a ways to our piano teacher....but it's so worth it!
Each year they do a Keyboard Fest!  Last year was A's first year and this year was C.'s.  I hope they are able to continue this each year....such an opportunity!

"This annual event features almost 300 Midland County (inaccurate statement because we aren't a Midland County family) piano students of various ages and skill levels performing selected pieces alongside their teachers.  Under the direction of James Hohmeyer, students will perform four-handed duets.  Pianos are tuned and provided by Steinway Piano Gallery of Detroit."'---
Quick snapshot afterwards since we got there too late to do a group pic with their teacher.
Math2: Multiplication by 2
Freebie from GreatSchools

L.'s turn to practice those sums from 5-12.  He did quite well with speed and accuracy!  I was pleased!

We are actually doing something a little different this year.  Last year we did timed tests as a group...those with addition did addition and those with multiplication did that.  However, timed tests do NOT go well with this student.  He "freezes".  I think we really caused more of a problem by keeping it up so this year I'm doing something different because I want him to see his progress and work on speed and accuracy.
I came across this freebie at Bright Concepts  Teachers and we are going to use 3 colors vs. the red and green.  We are inserting yellow represent "almost there!"  
Our goal is to get down to 1 minute.  If he completely flops that number we'll color it red.  If he does relatively well but does not get it under a minute, we'll color it yellow.  When he "masters" that set of facts, he'll get a green.  Each time we'll write the time down also.  We use an online stopwatch and stop it when he completes the page to see how long it took for him to complete.  :-)

Most children must be actively taught how to organize their math problems.  I have also found that K12's math pages have some pretty small problems.  Hard to see clearly what you are doing.  Anyway, flipping line paper sideways works very well for math problems.  One number per line.  :-)  Here C. is working on division of decimals...I see I snapped a picture with him using his multiplication of 9s hand technique.  :-)

Math Problem of the Day
Last year I downloaded these Math Problems of the Day for grades 1st through 4th.  I went searching for it for their 5th grade one and they've taken it off the site.  :-(  So sad!  These are great little problems....perfect for a few moment work every morning.  
 Morning Group
This is the first time I did something like this.  I was interested in how they would handle it...but they loved it!  So, what were we learning?  Actually, I was reading History1: Trojan War.  :-)  They love me to read each others books out loud . 

I came across a game created by a child called MADS.  :-)

This was a great whole group activity because they could play at their level.  MADS stands for x, +, /, -.  They first created a set of lids with numbers 0-9.  Then they rolled their dice and they could use any of the operations to come up with an answer and remove it from the line up.  Of course, by about halfway through it's a bit more difficult to roll a pair of numbers that work for the answers you have on the lids in front of you.  :-)  We'll play this again!

Dictionary Skills
Please excuse my very poor penmanship.  I've so wanted the ability to have a program where I can type and project it up on the wall because 1) we use the dry erase board but then have to erase it...can' really be "saved" 2) I have poor penmanship to begin with because I'm always in a hurry and then couple that with writing at a vertical surface....heaven help us.  Ha!  Anyway, we explored the dictionary a bit and reminded ourselves about what it can do to help us.  Then next week the 3 older students will be working with
Digging Through The Dictionary.
This is a free printable that can be found at Teachers Pay Teachers. They are going to do it about 3 times a week and at snack or lunch, share with us their "interesting word".  Then we'll vote on which of the three is the most interesting.

We had such an awesome whole group geometry lesson covering angles (right, acute, obtuse and reviewing/learning about the vertex), polygons and solids!
How we started the morning :-)

 A. helped at the dry-erase board as this was a bit easy for him but necessary for the other kiddos.
K. definitely earning a marble for the kindness jar! 

T. thought this was grand...awesome for him!  A. got the other kids on board to create a larger structure during free time.  :-) 

 They actually build these other creations after creating a "n-gon".  Ha!  They loved that little tidbit.

The word "polygon" derives from the Greek πολύς (polús) "much", "many" and γωνία (gōnía) "corner", "angle", or γόνυ (gónu) "knee".

They also loved learning where the word polygon came from!  Wikipedia is always helpful to us here!
Misc. Pictures
It warmed up enough to make it good packing snow.  :-D

Cup Stacking :-D

Science1: Animal Classification
I really wanted to do more "hands-on" with this science unit.  So, we did go through the online lessons but most of our time was spent on doing a little "writing" and a craft of some sort.  That being said, we only got to 2 of the animal groups this week.  Ha!  
These are really hard to see.  This is the format we are using for her writing.  You can get this free Animal Groups book from the TPT store.

You can see her fins, gills and scales which were the three main characteristics the lesson covered with fish.  :-)

 We have an awesome "picture encyclopedia" from the library that fit right into her science.  

She loved browsing through the section of the animal group and choosing her favorite.  When she chose her favorite "locust", I went on a search for a craft that she could do the next day.
We were actually able to slip in some reinforcement of the idea of shades and tints from her art lesson!  
Sight word practice

Contractions!  She had a lot of smiles while she was doing this.

He cut that bear out!  I found the pattern for a stuffed bear at Crafts For Kids.  We just chose to not stuff it.  :-D

This is really a hard picture to see....all of his drawings are but I'm posting it anyway to help me to remember not to ever "underestimate" a preschooler.
He does all morning groups with us.  Today he was drawing a landscape.  He even had a horizon line!  Amazing what he gets out of a lesson!

You can find these printables at Making Learning Fun.  He uses the pattern blocks to create the the letter, traces them with his finger using correct formation.  Then he pushes it up and uses HWT's tools to practice building and writing the letters then after a bit of practice he writes 5 letters on this pages at the bottom.  Amazing how well he does!  Learn those habits early!

In my plans for T., we touch on a phonological awareness skill each day.  This day was rhyming.  He does it very well.  :-)  You can find this printable at Teachers Pay Teachers.  Unfortuantely, this week his work didn't get prepped very well.  :-(  We kind of fell back to doing "other" stuff.  Need to get back in gear for next week!
Snacks/Lunches Worth Mentioning
A. made us pumpkin dip one morning!  Definitely went over well.  We'll do it again.  You can find the recipe at Baked Bree.  We enjoyed them with apples and Nilla wafers :-D

We also had PB and J on a stick.  Which, of course, they absolutely loved!

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