First Five for Friday

I've spent oodles of hours looking at Doodlebug's Five for Friday for months now. I decided to give it a try. Little did I realize, that I didn't really take pictures of what I wanted to share. But- this is my first- there is room for improvements next time. :)

http://doodlebugsteaching.blogspot.com/2013/04/five-for-friday-linky-party-april-26.html

1. Testing part 1 done (reading). Testing part 2 to come (math) on May 6th. Followed by Map testing, followed by more Map testing. I'm pretty sure when I told my kiddos this they wanted to attack me. I just hope they hang with me. I was really impressed with their reading preparation. I hope it comes across in their test results- however, I feel like our test prep unit did help them improve as readers anyway due to all the different concepts being applied at once. I started my end of the year BAS testing today, and 2 of my middle kiddos grew another 2 levels towards grade level!! I say that is success, even if their MCA results don't match. I got to witness them apply those strategies with confidence today and that was powerful. Here was some of the work we did to prepare for the tests. We did a poetry poster also, but I took these photos before it went up.

Our testing strategies. I had these on magnets and would mess them up each day and they had to put them back into order to really drill in the process for them. I saw many of them actually doing all of these steps and really being thoughtful!

Our "Predictable Question" board (minus the poetry poster)

Predictable question topics on characters (fiction)

Key words for cause and effect/sequence questions (fiction and non-fiction)

Problem and Solution Predictable Questions (fiction)
Non-fiction Predictable Questions

Main Idea and Detail Predictable Questions

Fact and Opinion Predictable Questions


2. Wedding planning is starting to really pick up. I need to start transitioning from all my energy on school to more energy on my wedding. Some things I checked off the list:
*finally sent back our signed contract for our photographer
*planned out "most" of our ceremony to give to the woman making our programs
*picked out our music for our string quartet
*organized an invite-assembly day tomorrow with my girls
*sent in logistics for our photo booth
I hope this momentum continues!

3. In Reader's Workshop, we are doing a very short unit on informational texts. We are focusing on reading closely (again, another chart I forgot to take a picture of) and jotting notes. My kiddos had tons of post-its, so we assembled file folders to hold them. We talked about essential questions and they sorted their notes into these question stems (which we, the teachers, came up with). Next week, they will have to categorize their remaining notes into other essential questions that they come up with. More detail in posts to come on how we are doing this unit.

Categorizing their jottings (sorry for the creepy headless children)

Finding answers to essential questions that they are lacking.

Folder used to categorize jottings into essential questions

 4. We had some professional development this week. I don't know about you, but we use Reader's Workshop currently. We will find out next week if we will continue or dive into another curriculum that is in the running. We've had 1 day every month this school year devoted to professional development in RW. I've had mixed feelings about it throughout the year, but I will be very sad if we abandoned ship without trying to improve what we've done this year with this hard work. You should see my binder of teacher resources from these PDs. I'm waiting til next week to reorganize it all or not- depending on if we stay with it. It is a 3 inch binder. I can't move papers it in. Because it is completely stuffed.

5. I got Caribou Coffee this week. I never get coffee. And I was reminded why- I am a jittery mess! It was so delicious and free (gift card from student from Christmas) but man, that PD was tough to get through after I had a large chocolate cooler.

Until next time!!

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Busy, Busy

I've been meaning to blog about the many awesome things we've been doing over the last month. Whenever I find time to do it- I realize I left my camera at school. I'm going to try really hard to remember to bring it home this weekend to share what we've been up to for test prep, fraction work, ocean animal research, and more!

In other news, I found out earlier this month that I was renewed for my 2nd year! Even better, I'll get to stay in 3rd grade with my fabulous team!!! We have SO many plans for summer to get ready for next year now that 2 of us (who were new this year) know what to expect, so I hope to get lots of good idea to blog about as we collaborate.

We finished reading MCA tests and have about 2 weeks before we take the math. Then we have lots of fun events, field trips, and end of the year plans to tackle in May. We are down to just 30 more school days(yes I'm counting down)- this year has FLOWN by!!

I'm excited to share this weekend some of the things we've been up to!

Until then!
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