Friday, March 30, 2012

Chris Van Allsburg--The Z Was Zapped

We began an author study on Chris Van Allsburg. Last year, I purchased the Chris Van Allsburg from Amanda at One Extra Degree. Well, I feel like I hit the jack pot. Like Amanda, I began searching the internet for ideas about Chris Van Allsburg, and I did not find I decided to buy her packet.
So far we have read The Z was Zapped. This book introduces each letter via a stage using alliterations. The letter in the alphabet usually has something bad happed to it.  We have been discussing figurative language (similies and metaphors). I decided to use Amanda's idea and introduce alliterations and create a book with happy actions for each letter. However, I added a twist to LIVEN up my students dull sentences and see what the students had learned about adverbs and adjectives. I gave them this sentence "outline" as a guide: The adjective  letter of the alphabet adverb verb ..... I assigned letters of the alphabet. We did three together. Then, I set them off to write. On day 2, I had some dental work so I left the actual "making the book" page complete with writing and illustrations for the students to complete with the substitute (trustworthy sub that is great in all grade levels). I was so excited when I returned the next day to see the students work. Here are some examples:

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Who is Chris Van Allsburg and a Freebie

On the first day of our author study, I introduced Chris Van Allsburg. I created a Power Point Presentation
available for FREE at my Teachers Pay Teachers Store that I used to help introduce Chris Van Allsburg. After introducing the author, the students completed what we call a 3-2-1. In the 3-2-1, students wrote 3 interesting things about Chris Van Allsburg, 2 questions that they still had about Chris Van Allsburg, and for a twist drew a picture of one book that looks interesting that they can not wait to read. Then, we also pretended to be sculptors and use playdough to create sculptures.
I found this Chris Van Allsburg biography to be helpful.
Tonight, I found an awesome You Tube Video! However, I think I am going to show it as a culmination. (I am a little behind on my posts because we have actually been studying CVA for one week. Therefore, we have read several stories.)
I also found a link from Scholastic about Chris Van Allsburg. It has a place where you can view illustrations in a slideshow format.

Don't forget to visit my store at the links above for your FREE download.
Come back tomorrow for day 2.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Earth Day Every Day and a Linky

Leanne at Teaching Tales is having an

So I decided to join. Pollution is part of the third grade currirulum. I decided to use the Earth Day Theme during the first week in March. I read The Lorax. We discussed water pollution, air pollution, and noise pollution. The students used the persuasive writing prompt: How can you convince your peers to make EVERYDAY Earth Day? We used our four square model to create our main argument and our 3 convincing reasons. Upon the "brainstorming session", student completed their writing on notebook paper. Finishing touches were added by creating Lorax heads and mustaches. This is the final product:

I used ideas from Rachel at The Sub Hub (Teachers Pay Teachers page) for my part of my Lorax unit. The movie also opened the same Friday we  had been studying Pollution so we made these cute trees too.

Next week, I will begin my post on our Chris Van Allsburg study. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

I love blogging!

I HAVE NOT blogged as much this year as I would like, but....
Well, anyway I am so happy to be a teacher blogging. I love to blog stalk (oops! I mean read) other teacher blogs. Anyway, I have met so many dedicated people in our fight to make education be the TOP priority for not only those that teach, but those that are administrators, parents, parents, and just members of society that care and value education. Thank you to all those. Thank you to all those that also share everyday.
I am so delighted to have received such a sweet award from Emily at Circus of Learning.
Here are the rules:
 1. Just post a link back to the person who sent it to you.
2. Follow that person.
3. Pass the award on to some other amazing bloggers.
 So--I am passing this award to:

Building Vocabulary

     Part of the Georgia Third Grade curriculum is building vocabulary through learning Greek and Latin Roots.

Our county is using some of Tim Raskinki's Building Vocabulary books as a part of Word Study. I have been implementing lessons in a bi-weekly manner. One week a Greek or Latin Root ,and one week a spelling pattern. 
    Basically, I have been doing these rotations for for about 7 weeks. My class readily caught on to the  routine/ format and WOW! It is amazing how the transfer has carried over and stuck. Students are even finding words in their chapter books (making connections, expanding vocabulary, seeing transfer). This is exciting. I have only the Building Vocabulary From Word Roots book. Of course, it does not cover all the roots we use. Therefore, I used it as a guide to adapt and create my own lessons.
Here is a short run-down of what I do each week.

Monday-Introduce--Meet the Root OR Determine the spelling pattern usually through a game (sometimes a discovery lesson which is more student-centered, but sometimes teacher-directed with posters and direct instruction)
Tuesday-Review/Add New Words and Draw/Sculpt the Root-Students choose a word/partners guess the word based on the drawing/sculpture (made of playdoh or clay) With spelling patterns-We sort the "list". New words are introduced. This is also an opportunity to discuss defintions (vocabulary) and students make/play concentration.
Wednesday-Review through teacher created riddles (Extend to students creating riddles/guessing.) Introduce new words through context. Students work with a partner to learn the meaning of two or three words used in context based on background knowledge.Other activities might include making words, playing scattegories type game, or playing a charades type game.
Thursday-Bingo or another type game to review
Here is another link to the products:Building Vocabulary

Be on the look-out for lessons,ideas, and assessment in my store at Teachers Pay Teachers soon.