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Thursday, October 29, 2020

Small Group Virtual Halloween Activity

I feel like our kiddos got the short end of the stick for Halloween this year. Many are not going to celebrate because trick-or-treating is not safe. So I wanted to do something fun with them in class tomorrow. I looked at many escape rooms but I think they were to too complicated for 1st Graders to navigate the Google slides.

I made my own rebus activities and wanted to share in case anyone else wanted to use them. My plan is to put my virtual and in class students in rooms on Teams and upload these activities. The students will work together to solve the riddles and see who can solve them first.

Hope someone can use them!













Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Wild Thing Ethics

I think my all time favorite book to read aloud to students is Where the Wild Things Are. After reading it we discussed how the Wild Things felt when Max left. Then I asked the students to write about whether it was right or wrong for Max to leave. Here are their responses:

right because it was wild things



Max should love

wrong because everyone was sad.


right because mom, food.







Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Invisible Boy Reading Response

Our district schedule has us spending the first 20 minutes of our day on SEL skills. This is something that I will continue even after we are no longer virtual learners. I love the discussions we have been able to have about feelings and dealing with stress. We also talk a lot about including everyone. One of the articles that I read recently that really sticks with me is how dangerous it is for students to be alone at school. A student with no friends has a much higher chance of suicide and drug abuse. One of my favorite books to start this discussion is: 


The story is about a shy boy who feels invisible. Even his teacher doesn't see him. My favorite part of the book is the author has his character in gray until he starts being included-then he is in color. A great book to begin discussions on inclusion.


This one took my breath away. What an amazing representation.

To be in teams at recess









Saturday, October 10, 2020

Using Poetry in 1st Grade

I love poetry! I always have. I think there's a lot we can learn from just reading poems in the classroom. Each week we take a poem-some of my favorites are from: Robert Frost, Langston Hughes, Jacqueline Woodson. I read the poem to them on Monday. Tuesday I go over any unknown vocabulary. We discuss the meaning and literary devices and on Fridays the students illustrate (and when we are in the classroom write about ) the meaning. I want to see lots of details from the poem.

Here is the response from a poem by Robert Louis Stevenson called The Moon.




















Thursday, October 8, 2020

Halloween Costumes for Characters

I originally got this idea from Ian Byrd of Byrdseed.com fame. My students have Halloween on the brain (I don't have the heart to tell them it's going to be cancelled this year). We are reading the chapter book Wedgie and Gizmo:


I asked the students to imagine what Halloween costumes the characters would choose. Most chose what was expected-Wedgie is a dog who thinks he is a superhero and Gizmo is a self-described evil genius.The little girl does dress Gizmo up in a little tutu so I thought including that detail was good too.

 But here is what they came up with:



















Saturday, October 3, 2020

Painting Like Frida Kahlo-Virtual Version

There have been many adjustments for my students learning in the virtual world. One that I think is the hardest for them is not doing as many art projects. I work in an area of low economic development-I can't assign them to do something that I am not sure they have the materials for. Some of my students have no pencils and paper, I know they don't have glue and paint. So we adjust. :)

We learned about Frida Kahlo this week for Hispanic Heritage. I showed the students some of her self-portraits and asked them to think about how it made them feel. How do you think she wanted you to feel when you looked at it? Then I asked them to do their own self-portraits using the Pear Deck tool. Here's what they came up with:















Friday, October 2, 2020

Details: Changing the Setting

Continuing our work on using Details from Kaplan's Depth and Complexity this week. We read a different version of Cinderella every day. We read:


Cinderella set in space (love that in the end she turns down the marriage proposal to do the work she loves).


Mexican Cinderella story


set in Africa


Set in a chicken coop


Set in Alaska

So we discussed how the setting of these stories determined a lot of the details. And if we changed the setting some things changed but some things remained the same (attending a ball, living happily ever after). After that discussion, I asked the students to write where their own Cinderella story would take place.

Here are their Pear Deck responses:


New York (complete with the Statue of Liberty)



on a peaceful river




Halloween themed



Haunted House


Halloween themed