Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A Pooh Thanksgiving

I know the traditional thing to do, is to have the kids do an activity asking them what they are thankful for. The thing is, we do that all the time in our Gratitude Journals. So I wanted to do something different, and of course, I wanted to make them think a little bit. We just finished the story of Winnie-the-Pooh so I asked them to imagine all of Pooh's friends getting together to celebrate the holiday and to tell me instead what each of the characters would be thankful for. We are incorporating their memory of details from the character development in the story and applying them in a different way.

Here's what they came up with:

How much do you love that Roo and Piglet are at the kids' table! She said she put an adult (Kanga) there to watch them. :)

Piglet on the edge of the table needing help.....priceless. :)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Thanksgiving Community Service

My Little Dragons this year are such a tender-hearted bunch! :) We brainstormed some ways we show our community gratitude last week-their answers were just so sweet. One of them wanted to give blankets and puppies to all the homeless people-so they'd be warm and have company-melt my heart. 

The one I like to do every year is to have them make placemats that Meals on Wheels can deliver with their food for the week of Thanksgiving. I mean, if nothing else we can count on young kids for being good at making something cute, right! 

Here are some of them:

Saturday, November 23, 2013


So we are reading Winnie-the-Pooh as our new chapter read-aloud right now. I love this book because once in a while there are these really meaningful lines that we can stop and digest a little bit. The characters make the kids laugh and since our last 2 read-alouds were a little more serious in nature, this is a nice change for us. Oh and I can do different silly voices and expressions which I think makes the whole process a little more fun!

I really like to ask the kids to play with details about a story or a a character. If we change a detail of the story what else will change? This writing assignment just kind of came to me last minute, don't ask me from where-because I truly don't know. But I like what they came up with. So the question was, knowing Winnie-the-Pooh, say he suddenly became rich, what would happen (get it P.Winnie like P. Diddy :) ? I knew the first thought would be that he would buy lots of honey-- so I did ask them to dig a little deeper into who Winnie was as a character.

My favorite answer--that would be classic Winnie wouldn't it, he never knows what people are talking about, but he likes it anyway!

Winnie might need some Hooked on Phonics! :)

So he took the honey answer a step further....

I love this answer too-I truly believe Winnie would be generous and share with his friends !:)

Could you imagine a teddy bear driving around in a BMW?!

Again, such a great visual! If only they could see pictures of the richest people in the world-I can't picture Bill Gates or Warren Buffett traveling around that way!

He also does like writing his songs-maybe we'd see him on The Voice! :)

Friday, November 22, 2013

Turkey vs. Eagle

We all know the story of how Benjamin Franklin wanted the turkey to be our National Bird. I asked my students to make an argument either for the turkey or the eagle to win out as our National Bird. Some of them came up with some pretty convincing ideas!

Eagle because it soars in the sky and it is like a predator.

What a GT answer! The question was turkeys or eagles.....he chose penguins!

Eagle because eagles help us being protected when we are in danger.
Eagle because turkeys are to silly and proud of themselves.

He can be President.

Eagle because it's a perfect match to the flag.

Turkey because it is smart and maybe we'll have less in the zoo.

Turkey because they survive in the winter and they remember too good.

Eagle-we don't eat them because they are nasty.


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Gratitude Part Deux

I have written before about how much I love using Gratitude Journals with the kiddos this year. I was inspired (as usual) by Terri over at: . She posted a bunch of links for ideas using critical thinking and I found this gem: .

I had been just asking them to write what they were grateful for that happened over the weekend or in November. But I think these are great ways to ask them to think more specifically (one of those "why didn't I think of that" moments!). So today I asked my Little Dragons to write about something they were thankful for that didn't cost any money. This is what they came up with:

Gotta love his priorities! :)

I bet most teachers you ask would say the same! :)

Since we are Title 1 we have some kind of grant that gives them snacks to take home.

Awwwww! :)

Well, I guess it didn't cost him any money! :)

Aren't we all! :)

Learning, reading and freedom is free too.


Sunday, November 17, 2013

Mom, Can I Get A Moose?

I found this sweet little story at the library:

It's a too-cute story about a boy who claims a moose as his pet-although the moose doesn't quite agree to that!

I wanted to work on persuasive writing with my kiddos, so I did this activity as kind of a preview for me to see what kind of skills we were starting with. I asked them to persuade an adult to let them have a pet. It was interesting to see some of the arguments that they made:

I would take care of it-I would take it a bath.

It will entertain the babies and I won't have to do anything (she recently had twin siblings born :)

Because if our tires are flat we can ride on it and if someone was stuck in a fire the moose will 
save the person.

Dad-you should buy it because I'm the princess in the house. :)

...because you have a lot of money.

...because you should do whatever I want.

it can take me to school and my house and the bus.

I want to ride one.

He can run the sheeps at grandma's house.

..if you don't I will not be your honeybun. :)

...when you are lazy it could do your laundry and fold your clothes and put them away. (don't you just love that illustration!) is a nice pet and it can get anything because it's tall.

...because it's nature and part of my heart.

...he will mow the lawn for you by eating the grass. 

...because they are quieter than me and if you are asleep so if I want cereal, he could get it.