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Three Words About Your Weekend!

Every Monday, we have a special topic for our Morning Meeting Share. Every Monday we share 3 words about our weekend!

Three Words About Your Weekend: Here's a morning meeting ritual we do every Monday. The kids love it, and they're learning something about words and language!
 
Believe it or not, it's harder for my second graders than it seems! 


Some have trouble limiting it to 3 words. They try to sum up their weekend into phrases and sentences. (I wish they'd apply this skill in their writing and speaking!)

Some actually have trouble remembering their weekend! They really can't remember what they did for the last couple of days! I've had weekends like that where everything blended in together.

Then I have others who start planning their 3 words on Friday, and are all excited when it's sharing time!

Then there are others who are so interested in the 3 words others share they can't remember what they planned to say themselves.  I admit, I've done that more than once.

One of the best benefits: It helps the children when it comes to note taking. It gives them practice choosing the important words and distinguishing them from those "little middle" words that aren't essential.

Example: "I went to Applebee's with my family. I had chicken."  becomes "Applebees, family, chicken"

or 
"I played in the snow with my sisters. We built a fort."
becomes "Snow, sisters, fort"

As the year goes on, they're getting better at it, and just in time! We're starting our big library research project!

Another advantage to this sharing?

It gives me lots of information about my students, and what is important in their lives. Plus, it doesn't take up a whole lot of class time!

What are 3 words about your weekend?

Three Words About Your Weekend: Here's a morning meeting ritual we do every Monday. The kids love it, and they're learning something about words and language!

Will the Groundhog Predict Spring?

Do you think Punxsutawney Phil will see his shadow?

Will the Groundhog Predict Spring?  Who knows, but here are several ideas and resources for learning, thanks to the groundhog!

It's a tough call, but I'm thinking we might just have 6 more weeks of winter. 

But even so, Groundhog Day is a fun day at the beginning of a dreary month to scramble up some fun excuses to learn!

Let's start with books! I'm a big fan of Gail Gibbons, and this one is perfect for groundhog learning. I love her books because she puts information in a way it's interesting for children. 
These two books are fiction, but with a lot of learning to happen!

Speaking of reading skills, I have a close read about Groundhogs in this resource: Science and Social Studies Printables for February.

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Science-and-Social-Studies-Activities-for-February-1671074?utm_source=groundhog%20day%20blog%20post&utm_campaign=S%20and%20SS%20for%20Feb


Plus, there's an activity sorting animals that hibernate in the winter.

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Science-and-Social-Studies-Activities-for-February-1671074?utm_source=groundhog%20day%20blog%20post&utm_campaign=S%20and%20SS%20for%20Feb

Then there's video! 


Look what I found! This is a reading of Gail Gibbon's book Groundhog Day!


I also found an informational video that tells about Groundhog Day.  I like this one because it has real groundhogs for the kids to see!
 

Besides the science of groundhogs, kids really take to this topic, so I've got a few resources to help you out!

Here's some groundhog themed word work, and it's a freebie! Perfect for grades 2-3!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Groundhog-Conconant-le-5156750?utm_source=blog%20post%20February&utm_campaign=Groundhog%20%2Ble

Speaking of word work, Here's a fun game to practice prefixes and suffixes!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Groundhog-Day-Prefixes-and-Suffixes-465184?utm_source=groundhog%20day%20blog%20post&utm_campaign=groundhog%20suffixes


What student doesn't think story problems are a little bit more when they have a fun theme! This is my plan for this week! It combines groundhogs AND Super Bowl themes!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Groundhog-and-Super-Football-Math-Story-Problems-529764?utm_source=groundhog%20day%20blog%20post&utm_campaign=groundhog%20and%20super%20math


Want to try a little science? Here's a Life Cycle activity with lots of options! And it's free! 

Will the Groundhog Predict Spring?  Who knows, but here are several ideas and resources for learning, thanks to the groundhog!

Here's to hoping that groundhog doesn't see his shadow! 

We could use a little spring!


Will the Groundhog Predict Spring?  Who knows, but here are several ideas and resources for learning, thanks to the groundhog!


How Can We Help Them Learn Kindness?

There is a whole lot of hate in our world. 

How Can We Help Them Learn Kindness? This post shares three different strategies for helping children learn to be kind to one another. It includes a Readers Theater freebie and links to several other freebies. #kindnessnation, #weholdthesetruths

It's very concerning when we work with little ones and we want them to be successful. 

Although I'm not going to delve into politics, I'm sure you're aware that political changes here in the USA are pretty uncomfortable for many right now, and people are angry. Yes, BOTH sides of the political system are angry, and it's not helping our children. 

How can we help them learn about kindness? 

Well, here are three ideas!

How Can We Help Them Learn Kindness? This post shares three different strategies for helping children learn to be kind to one another. It includes a Readers Theater freebie and links to several other freebies. #kindnessnation, #weholdthesetruths
There are tons of great books with the theme of kindness! I've linked some of my favorites below.

                            

I have a special softness for Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch and The Invisible Boy

Be sure to read the books and let the children have plenty of conversations. 

Bring up the topic of kindness and let the children talk about how the characters showed kindness in the stories. 

How Can We Help Them Learn Kindness? This post shares three different strategies for helping children learn to be kind to one another. It includes a Readers Theater freebie and links to several other freebies. #kindnessnation, #weholdthesetruths

We know as educators that children are more likely to do what they see than what they're told to do. That means we need to let them see us showing respect and kindness to them, and the people they see us interact with. Let them see you performing little acts of kindness for children as well as adults!

Let them see you writing fun little notes for them and their classmates.

Let them see you leave a treat for the teacher next door.

Let them see you bring flowers to the nurse for Nurse's Day.

Let them see you go out of your way to tidy up to make things easier for the custodians.

Bring the whole class to the Library to sing Happy Birthday on the librarian's birthday.

I'm sure you can think of more examples of showing kindness, and I'm sure your students can think of plenty more!

How Can We Help Them Learn Kindness? This post shares three different strategies for helping children learn to be kind to one another. It includes a Readers Theater freebie and links to several other freebies. #kindnessnation, #weholdthesetruths

When problems occur in the classroom, which we know happen often, be sure to address the group with the question, "How can we solve this problem with kindness?"

To help you out, I've got a Reader's Theater freebie that does exactly that! It's a little play for 4 people with a problem children can relate to. Here's the twist: after a discussion on how to solve the problem with kindness, the performers get to make up the ending!




One last thought: my singing group sang this song years ago, and it helps me deal with many difficult situations. Although this isn't my singing group, the song is just as beautiful.
 

Speed Chatting!

Do you have a talkative group like I do? 

Speed Chatting: some children just need to talk, and here's a chance to let them talk without wasting class time. Perfect for Morning Meeting!

 Do you have kiddos that have so much to say they have trouble holding it in? 

Isn't it tough to find class time to let them get out what they want to say!

So I decided to try Speed Chatting. It works sort of like speed dating, without the dating part. 

I have the children make 2 circles. They partner off, and get a couple of minutes to talk! Then one of the circles shifts, and they have a new partner for chatting. They'll shift a few more times until they've had a several chances to talk.

Sometimes I give them a topic, and sometimes I let them choose whatever they want to talk about. 

Topics could be: 

  • Tell about the book you're reading.
  • Why do we need to regroup to subtract?
  • What did you do this weekend?
  • Talk about your favorite thing to do.
  • Tell what you know about _________.
  • Tell about a place you'd love to visit someday.
  • What pet do you wish you could have?
  • If you had plenty of money, what would you buy?
  • What is your favorite subject in school?
  • What do you wish you could have for homework?
  • What do you like to do after school?
  • What makes someone a good friend?
  • What is something you wish more people knew about you?
I'm sure you can think of plenty more!

Right after the holidays, the kiddos were busting at the seams, wanting to tell about their vacations, staying up until midnight on New Year's Eve, and their new toys.  

We did Speed Chatting. We had to... there was no option, they were going to talk about their vacations no matter what. They needed to get it out. Either they'd be sneaking it in all day, or I'd let them get it out of their systems first thing in the morning. 

I chose to put Speed Chatting into Morning Meeting that day. 
Then they were ready to get back to work!

Honestly, I don't think kids get enough time to speak their minds these days. We're incredibly busy between testing as well as teaching an overloaded curriculum. This is a nice way to get them talking without missing much class time.

Enjoy Speed Chatting with your students! 

You'll hear some amazing stories!


Speed Chatting: some children just need to talk, and here's a chance to let them talk without wasting class time. Perfect for Morning Meeting!

Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas?

If you are already on vacation, congratulations for surviving! If you're still going, like I am, you'll be needing something extra special to keep those restless, overtired children engaged!
 
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas freebies, and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

This week we did some STEM activities from this set: S.T.E.M. Activities for December.


Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas freebies, and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

The children had a great time creating face warmers for Santa!
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

And designing workshops for elves!
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

Every student was engaged, plus there was learning going on! Their reflections really showed they were learning about the Engineering Process, as well as learning to work as part of a team. I was proud of their achievements!

There's a lot going on this coming week. (Yes, we go through Friday afternoon at 3:30!) I'll be pulling out all the stops with some of my favorite holiday activities. 

We'll be painting, illustrating, and reading some of my favorite holiday stories. We'll also bring in a little Science and Social Studies with this resource: Science and Social Studies Activities for December.
 
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

They'll be reading informational text about the North Pole and about the Aurora Borealis, practicing their mapping skills with a map of the North Pole, sorting Christmas scents, and learning about laws by sorting elf laws.
 

Besides all this fun, I'll be pulled out of class on Thursday for an IEP meeting, so I'll be assigning some of the pages from this resource: Holiday No Prep Activities.

Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

I can be sure the children will be getting fun practice on important reading, writing, and math skills with these! 

If all else fails, it's time to pull out the glitter! (Yes, I plan to!)

Of course, I hate to leave for vacation without being ready for that first week back! Here are a couple of resources I'll be pulling out at the beginning of January!

Beanie Toss to 100! (This one is a freebie!)


Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas freebies, and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

 
Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas freebies, and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Calendar-of-Fun-2020-5010805?utm_source=blog%20post%20keeping%20them%20engaged&utm_campaign=2020%20calendar


Here's a little something extra they can do with these calendars!

Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!



Wondering what will keep them engaged the last week before Christmas? Here are some ideas freebies, and resources that will keep even the most rambunctious children engaged!

The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun!

Here's a game my students have been playing for years called The Greatest Sum! I've put it together with lots of variations!

 
The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This place value game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers (with or without regrouping) with many variations!

The basic game is played with two 2-digit numbers. The children choose one number square at a time, and decide where to place it on their boards. It doesn't take them long to figure out they should put the greater numbers in the tens column, and the lower numbers in the ones column. You can use the numbers included in this package, or you can use tiles, cubes, or other interesting manipulatives and write the numerals 0-9 on them, as I have done in these pictures.

The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This place value game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers (with or without regrouping) with many variations!

Here's how to play:


1. Place the tiles (or number squares) face down between 2 "Greatest Sum" boards.
 
2. The first player takes a tile and places it in one of the squares on his board. That player should think about which square might bring them the greatest sum, since he isn't allowed to move it once he lets go!
 
3. Play continues between the two players until all squares on both boards are filled.
 
4. Which player has the greatest sum? Players may use paper & pencil, white boards, number grids, a calculator, or mental math to figure out the winner of each round. (Teacher's choice!)

As you can see on this preview, there are plenty of variations to this game!



http://bit.GreatestSum

Explore the image or explore this link: The Greatest Sum

Explore the image below or explore this link: The Greatest Sum Sampler for a freebie sample to try out!

http://bit.ly:GreatestSumFreebie

Which player had the greatest sum?


The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This place value game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers (with or without regrouping) with many variations!The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This place value game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers (with or without regrouping) with many variations!
The Greatest Sum - an Addition Game with Strategy and Fun! This place value game practices adding 2-4 digit numbers (with or without regrouping) with many variations!


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