Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Book Talk Tuesday...A Little Something Strange!

Hi, and happy Tuesday!  My kids have been busy completing their summer reading charts for our local library, so the Science teacher in me could resist sharing one of their favorites from their list...Strangest Animals by Thea Feldman.

What even is that creature on the cover?  LOL The pictures are strange, adorable, and yucky...all at the same time!  This nonfiction text (that is super-kid friendly) is published by the American Museum of Natural History.  Here are just a few of the eye-catching animals found inside.

Whether studying animal adaptations, ecosystems, regions of the world, or research skills, this book would be a reader favorite!  It is filled with fun facts to make any little scientist happy!  Extensions could include practicing map skills by locating these animals around the globe, writing animal reports, making comparison charts of the various adaptations mentioned in the book, or creating one's own "strange animal" to share with classmates...the list goes on and on!  Enjoy, and look for these super-strange titles as well!  
Peace, love, and happy reading!  Shannon :-)

PS--For the entire linky, visit here for more: http://mrsjumpsclass.blogspot.com/2014/07/book-talk-tuesday.html.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Lights, Camera, Thinking! and More...

I have some dear teacher friends headed back to school this week...THIS WEEK!  Where did the summer go?  In the spirit of Back to School time, I wanted to share with you a resource that I use in my own classroom, as well as several variations of this product that hopefully will benefit your little learners and match your classroom or school theme. 

My classroom is designed with a train theme in mind, so this is the set of Bloom's Taxonomy/higher order thinking posters that I made for my own class!  


I use these in both teaching and planning, and laminated and posted them on my classroom wall for student reference as well.  Metacognition occurs when we get students thinking about their thinking, and these visuals help students think on a higher level and also articulate the types of thinking they are doing.

Interested in seeing if there is a set that matches your theme?  Here are some of the classroom sets available in my online stores for just $3...Whew...there are a bunch!  S :-)


Saturday, July 19, 2014

New Things, Old Fears...

We are fresh off of a quick weekend trip to coastal GA.  A sweet niece was celebrating her 5th birthday, so we made the most of our time together by squeezing in some kayaking Friday evening.  My boys have been kayaking several times, but for our little girl...this was her first time, and she was sooooooo excited!  

She started off by riding as a passenger on board with her big brothers.  Sure that space is meant for a cooler or fishing gear, but she thought it was the perfect place to catch a ride!   

After awhile, however, just riding wasn't enough!  She wanted a bit of independence...to tackle kayaking on her own!  And let me say, we were so proud of her!!!  She paddled like a rock star, completely unafraid of the outgoing tide, the pull of the current, the fish jumping all around her, and the fact that she was in a kayak in the marsh ALL BY HERSELF!!!

While watching her relish in the joy of new discovery and the thrill of accomplishment, I had a few quiet moments on the dock to watch and consider...I wish I approached new challenges with the same enthusiasm and determination that she did!  Sometimes, though, I instead feel fear, anxiety, or even discouragement when a new challenge or unplanned experience comes along.

In truth, this past year has been a year FULL of changes for our family!  A new job, a new school for all 3 children, a new church for our family...ALL of these new experiences.   But I am learning to be thankful for the NEW--to be open to new possibilities, new friendships, new challenges, and new blessings that may be waiting behind new doors of opportunity!  

Tonight I felt led to share in case you also find yourself at a new crossroads.  Be encouraged!  That is the lesson I have learned from the past year, and that is the lesson I was reminded of by my daughter, the fearless kayaker!  Choosing joy, Shannon <3

Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. Isaiah 43:19

Do not despise these small beginnings, for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin...Zechariah 4:10

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Book Talk Tuesday--A Yummy Book to Use for Teaching Scarcity!

In Saturday's post I shared with you about my newly revised economics mega-unit, Economics for Kids

 Because of that, I wanted to share with you one of my favorite economics stories...The Doorbell Rang by Pat Hutchins.  

In a recent book review by Scholastic, I read this blurb about the story, "Ma makes a batch of a dozen chocolate chip cookies for her children Victoria and Sam. Each child has six cookies. But when the doorbell rings and friends drop by, the cookies must be shared. The doorbell rings again, and again, and again...until there is only one cookie for each child. What happens if the doorbell rings again? Will the cookies be divided? Will Ma make more cookies? Or will a special visitor surprise everyone?

Author/illustrator Pat Hutchins has wonderfully rendered a diverse array of children in characteristically rich illustrations, and the excitement of the tale is enhanced with every ring of the doorbell. This lively tale of family love and cookies skillfully teaches youngsters some math basics, as well as the basics of sharing."

Not only does this book do an excellent job of teaching about sharing and mathematical concepts to young children, but it can also be used with older children to teach the idea of scarcity and limited resources!  As an extension, students could write about a time they experienced scarcity, enjoy a snack of chocolate chip cookies, brainstorm a list of resources which are in limited supply, and create posters promoting resource conservation.  Students could also write their own version of this fun story!  I hope you enjoy The Doorbell Rang as much as I do!!!  Happy Tuesday!!!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Economics Unit Update...189 pages of learning fun!!!

Happy Saturday!  Hope you are having a great weekend! Just a quick update that I have just uploaded a revised copy of my economics unit to my TpT store. It now totals 189 pages...jam-packed with ideas that incorporate math, language arts, social studies, creative thinking, etc.  Thank you all for your sweet feedback of this activity pack!!!  I have been overwhelmed by your response!  It is one of my very favorites, so please check it out if you haven't already! 

Here is a description of the unit for those of you that may be interested, especially if you teach 3rd grade and up: 
"This interdisciplinary resource pack was compiled after many years of teaching economics and forming classroom businesses with my own students. It was always so amazing to watch my students develop independence, resourcefulness, and business savvy at a very young age!

This unit may be used as a whole, or you may simply glean from it the portions which you feel are most beneficial for your own students. Don't be afraid to dive in and be fearless. I love the quote by Heinz which says, "To do a common thing, uncommonly well, brings success." If you have a great time with this study, your students will too!

I also find that this unit does a great deal to foster teamwork, creativity, and innovation amongst my students. I hope you enjoy and that your kids have a blast forming businesses, studying advertising, understanding economic principles, and learning together with tons of great supplemental resources, handouts, and activities!!!!! 189 pages of learning fun!"

In my book talk linky this Tuesday, I'll be sharing more about 1 of my favorite economics books, so stay tuned!  Hope to see you then!!!  Shannon 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Book Talk Linky---We're going to the beach, the beach, the beach...

Who doesn't love a good beach trip?!  This family certainly does!  In fact, this last week we enjoyed tons of time in the sand and surf!  I did however forget to sunscreen one of my arms on our 2nd day there (how does that even happen?)  1 tan arm and 1 peeling, pink arm=not cool! LOL

In honor of beach lovers everywhere, I though I would share one of our beach stories, as well as a few ideas for how to use it in your instruction.  

A House for Hermit Crab by Eric Carle has to be one of my very favs!  Who doesn't know that feeling of struggling to fit in and the joy that comes from being "home!"  I use this book each year to supplement our spring study of ocean ecosystems, but it would also be a great launching point after returning from summer vacation.  United streaming has tons of wonderful video clips to use to support this study of oceanography and plant/animal adaptations!  We compare and contrast different types of shells, discuss spring and neap tides, highlight methods of island formation including barrier islands and volcanic islands, and of course do TONS of creative writing!  One of my favorite writing topics:  Are you more like a crab or a sea sponge?  The illustrations are beautiful and hilarious as students illustrate themselves as one of these types of sea creatures!!!  

The link here will take you to a version of this story read aloud on vimeo:  http://vimeo.com/64470843  

Find the book available for purchase on Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/House-Hermit-Crab-Eric-Carle/dp/B004S7VTPQ .

Happy Tuesday!!!  <3, Shannon

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy 4th of July!!! Summer Sale News...

Hi!  Hope you are enjoying this July long weekend of Freedom-Lovin' and Summer Fun!!!  We certainly intend to, but our morning did begin with some DIY and yard work...pretty typical for our southern summers! These afternoon thunderstorms mean that our grass grows in a blink!

I wanted to let you know about 2 opportunities for July savings in both my TpT store and my TN store.  I know...it is painful in some ways to think about next school year LOL, but maybe some summer savings will make it a bit more pleasant!

Enjoy this weekend with yours!  I am so thankful for our country and our American freedoms!  Thanks to ALL who defend and protect these freedoms everyday!  Love, S :-)