Monday, March 9, 2015

Monday Math and More...Graphing, Surveying, and Charting

Hi, and welcome back for another Monday Math installment!  Today I wanted to share some ideas that I love for how to add Graphing, Surveying, and Charting across the curriculum and some resources that I have found super helpful!

For Science and Social Studies, these math skills can be linked quite easily.  They are the perfect way to link real life math skills to real world content areas of study.  Whether interviewing parents about their favorite landforms or surveying classmates about which planet they would most like to visit, surveying allows students to connect with the curriculum in a personal way.  
Data collection and graph-making can also be used for projects (like the one above that we completed during our recent study of weather-- or even when gathering data for persuasive writing arguments in Language Arts.  The possibilities are numerous!  

For example, here is an example of how we made line graphs this week when measuring and calculating magnetic force
Once survey results are gathered, interpreted, and tabulated, students may use stickers, graph paper, hand-drawn graphs, or even classroom technology to share their data and results.  

Excel is always a great tool to use for older students, however Mr. Nussbum shares other kid friendly versions using programs and games to practice graphing skills as well.  Simply follow this link to see his fantastic suggestions:

Here's a graph for charting class birthdays. Have the kids complete it as a class discovery activity.
I also found some basic/beginner ideas on Pinterest I really love...For example, Jennifer Roys shares this adorable idea for a birthday graph from Snippets by Sarah (
fun ways for kids to make a graph
The Measured Mom also shares some awesome ideas (like this lego graph) in her blog post at

Even Sid the Science Kid loves charts.  I love this adorable song!
Or how about a more complete video on data collection from Math Monsters?
Hope your week is wonderful!  Thanks so much for stopping by!  See all of the posts in this math linky by visiting  Shannon :-)

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

St. Patrick's Day Devotion FREEBIE

Happy Wednesday!  The downhill slide to the weekend has begun!  Lacrosse season is in full gear here at my house, so the weeks literally seem to be flying by!  3 games for big brother this week, 2 practices and a game for little brother, and baby sister is just along for the ride!  LOL
In the busyness of the month, I wanted to make sure you knew about a fun St. Patrick's Day devotion freebie available in my store on TpT.
Family St. Patrick's Day Devotions and Resources
Download for some fun and easy ideas for celebrating the gift of Christ throughout the month of March.  

There are even more of these seasonal devotion freebies also available.  Simply click the "Free Downloads" tab at the top of my blog to see more.  And thanks so much for your sweet feedback!  I always LOVE reading it!  

Thanks so much for stopping by!  Happy Hump Day!  Shannon :-)

Monday, March 2, 2015

Skimboards and Resilience

I will never forget the summer we bought skimboards!  Have you seen them?  Little ovals of wood that seem like they should be so easy to master.  You just toss them across the shallow surf, get a running start, and slide across the sand as easy as can be!  Right????  LOL NOT SO!  At least not for my apparently uncoordinated family.

Those skimboards got the best of us time and time again that summer!  So much so, that what began as an afternoon of fun at the beach ended with stomping, growling, and lots of family angst!  Just how many times can you land face down on the sand in front of a beach full of strangers?

Getting up again and again and again in the face of failure takes a special skill--RESILIENCE!  As a parent and teacher, I realize often just how important the art of resilience is--both in the classroom and in life.  I love this quote by Winston Churchill...
So how do we help our students and our children develop a resilient attitude?  How do we help them see the value in perseverance, diligence, and determination?  Here are just a few tips from me:

1) Remind children that failure is just a normal part of life.  It is not the end of the story; it is just part of the story! 
2) Remind children that repetitive trying is a key aspect of learning.  (Think learning to read, riding a bike, learning to walk...)
3) Provide an environment that allows for safe failures, encouraging hugs, and lots of constructive coaching!
4) Model a "don't quit, won't quit" attitude in your own life!
5) Seize teachable moments!  Some of these opportunities will will come at the bottom of a valley, and some will come at the top of a mountain...Learn to recognize these opportunities when they arise.
6) Expect excellence, not perfection!  One encourages children to do their best, while the other emphasizes shortcomings and leads to frustration.
7) Love them...unconditionally!  Teach them...continuously!  

  Thanks so much for the resilience you model to your little ones everyday!  "I think I can, I think I can, I think I can!"  Blessings, Shannon

PS--And on a positive note...we discovered the following winter, skimboards make excellent sleds for the snow!