Sunday, February 2, 2014

A Peek at My Week [2.3.14]

Happy Sunday!! I hope this finds all of you relaxed after a great weekend!  We finally got out of the house and did some fun things at Lake Geneva's annual Winterfest.  It was snowing and chilly, but it felt good to get out and do some walking!  Here are just a few of my favorite pictures from our adventure. What did you do this weekend?

This was my favorite!!!  I voted for it.  The little fish in the tub rocks!

This was my husbands favorite!!  :)


Here I sit again with almost the exact same plans in front of me as last week.  We had two snow days last week, making for a short week with students again.  I decided to change things up just a little to squeeze some things in that I felt didn't get as much time as they needed previously.  So some of my plans from last week got done, and some are going to get done this week.  So if there is an echo in the room, and I post some of the same things, I apologize!  I'm linking up with my wonderful co-worker Jennifer today from Mrs. Laffin's Laughings for her weekly linky A Peek at My Week.  I love that this linky is set up so I'm ahead of the game and get all of my things in order with plenty of time to spare!  Be sure to check out her blog and see what she's up to as well as all of the others who are linking up.

Math-  This week we will continue with addition strategies.  We will still be working on proof drawings, however now we will be actually using them to add.  I'm excited to see how the kids take to this, as it's something new for them this year!!  They did great with what we learned last week, you can check it out from this past post.  I'm anxious for them to make the connection between adding and regrouping in the next steps.  My intervention group will focus a lot on just getting comfortable with proof drawings to ensure they are ready to move on to adding with them.  We will also be using proof drawings to round!

Reading-  We will actually start poetry this week.  Last week I ended up doing some review on author's purpose and point of view.  After grading some assessments I saw we needed to do some more with that. So our poetry unit will officially start.  We did some fun activities last week with poetry to get the students ready, and it was really cool to see what kids knew about poems or what they wanted to share about poems.  I'm hoping to change some of their minds on liking poetry after we're done.  Our team uses a poetry book to help us out with more of the structural aspects of poetry.  We use Read and Understand Poetry grades 3-4.

We've really enjoyed using the poems in this book, because it's easy to follow and easy to make sure that we touch all elements of poetry that we need to cover.  We don't just use this book, but it's a great starting point.  In the teacher's section before each poem there is a 'toolbox' section where it talks about what the kids will learn about in the poem.  It ranges from stanza to bold and italic words.  We actually then make a toolbox with the kids and put each element in it so they can go back to it for reference.  I've tried to upload it several times facing the correct way and it's just not for now, we'll just have to turn our heads, ok??!! :)

They will need it later for our big fluency project that I will share about as it gets closer!  I'm excited to start exploring poetry and fluency with my kiddos!

Writing-  As I've shared in the past, I am working very closely with our amazingly wonderful ESL teacher. While we're doing guided groups with reading and writing combined at the end of the day to give kiddos a double or triple does of the skills that they need I'm also starting to work with an enrichment group this week. I'm using a resource that I love to use in the classroom.  It's especially great for when there is a sub in the room, because it has a great resource guide and follows a lot of the reading strategies that we focus on through the year, including reading non-fiction text.  I have so many saved, so I dug in the back of the cabinet for an older issue of a National Geographic Explorer magazine.

We'll work on reading an article called Discovering Deserts.  I picked this one for several reasons.  One being in the 4th quarter we do a big pioneer simulation where students travel west in wagon trains.  They get fake identities and everything to experience life on the trail. I thought getting them familiar with some of the land they will travel over will help them teach some information to their groups when we get started. Secondly, the reading strategy to go along with this article is compare and contrast which I feel this group of students needs some extra work in.  They will learn about climate, landscape, plants and animals from different deserts.  We will also discuss how climate impacts each category.  Lastly I love the writing that goes along with it.

It will be longer than a week to work on but when we get there the writing will be to talk about the difference between 1st, 2nd and 3rd person.  We will discuss how writing in 2nd person helps the author write an article form a readers POV.  We'll start small by choosing a photo together and write a short story on it in 1st person.  Together we'll go back and rewrite in 2nd and 3rd person and compare how the perspective changes.  They will then do the same with another photo on their own. I'm excited to challenge this group and to get them writing about this non-fiction topic.  If all goes well, they will create a project to take to our buddy class to teach them about desert land!

I hope everyone has a great week! :)


  1. I use the Read and Understand Poetry resources too! Those sculptures are amazing!

  2. Wow, those snow scultures are amazing! I like your favorite.
    ~Lucy at Kids Math Teacher


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