February 25, 2014

Always Learning~

Today was my last day in Extending Children's Mathematics in Grades 3-6 Year 2 workshop. I have learned so much about how to teach math. The more I learn, the more I know I need to learn. In the field of teaching you never arrive or have all the answers! You do the best you can with the knowledge you have at the time. Then you continue to learn! I have learned so much about how to push students' thinking and how to really look at how they are solving problems. In the past math was either right or wrong, but now teachers are being trained on how to analyze students' thinking. How exciting is this! Change isn't always easy, but it is very rewarding! My journey as a teacher has made me realize that there will always be new ways of teaching, new standards, and different types of learners, but that is what makes teaching so much fun! There is never a day that is the same! I know how only the bad things about Common Core get published and shared, but I for one am glad that someone has taught me that I should stop, slow down, and ask children important questions about their math work! Students should be able to discuss how they solved their problems and understand how their peers' work is similar or different to their own. Teachers should always strive to understand what students are thinking when they are solving math problems. Students should be taught for mathematical understanding! (And teachers too!)

February 11, 2014



Students Reflections

Little Rock
By: Janson, 5th Grader
   Little Rock, it is our state capitol, it has a lot to discover and tons of fun hidden throughout the city. Come along on this adventure with me as I take you on my Fifth grade Little Rock field trip.
        First, my alarm woke me up at 5:30am to get ready to go to Little Rock. I ate my breakfast and then got on the bus to head to Little Rock. When we got to Little Rock we went to the capitol, and I got to take a tour. On the tour I learned that when the capitol was first built there was only three senates but now there are five senates. I also learned that in the house of the senate there are 9,720 dots on the ceiling, and Arkansas is the only place where you can dig for diamonds and keep what you find. Also on the tour I learned that 2 laws in Arkansas are that you can’t push a moose out of an airplane and you can’t keep an Alligator in a bath tub.
       Next, we went to Central High School where the Little Rock 9 were the first African Americans to integrate Central High School. At CHS I learned that one of the girls of the Little Rock 9 got expelled for calling a girl “white trash”. Also I learned that one of the Little Rock 9 passed out before getting to the second set of double doors. Plus I learned that one of the girls from the Little Rock 9’s dress was torn to pieces in the bathroom by a bunch of girls who were against mixing blacks and white. Hearing that made me feel sorry about how my ancestors treated African Americans.
       Last, I slept at Ferndale with my bunk buddy’s Jackson, Carson, Gavan, Cannan, and Mrs. Voss. The next day we went to the Heifer Project. The Heifer Project is an organization who helps communities by donating Alpacas, Goats, Ducks, Honey Bees, and more to provide the seven M’s meat, money, milk, manure, material, motivation, and muscle. After the Heifer Project we took the long ride back home. All in all my Fifth grade field trip was a great adventure in which I had fun and learned a lot too. Maybe after reading this you might want to take a trip to Little Rock to explore all of the fun and knowledge of Little Rock.                           

February 9, 2014

Field Trip Experiences

I love the thought of field trips~ giving kids great experiences that connect to the content you're learning about in the classroom, but 3 hours on a bus with over fifty kids can be a wild experience!  No really, we had a great time on our fifth grade field trip, but I was glad to have a few extra snow days to recoup. (Maybe in my college days I could have kept up better!) 
Our fifth grade classes traveled to Little Rock to visit our state capitol and to tour Central High School.  
Our students had learned about the Civil Rights Movement and how schools were segregated in the south.  Students walked in the path of the Little Rock Nine and opened the same doors that they had opened.  I feel like this experience brought my students’ learning to life!  Students sat engaged as the tour guide told stories of how the students had been mistreated.  Students then visited the museum at the Central High School National State Park and learned more about this time in history. 

We also visited the Heifer International’s Ranch.  Students visited the countries around the world as they learned about their needs and the way that people in other countries live. 

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Field trips are a great way to making learning fun!  It gives all students the same experience to write about and it connects classroom learning to real world events! RELEVANCE~REAL~ and you definitely build RELATIONSHIPS!!!!

Chemical and Physical Change Breakfast

Chemical and Physical Change Breakfast 
It’s important to keep students excited about learning.  Nothing gets kids more excited than using food to teach a concept!  The Chemical and Physical Change Breakfast gave students a chance to SEE science in action.   Students also read the directions in preparing the pancakes.  (Reading nonfiction text) Student mixed the solutions and flipped the pancakes.  (Fine Motor Skills)  My students identified and classified if their breakfast foods had a chemical or physical change.  Breakfast foods included:  pancakes, orange juice, hot chocolate, toast (with jelly or butter), and fruit