Thursday, May 31, 2012

Do You Dojo?

So, today I was at a meeting where our ELA committee was working on creating some units to use when teaching common core standards next year. While we were discussing what to include in this unit for first quarter, somehow one of the teachers mentioned how she used Class Dojo in her room for behavior management. Now, I had never seen this program in action and as she was showing us, I must admit I was a little jealous that I didn't personally stumble on this little beauty!

Let me tell you how it works, in case you are like me and haven't seen this puppy in action yet! On the website Class Dojo you input all your students' names and assign them an avatar or upload their photos. Then you choose which behaviors you want to use both positive and negative. I used the clip chart this year, so I chose behaviors that I would typically move clips up or down for. Such as, being respectful, participating, staying focused, or on the negative side something like being disrespectful, disruption, or getting out of their seat.

Once everything is set up online you can also add the app to your smart phone and you can award points or take them away from your computer or from your phone. So you can Dojo wherever you Go-go! Lol  I plan to use this next year and will just keep it open on my ENO board all day and minimize it if we are doing something else. It "dings" when you award positive points and "buzzes" if you take away a point for a negative. When the students hear the ding or buzz they are automatically paying attention to see who it is and make sure they don't get buzzed.

The best part of all this is that it keeps the data in the form of a report card so you can easily look back at what their behavior has been like over a period of time. Also, my friend who uses this said she lets the student with the most points for the day choose a coupon from her jar. They say things like sit in the teachers' chair, get a free pencil, take the line leader job, etc.

 I am really excited to give this a try next year. Let me know if you Dojo in your room and if so how do you reward your kiddos?


Monday, May 28, 2012

End of the Year Fun!!

We had a Summer Fun math night at our school that was a blast for the kids! We had different stations that taught them math games they could play this summer to practice math.

We had a beach ball station where the kids got to have a mini beach ball and they would write numbers on the different colors. They would toss the ball in the air and catch it with two hands. Whatever numbers their thumbs landed on they would have to add, subtract, multiply, or divide depending on their grade level.

We had dice game packets for primary and intermediate and we gave them those and a set of foam dice. These are games we had already been using in our classrooms, but we wanted the parents to have a chance to learn how to play and also to give the kids the materials they would need to play.

We use and the EnVision online resources at school, so we also let parents come to the computer lab and see how they work. We had the kids write their logins and passwords on an index card to take with them.

We also had food! One station allowed the kids to make their own ice cream, but first they had to help measure out the correct ingredients.

At each station, the kids would collect a fake coin.They had to have 4 coins to buy a slice of pizza when they were all done. :)

It was a great night and the kids really had a ton of fun!
The last week of school we had 2 awesome days of fun also. We took an all day trip to a park that has water sprinklers and the kids played on the playground, got in the water, and we had a picnic lunch. It was so much fun, and a great way to spend one of our last days together as a first grade family!

Finally, we had our End of the Year PBIS celebration. The kids live for this day! We rent a big bounce house obstacle course. We have a face painting station, the playground, the kids can play "Just Dance" on the wii or sing Karaoke in the gym, and we had the parachute and some relay races. We move from station to station. The only kids who can participate in this part of the day, are those who have had no more than 1 detention and no office referrals for the month of May. After 1:00 we have all made it through the stations.  We had a game of Minute to Win it in the gym. All students were invited to the gym to watch and the names we drew for the kids to participate were those students who had not had a referral or detention all year. The kids enjoyed cheering for their friends even if they didn't get to participate themselves. :)

Here are couple of students playing "Chocolate Unicorn". :)
My last thing to share and then we are all caught gift to my kiddos on the last day of school. Inspired by Pinterest once again...

 I folded a piece of construction paper to make a little pocket. I added a packet of Kool-aid, a crazy straw, a picture of our class, and a letter to the student. :)  
(Sorry I couldn't make the pic turn right side up!)
Well, if you followed this to the end then thanks for sticking with me and sorry for the super long post. We are all caught up for the school year and I am ready to start blogging about some new awesome ideas that I plan to work on this summer! 
Happy Memorial Day!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

We had a "Moo-velous" time at the Dairy Farm!

On to my next post to help catch up the fun from the April my student teacher had to teach a unit with at least 10 lessons. We had already planned to take a trip to a dairy farm and so she did a unit on dairy cows and dairy products. It was so much fun!

We of course started out with a word web to activate their schema.

We let the kids do their own writing based on the things we had learned all week.

We were working on collecting and organizing data in EnVision Math so we tied it in to dairy products.

We also made some really cute cow art...inspired by Pinterest!

There are no dairy farms in our local area, so we took a bus trip to Fair Oaks, Indiana to the Fair Oaks Dairy Farm. If you live anywhere close to this and have not been there....check it out here!! They have tons of things to do there! We went to a cow museum that told us more about cows and the farm. We also saw a 3D/4D movie. The kids loved this because they got 3D glasses but there was also wind, and we got wet a few times. :) They had lunch there and we got to taste milk and ice cream actually made at the farm. And the best thing was going on a cow bus tour to see where the cows are kept and seeing how they are milked. You can even see a calf being born, but unfortunately we ran out of time before we got to see that. It is a definite must for next year!


After we came back the students got into small groups and each created a powerpoint slide with the help of an adult to create a presentation about our trip and what they learned (Hello Common Core!) and we chose 2 students to present it to some classrooms around the building and even at our Board of Education meeting. They loved it! It was an awesome field trip and we really had a "moo-velous" time!


Saturday, May 26, 2012

Good to be back!

Wow! I can't believe I haven't posted anything since February! Part of it was being busy with school and family and the other part is just plain being lazy. I have taken pictures of things with the idea of posting it to my blog and then just never gotten around to it. So, this post is going to be a from a while ago and then I will just keep adding posts until we are all caught up. LOL

In March, for ISAT state testing, 1st grade was in charge of being cheering buddies for our 4th grade students. A couple of the things I made for them were...

I made this smile face with our di-cut machine and then stuck the air head in the mouth like a tongue sticking out. LOL

"Don't Worry...Be Happy!"

I also loved these little smartie pants that I saw on pinterest, so I had to make them too! :)

I copied the pant clipart onto blue, red, and yellow paper and then cut out 2 pieces and stapled them together. I then taped the message on the front and stuffed the smarties into the pant legs.

Be a "Smartie" pants on the test!!

On the Monday before the testing began, the 3-5th graders were invited to have a donut breakfast in the gym. The first grade classes practiced a couple of ISAT cheers and read them to the kids. They really liked it! But, the best thing of all that morning was our "Flash Mob". The teachers planned to just randomly start singing "I Will Survive" the ISAT test. It was hilarious and the kids started clapping along. I think we really got them all pumped up and ready for the test. Of course, we won't know until next school year how they did, but hopefully they felt confident and ready to do their best on the test!

Come back tomorrow to learn about our best field trip ever!  It's so good to be back!!