Saturday, June 30, 2012

Have You Voted?

Ya'll there are a TON of great bloggers nominated for the fascination awards and not a whole lot of voting going on. Would you take two seconds to vote for me and others? Here's what you do:

1. Click on the badge on the right side of my page to take you to the fascination awards. 

2. Scroll down to the post talking about Kinder Teachers and click where it says "83 comments"

3. Find your favorite blog (pst -!!!) and hover over it. When you hover over it you will see a +1. Click on the +1 to add your vote!!

Voting ends Monday at Midnight so vote, Vote, VOTE!

Friday, June 29, 2012

In Picture and In Words: Chapter 7

This week we took a look at Chapter 7, which shows ways you can use illustrations to teach ideas and content.  Each technique is formatted like this:

1. Something to Notice-Names the illustrative technique

2. Illustrative Example-Provide an example of what this looks like in a picture book.

3. An Understanding for Young Writers and Illustrators-Involves the kind of thinking you might do with the technique.

4. In a Teacher's Voice: An Idea for Trying it Out-This is just what it says. There is a little script that you might use when discussing the use of this technique with your students,

5. A Writing Connection-This section helps make the composing connection between writing and illustrating.

I’m going to share just a few of the techniques mentioned, and picture books I found that are good examples of the technique. This was a little challenging to me since I’m home for the summer and have no access to the books in my classroom, but I have a pretty good stack of kids books in my garage so here is what I came up with!

Technique #2: Crafting with Positioning Perspective
“Illustrations have positioning perspective: a central image may be picture from the front, the back, the side, above or below. “
I love this image from the book “The Paper Bag Princess”. He has pictured Elizabeth and the dragon from the side so that you can see both their expressions upon meeting one another. Had it been from either characters point of view, you would have missed out on the others.

Technique #3: Crafting the Background
“The central image in an illustration may have lots of background behind it, just a little, or hardly any at all.”
Here are two examples that stand in stark contrast to one another. The first is from “Blueberries for Sal” You see little more than Sal and the blueberry bushes. Likely because to young Sal, that’s all he sees and is focused on.

Compare it to this scene from “Paul Bunyan” which has a whole lot going on in the background to give you a sense of the mayhem that came with Paul’s size.

Technique #4: Showing two sides of a physical space
“An illustration may show two sides of a physical space simultaneously: inside and outside; above and below”
Here are two examples. The first is from “The Paperboy” You can see both inside and outside the house to see that it is nighttime and the boy is sleeping. On the next page, you have the same view and can see that it is still night time, but the boy is up and getting ready,  indicating that he gets up very, very early to do his job.

This next picture is from the book “Hurricane”. In my opinion, every Florida teacher should own this book because it teaches kids to use their imaginations and turn a scary situation into an adventure.
You can see inside the house where it is relatively calm, and also outside where the wind has picked up and the rain has started.

I’m assuming the illustrator wanted to use this technique and that’s why his picture doesn’t include hurricane shutters. In any real hurricane shutters would be covering that window and you wouldn’t be able to see outside at all!

Technique #5: Using Scenes to show different actions
“Small, separate scenes show different actions”
This picture from “Tacky the Penguin” shows several different scenes in which you see tacky doing different actions.

Technique #7: Using Scenes to show movement through different places
“Small, separate scenes an show movement through different places”
This picture from “Jaime O’Rourke and the Big Potato” show different scenes of the potato rolling down the hill, across the street, and through town.

What did you notice in this week’s study? 
Make Sure to link up with Mrs. Wills!!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Summer Bucket List: Classroom Wreath

All right, next up on my summer to do list was a wreath for outside my door. I was inspired by this one that Melanie from School Girl style made for her bird themed classroom:

I headed to Michaels and picked up the following supplies:
A wreath
2 different ribbons
Flowers in my color scheme
Small wooden letters
Paint in my color cheme
Wooden dog cutouts

The first thing I did was rifle through the bag of wooden letters to make sure I had enough of the right letters for my name. Luckily I did! Then I painted them with the blue, green and yellow paint I had gotten to match my room. Once they were dry I started arranging things on the wreath the way I thought they would look the best:

I ended up rearranging things a few times before I found a way that looked balanced: 
Once I had everything where I wanted it I hot glued like crazy to hold it all down! Then I added some ribbon to hang off the bottom, and a ribbon loop at the top to hang it from and voila!

I loved it so much I made another as a going away present for a friend who is doing an owl themed classroom next year:
Hers was easier to arrange because her name is shorter :)
I think they are both adorable!

Now my summer to do list is looking like this:
1. Supply Storage
2. Pendant Banner
3. Curtains
4. Brownie Points Magnetic Board
5. Spend time at the Pool/Beach (this is an ongoing one)
6. Finish TPT Units – Back To School, Fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Winter, Valentine's, Spring,  Alphabet Wake Up Work, Numbers & Shapes Wake Up Work, request for stamping centers unit
7. Crate Seats for Guided Reading..
8. Listening Center Seats & Storage
9. Sight Word Sticks
10. Door Wreath

I recently posted my Halloween Unit, which is my most recently finished one off my to do list – check it out! 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Daily Five Book Study: Chapter 3

1.    Establish a gathering place for brain and body breaks.
I have a large carpet at the front of my room where we gather as a whole class. I don’t have a cute name for it, but since I’m doing a dog theme, maybe I should call it the dog park or something? I’ll have to work on a name.
2.    Developing the concept of 'good fit' books.
I loved the shoe lesson presented in this chapter, where they talked about different shoes and whether or not they fit and what purpose they serve. I definitely want to bring in a bag of shoes to teach good fit books. I’ve also seen cute lessons with Goldilocks and the Three Bears. I think anything kids can relate to is going to make the idea concrete to them.  

3.    Create anchor charts with students. 
This I’m pretty good at. We make anchor charts for everything in my room. I do need to get a little more  creative with where to hang stuff as we often start running out of room!

4.    Short, repeated intervals of independent practice and setting up book boxes.
I have these boxes from Lakeshore Learning courtesy of donors choose:

 I think they will work perfect for book boxes. At the beginning of the year I like to let them browse and choose books that interest them, since most can’t read at that point anyways. Once we finish assessments, begin reading groups, and have our good fit lesson I’ll have them start picking good fit books to put in them.

5.    Calm signals and check in procedures.
I definitely need to figure something out for calm signals, I’ve been eyeing the music wands and might have to order one. Right now I just have my bell. My students turn in their work in a large pocket chart made to hold file folders. Each child has a file folder their finished work goes into for me to check.  

6.    Using the correct model/incorrect model approach for demonstrating appropriate behaviors.
Love, love, love this. I always model the right way, but I think having a “challenging” child demonstrate the wrong way and then the right way can really help nip inappropriate behaviors in the bud. It still gives those kids the attention they are seeking, but in a positive way.

Don't forget to link up with Tammy this week!
Next week we will be heading to Mrs. Miner's for Chapter 4!