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Showing posts from September, 2014

The "other" sections of the Writer's Notebook

First- I caved and bought labels for ALL of my students to put in their notebooks. Not only because I'm controlling, but because it's helpful for them to be organized. In fact, they recognized that this will help them become more organized, and make it easier to find sections in their notebooks. Am I the only one who gets super excited when I see organized tabs? Oh, and notice their "Master AAAWWUBBIS Hunter" stickers? Went over really well, and every student received one when they showed me their completed, and correct, Express Lane Edit for AAAWWUBBIS. It cost $20 for the labels, but I can get four different sets of labels done for my classes. Coming up this week is "Ultimate FANBOYS" :) Ahhh...organization  So I have two other sections in my Writer's Notebook, "Author's Word and Phrase Palette", and "Gems". We utilized these sections last week in my Language Arts 1 (Reading) class, by having them out while they s

Grammar Invitation #2

I have been having trouble deciding what I'm going to blog about when lately, because I teach four different classes, and I want to make sure I'm sharing consistently about all of them! is the schedule I'm hoping to follow from now on. This doesn't mean that I won't be blogging on the days not listed, it just won't necessarily be on a specified topic. :) Mondays: Interactive Student Notebooks Tuesdays: Technology Tuesdays and Genius Hour Sundays: Writer's Workshop and Grammar Today is Sunday, therefore I will be talking about Grammar! Yay! When I last left off, students were finding their mentor sentences from their silent reading books. This ended up taking almost TWO class periods! Students started off with their own books, and quickly escalated to grabbing piles of books off my shelf and flipping through them. I stopped them around ten minutes in and asked them what methods they were using to find AAAWWUBBIS words. They immediately

DIY Weekend Fun

Warning- This post is not school related (that will come tomorrow) :) Last week I was lusting over the blue Kitchen-Aid mixer, I even entered a giveaway to try to win one, even though I have a perfectly good red Kitchen-Aid Artisan mixer that we received as a wedding present. So I thought, "I wonder if I can paint mine?" I went to Google, and lo and behold, other people had thought the same thing! After ordering our new island for the kitchen today, we stopped at Lowe's, and I found the perfect color for my new mixer! BTW-Here's the new island, I'm so excited! Our current one is unsealed butcher block, and it's just kind of gross to prep food on, so I'm pumped to have the stainless steel. We purchased it from Crate and Barrel I picked up this color, if they had it in gloss I could have skipped the clear coat, but I wanted it shiny! The hubster dragged out my mixer, and eww, I'm gross, I know. I didn't get the bits off the last

Using Egocentrism to Your Advantage

Egocentrism: having or regarding the self or the individual as the center of all things: an  egocentric  philosophy that ignores social causes. having little or no regard for interests, beliefs, or attitudes other than one's own; self-centered: an  egocentric  person;  egocentric  demands upon the time and patience of others  ( If I were to ask my students what the connotation is of this word, they would more than likely say it is negative, but my mission is to turn this into a positive! We all know about this. We've taken Educational Psychology, right? Erikson's Psychosocial Stages of Development points it out clearly. At the adolescent age, teens are all about themselves, and that's normal! Adolescence (12 to 18 years) Identity vs. Role Confusion Social Relationships Teens need to develop a sense of self and personal identity. Success leads to an ability to stay true to yourself, while failure leads to role co

Update on the ISN

My 7th graders have finally finished up their introductory unit, and we focused on Close Reading, Types of Questions, and Notice and Note signposts. I feel like with these "anchors" in their notebook, they can successfully conquer any text! First- how cute is this notebook?? I think it's my favorite so far this school year! Here is a student created key for close reading These are our models for Fiction and Non-Fiction. I used the first page of Hunger Games  for the fiction and an article from NewsELA for the Non-Fiction. We did these together as a class. I walked through the Types of Questions with students, and we explained each in depth. We even color coded using Green, Yellow, Red to signal that the Green are "Good to Go" and easy to find, the Yellow means "Caution: switch up your way of thinking and be aware" and the Red means "Stop and think before you answer". Students then wrote their own questions using thei

Genius Hour Update

Here's what we've been doing over the past two weeks in Genius Hour! Week #2 On Tuesday and Wednesday they did brainstorming and played with the formatting on their Weebly website. On Thursday they started formulating their Essential Questions and Proposal (I gave them a full week to work on these so that they took their time with it), and on Friday they did a Blog Post on their brainstorming and I met with students for Sacred Conference Time. I created a Google Doc that students could edit with times for Friday conferences. Originally, I had 10 minute slots, but it ended up being around 5 for each student, so I changed it to that. If students needed more time, they could sign up for two slots.  Here's an example of one of the brainstorming sheets: Week #3 Tuesday and Wednesday they wrote their proposals, using the outline I have up on Teachers Pay Teachers.  Thursday-Pitches On Thursday, students gave their pitches to the class. I have 28 studen