Tuesday, December 31, 2013

What I'm Reading Wednesday

Happy New Year's Eve! Thanks to Christmas break, I've been able to get caught up on reading - for fun! Here's a look at what I've read and started reading...

The Husband's Secret

Good Reads

I spent my entire Saturday reading and finished this book with my mouth wide open. As more secrets were uncovered, I kept gasping with pure shock. From this point on, please don't tell me any of your secrets - pretty please?

Good Reads
I am on the road traveling quite frequently, so I began Semple's book as an audio book this past Friday. Now, I find myself reading the iBooks version because I can't wait to find out more about Bernadette and those darn gnats from down the road. 

What are YOU reading over break? 

Monday, December 30, 2013

Year in Review

 Happy December 30, 2013 folks! It's hard to believe that 2013 is coming to a close so quickly. Since I've had some free time the past few days (bless you, Christmas break!) I have been having fun with social media tools.  Through #flipagram, Vizify, and Statigram, I have been reviewing my year through social media. If you're a Twitter and Instagram junkie (I mean that in the nicest way) like me, I encourage you to do the same. It's quite fun! 

Click here to watch my Vizify 2013 Twitter round up. 

#students #Chip #MIZ

Are you on Instagram, too? It's one of my favorite social media tools. I even started using it with my students! Here's a snapshot of my year on Instagram: 


Wishing you all a wonderful 2014! Here's to another great year!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Bringing DIY to my Classroom

To say that our classroom was filled with Christmas cheer this week would be a mild understatement. For one of our activities, I had my students create an ornament with their big 'ol 5th grade smile tucked inside for their families. Last year, I made a few ornaments for my own tree that you can read about here. It was fun bringing the spirit of DIY to my classroom and equally exciting having my students create a gift for a family member - now I'm just hoping that gift made it home and found its way to a tree. :)

For the project, we used a ball-shaped ornament, and a photograph to roll up and stick inside. The end result was pretty stinkin' cute. 

Stuffing the Ornaments
What holiday crafts did you complete with your students?

Happy weekend! 

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Here Comes 2014!

*** Update! Since this was posted on WeAreTeachers Facebook page (hooray!), Eve over at Science Notebooking created another version on the document swapping out the resolutions for "1" and "4". You can find her file here.  ***

The new year is approaching and today my students and I talked about our resolutions for next year. In class, we have talk tremendously about the value and purpose of goal setting - especially setting attainable goals. This was just another great exercise in setting practical and reachable goals... even for myself! 

Through Pinterest, I stumbled upon a great foldable from 2013 at Frugal in First and gave it a little facelift for 2014. (Side note: the foldable doesn't match up exactly but it's still pretty fancy!)

Download the file here from Google Drive.

Happy last few days of school!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Living in Space, Uh... I Mean 5th Grade

'Tis the most wonderful time of year because of the approaching holidays, time spent with family, and of course teaching Outer Space goodness to my 5th graders. I've decided to compile a few of my favorite resources and lessons we've had over the past few weeks. December has been an exciting month in 5th grade science!

While searching for more interactive and engaging ways to learn about the Moon, I stumbled upon The Science Penguin. To put it mildly, I'm her biggest fan. I've snagged several goodies from her Teachers Pay Teachers store and my kids are smarter for it!

Last week, after spending extensive time discussing the differences between the Earth, Sun, and Moon I was stuck on how to continue our conversation and take our thinking a step further. Thanks to one of the resources I purchased from The Science Penguin, we were sorting out characteristics of the Lunar Cycle, Tides Cycle, Earth's Revolution, and Day and Night. 

A few popular videos and songs we've discovered this year are:

A classic for the ages, Mr. Parr.... 

Throughout the unit, I've pulled my various outer space books from the nonfiction shelf. While chatting about various aspects of our universe, I have referenced pages from a few notable titles. It's been a great teachable moment on accessing nonfiction in a different way than we read fiction. I've been able to model using the index, table of contents, and whatnot to gain certain information. 

Seymour Simon

When we return from the holidays, we are moving on in science and I'll have to wait another year to teach outer space. Which means, I'll have another year to find and develop new and exciting lessons for my students. :)

Monday, December 16, 2013

Poetry in Science

It's possible! It's true! 
A few weeks ago, prior to starting our Solar System unit, I updated the display on our classroom door to a poem titled, "A Galaxy". 

I found the poem in Douglas Florian's book, "Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars" and decided it would be the perfect teaser to our new unit. The best part was watching students turn their heads and read the poem as they enter and exit the classroom.

If you're looking for a new book to add to your classroom collection, I highly recommend this one. I have read a poem daily from its pages to bring a little poetry to our science classroom. 


Comets, Stars, the Moon, & Mars: Space Paintings and Poems by Douglas Florian
Buy it here

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Providing Evidence

We just wrapped up an awesome Book Advertisement project in 5th grade. I snagged the idea from The Common Core Lesson Plan Book by Gretchen Owocki (buy it here). I took the idea of students creating an advertisement for a book and ran with it. Within the advertisement, I wanted my students to focus more on demonstrating their inferences and analysis of the book rather than a summary of what happened. 

One of the requirements for the Book Advertisement was to provide two quotes and provide evidence as to how this was important to the entire story. (This goes back to CCSS RL5.1) Needless to say, this was rather tricky for my students. Students were able to find key quotes in the story, but explaining their meaning, purpose, or importance was rather tricky. 

I knew they could tell me why it was important, but what was holding them back from writing it down?? For example, I would sit and conference with my students about the quotes chosen in the story. I would ask why this quote is important, what it means to the story as a whole, and so on.. and they would give me beautiful verbal answers! I would, often, exclaim, "YES! That's it! That's what I'm looking for!! Write that!" Then, they would put pencil to paper and look at me and say, "what do I write again?" 

Oh vey!

I began digging through the internet to find SOMETHING to help my kids get their thinking on paper. Then I stumbled upon Pencils and Pancakes blog post on providing evidence. She gave her middle school students a simple, but extremely wonderful, foldable to help them stretch their thinking. I quickly changed my lesson plans for the morning (yes this was all happening during my plan time at 8:30 AM), and gave it a-go during reading time. This graphic organizer was very powerful for my students in providing evidence and proving to myself and other readers the importance of specific quotations and parts from the story. 

To get my students started with this graphic organizer, I modeled my own thinking using our previous read aloud, "Out of My Mind". That book has come in handy quite often! It was the perfect example because all of my students were familiar with the text and could follow my think aloud. 

I'm testing out sharing documents via Google Drive (Google Docs), if you click here you can download the graphic organizer my students used to stretch their thinking.

Later this week, I'll share our Book Advertisement project!

Happy last week before the holidays!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

What I'm Reading Wednesday

Currently, I am experiencing book withdrawals. You know, when you finish a book and you aren't ready to start another one but you have the longing to be wrapped up in the story line and drama of another piece of literature. Yes, that's me right now. 

On Monday, I finished reading/listening to (I did a combo this month) "The Cuckoo's Calling" by Robert Galbraith (a.k.a. J.K. Rowling). Near the end of the story, things started escalating and I actually shouted out loud, "WHAT!"  Rowling's book follows detective Comoran Strike as he investigates the mysterious death of famous supermodel, Lula Landry. I have a sneaky feeling we might be hearing from Strike again soon. I can only hope!

 Buy it on Amazon here

In my classroom, we just wrapped up Out of My Mind and have moved on to a new pick by Gordon Korman titled, "Ungifted". We are only about 20 pages in, but the kids seem to really enjoy the story so far.

Buy it on Amazon here.  

What are YOU reading this week?
Happy Wednesday!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

What IS Life Like on the International Space Station?

Eventually I will "get over" the fact that I can't take my students on a field trip to Outer Space - not exactly in the budget this year. Until then, I will continue hunting for ways to share the excitement of space with them. I am ashamed to say that, until this year, I wasn't up to date on the missions and expeditions of the International Space Station. This year, our school has been tracking and following NASA Astronaut Mike Hopkins and his crew members of Expedition 37/38 as he lives in space until February. Mike Hopkins is an alumni of our high school and we've all been cheering for him since he departed earlier this Fall. 

This got me thinking, if we can follow Mike on Twitter - who else can we find that's in space? A few clicks later, I was uncovering several Twitter accounts of astronauts who were preparing for space travel, had been to space, or currently residing on the I.S.S. 

Earlier this week, I posed the question, "what's life like in space? What would it be like to live on the International Space Station?" We brainstormed how life would be different and started asking questions about daily routines that would change because of zero gravity. 

The goal of the day was simple: find out what life is like in space! I let my students explore Twitter accounts and reminded them to take notes so we could share at the end of class. 

Screenshot of Mac: Mike Hopkins' Twitter Page

Screenshot of Mac: @NASA_Astronauts Twitter Page
Oh, but wait.... there are VIDEOS, too. TONS of videos! Ever wonder what it is like to brush your teeth in space?

What about washing your hair in space?

What's it like to sleep in space? Do you float?

Okay, okay... I know you're wondering, what happens if you get sick?

That's only the beginning. Once I started searching for videos, I found TONS from several Expeditions on the I.S.S. Who better to teach my students about life on the I.S.S. than residents of the I.S.S.? 

We're constantly checking in our favorite astronauts through Twitter and reading their updates in our classroom. It's truly remarkable to be able to share with my students what is happening on the I.S.S. through Twitter and live feeds. AMAZING!

5th Grade Skywatchers!

Just last week, we started our Outer Space unit. We will be reaching for the stars and floating along the Milky Way until Christmas and I couldn't be happier! A friend of mine introduced me to the app "SkyView Free" for iPhone and I introduced it to my students on day during science while we were chatting about galaxies and constellations. My kids were passing around my phone spotting different constellations, satellites, International Space Station, and the Moon!

Screenshot from my iPhone After Spotting the MOON!

You can download "Google Sky Map" for Android users. 

Trust me, this app is a sure way to impress your kids. I had several of my students download the app on their own devices at home. 

Do you have any outer space apps you share with your students?

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Oh, Hello! Do You Remember Me Sweet Blog?

Don't give up on me bloggy friends. I still have a pulse and a passion for blogging and connecting with educators. Unfortunately, something had to take the back burner and it happened to be my blog.

Just checking in. Expect more from me.... soon. :)

Monday, November 4, 2013

A Glass of Warmth & Holiday Cheer

There is one drink that is sure to remind me of family and the holidays: wassail! Last night, I jumped the gun a bit and made a batch for my bf and I. It was the perfect treat on a Sunday evening. Here is the recipe my family has grown to love!

You'll Need:
  • 4 C Apple Cider
  • 1 C Orange Juice
  • 1 C Cranberry Juice
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1/2 t whole cloves
  • 1/2 t all spice
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
Make it!
  • Combine all ingredients in a crock pot or kettle of your choice. Let sugar and spices dissolve. 
  • Grab your favorite mug of the shelf and enjoy curled up under a blanket!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Jalapeno Popper Dip - MIZZOU Style!

For our Tennessee tailgate this weekend, I decided to put one of my long-lost pins to good use. On Saturday, we tested out and enjoyed Jalapeno Popper Dip. I orignally pinned this recipe from Raining Hot Coupons, you can find the original recipe here. We made a few slight modifications which you can see below:

Jalapeno Popper Dip
Original Recipe: Raining Hot Coupons

You'll Need:

  • 2 8oz packages of Light Cream Cheese
  • 1 small jar/can of jalapenos (we used some of the juice in the mixture as well)
  • 1 small can of green chiles
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
  • Planko breadcrumbs (for topping)
Make it!
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Combine and mix all ingredients except the breadcrumbs. Reserve those for the top of your dip. 
  • Pour mixture into 9x13 pan and top with breadcrumbs.
  • Bake for 20 minutes. 
  • Broil the top for 2-3 minutes until you have a nice golden brown cover on your dip. 
  • Serve with crackers, tortillas, or pita chips!
It was definitely a hit - especially when it was heated up next to a giant bowl of homemade chili. The perfect combo before a big win over the Tennessee Volunteers! Did I mention Mizzou is 7-1? Oh, and the Chiefs are 8-0? FANTASTIC!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Mapping Out an Exploration

Social studies is one of my favorite subjects to teach. Now wait, that's a bold statement! Science is equally spectacular and I love seeing students creativity come to life through their writing.... Okay, I retract my previous statement: I love it all. 

Last year, I blogged about the Explorer Trading Cards my students created. In 5th grade, we have very few standards addressing early exploration and the explorers of the new world(s). In my opinion, in order for students to understand the Revolutionary War, Westward Expansion, and the Civil War there has to be some background knowledge there. So - we still cover it, even if it is brief!

This year I decided to tweak our project and focus on map making AND exploration. In small groups, students researched one early explorer and focused on recreating a map of their journey. Some groups struggled to identify where on a map these explorers visited. It brought up great discussions of resources and geography of our Earth. 

Next week, we will briefly discuss the 13 colonies and then hop right on into the Revolutionary War. Fellow 5th grade teachers, what are YOU studying in Social Studies?

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

What I'm Reading Wednesday

Do you ever get so swept up in everything you aren't doing and can't quite find time to do that your brain starts to play ping pong? That's what is happening to me right now. So instead of dwelling on all the stress, I'm watching Full house in my cozy socks and catching up with you, readers. 

In Book Club:
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time. This was highly recommended by two friends so I suggested my book club read it as well. I'm listening to the audio version this month (it still counts!!) and I really think it's adding to the story.

In my classroom:
Out of My Mind. Once I got my students past the idea that Melody was not the fish pictured on the cover, the questions and compassion started rolling out. Haven't read it? YOU MUST.

 I'm participating in a district-wide book study on Text Complexity. We are reading the book titled, "Text Complexity". I believe, based on the title, you have figured out what this one is about. Well you're wrong! It's about a group of teachers working to solve a mystery about who stole the cookies from the cookie jar. Okay, okay... I'm kidding. It's about raising rigor in reading and the common core. I had you there for a minute though!

The Energy Bus. Talk about a real booster of energy! This book is filled with ways to encourage positivity with those around you whether its professionally or in your personal life. I've posted the "10 Rules", but it will really make sense if you read the book. Go for it, I dare you!

Have a great Thursday!
Linking up with Juice Boxes & Crayolas

Monday, October 7, 2013

6-Second Matter

What story can you tell in six seconds? I gave my students the challenge of creating a six-second Vine video filled with examples of solids, liquids, and gases. I got many shocked expressions and several "huh??" replies. Once they started brainstorming, I was very impressed with their thinking and creativity.

Have you used Vine in the classroom? Follow our classroom fun at "Miss Furnell".

Share your ideas below!

A Little Motivation

A little motivation for your Monday evening. 

I hope it lifted your spirits just like it did mine. 

Here's to Tuesday!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Crayons + Pumpkins

Fall has arrived in Missouri and I can officially not feel weird about wearing sweatpants and scarves throughout the day. Today, I had ample time to get my creative juices flowing after much neglected DIY time. 

My carving skills are inadequate, so I've jumped on the painting pumpkins bandwagon. My pinterest was filled with images of chevron and polka-dotted pumpkins and melted crayon pumpkins. I decided to give it a whirl this afternoon. 

The Finished Product

Fancy, huh? It definitely brings more color and creativity to my living room. 

Earlier this week, Chip and I decorated the front porch and took a few glamour shots. He's such a photogenic pup!

Have a great week!

P.S. Have you heard the news? The Missouri Tigers AND Kansas City Chiefs are 5-0!! Great start to the football season. MIZ!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Pop Rockin' in Science

What happens when you dump pop rocks into a bottle of soda pop? Ask one of my 5th graders and they should be able able to tell you what happens and why! Thanks to a little Pop Rocks Expander experiment from Steve Spangler (click here for more information). 

This experiment was the perfect addition to our Matter unit and after our inquiry, it left students asking questions about why different flavors had different effects on the pop. Today we are continuing our thinking on physical changes and melting ice cubes with blow dryers. Cross your fingers I don't blow a breaker! No, really... cross your fingers. 

Sacrificed in the name of SCIENCE

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

How do Text Features Help Me?

'Twas the question of the day! err.. I mean, yesterday. 

Before we dive into actually using text features as a resource when reading informational text, I felt it was important to refresh our memories on the different types of features. To do this, my students created their own anchor charts in small groups with examples of text features snipped from magazines. 

First, we compiled a list of the features we already knew - which was quite a bit! Then, with prompting, we generated a decent list of features. After tossing around dozens of magazines, I sent students on their merry way to cut, snip, and glue examples of text features. 

To start our reading block today, small groups shared their posters with the whole group. Now, our posters are hanging in the wall for all to see - and to gain a bit of refresher before reading their informational text. 

What tricks do you have up your sleeve for text features? Share with me!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

SCIENCE RULES! Making Lava Lamps

Our Friday was rather exciting in Science because we made our own lava lamps. I'm sure parents and bus drivers were turning their heads when several kids were walking out the door with water bottles filled with colorful liquid. A great conversation starter if you ask me! 

Last year, a fellow 5th grade teacher created lava lamps with her students and had the best time doing so. I didn't want my kids to miss out on this experience, so I knew I wanted to add it to my scientific method lesson plans. What a great way to hook kids onto science experiments!

Here's how we made our lava lamps:
  1. Fill an empty water bottle 1/2 - 3/4 full of vegetable oil.
  2. Add 10 drops of food coloring to the oil.
  3. Fill the rest of the bottle with water - leave room at the top of the bottle in case it overflows. Yes, I speak from experience!
  4. Break an antacid tablet into tiny pieces and drop into the bottle. 
  5. Watch for the reaction!

I couldn't help it - I even made a Vine video during the madness. Do you Vine in the classroom? I'd love to hear about it!

It was an awesome experiment and perfect way to end the week. 


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Teaching Like a Pirate!

I know for a fact I am not the only teacher out there obsessed with Dave Burgess' book, "Teach Like a Pirate". It captivated me this summer and I encouraged several of my coworkers to read it as well. We are constantly swapping pirate-like ideas and love speaking out Burgess' book like he is an old friend. If for some reason you haven't jumped on the Pirate bandwagon - now is your chance! 

Hop to it!

Fresh Out of the Amazon Package!
In the book, Burgess walks teachers through his first three days of school. One of the activities he does with his new students is with play-doh. He gives each of his (high school!!) students play-doh and asks them to create something that describes them. While students are making play-doh creations, he walks around the room getting to know the students on a personal level. 

As soon as I read this idea, I knew I had to try it with my class - plus, who doesn't love play-doh? One afternoon, I passed out play-doh and gave the students the challenge of creating something with the 'doh about themselves. As I moved around the room, I witnessed a variety of objects being created. I had softballs, flowers, bow and arrows, high heels, horseshoes, and so on. It also gave me time to ask students why they were creating what they were. What that bow and arrow or softball meant to them - it was an excellent time to really get to know my kids. 

A Horseshoe for the Horse Lover

How do you get to know your students at the beginning of school? Do share!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Classroom Blueprints

We are starting the fifth week of fifth grade and I am just now blogging about our first week activities! Oops, I guess with the start of a new school year something had to take the back burner and my poor little blog was the one that got tossed. 

Thanks to an inspirational blog post by a teacher blogger, I decided to have my students draw blueprints for the tables and chairs in the classroom. (I could have let them move the bookshelves...but I stuck with just tables!) 

In small groups, students collaborated on a set up for our classroom. They had to agree upon a layout for our five tables. My only request was for there to be at least four chairs at each table. Once groups were finished with their blueprint, it was hung on the board for class voting. 

To end the activity, students walked around the room and added a tally mark to the layout they liked the best. It was a really fun activity, and I was quite impressed with the table arrangements my kids came up with - very creative use of space! 

Happy Monday! 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

French Connection Opportunity!


Earlier this week, a teacher of 9-10 year old children reached out to me with an opportunity to exchange post cards. I was THRILLED when I saw her email and thought of the amazing opportunities this was for my 5th graders. How exciting to be receiving post cards from France! 

In her email, she mentioned that she has reached out to several teachers and heard from little in response. Her goal is for her students (pupils as she called them) would like to receive a post card from all 50 states. She found us in Missouri and I've made it my mission to help these students out in France. They should have postcards filling their mailbox daily! 

Will you help them? 

Email me at [jordon.furnell@gmail.com] if you wish to connect with eager students in France. Imagine the possibilities for your students! Once you've emailed me, I will pass along the teacher's name and email for you to exchange information. I'm simply the messenger. :)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

What is a Scientist?

There are very few careers where wearing a wig and causing a ruckus is acceptable from time to time. Thankfully, I've got the kind of job that supports my wacky ideas and wig purchasing obsession. If you've been a follower of my blog, you may remember about my Isaac Newton experience here. At first, many thought George Washington was wandering the halls but I quickly informed all that I was Isaac Newton. 

Fast forward to today: I decided to dress up like a mad scientist to play on the stereotype of a "scientist". As one of our beginning lessons in science, we ask the question, "What is a scientist?" The students draw a picture of their mental image of a scientist and then we share the responses. MOST of the time, students are drawing pictures of wild looking individuals in laboratories blowing things up. I'll admit, I participated in this lesson in college as an undergrad.... and I drew the same thing. 

Today I decided to really play up that stereotype and perform it live. My little show involved kool-aid and alka-seltzer tablets as well. There was red foamy water overflowing everywhere! Before Professor Magnifying Glass ran out of the room screaming about an invention (after climbing on tables), "he" gave the assignment to draw a picture of a scientist in their notebooks.

Professor Magnifying Glass

When I returned to the room a minute later, I instructed the students to draw their mental image of a scientist. Yes, many of them were thinking of Professor Magnifying Glass! After students had time to draw, we met on the carpet and started talking about our sketches. 

Next, we started listing other careers and fields where scientists work - hey! It turns out, we're all scientists in 5th grade as well. Several students were explaining how their parents and family members use science on a daily basis as well. 

Tomorrow we'll continue our discussion about scientists and spend the next two days talking about Galileo and Newton. I think I'll leave the wig in the drawer tomorrow. :)

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Back to School - Setting Goals!

Wow! The first week went by so quickly. By Friday I felt like we were getting into a groove for the school year and my new crew was coming out of their shells. We even had several moments of dancing as a group. Talk about a good week! 

The entire week was devoted to getting to know each other as a classroom community and becoming one big happy family. An activity we did involved goal setting and decorating pennants. I can thank my wonderful friend/coworker for giving me an idea on how to get us started thinking about goals. Here's how the activity played out:

My entire class is standing in the grass on the playground in a straight (horizontal) line. I looked at them and said, "Are you ready?" I got blank stares. I said, "Are you READY???" Then I said, "GO!" No one moved. I said.. "GO!" I heard several confused responses from my class like, "huh?" "where?" "are you serious?". Then I said, "RUN!"

Next thing you know my kids are running all over the place. No one had any idea where to go, when to stop, or if they could start playing kickball. It was quite the mess of 5th grade confusion. I rallied everyone back to the grass and gave them a goal. I said, "Run to the soccer net!" My kids took off running with an end result in mind. Once everyone made it to the net, we began having a conversation about the purpose of setting goals, how we can help one another achieve our goals, and how we all reach goals at different times - and that's okay folks! 

After our chat, I instructed students to come up with two goals for themselves academically.  Each student was given a pennant (that I modeled after one I saw in a magazine and recreated on Word). The pennant was to be decorated to their liking, have two goals written, and their picture would be placed in the circle. 

All the pennants are done and goals are set.  Now they are proudly on display in our classroom. (Side note, another goal of mine this year was to incorporate more student photos around the room. I think this will add to the ownership factor of our classroom. It's their home away from home, might as well feel like it!)

How was your first week? Hopefully wonderfully! Share your fun ideas with me as well. 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Back to School!

My morning started at 7:00 blasting "It's a Great Day to Be Alive" by Travis Tritt. The lyrics of that song rang true all day long (except the growing a beard part...and the rice in the microwave... oh, and that tattoo. I suppose it's more of the message of the song that rang true. hah!) and I'm still on cloud nine after meeting my new students today. I had several former students come in and visit too - I was handing out hugs left and right!

This year will begin my fourth year of teaching and I'm still as giddy and excited as day one. I think that's a good sign! It's going to be a great year. I can feel it. 

C'mon in, folks! It's time for another year! 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Nuts & Bolts of 5th Grade

Bulletin boards are one of my favorite parts of preparing my classroom for the school year. I spend, way way way, too much time sketching out my ideas and pinning pictures of what inspires me. 

If you're a follower of my blog, you may have read about my Reading Graffiti board here. On black butcher paper, my students pulled favorite quotes from their personal books and wrote them on our class graffiti board. At the end of the year, we had compiled incredible quotes from many different genres of books. To start the year, I am going to use the same graffiti concept except begin with student's pictures instead of quotations. On the first day of school, I will photograph all of my students and print the pictures. Once I have the pictures printed, I'll stick them on our "Nuts & Bolts" bulletin board. I will give each students a metallic sharpie and let them write their name and write a little tid-bit about themselves on the board. Viola! We have our bulletin board full of cute faces and smiles. 

Pardon the crease. :)
What bulletin boards do you have planned? Do share!

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