Friday, May 31, 2013

Five for Friday, Big News and My June Goals

I'm linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching's Five for Friday for the first time! Of course I've seen lots of others link up before, but I've just never had 5 things to talk about before I guess!

So, here we go with #1!

We've been popping a balloon each day with a couple of surprises inside for the next day. This week we had a PJ day, a Rock, Paper, Scissors Tournament, played some minute to win it games, wrote thank you notes to support staff, had lunch outside, made balloon rockets, and a few other fun things. The kids are excited, and popping a balloon before we leave each day requires "excellent behavior" for that day.

And, #2!

My kids having been wrapping up what I call their "Personal Passion Projects." It's our multi-genre culminating writing project. I have the kids pick a "people problem" and then make a 'zine about their topic. They have time to research and complete control over the topic as long as it is a "people problem." They make some pretty killer end-products, and their presentations about their 'zines are usually pretty awesome too. My kids this year have chosen topics like dog fighting, breast cancer, frakking, modern slave labor, etc. 

Here's a freebie copy of the rubric I give them. Most of the kids are so excited about their topic that they go overboard and work on it at home as much as at school!


A Bird in Hand Blog Design
I decided to take this ol' blog up a notch! I have been pretty proud of my patchwork self-made blog design that I've had going on here for the last couple months, but I think it is time for an upgrade! So I've sought the help of A Bird in Hand Blog Designs! Many of my favorite blogs have been designed by her, so I'm going to challenge her with designing a blog for a man (who's only kind of manly) that teaches elementary! I'm on the list for an upgrade in mid-June! I can hardly wait!

A linky within a linky for #4!

I'm linking up with I {heart} Recess for her June Goals linky!
Here are my goals!

And the BIG one for #5!

An opening appeared in our school for an intermediate teacher, and I put in my request for it a while back. My principal has honored my request to change grade levels! 

I'll be moving to a 3rd and 4th grade multi-age class next year! I got to meet next year's 3rd graders today!

Before moving to 5th grade last year to fill the spot of a teacher who moved, I had previously taught K, 1st and 2nd for the previous ten years. 5th grade has its charms, but my heart is with the younger grades. I think 3/4 will be a really great fit for me and the science and social studies units we teach in intermediate here are awesome. The units change every other year. Next year we'll be teaching Africa, Japan and Festival of the Arts for Social Studies. Ecosystems, Air/Weather/Aviation, and Energy and Electricity will make up Science! I taught a Japan unit for years in GA as part of 2nd grade and I think it is probably my favorite unit ever.

I am beyond excited about the move. Learning two grade levels worth of curriculum and teaching two grades at the same time will be interesting, but I taught a 1st/2nd multi-age class for the 5 years before I moved to 5th so I know I can handle it. 

So now I need to go find about a hundred boxes to pack up my classroom, AND I get to dig through my spare bedroom and pick out all of the things from my 2nd grade boxes that I think I will be able to use with my thirdies! 

So, any exciting changes coming for the rest of you out there?

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Tried it Tuesday and What I'll do differently!


I've got two this time!

So, I've tried the old shaving cream on the desk routine before, but not with 5th graders until today. 

 As I somewhat anticipated, some of the kids took it a step further than they needed to. Before I knew it these three had smeared the shaving cream all over their faces to make beards. Usually I'd cover my kids' faces on here, but that would have defeated the purpose of this picture, so I got permission for this one. The kiddo in the middle told me he was Santa Claus and that "he sees me when I'm sleeping." It cracked me up so much because it was SUPER creepy when he said it and he wasn't trying to be creepy

So, my second one is my Human Body Systems lapbook activity. The kids have been studying the human body for the last few weeks and we've been keeping KLEW charts inside the flaps. 

We learn about a new system every couple days. I've been doing a series of cool experiments, watching Brainpop clips, reading informational texts, and of course having class discussions to go along with the lapbooks.  The kids have learned a lot and have come up with a lot of great wonderings. I think the best part of the lapbook has been that they've got a place to record their wonderings.

Find the lapbook in my TpT store:

Finally, I'm linking up with the brand new "What will you do differently?" linky from joyin6th

I was a little late to the party when it comes to using task cards in my classroom, I think. Though I think I'm the only teacher in my school who uses them. Reading a thousand blogs has its advantages I suppose! I've blogged before about how I've used task cards to great effect since I learned about them, and I'm looking forward to making a set of them for all of the math units I'll be teaching next year. I want to use them throughout the year as part of my math workshop. They make a great independent center.

In other unrelated life news, I'm officially down 17 pounds since I started trying to lose weight 6 weeks or so ago! I'm pretty excited. It's crazy how I don't even crave or want some of the bad foods that I used to snack on with reckless abandon. I'm looking to make even more progress over the summer!

I've also got a bunch of great TpT products in the works that I'm super excited about. One of the big ones is one I'm working on collaboratively with my brother! He's a high school English teacher in GA, and also happens to be an awesome artist. I've told him all about the unexpected success I've seen with my TpT store and he has decided to set one up himself  for his secondary lit resources and to start working on clip art! The stuff he's made me for my current project is just ridiculously good and I see lots of cha-chings in his future as a clip artist. 

Whelp, 9 days of school to go! Still trying not to be too jealous as I read everyone else's posts about summer!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Social Studies Mentor Text Linky

I know, two posts in a day is taboo...but they're both short ones!

I'm linking up with Collaboration Cuties' Mentor Text Memo Linky. This week they're looking at historical fiction texts. 

When I was a kid the biggest fad in books were these fun and weird "Choose your own adventure" books. I think I must have read 30 or 40 of them. I still have some in my classroom now! I loved reading through and seeing all the different endings. 

Well, some smart people have taken this idea and applied it to historical fiction! 

I read this one on Colonial America to my kids earlier this year and they loved it. I have several books from the series. Each book comes with 3 or 4 different stories from that era. They have these books for everything from Ancient Egypt to the Titanic. 

Usually the kids beg me to "go back in time" and read the story over again from the last choice...just like I did as a kid. 

The stories in the books are interesting, accessible, and historically accurate. I'll definitely be looking to add more of these to my library in the future. 

Check out some of the other books in the linky! I see some of my other favorites there already!

Helping Moore, OK

I know a lot of you out there have already hit up the ridiculously good deal over at Teacher's Notebook, but in case in you haven't yet, you should! I have been going through and downloading just the 3rd-5th grade stuff that has been donated and it is truly amazing how much good stuff there is. Of course, that's the bonus to the fact that you'll be helping to assuage some of the devastation in OK with your monetary donation. 

I started selling on TpT in earnest on March 1st of this year, and I have to say that I am thrilled with how successful my store has become. I had no idea how it would work out, so I feel truly blessed. In an effort to do a little more and offer up something in exchange for donations, I'm putting my 10 Math Games for $10 bundle into a mix of bundles that people will be donating the profits from on Monday, Memorial Day. To make it easier I'm going to cover TpT's cut too and just donate $10 for each one sold to The Red Cross. 

While I was checking out Teacher's Notebook I decided to go ahead and start a shop there. I've only put a couple items up there now, but I think I'll add more. I have to admit, I'm kind of partial to Teachers pay teachers, myself. But I know some people prefer TN, so any Math Bundle sales from there on Monday will go towards my donation as well!

I'll be back this week to share some of the fun things we're doing for the last 10 days of school! We've still got lots of learning and fun ahead of us!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Workshop Wednesday - Reading Response

I'm linking up with Workshop Wednesday from Ideas by Jivey again! This week's topic is how we get our kids to respond to their reading.

One of the big things I do is have my kids keep a reading response journal that they must write to me in each and every week. In fact, we count it as part of their "Write about Reading" during our Daily 5 rotations.

A rubric is included for the kids to make sure that they include everything they should. I ask them to briefly summarize their reading in one paragraph and then write two more paragraphs that include a thoughtful response. The kids have a ton of options to include in their response, and the most common ones are included in a list on the other side of their rubric. 

I read, score (using the rubric) and respond to each of the letters each week. This can be time consuming, but I really value doing it. It's almost like having another reading conference with the kids. I learn a lot about their understanding by reading what they've written, and it often gives me ideas about what to talk about with them during their next conference. 

I compiled my reading response journal materials in this handy packet that's available on my TpT store! Check it out!

Jivey may have had her last day of school, (I'm making my jealous eyes even though you can't see them) but I've got 13 days to go!

I try to make the last bit of school bearable for myself and the kids by doing a little something fun each day. We've been using my 32 End of Year Activities to help do that. I do the tried and true "hang balloons from the ceiling with an activity inside" for each of the last days of school. I'll be posting about some of the fun activities we're doing in the next couple weeks!

Check out my activity cards in my store! Just a buck!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Grants, and uncomfortable parent night, and clovers, oh my! Plus a "squach" for fun.

 Our school has been awarded 3 grants this month! 

The first is money that will allow our school to continue our inquiry into expanding our inclusive practices as part of our Membership, Participation and Learning initiative. I wrote in detail about MPL in a previous post. It truly has been a great thing for our kids, and I'm excited that our school will be expanding it into 3rd and 4th grade next year. 

The second grant is one I wrote to participate in a program called "PA Trout in the Classroom." As part of the program I will be outfitted with a HUGE 60 gallon aquarium and all the materials to insulate and keep it chilled so that I can raise trout right in my room. The trout eggs will arrive this October and will hatch (hopefully!) and then be released into the wild once they reach a certain size. I think it'll be a great chance for the kids to see a life cycle in action.

I didn't have anything to do with the 3rd grant, but it is really cool. Our school has been donated 20 bicycles so that the PE teacher can teach bicycle safety to kids as part of PE! Also, we got a visit from a pro BMX X Games winner, Jamie Bestwick! Here's a picture of him right before he jumped his bike over our principal and two teachers!

On another note, in my district we teach a Human Body unit in science in 5th grade. As a part of the unit we teach the reproductive system...and are required to hold a parent night where  we show the materials we use (all over 20 years old), and answer parent questions. It's always a kind of awkward evening. Most of the parents wish we were allowed to teach more than we are. We have to inform them that we pretty much just name the parts. No talk of safe sex, STDs, etc. is allowed in school, so it's on the parents to teach that. I'm glad to have the parent night over for this year!

Before the parent night tonight I accompanied Killer B while she took our younger German Shepherd tracking. Tracking is just one aspect of the sport she does with the dogs. And unfortunately, it's kind of the most boring. While I followed along I was looking at the ground and was pretty psyched to find this 5-leaf clover!

Well, that was just the tip of the iceberg. As I walked along I ended up finding another 10 four leaf clovers. All within a 30 minute span of time! Too bad some joker already won that $600 million powerball! Dang it. I tape all the 4 leaf clovers I find to preserve them. Up until today I only had 4 that I keep in my wallet. Some of these are too big for that. I'll have to find a place to keep them. Maybe this means something good will happen soon.

And just for the heck of it, here's a random Sasquatch statue Killer B and I came across out in mid-western Pennsylvania this past Saturday! To give you an idea of how big it is, I'm 6'1" tall.

I know everyone's hearts are heavy with the news from Oklahoma these past couple of days. Hopefully this post brought some levity. Our prayers are definitely with the people struggling with this disaster, and I hope yours will be too.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Budding Blog Linky

I figured I'd jump on ( a little late) to this linky from I Heart Recess for those of us with less than 200 followers. (Getting close to 100 though! Woohoo!)

For this one I just answer four questions, so here goes!

1. Why did you start blogging?

I've been reading teaching blogs for YEARS now. When I got moved to 5th grade last year I ramped up my reading because I added a slew of upper grades blogs to my rotation. I've always thought about writing a blog myself but figured no one would be interested. My lovely wife, Killer B, convinced me to give it a try. So I jumped in! I have a lot of fun blogging and as a bonus...people actually do read it! It's great to know there are other teachers out there addicted to reading teaching blogs.

2. What is your favorite subject to teach and why?

I love teaching Reading and Language Arts. I love children's literature and am a collector of books. I read (not counting blogs) for at least an hour a night. When I'm not able to read I get cranky. I love getting kids to dig deep into the books they read. I love talking with kids about their reading and the thoughts the books make them have. Nothing is better to me than making a class laugh or cry with a read aloud. And when I can help kids craft a piece of writing (often by using a mentor text) that makes you say "wow," it just makes me feel like I've accomplished something.

3. Describe your teaching style.

I'm a big believer in the workshop model. I teach reading, writing, and math through the workshop model. I love mini-lessons. I love teachable moments. I believe in high expectations for my kids' work AND for their behavior. Setting non-negotiable, enforced expectations for behavior early is really the key to successful teaching. That being said, as long as kids are respecting each other and the adults in the school, I'm super laid back and fun. Kids learn best when they feel safe and are engaged. I believe in knowing my students as people and letting them know me as a person. Finally, I'm a planner. I believe that it is our duty as teachers to be well planned and well prepared ahead of time. Flexibility is important...but barring outside forces I can account for every minute of my next school week at least a week in advance.

4. Give three interesting facts about you.

Hmm...not sure if I've blogged about these before or not but here goes:
1) I've read EVERY single appearance of Spider-Man in a comic book. That's every issue since he was created up until the comics that came out last Wednesday.
2) I've been married to a woman who is out of my league (but doesn't realize it, thank goodness!) for 5 lucky years!
3) I'm an avid organic gardener. Tomorrow is planting day for a bunch of stuff too!

5. Do you have a TpT store? If yes, post the link :)

Yep! My widget is on the right side, but here's the link too!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Let's get acquainted - Why I teach...

I'm linking up to Flying into First Grade's linky again! This post gets a bit heavy, FYI. This time there are three questions to answer:

1.  What made you decide to become a teacher?
2. What has been your most rewarding experience as a teacher?
3. If you were not a teacher, what would you be?

1.) This first one is something I don't always share with my colleagues, though some have heard about it. I had a very different upbringing than your average American white guy. I grew up in a neighborhood and went to an elementary, middle, and high school where I was the minority in the school. My schools were not the best funded, my teachers weren't that great, the area the schools were in weren't great, etc. I experienced a LOT of "reverse discrimination" growing up. I had teachers that insisted on calling me "Mr. So-and-so" while they called everyone else by their first names. If I achieved in elementary school I was accused of "showing off." My parents were once called in for a parent-teacher conference because I was reading too much. I was resented for being in the gifted program. I think it's safe to say that I never had a teacher that was truly inspiring. There is no teacher from my schooling that I can look back on and use as a role model. I had plenty of the opposite though...

I once had a high school teacher who awarded me eight zeros in her grade book in one day of school. 1 for reading ahead in the book, 1 for asking a neighbor for a pencil, 1 for not coming to class prepared (no pencil), 1 for failing the pop quiz (because I couldn't take it without a pencil of course), 1 for talking back when I tried to explain about the pencil, etc. Of course the real reason was that I was white. I transferred out of her class that day thank goodness.

Daily life in high school was only made tolerable by my two best friends. I got into fights regularly, not because I wanted to...because I was defending myself. My sophomore year some other students locked one of the only decent teachers in the school in her portable classroom and set it on fire. She was pregnant. She got out, but she quit that day. Later that year when the police and firemen were called to help calm a riot that had broken out, several policemen were put in the hospital and all the windows of the firetruck were busted out. I locked myself in the armory of my school's ROTC building with the rifles we used for marksmanship practice. 

5 minutes after arriving to my Senior prom I was in a surprise fist fight because my date wasn't white. The teachers came over and kicked me out (but not the students who assaulted me). I'll never forget my English teacher looking me in the eye and telling me that I didn't belong there. The same students tried to fight with me at my graduation. The police had to be called. I was my school's STAR student (highest SAT score) and was supposed to give a speech at the ceremony but that same English teacher skipped right over me that day.

I managed to graduate high school with higher than a 4.0 (thanks to straight A's and the bonuses from the 8 AP classes on my record), the highest SAT score in the school, and several full ride scholarships. I can honestly, and unfortunately, say that none of that had anything to do with my teachers. I consider having accomplished those things despite my teachers. And THAT is why I became one despite many people in my family begging me not to. I wanted to be a good teacher. I wanted the kids in my future classrooms to never feel the way I had to feel. I wanted school to be a place of safety and tolerance.

2.) That brings me to the second question. My greatest achievement has to be that every year I strive to make my classroom be exactly what I wanted when I was a kid. A place where you can be appreciated for your gifts, no matter what they are and no matter what package they come in. A place where kids are valued and respected regardless of their differences. A place where kids take all that for granted.

3.) I know this is cliched. But I honestly don't know what I would WANT to do if I weren't teaching. Like I mentioned, I was in ROTC in school and had the opportunity to pursue marksmanship as a career. One of the scholarships I mentioned would have required me to go into the Army as a second luitenant upon graduation with my B.S. I would then have likely shot for the Army's marksmanship team as my job. I was good at shooting, but it isn't a passion of mine. Still, I considered it for a brief moment back in high school. I suppose if I weren't teaching I'd be doing that. 

Choosing teaching was one of the best decisions I've ever made!

Anyway, if you stuck around this long...thanks! Sorry to get heavy there for a while. Reading back through this it kind of comes off as a sob story. But those were the facts of my life! 

The good news is that once I had decided on teaching and made my way to college I had a much more normal life! Well, as normal a life as a man who regularly gets accidentally called "Mom" can have at least!  ;)

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Spark Student Motivation and Easy Skill Assessment

I've seen a lot of good ideas and a lot of good reminders of things I've done before but haven't done lately through this linky from Head Over Heels for Teaching

I figured I'd share a quick one myself!

Mine involves the use of multi-link cubes. When I can tell that the kids need a brain break or if I need to quiz my kids on a particular skill, then I play a game with them. For example, maybe I pass out the judy clocks and give them an elapsed time problem. They write the answer on a marker board (or right on the desk!) I quickly walk around the room and check for correct answers, if the student is correct they get a cube. I often have them put up a trifolder "office" to keep their answers private.

I usually make it through about 10 problems or so. The kids love collecting the cubes and building with them, and it keeps them focused on the questions I'm asking so they can get a new cube to build with. 

The best part of it all is that often I'll play this game right before lunch or specials and ask the kids to just leave their cube structures on their desks. Then when they're out of the room I can walk around with a list of my kids' names and mark the numbers of cubes they received. If I asked 10 questions and a kid has 9 out of 10 possible cubes then that let's me know that he gets elapsed time problems with 90% accuracy. It really helps me notice when a certain kid doesn't get a certain concept. And if I were the quantitative data collecting, grade giving type then I would have just collected a grade for the gradebook for each kiddo too! (We don't really give grades in my school.)

If everybody gets a cube, we move on. If a decent number miss a cube then I get a kiddo to explain how they got their answer. Sometimes I make the questions get progressively more difficult.

When playing with a group of kids that has some students in it that might not do so well I'm sure to be somewhat stealthy when I award the cubes. I've also started every kid with a small pile of cubes (I pick one color for this) and then disregard those cubes when it's time to use the cubes to assess their understanding.

I've played this game with my 1st/2nd multi-age class and I've played it with my 5th graders. Both groups have loved it. Better than doing a worksheet for sure! With the 5th graders I've been known to pass out two cubes for every right answer, just because they like having more cubes to build with. I've done it with a lot of skills that need to be practiced...time, greater than/less than, counting money, calculator usage, finding words in a dictionary, spelling tests, etc.

Another option in place of the multi-link cubes is to pass out pattern blocks for the kids to make symmetrical 'flower' designs with.

Check out the other great ideas in the linky!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Feeling Appreciated!

I arrived this morning to find this cool banner hanging outside my classroom! I was so excited that it was green because that's my favorite color...then I started to notice that the other teachers' banners were their favorite colors too. That's when I remembered one of my kiddos randomly asking me about two weeks ago what my favorite color was! 

Those sneaky PTO parents had really put some effort into making sure that every teacher got a banner that was special to them. 

I also found this vase of carnations with a pile of notes from my kids telling me that I'm an "awesome teacher" etc. It's amazing what a little felt and a few flowers can do for your disposition! 

The free tacos at lunch didn't hurt anyone's mood either! It was really nice to feel appreciated. It definitely served as a good reminder as to why we moved here. Teacher appreciation wasn't really a priority at other schools I've worked at. 

After working 8 years in a pretty disadvantaged area in a school system that was too big to support all of its schools, where portable classrooms were the norm and I had to commute 45 minutes both ways...I finally moved to PA with my wife. 

I've worked happily for my last 5 years in my small university town school district. It amazed me when my new colleagues complained about how there weren't enough books in the book closet (I couldn't believe they HAD a book closet!) I couldn't believe we didn't have copier limits, had people to make our copies and laminate for us, had paras in classrooms other than Kindergarten, could attain tenure(which you can't do in GA), most of my kids have parents who actually care, etc. 

Over the last 5 years I've definitely started to take some of those things for granted. So in the end...being appreciated at school has actually just made me appreciate everything I have in my school.

I hope everyone else out there feels appreciated too! Felt banners or not, I know that your students appreciate all you do!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Teachers Pay Teachers Sale!

So, I know a lot of people have already heard from other places, but JUST in case I figured I'd let everyone know about the sale going on Tuesday and Wednesday over at TpT! I have my entire store on sale at 20% off, and then you can throw in the Promo Code "TAD13" to get 10% off after the 20% off I gave you is taken away! That's where the 28% off comes from! 

This is my first official sale, so I guess we'll see how it goes! If you haven't picked up your Wonder Novel Unit yet...what are you waiting for?! Grab it starting at midnight tonight!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

May Currently and Tweet Board pic!

I'm linking up to Oh' Boy 4th Grade's Currently Linky! Click the image to visit her blog!

Listening - I've been working my way through the entire series of Scrubs seasons on Netflix. I usually put it on in the background while I'm working on my computer. I never watched it on TV, but it's a pretty funny show. I switch it up with Eureka now and then too.

Loving - In my school we group the kids for math, and on my team I teach the students who typically work at a slower pace and struggle with math. I love helping these kids, but sometimes their level of participation is a bit low, and admittedly it can be draining sometimes. We have decided to switch back to teaching our homeroom kids for the last 6 weeks of school though, and this past week I was able to do my math workshop with my homeroom kids for the first time. They LOVED it, and the mix of kids was really nice. I'm able to differentiate with the groups, so it still works for the different levels. Math just seems to fly by now for both me and the kids.

Thinking - I've got a decent list going for fun, quick and cheap ideas to do with the kids but am still looking for more!

Wanting - I feel like the household chores are really piling up and not all getting done! Now that the grass is growing, we've planted our garden and it's nice enough to go outside, it seems like there are more chores than usual and less time to get them all done!

Needing - I've been working on a Human Body lap book for my upcoming science unit that is almost done, and I've been writing a novel unit for a fun book called Fake Mustache by Tom Angelberger that is nearly complete!

Summer Bucket List - I've got a big list of things to do this summer, but one of the biggest is our upcoming trip to Savannah, GA and Tybee Island, GA. It's our favorite vacation spot, and I'm looking forward to some stress free relaxation!

I had a request to share the Tweet Something Sweet board in my room. I heard about this idea from a teacher in my school, and thought it was perfect for this blackboard in the back of my room that I never use. The kids can take one of the bird cut-outs and write a "tweet" on it whenever they'd like to compliment a classmate. We wipe the board clean every once in a while and the kids get to take their tweets home. Here's what it looks like:

The birds add a bit of color to what would otherwise be a big unused black rectangle on the wall. It's so great to see the kids light up when they notice a new tweet under their name!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

My newest love...task cards!

I've been reading a lot about task cards lately, and have seen a lot of them on TpT, so I decided to try them out in my room. Admittedly, at first I didn't really get it. It just seemed like they were a worksheet broken up into a bunch of cards. In the end I realized they can be more than that. 

I am currently teaching my ratio, unit rates, proportion and scale math unit. This is one of those skill sets that kind of just need to be practiced a lot for kids to get them. I took some time to make a set of 40 cards, ten for each of the skills. Each day this week during my math workshop the independent practice group has been working on the task cards. To make them more engaging I spread them throughout the room for kids to find. 

The kids really seemed to have a great time finding the cards and solving them. I asked the kids for their honest feedback after the first day of using them and they pretty much unanimously said that they really liked how they only had to focus on one problem at a time and didn't have to sit at their desk working independently for that center.

This activity paired with doing fun things at the "Teacher Center" like M&M ratios and baking cookies (we gave the students a recipe for one cookie and they needed to figure out to make cookies for 24 people), really has made math time fly by this week!

I'll definitely be using task cards again. As many other teachers have discovered, they could be used in pretty much any subject area. I'll be posting my Ratio set of 40 cards on my TpT store at some point this weekend! EDIT: I got productive and posted them! Here they are!

Have any of you used task cards yet? What do you like about them? Not like? 

I know a lot of you out there are getting ready for summer vacation...NOT ME! We go to school til June 11th, so we still have loads of school to go. For the last 20 days of school I like to do fun things with the kids each day for just a few minutes. Sidewalk chalk, rock-paper-scissors tournament, etc. What fun & free ideas have you got?
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