Converting percents and decimals is easy as PIE… especially around Thanksgiving! But seriously, practice makes perfect. For me as a young student, this was just something that eventually clicked one day; the more practice, the better. Here’s a page of practice with equivalent percents and decimals with a Thanksgiving theme.
Here’s a simple idea that one reader submitted. Cut out a bunch of paper fall leaves (or any seasonal shape, like snowflakes for winter, hearts for Valentine’s Day, etc.) and laminate them. Then attach a magnet to the back.
Then put an array up on your white board. Ask your students what equation is depicted. There will be more than one way to write the equation.
Then discuss the answers as a class. For younger grades, the answer could be “4+4+4 = 12″ or +3+3+3+3=12″, but for upper grades the answer could also include “4×3=12″ or “3×4=12″.This would make a great warm up for math lessons. Have any great ideas for building number sense? Send them to me at squareheadteachers at gmail dot com. :-)
A friend of mine recently did a recipe writing project with her second graders. (Other teachers do a sequence writing piece about making a sandwich.) She asked me to make a simple printable that they could use to “publish” their writing projects. Here’s what I came up with:
The kids each drew their own face on the printable and then cut it out. Afterwards, they traced and cut out their hands so it would look like the paper chef was holding their writing project. This made for an ADORABLE project!
Piles and clutter drive me crazy (in my classroom and my home)! And it’s not just physical clutter that I can’t stand. Visual clutter also bugs me. Here’s a super easy trick to hide stuff and minimize the visual clutter in your classroom.
Use panel curtains and a tension rod to hide sections of a bookcase and other areas. But more important than addressing my pet peeve, these curtains minimize the distractions in your classroom. If every inch of your classroom has multiple colors, shapes and patterns in view, your students will have a harder time concentrating on what you’re saying and showing them. I recommend choosing a solid color or light pattern for your fabric. It doesn’t have to be boring white, but it shouldn’t be super eye-catchy. While it’s pretty trendy right now to pick a bright color scheme and use it in every pattern possible all over your room, think about what it does to your students who already have a harder time focusing. Kids only have so much focusing power in them, so help the focus on what’s really important (which probably isn’t your cute color scheme). :-)
How have you minimized the visual clutter in your classroom? Send me a picture (squareheadteachers at gmail dot com) and I’ll post it here to share with other teachers. Thank you!
I’ve heard all kinds of debate about whether to name leveled groups using colors, animals, etc. One year, my guided reading groups were all animals, which I didn’t think would be a problem. But I had a fellow teacher criticize my naming of groups because “6th graders are too old for animal groups.”
A friend showed me this idea that I really like. The reading groups were named after pets that the teacher had owned over the years. One of the pets was a dog named coco. The group wasn’t called “the Cocos”, but were called “Coco’s Team” or “Team Coco” so that the students were team members rather than animals. (Since the theme was pets, the teacher also chose a weekly “Top Dog Reader” to spotlight good work or improvement.)
I thought this would be a clever way to help your students get to know you while helping with the group naming situation. I’m definitely trying this in the future.
Have a great idea? Send it to me (squareheadteachers at gmail dot com) and I’ll post it so other teachers can benefit. Thanks!
I saw this picture on Pinterest (follow me!) and I knew I had to share it! It’s a paper soldier in a camo uniform. You can make the camo part by sponge painting with brown and green paint, or by gluing brown and green squares of tissue paper to the outfit. Such a cute Veteran’s Day craft for kids! Heart!