Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine's Day Fun!

I'm pretty sure that holding school on Valentine's Day is some sort of cruel and unusual punishment for teachers!  It's been crazy here all moring.  Now that I have my kids working independently for a few glorious moments - I'll update you on our projects!

We made the super cute owl bags!  Mrs. H. used my templates, but put her own twist on them - they came out cute too!  The kids with their wacky eyes crack me up :-)

Mrs. H's Variation :-)

What better way to start an already crazy day than with candy?  Said, the crazy Mrs. Z!

And, a little Pop Art to decorate the halls!

Hopefully, I survive the Nacho Bar and "Friendship Party" after recess!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Valentine's Day Owl Bags - FREEBIE :-)

I created these little cuties today with a bit of inspiration from Pinterest :-)  Click here for your FREE template!  Copy pages onto a variety of colored construction paper.  Have students cut out and glue to paper bags (larger size lunch bags work best!)  Use one heart for the body and one heart (cut in half) for the wings.
Enjoy :-)

Friday, February 7, 2014

Eric Carle Inspired Art

We have a snow day today - yay!  So I'm posting a project I do at the beginning of the school year.  I use it with the Mixed-Up Chameleon, by Eric Carle - one of the first stories in our basal.  I show students video clips from Eric Carle's Official Site where he shows how he paints his own tissue paper and creates his pictures by making collages.

I don't use tissue paper with my students, because it would be a nightmare with 2nd graders!  I have them use tempera paint on regular copy paper.  I give them three cool colors and three warm colors and we paint as shown on Eric Carle's tutorial.

I then give my students a template of a chameleon (see below) that I section off into chunks to show them where to cut.  They cut up the chameleon into pieces and then lay them on the painted paper to trace and cut out.

Students then put the pieces they traced back together and glue onto a piece of construction paper.  This gives them a chameleon created in a similar manner to how Eric Carle creates his art work!

:-) Jenny

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Tears Of Joy Performance

Have you had the opportunity to see a Tears of Joy performance at your school? It is truly an amazing experience. These are the most incredible puppet shows I've ever seen!  I have had the opportunity to see many of their performances over the years and am always impressed!

They travel to: Idaho (except Kootanai County), Oregon, California, Nevada, Tri Cities WA, and Portland Metro Area. 

Today they performed, "Malika, Queen of the Cats" at our school!  My daughter sat with me during the assembly.  I loved seeing how enthralled she was with the performance, even at 6 years old!  The overall message was kindness, and this provided a fabulous way to talk about being kind to others and how our words can be hurtful toward others.  A much needed message for my second grade girls!!!

Below are some pictures and a short video clip.  If you would like more information see the Tears of Joy Website!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Van Gogh Inspired Art Project

Our school has a parent led art program called Meet the Masters.  This year parents will be having students create Van Gogh inspired art work.  In preparation for this, Mrs. H and I decided to pre-teach a bit about Van Gogh. 

I found a great idea on Pinterest that was done by middle schoolers, see here.  Being that we teach second grade, we pulled blackline masters of different flowers off of the internet and had students color them with oil pastels.  I think it came out really cool and is brightening up our hallway.  We are in desperate need of something other than winter, cold, and overcast here!  A few bright colors does wonders!


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Common Core Math Curriculum

Are you struggling with finding math curriculum that aligns with Common Core?  Join the club!  I have recently been introduced to engageNY and I am LOVING it!!!

This is offered (currently) for free - yes free!  I am downloading all of the modules for my grade level, just in case it's not free in the future!  I have to say that I am very impressed with what I have used so far.

There is a scripted teacher's guide (which I don't read verbatim) that is a great guide, work pages, exit tickets, homework, and assessments!  It sounds too good to be true - but it's not!!!

Below are a few pics of my kids enjoying one of the "hands on" activities!  One of the students actually said, "Are you crazy?" when I dumped 1,000 - yes 1,000 popsicle sticks on the floor!  Students had so much fun grouping them into tens, hundreds, and eventually counting to 1,000 by using groups of 100 :-)

Many of the lessons have "hands on activities" such as shown above.  I really enjoy the exit tickets, which are quick to check each day and give me the opportunity to correct any misunderstandings that may have occurred before they work on the homework that night!
To add the "Mom Factor" to Teacher and a Mom, here is a pic of my own sweet kiddos on Super Bowl Sunday!  We were so excited to FINALLY be, not only in the Super Bowl, but to be winners too!