Monday, March 24, 2014

March Madness!

With March upon us, my husband was all about March Madness! 

While we are not going to play basketball in the library! [I had a teacher ask me no...]

However, we ARE going to vote for our favorite author, once we have a list of the top 15 authors, the authors would go head to head in their own brackets and we’d narrow it down to the favorite author of the school! Each week students could vote using a Google Form. The first week, I simply had students enter their favorite author (only one!). Then I looked at the results and built the brackets. Each week I made a new bracket that narrowed down little by little until there was one winner!

To break it down: 
Each week I had the students fill out a Google Form:

1st Week - Who is your favorite author?
I got everyone from Mo Willems to Suzanne Collins, plus we started a great discussion (and real life research project) about the author of the Geronimo Stilton series! 

 2nd Week - Vote for your favorites.

The head to heads:
Vote for your favorite Easy Fiction Author:
Dr. Seuss, Mo Willems, or Tedd Arnold
Vote for your favorite Middle Grades Author:
Mary Pope Osborne, Roald Dahl, or Elisabeth Demi (the ACTUAL Geronimo Stilton author!)
Vote for your favorite Graphic Novel Author:
Jeff Kinney, Lincoln Peirce, Raina Telgemeier
Vote for your favorite Fantasy Author:
Rick Riordan or J.K. Rowling
Vote for your favorite Dystopian Author::
Suzanne Collins or Veronica Roth

3rd Week - Vote for your FAVORITE favorite =) 

At our school, it was down to:
Suzanne Collins, Elisabeth Demi, Jeff Kinney, J.K. Rowling, or Dr. Seuss!

I made the worst bulletin board ever: 
Next year, I will actually make brackets!

I was a little bit worried about the kids being able to do it on their own, but after a quick overview, not only could my Kindergartners do it, they taught their older buddies how to get to the site and do it! 

Plus they could not wait to vote again and again! 

A few cute pics of a couple kids on the computers: 

Thanks for reading!
Want more info on the Google Forms? Let me know in the comments! 
I would love to hear how it's going and would love to hear your wonderful ideas also! 

Keep reading!
Ms. Dhruv

Monday, March 3, 2014

Push in for ISAT! What to do in the classroom??

So this week our students are taking the ISAT...which normally means I am in a classroom proctoring with a classroom teacher. This year, many of our teachers complained about losing their prep, so instead all the specials are pushing into the classrooms (meaning we teach in the classroom teacher's room, not in the library/art room/music class/gym, etc...super fun...not!). So I needed to find something to do this week that I could do in the classrooms, I was originally going to show Tumblebooks and let them talk about the stories, but wanted to maybe do something for Dr. Seuss. After looking at many different things, I was having a hard time finding something that a. didn't need technology and b. didn't need a lot of prep work (this is only for one week...don't want to put it a huge amount of effort into something we will only do once). I am going to do this with the 1st and 2nd graders this week, and something different for the Kindergartners (as they can't write as well and don't know as much about story structure to be able to write a book on their own).

Anyhoo, I decided to use the Brainpop Jr. video on Jon Scieszka (you will need a subscription).

Then I let the kids talk to each other for a minute about what they learned. We talked about the book Jon Scieszka wrote called The True Story of the Three Little Pigs. We summarized the "regular" Three Little Pigs.
Then I showed The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka (I used a video version to save my voice, as I have to read it up to 6 times in a day, you could also use the book and read it aloud to take time to discuss with the kids how the wolf has changed the story from his point of view).

We discussed the story and how the point of view changed the story.
Then I passed out the activity (right), that goes along with the Brainpop Jr. video to make their own "The ______ Story of the Three Little Pigs" and I let them change the title to make it "The True Story of the Three Little Pokemons" or The Silly Story of the Three Little Pigs," etc. I wanted to see their creativity and we'll finish next week! I'll share some of our finished products!

Thanks for reading! I would love to hear how it's going and would love to hear your wonderful ideas also! Thank you for your support!

Keep reading!
Ms. Dhruv