Thursday, September 26, 2013

Mash Up

A long time ago, my daughter and I used to watch Glee and sometimes they'd have Mash Ups - they'd combine a couple different songs to make one song. Anyway, that's what I feel this post is.

First of all, I saw a Fall Book Linky Party {I first saw it at The Teacher's Cauldron.}. The Teacher's Treasure Chest is hosting.

I got this book as a freebie from our Scholastic book order we just got back last Friday.

It is a fun book with all kinds of information about different aspects of autumn. So I don't have a craft we did with this - but I was thinking, next year! - I think I'll have the kids make a word web of autumn words/ideas {we'd probably do this part together} and then they can write a descriptive paragraph about autumn. Descriptive paragraphs are something we have to do at the first of the year and this would definitely help them get started. 

The kids really like this book - they like sharing their ideas as we read, and it has some great photographs.

In Math, we're working on basic math facts - addition and subtraction to 20. Our district gives us 2 weeks to do addition strategies and 2 weeks to do subtraction strategies. I just don't understand why the kids don't understand these timelines {ha!}. I can tell they don't understand these timelines because they don't understand and use the strategies I'm teaching. Because really, folks, it takes more than 2 weeks to teach a couple different strategies - AND practice them! But whatever....

Anyway, a couple strategies that I've used that have been successful...

She calls these number bracelets. We only made these for 10 - but some struggling mathematicians were able to use these to help them not count on their fingers {smiley face}. You can move the beads around to make whatever number sentence - for example - 5 beads on one side and 5 on the other. Some of my real smarty pants were able to use the 10 beads to count other things - like 6+7 - they were able to count up with that.

 Another idea is one that I had pinned:
Saddle up for Second Grade Number line idea, made from a Baggie
 {Well, the link goes to Saddle up for Second Grade, but I can't find her specific post on this. Boo Hoo}
 The idea is the kids can start the zipper deal at whatever number and scoot it backwards {for subtraction} however many. Some of my kids enjoyed using this. 

So what's some of your best ways to teach math facts?

And finally, I'm taking a class as I'm working toward my ESL endorsement. I'm not sure how beneficial most of it is - it seems like it's just reading chapters about theories and commenting online. But! one thing it got me to thinking about is my talk - how quickly I talk, how often I use idioms or other sort of nonsensical phrases. Especially when I used the phrase "Show and Tell," asking someone to show me and tell me about their work - and they thought I was going to show them something! And that's only from a student that is brave enough to ask me. So, one goal for me is to think about what I'm saying, and in my efforts to do fun, make sure it makes sense!

It's Thursday, and that's recess day for me, and the weather has shot back up - it's supposed to be 90 today. Maybe if I'm lucky it will be windy, too!
Have a great day!      

Oh, well, I'm embarrassed - I see that the linky party is closed. But since I've already written and now published - I'm just going to go ahead and share!


  1. Sara, don't feel bad, I did the same thing last week with the Five for Friday Linky.;P Wow, i can't believe they only give you a month to get the strategies down. My personal belief is to just keep coming back to it over and over. My school uses Everyday Math ( I don't really like most of it). Everyday Math wants the kids to build such a strong number sense that they don't have to memorize the facts. In fact, they are allowed to use number lines, counters, etc... on the tests we give. I keep saying I am going to make those bracelets, I keep forgetting to bring the pipe cleaners home.;)

  2. Two weeks, huh? Ugh. I think I've pinned both the bracelets and ziploc bags. Great ideas.
    ❀ Tammy
    Forever in First