Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Tic Tac Toe Spelling Review

Using this SmartBoard I created, I broke students up into two groups. Students wrote their spelling words on a dry erase board. Teams took turns placing X's and O's on the board! Interesting and engaging for students! 

Monday, January 27, 2014

Mighty Mustache!

Mighty Mustache! We all know that mustache's are very popular right now. To improve classroom behavior, if a student is being exceptionally good that day/week, allow them to stick a mustache above their lip and get to wear it all day. These mustache's are $2 on eBay! The class and school will learn that this symbol stands for good behavior! Just something fun to do and can help with troublesome students!

Finished Bulletin

Here is the finished bulletin board without the students work.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Bulletin Board

One of my assignments was to create a bulletin board. I'm starting a science lesson soon so I created it around that!

Friday, January 17, 2014

1/17/2014 Journal

DAR Journal


            Today was Friday and casual day. If teachers wished to dress casual, they could pay $3 which went to a fundraiser. The day started off like any other day, witch students entering. Students came in and got to work on their spelling review wish was a word scramble. After students worked through their word scramble, the morning announcements came on. After the announcements, I reviewed spelling words with students. Then I began their spelling test. I read over the words and used sentences. After students were finished with their spelling tests, I graded them. The majority of students did well on these tests.
            After spelling, students had an SRI (Scholastic Reading Inventory) Lesson. Students walked down to the computer lab and worked on these assessments. Students answered a few questions about a passage. These questions produced a Lexille score for each student.
            After SRI, students returned to the classroom and my mentor teacher read through a Martin Luther King Jr. book due to the upcoming holiday. Students asked questions and my mentor teacher held a mini classroom discussion on Martin Luther King Jr. Students seemed to be interested in this story.
            After reading through the story, my mentor teacher moved on to math. Here, students reviewed coins and counting them again. After a brief review, students took a quiz. While some students mastered adding up coins, other students still struggled. One student in particular was struggling. I moved with her to the back table and we worked on her math quiz. She was getting extremely flustered and confused. I tried my hardest to persevere with her, but she was getting to the point where she wasn’t working. As the class lined up to head to P.E., I saw that the student was getting frustrated, so I thought it best to allow her to take a break from the quiz and head to P.E. The math quiz would be finished an another time.
            After P.E. students headed to lunch and then recess. When student got back to recess, they returned to the classroom for a brief period of time. In this time, it was enough time for students to get a drink of water and line up for art class. While students were waiting in the hallway, I had to play the quiet game where one student comes out of line, and picks the next quietest person. If at least 4 students get selected for being quiet, they get to do something fun the following day such as extended recess.
            When students returned from art, they watched a Martin Luther King Jr. video about him as a leader and why we celebrate him in January. Students were well behaved during this video and seemed to enjoy it. I only had to quiet down a few students. All in all it was a good Friday!


            Once again I witnessed excellent classroom management
. Students knew what needed to be done, and for the most part they did it. With the exception of specific students, it was a good day as far as behavior goes.
            Each and every day I am enjoying student teaching more and more. As I take on more responsibilities and learn each of the students, I look forward to coming. The students responded well to me during the spelling test and remained quiet. During the afternoon, my mentor teacher left and I was practically in charge of the class with the assistance of a resource teacher. I enjoy doing this, because it makes me seem like a solo teacher.


            Ending my second full week of student teacher I remain to have a positive attitude
. Yes, I am exhausted, but I still am enjoying it. There are a few moments during the day when I grow bored, but I know that I will need to take value during these downtime moments, for when I take on more responsibilities, I will wish I had more downtime. I'm continuing to mesh well with my mentor teacher. I will begin implementing science lesson starting next week. I am eager to begin these lessons!

Thursday, January 16, 2014


This is one of the iPad apps I mentioned in my previous journal entry.  It's a really cool app that allows students to be creative with their presentations.  Students can draw, type, and even share photos while recording their voices.  They can put on a presentation for the entire class!  I definitely encourage you to check this out...best of all, it's free!!!

Journal for 1/16/2014



            The day started out like a normal day. Today was C day. This means double specials in the afternoon. The day started out as normal, students arrived and filled out their agenda's. I circulated the room and initialed agenda's and check spelling homework. After the announcements, students sat and waited quietly for the spelling lesson to begin. Due to a slow computer, it took a while for the SmartBoard activity to load. For the spelling review, I did a word scramble. The students seemed to enjoy this activity. Toward the end students were beginning to get restless and bored. I had students stand up and stomp as they spelled out the words. The idea was to get the students up and moving for a brief period of time. 
            After spelling, students moved on to reading. In reading, student read through a passage on making inferences. With this passage, students were assigned a journal entry and had to form inferences with their responses. Most of the students worked well with this activity. Students transitioned into their Daily 5s. Student began to get really loud during their Daily 5s.
After students worked on their Daily 5, the mobile book bus was parked outside the school. This was an opportunity for students to visit the library. Students checked out books from the library. I assisted with this, making sure students were acting appropriate on the bus. After the mobile bus, students came back into the classroom and reviewed counting with counts and adding them together. Some students grasped the idea of counting with coins, while others were still struggling and getting frustrated.
            After math, students lined up and headed to lunch. Some of the students were treated with lunch with the teacher. After lunch, students returned to the classroom for indoor recess. Once again, there was too much water outside on the playground for students to be outside.
            After recess, students lined up and it was time for music.  As music progressed, I started looking at potential science lessons I could teach to my students in the next few weeks.  When students returned from music, my mentor teacher reviewed money and went over the math homework for that night.  I was given the opportunity to work with a student on his spelling test, for he was going to be absent tomorrow and needed to complete the spelling test.  After the test wrapped up, I returned with the student back to the class.  There was just enough time for students to pack up and head home for the day.
            After the student left, I was informed that there would a meeting with the 2nd grade team on technology.  I attended this meeting and learned about two new apps that could be used on iPads within the classroom.  They were great for incorporating technology into the classroom and allowing for hands-on experience for the students.  Hopefully, I will be able to incorporate this technology into one of my science lessons.
            Today was a great day overall.  The students seemed very unmotivated today and were not so well behaved.  A few students were sent to the office for their behavior card had been flipped over so many times.  I was given the opportunity to perform a spelling lesson that I thought went over well.  When working through the lesson, I witnessed students were beginning to become bored and unmotivated with the lesson.  So I simply asked the students to stand up, and clap and stomp through their spelling words.  I think this allowed students to get up out of their seats and get some blood flowing.
            I enjoyed being included in the short technology meeting after school.  I learned about two new apps that can be used with the students in the classroom.  I immediately downloaded these apps when I got home.  Within the next week, I will be most likely taking over science and I'm considering using one of these apps within one of my science lessons.

            Today was a great day.  I'm exhausted though.  Students were out of control today.  Not sure why, but perhaps it's because the weekend is drawing near.  I had several students go to the office because of behavior.  I'm struggling with keeping students motivated and quiet.  Students are continually complaining and whining about doing independent work.  Mere threats of taking away recess are not working.  I have discussed a few options with co-teachers and my mentor teachers, so perhaps within the next few school days, I will implement some of these ideas and one will work.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Saw this talk on Ted Talk and thought it was awesome!

Small Changes Ripple Outward 

- 3 things you're thankful for each day/week 
- Journaling 1 positive experience from your day 
- Regular exercise 
- Frequent meditation to reflect and relax 
- Random Acts of Kindness (do something/say 1 nice thing to someone each day...send an e-mail to a co-worker)

Shawn Achor - The Happy Secret To Better Work

1/15/2014 Journal



            Today was a fog delay, so I arrived two hours later than normal as did students
. When I arrived, a few students were already in the classroom unpacking their things. Students had a little trouble starting today off due to the fog delay, but after a while, they got settled. Due to lack of time, my mentor teacher said we wouldn't have time for spelling today, and I would revisit my lesson on Thursday. Today was going to focus on a review for their math benchmark test. As students reviewed for their benchmarks they would later be taking, most students got frustrated while practicing. My mentor teacher had to repeat directions several time for the students. As students worked on their benchmark tests, I graded math papers. This took up the majority of the period.
            After I finished grading paper, I walked about briefly and observed students taking their benchmark.
            After students completed their benchmark tests, they headed to library. A few behavior students did not want to go to library, but after awhile, they went. After library, students moved on to lunch. After lunch was recess.  This recess today took place outside.  I went outside and watched the students for half the recess.  The other half of recess I was inside assisting a student with his Accelerated Reader. 
            When students came back in from recess, my mentor teacher immediately reviewed their math benchmark.  Student worked eagerly on their benchmark tests.  Some students were again getting frustrated, but I kept assuring them to persevere and work through the problems.  After students finished up with their benchmark tests, it was time to pack up for the day.  Students lined up and exited the room.

            With today being a 2 hour delay, it was a little different.  Though I was happy to get the extra couple hours of sleep, students were crazy today.  Today focused on reviewing and completing their math benchmark test.  Students got easily frustrated and gave up several times throughout the day.  There were some behavioral problems today, and I think that had to do with the review of the benchmark.  Students did not like reviewing or completing the benchmark. 
            I wasn't able to teach a spelling lesson today due to the fog delay.  I was a little bummed because I enjoy doing these lessons.  I will continue my lesson tomorrow. 
            I don't mind grading papers thus far, I typically use an answer key while grading to make the process a smooth one.

            Today was an entirely different day than what I had experienced in the past week.  Since today was a fog delay, students acted completed differently.  With the days goal of completing their math benchmark, students got easily frustrated and had a hard time staying on track.  I would have occasionally allowed students to stand up, stretch, and do a 1-2 minute activity that involved them getting up and moving around.  With these stretching activities, I find that it gives students a break from their task, and allows them to retain their focus on the assigned activity.  I think when I start teaching a bit more and I see students off task or not paying attention, I will implement such stretching activities, or maybe counting by 5's while touching our toes.  I've seen that activity being done, and students seem to enjoy it.  I am looking forward to tomorrow, for I will be finishing up my spelling activity using a SmartBoard activity.

1/14/2014 Journal



            Today was A Day. The students entered quietly and wrote down their homework assignment in their agenda's. The morning announcements came on and students listened quietly as they were said. Immediately after announcements, my mentor teacher went over the days agenda. Since it was A day, the guidance counselor would be coming in and working with students again on a lesson about perseverance. Students were engaged for the guidance counselor had a hands on activity waiting to do with the students. After the guidance counselor was finished working with students, I started my spelling lesson. My spelling lesson consisted of students reviewing their spelling words. I did a SmartBoard activity using dice. Students would come up and roll the virtual dice on the SmartBoard and depending on the number rolled, a corresponding style of writing would be conducted by the students. For example, if students rolled a 1, students would have to write their spelling word with their eyes closed. Students gravitated well with this activity, for it was different than what students had normally done.
            Following spelling, my mentor teacher began math. Today for math, students would be completing a bench mark exam. Prior to giving the exam, my mentor teacher reviewed some similar problems with the class. The class seemed bored and uninterested in this review. When the review took place, students were working independently on their benchmark tests. Several of the student were confused and grew frustrated with the test. In the common area outside of the classroom, I was working with two students on an Education City activity.
            After the bench mark concluded for the day, students lined up for lunch and began heading to the cafeteria. After lunch, students returned to the classroom to indoor recess. After an extremely loud indoor recess, students lined up and headed to gym.  
            When students returned from gym, they worked on more reviews of their benchmark tests. I could tell by the reaction of students that they were not thrilled about having this review.


            Today was a normal day. I witness excellent classroom management from both my mentor teacher and the guidance counselor. I enjoy that the guidance counselor assists with students in the classroom and the lessons she does with them. The lessons usually involve something about self and perseverance and pushing through. The students seem to respond well to these mini lessons. A good portion of students were out sick today. Whenever students are out sick, especially the behavior problem students, it makes for an easier day.

            My spelling lesson went phenomenally today. Students enjoyed the new activity of rolling a die and choosing a way to write their spelling word. I enjoyed teaching today and would love to take on more of this role. It was fun using the SmartBoard!


            Each day is getting better and better. Waking up early is getting a little easier, but still is a job in itself. Students are continually adjusting tome being in the classroom. Students responded well to the spelling lesson, but it is continually a hassle to keep students on track. My mentor teacher encouraged me to use a different approach while teaching, so with that in mind, I will use it during tomorrows review.