Sunday, June 15, 2014

Font-astic Fonts Linky

The Polished Teacher is hosting a Font-astic Fonts linky party! Who ever knew that teachers had such a variety of fonts that could fit in different categories?? I was curious about it so I thought I'd try out. It was interesting to see how many fonts I had that were animals, food, color, etc.

Such a fun linky! I hope you link up too!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Five for Friday - Last Week of School

Last week of school! Is it really over???

Monday was Science day. We spent the day doing candy science experiments. We didn't have time to do all of them so the ones we did do were: candy clay, exploding candy, acid test, color separation, and floating candy. Floating candy was my favorite one. 

Put a M&M or Skittle in a cup of water with the letter side facing up. Wait a couple minutes and see what happens!
We ended the day with a coke and mentos demonstration. Safeway was having a deal so I ended up buying 3 coke bottles. The PE teacher and Motor Skills teacher helped out so that all three coke bottles could be spraying at the same time. No picture of this. I was too busy running away after dropping the mentos in!

Tuesday was Reading day. We started with a book viewing party of the book we published. (Read more about the process we went through creating this book here.) Parents came in and read the books with the kiddos. Light refreshments were also served. 

After that, we went through different reading activities. First D.E.A.R. time, then buddy reading, and finally, writing book recommendations for their classmates for summer reading. We ended the day with some classroom library sorting and organizing which definitely helped me with my classroom cleaning and packing later. 

Last day of school was on Thursday. I decided to play a little prank on my kiddos. When they came into the classroom they saw math workbooks (that we never touched) and a sharpie at their desks. They were warned that that nothing on their desks should be touched when they entered. Everyone in grades 1 to 5 attend the fifth grade promotion which was in 40 minutes. I told the kids that during that time, we were going to work in the workbooks. Since many of the kids took their pencil boxes home the day before, I provided them with sharpies to use instead. I also told them that we would sign each other's workbooks, just like yearbooks. 

The reaction I got from the kiddos were hilarious. It ranged from some being totally okay with it while others were already starting to whine. I also got some questions and concerns like how the sharpie bleeds through paper so it's hard to write on both sides. 

After some time of agonizing I told the class that I was just kidding and to look under their workbooks.

Surprise! There was a beach ball under each workbook. THAT's what we were going to sign with the Sharpies. Boy, were the kids relieved. We then went around the classroom Scoot-style and signed each other's beach balls.

The next part was the most hilarious. Blowing the beach balls up! Haha. That was pure entertainment for me. :)

After the ceremony, we went back to the classroom for a pizza party and movie. We watched Honey! I Shrunk the Kids. Then the kids were gifted with their writing portfolio and an owl-wrapped gift (book from Scholastic specifically chosen for each child). 

Close-up of the portfolio:

The teacher's note actually comes with a picture of me and the student. This student ended her year early so the picture didn't make it in. 

End of the year teacher gifts from parents and students!

Some of them were owl-themed...

Also got some nice letters/cards...

The biggest gift was this giant canvas tote bag from a parent/kid
(it's sitting on the keyboard of my Macbook Pro!)

The best gift was the class gift, a customized photo travel mug.

Such thoughtful gifts from everyone! :)

Today was a work day, also known as clean and pack up the classroom day. I spent just about the whole day (9am-6pm) working on the classroom. Got a good amount of work accomplished including moving the classroom library from the bookshelves... the cubbies. Thank goodness for my students for helping me organize the books already!
Well, I'll be back in school tomorrow. I am leaving on a month-long family trip to Asia on Tuesday which means everything has to be done on Monday. Hopefully that's enough time! Aah!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Thank You Gifts

It's the end of the year, which means...time to appreciate all the hard work of our enrichment teachers and dedicated parent volunteers!

We have a lot of enrichment teachers (Motor Skills, PE, Computer, Library, Music). Our last writing unit was on letter writing so the kids wrote thank you letters to each enrichment teacher and I bound them up into a little book. We also wrote thank you letters for our Art parent, classroom aide, Opera teaching artist, and Opera parent.

In addition to the thank you letter books, my Art and Opera parents got a mint plant for their com"mint"ment to us!

I decided to just stick with a plant theme with gifts this year so I also got some mini succulents for our reading group parents. They meet with a small group of kids every week and read a chapter book with the students. 

My room parent also happens to be a reading group parent too so I fluffed her gift just a little bit more. :)

Finally, our field trip drivers got owl-themed thank you cards (made on Vistaprint) signed by all the kids.

And that is all the gifts we gave out to the teachers and volunteers! Phew!

Tomorrow's the last day of school! We will see if I have the energy to write about how the day goes! :)

Friday, June 6, 2014

Five for Friday

Yet again, another short break from blogging. I swear, I do want to blog! After all, I always take pictures during the week in anticipation for my weekly Five for Friday post. But lately, I have just been beat and exhausted to the point that I have no energy left to blog. I also write and send out my class newsletter when I get home from school on Fridays so that zaps a lot of energy out of me, leaving me with no energy to type another blog post.

BUT, given how we just finished our last full week of school, I am pushing myself to post even though I'm exhausted beyond no other.

I surprised my kiddos on Monday morning with a surprise field trip! We were going to walk to a park close by and have a field day and bbq there! My parents are great because they helped me keep this secret. I recruited some parents to help plan and get people to sign up for food for the bbq. I also sent home the permission slips in sealed envelopes and asked parents to do the same.

BUT, before I could reveal the surprise to the class, I got a surprise from them.

Belated birthday gift! I guess the kiddos secretly used Google Documents in their Google Account to make a page for my very special birthday book. Very sweet of them. Some of the messages in there almost made me tear up!

But, back to the field trip. The kids said hooray. The walking chaperones showed up and off to the park we went! Some of the activities for the day were...

Relay Races - three-legged race

Oops...some kiddos fell there...

Hike around the lake where we ran into a lost turtle.

Making some ice cream in a bag.

...and ending the day with some celebratory cake! A couple weeks ago my friend who is a photographer came to take pictures of the kiddos with their published book. We also took a class picture which all my parents say is better than the class photo from picture day. Guess the picture is so awesome it deserves to be on a cake!

The cake was also special on the inside too! Two flavors!

On Tuesday, we worked on our Father's Day gift. For some reason I thought Father's Day was this coming Sunday but I was wrong. Oh well, now we have our gifts ready already! We made a coupon book for Mother's Day so I thought it would only be fair to make on for the dads too. I had the kids draw a self-portrait of their dad wearing a tie. I laminated their pictures and then attached the coupon book from Savvy Second Graders to the bottom of the tie. They turned out real cute!

Wednesday was Judgement Day!

The kids spent the last two weeks planning and writing a persuasive letter. The purpose of the letter was to convince the judge (me) that they should be sentenced to third grade. (I saw this idea on a Teaching Maddeness)

On Judgement Day the kids went up to the judge one at a time and read their letter outloud. Then they waited to hear their sentence.

They did a great job and everyone got sentenced to third grade!

The students have been writing their autobiography for the last couple of weeks. Today was the day we added our peer comments (basically like signing yearbooks). We went around the classroom in Scoot formation and wrote some positive peer comments in our classmates' autobiography books.

Our last session with our Art parent was this week. The kids made house collages. They used a variety of scrapbook paper to create a house and some scenery. 

Well, I reached my five. Would you believe it if I said that there are still more things to share about this week? I guess you'll have to come back next time to find out more! (Hint: Has to do with opera and our published books)