Monday, March 26, 2012

Blog Challenge! Animal Photos = Writing Prompts

I have stumbled across a fantastic idea! Everyone loves fun animal photos, right? They are perfect for writing prompts, yes?

Well, Larry Ferlazzo has started a blog challenge that exemplifies the power of sharing and inspiration that blogs, twitter, and even Pinterest have! Inspired by similar ideas from his PLN, Larry is asking teachers to submit a photograph that would be perfect to use in a "What is this animal saying or thinking?" activity. (I immediately thought of 6 Traits of Writing - Voice lessons)  You must hop over to his blog here and see the awesome picture of a koala bear that got him started. Larry has contributed two pictures of his own dogs. Now, the challenge begins - can you find a picture to contribute?

Here is a link to a picture of a silly cat I found that I think would be great, too!
I found that photo on Pinterest, and it took me to a photo sharing site I hadn't heard of before now. I am not sure about its copyright, so I am not including the actual photo here.

Speaking of Pinterest, I know I have seen several teachers creating Pinboards of photographs, creating writing prompts in the comment section. What a fabulous idea! If you know of any such Pinboards, please leave a comment below for all of us to easily find. I think I am going to start one now, titled "What Is This Animal Thinking?"!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Add This To Math List

I knew I forgot a resource last time! It was really bugging me, too! And there it was the whole time, sitting on a sticky note on my computer desktop! Saw it today when I was "cleaning up", which really means copying and pasting notes/ideas from all my sticky notes to a word doc I have called "Sticky Notes"! I probably need a better system...anyway, check out:

Primary Resources Number Board

This is an awesome way to visually demonstrate expanded notation. Click on/select parts of a big number to build it. This clearly shows kids how to say big numbers, such as 3,628: 3 thousand, 6 hundred, twenty, eight. It is easy to see what each digit represents. I wish you could type in number vs. clicking on it. I wish there was an audio component. Yet, I am still going to use this. It would be neat on an IWB, with the kids at their desks writing numbers on paper or small whiteboards! It does require Adobe ShockwaveFlash.


Saturday, March 3, 2012

A Few Math Resources for Primary Grades

Oh has been too long since I updated my blog. I do apologize if you have been waiting or wondering...anyway, today I wanted to share a few math resources I came across recently. I think they would be perfect in a primary classroom!

This website activity asks students to find 10 hidden dog bones on a 100 chart in one minute. The trick is the chart is blank! A number is presented, such as 62. Students have to use their knowledge of the 100 chart, such as each row is worth 10, to hop around and pinpoint the number. This game would work well on an IWB or on a computer as a math center.

Another great website, this time from the UK. This activity is perfect for developing understanding of big numbers and place value. You are given a choice if you want to play with 10's and 1's, called "units" or 100's, 10's and 1's. This is a great visual tool! Again, this would be wonderful on an IWB or an individual computer station.

Sums Stacker
This website game, from Carstens Studio, needs Adobe Shockwave to play. I love this game, which is excellent for students who need a bit of a challenge with addition facts. Sums can be represented with dice, coins, or digits. Students click and drag values from three stacks, moving them around until they make the target sum at the bottom of the stack. There is a matching iPad/iPod/iPhone app available for $0.99, which has a few more options, including fingers and Spanish number words.

Hope you find one of these useful in your teaching!