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Friday, February 21, 2014

President's Day, Abe Lincoln

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We have been celebrating President's Day all WEEK in our classroom and the kids are totally in to it!  It always amazes me how interested they get in history and how different things were...

Monday was all about George Washington.  Tuesday and Wednesday I was out at workshops.  So Thursday was all about Honest Abe.

We read this book on Abraham Lincoln.

The kids LOVED the format of this book!  We charted our learning as we read...
{Liquid chalk pens have saved.my.life in the anchor chart world...it's soooo much easier than white crayon! And shows up better too!}

Then we added Lincoln's contribution to his light bulb hanging above our groups in our room.

We also wrote his contribution in our Bright Ideas booklet from this American Contributors Unit packet.

Friday was all about comparing the two presidents and choosing our favorite.

We started by doing a Venn Diagram together to compare similarities and differences between Abe and George.  Then, the kids did their own Venn Diagram independently.

Later, we graphed our favorite president.  

Common Core Unit 5 is when we introduce opinion writing.  We introduce opinion writing with this OREO graphic organizer and anchor chart.

Check out my Common Core literacy graphic organizers for lots of graphic organizers for writing and reading response, including this one. And find this anchor chart template in my store too.  My firsties learn to love opinion writing quickly because I choose one day a week randomly to pass out Oreos to students who have a "full" opinion piece.  For those that only have an opinion sentence and nothing else...they get the top cookie of the Oreo and nothing else!  They love this reward, but it's also good for them to see that it's less enjoyable to read opinion pieces with one sentence, just as much as it's less enjoyable to eat only part of an Oreo!

We voted for our favorite president.  16 firsties chose Washington and only 6 chose Lincoln.  It's so funny to me because there is always an overwhelming majority one way of the other {despite my forcing them to make their own decisions...eyes closed and all!}  And as my team and I were all hanging our presidents out in the hallway, it was fun to see how the other classes voted too!  After only a week of writing opinion writing, my kiddos did fantastic! I was so proud of them.  Several of them even had written so much information that they needed more than one paper!

And I think their crafts turned out so stinkin' cute!  I love how I can see all of their little personalities come through in our craftivities!

This little Washington cracked me up! He insisted on adding curls to George's hair!

Our hallway is so patriotic this week! I love it!!

Next week we are moving on to the contributions of leaders in black history! Bring on MLK, Harriet Tubman, Jackie Robinson and George Washington...Carver {not confusing at ALL!}

Read more President's Day posts >>>HERE<<<