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Monday, March 16, 2015

Seasons and St. Patrick's Day

Just Another Manic Monday...
Whoah--Oh!

Not sure why, but that song has been in my head all day today!  So in honor of my "Manic Monday," here are a few randoms from the last week or so as we get ready for St. Patrick's Day tomorrow!

For the last 3 weeks we've been learning about the seasons.  It wasn't supposed to take that long, but add a workshop day and 2 snow days in the middle of the week...and well, you know how it goes!  The plan was to do 2 seasons the first week and compare/contrast and the other two the next.  I've already blogged about the first week of our season fun, but I wanted to add our finished chart!

I've done several seasons charts over the years, but this one is my favorite because it really helped the kids learn to categorize their details in writing as I blogged about earlier.  And it just wouldn't be right to learn about the seasons without learning our seasons poem!  This is one of the 45+ poems in my Year Long Poetry Pack and it's a class favorite.  Perfect for leading into graphing the seasons {which I had to cut out because of snow days this year...} which is, of course, in my complete Weather Unit.

Now that we are halfway into March and almost to the end of our Weather Unit, we have been researching rainbows.  Much of what we did this year is the same as last year, because....well, let's face it: Great activities are worth repeating.  You can read about what we did with rainbows in detail here.  Rainbows were especially fun this year since we got to do them the week before St. Patrick's Day!  Perfect timing and the perfect way to decorate!

Things we did differently this year:   For our rainbow informative writing, I had to come up with something because we were using this paragraph for our district writing prompts...and they couldn't be written on clouds.  So they wrote a rough draft on regular paper and then were going to publish on their cloud paper.  But who wants to write the same paragraph with pencil AGAIN??  That's just boring!

So we wrote about rainbows in color felt tip pens.  And this. THIS. was the best. idea. ever.

Really, ya'll.  I'm probably behind the times here, but this is going to definitely be a regular occurrence in my classroom now!  I've always used pens during stations and I have giant pens kids can rent to use with reward money, so I know the power of writing with something special.  But there was just something awesome and fantastic about everyone getting to use a special pen at the same time.

You could have heard a "pen" drop....:)

Just look at these serious writers...


Just. Precious.

Felt tip markers made for some mad publishing skills, people!

Another thing we added this year was rainbow writing sight words.  This is something I do every year, BUT usually at the beginning of the year for our writing station.  For whatever reason, I didn't ever add it this year, but it worked out perfectly to do it while learning about rainbows!

This is one of several literacy station activities and handouts in my stations packet.  Get your copy HERE.  This is my next big overhaul packet.  I'll be adding lots more of my station handouts to this one soon...just gotta find a spare moment or two.  So, get it now and get the extras for "free" later! :)