Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Week in Rewind

Whew! This week has felt S.O. long- and we haven't even had a full week!!! Monday was parent conference day and the kiddos had the day off while we spent the day talking with parents. It was a nice change of pace, but ask me why I still felt frazzled on Tuesday even after having that semi-"relaxing" day on Monday!? Crazy how that works. Pile a full moon AND Halloween on top of that, and you get one tired teacher! To add salt to the wound, we take our first big district reading test TOMORROW!! Yikes! Hopefully the sugar highs will have worn off by then!

The little ones have been working hard over the past two weeks reading all types of poetry and learning about poetic devices. What I love most about poetry is the sensory language. We discussed how in poetry authors have to be incredibly picky about the words they use to depict just the right scene or mood. It was so fun picking out the sensory language and discussing it. We had some wonderful conversations.

Yesterday, we capped off our unit with a little poetry "Shel-abration." We spent the day reading poems by Shel Silverstein.  I had planned to show my kids around his website and play some of the animated poems, but my computer wasn't working correctly and I could not get to the website! Darn technology when it doesn't work!!! Thank goodness I had found the special edition of Where the Sidewalk Ends last Sunday when I had my mini shopping spree! It came with an audio CD- how great is that?! We were able to listen to Shel himself read our two favorite poems, "Sick," and "Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out." The kids ate these up! We used the last of the pages in our poetry notebook to visualize the poems and then we illustrated the garbage pile Sarah Cynthia Stout created. So fun!!

I got the idea of a poetry "Shel-abration" from Amanda over at One Extra Degree and she, being the amazing teacher she is, took her kids outside and let them write with chalk on the sidewalk- hence the poem "Where the Sidewalk Ends." I decided that this was just a bit much for me, so instead, I brought the sidewalk inside!! I rolled out a sheet of yellow butcher paper and it became our "sidewalk." The kids were psyched when they walked in and saw the bright paper on the floor. I held off until the end to explain that they would actually get to write on the sidewalk with smelly markers! Cue the ooohs and ahhhs! After we read the poem "Where The Sidewalk Ends," the kiddos chose their two favorite lines from any of the poems we had read that day and they wrote them on the sidewalk. It was a hit! I think smelly markers may be making more of an appearance in our classroom. :) If you like what you see, check out Amanda's poetry unit here.

We also studied homophones this week. We watched the adorable homophone video from Between the Lions. Brian McKnight is singing with Cleo Lion and it. is. hilarious! You know the kids were totally glued to the screen! If you have not seen it, you must watch it-now. Seriously. Now!

After the video, we discussed several homophone pairs and made an oober-simple foldable to practice determining the difference between common homophones.

The foldable was great, but I decided to make something a tad cuter to use every now and then. Click on the picture to get your copy!

What a week! Now I'm off to try to get some shut-eye before tomorrow. Hopefully the kiddos will make me proud on their tests! Cross your fingers and wish us luck!!

Have a happy Friday, friends!!!

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