29 January 2016

Five for Friday- Jan. 29th 2016

My favorite link up of the week with DoodleBugs Five For Friday 

Dream House Writing
Sometimes it doesn't all fit nice and neat on a bulletin board and that's ok. :)

I read the story If I Built a House by Chris Van Dusen and students first designed their house and then wrote about their house and gave reason as to why their house is awesome, great, or the best. Students really enjoyed this activity. I like to give students the paper to draw and design first to give students a chance to get their thoughts on paper without the pressure of feeling like they need to get started writing immediately. It is important to give students a chance to develop ideas before demanding results. 
Here are some of their designs.

After designing, students wrote about their house in their writing journal. Once that was complete I had a conference with each child about their writing and about adding details to different parts to make their writing more interesting. I then allowed students to get on google drive and type their writing. After typing, I talked to each individual student once more about their typed writing. We are still working on spacing correctly and remembering to punctuate while typing. 

Lastly, I helped students create a voki character from on voki.com and add their writing to the character to publish their writing. The characters are now on our school website and students absolutely love visiting the page and listening to each other's writing.

So, I mentioned being excited about hearing of Blendspace last week. Now, I am using it to organize websites, games and videos about specific topics we are studying. I've added these blendspace links to our class website and edmodo for students to easily access at school and home. I am planning to create a blendspace of parent resources to add to my school website as well to give parents more info about number talks, comprehension questions to ask students when they finish reading a story and lots more. 

100th Day of School
Padlet- 100 Compliments and Acts of Kindness
If you've not used padlet, it's a great place to create message boards for students to post comments, questions and show understanding.

Aging Booth- This was such a fun app. My students laughed like crazy when they saw themselves. I may have even sneakily changed some of their edmodo profile pictures to these when they weren't looking. :) 

I used plickers as a quick pre-assessment for the measurement unit we are starting. If you've not used them yet...stop waiting! You need to print them and use them ASAP. They are so easy to use and give you real time results. 
You can order them laminated in anti-glare laminate or print them for free on cardstock. 

This is a picture of my students using plickers from earlier in the year.

This week ended great with a Pay Day song from my administrators and I was announced as the January Staff Member of the Month!

Thanks for listening to my randomness for the week!


  1. Casey, I love the dream house writing! What a great way to make connections to a mentor text! Love all their designs. I also can't get enough of their cute old age photos. I may need to have a little more fun with my fifth graders next year and that would be an easy way to add it in! We don't do much with the 100th day in fifth grade but sometimes, we just need a little more fun... that'd be a great surprise! Love stopping your blog!

    Have a great weekend,
    My Shoe String Life

    1. I think fifth grade would also like the old age photos. I can see them laughing like crazy and having that memory for a long time. They did survive 100 days of 5th grade!