Monday, January 6, 2014

Making New Year's Resolutions Part 1, Back 2 School Fun, and a Math Game FREEBIE

It's back to school I go! It's always so hard to go back, but today was actually very pleasant, until I realized how few days we have off until Spring Break... Okay, I won't go there! 

We had a busy day, and I'll be continuing to add a few new things to our routine to keep up the rigor and pace of our learning. First up, we started our New Year's resolutions, a yearly tradition of mine. I told my students that a new year means we get to wipe our slate clean and start over! 2014 gives us a chance to start all over... if 2013 was a challenging year, we can change to make 2014 spectacular!

I gave my students a worksheet and asked them to predict the meaning of, or write their best definition of RESOLUTION. Then, I brought out the Dictionaries and challenged students to quickly find a definition of resolution and compare the Dictionary definition to our own definitions. 

Another New Year tradition... I read the book, Squirrels New Year's Resolution, pausing to discuss the examples of quality resolutions that the animals made and made a prediction of what Squirrel's resolution would be. If you don't have the book, YouTube will save the day!

Now it was time to brainstorm resolutions of our own! We're working on a mini-unit called, The Stars of the New Year (my kids really like the name, yay!). Our New Year's resolutions are Hollywood themed... so fun! 

Here's a peak at an example I made with my students to help them get their brainstorm on!

We did a little more brainstorming during our writing block... We'll continue writing a rough draft of our resolution tomorrow (stay turned for part 2)! 

Speaking of writing... hehe... I really wanted to update my old writing process chart. I made this one over the break and had my students decorate clothespins that we will use to track our journey through the writing process. 

And, since I'm on a clip chart kick, I made this one to go with our Math Facts program. Students start on different letter levels and more their clips up the rocket as they pass a level. Since students start at different places, it takes the competitiveness and bragging out. As a class, we celebrate moving up a level, not how high you are. As soon as a student gets to 'W', they have to start all over again with a new operation, anyway. 

If you would like a copy of the rocket chart, email me and I would be happy to send you one! 

Math time was a day of review! I made a quick, easy, and fun game to help students remember how to add, subtract, and trade. It's called, Pick Three (I gave the game a much needed name change from what I originally called it!). 

To play, students make two piles of cards: a pile of number cards and a pile of operation (+/ -) cards. Working in partners, students pick an operation card and mark the operation on their paper. One partner then draws three cards and decides how they are going to order the numbers. Your new three-digit number is placed in the squares of your record sheet. 

Next, the second partner picks three more cards, orders them, and writes them in the second set of boxes. 

Lastly, students add or subtract the math problem and repeat! 

Snag this math game FREEBIE {HERE} and enjoy!! 



  1. LOVE your Writing Process Pencil! That looks like such a fun math game. We just started our triple digit addition and subtraction chapter when we returned from spring break! Thanks for the ideas!

    Christina :)
    Apples, Books, and Crayons

    1. You're more than welcome! Best of luck with teaching triple-digit addition and subtraction! It's a hard thing to teach :)



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