Sunday, July 26, 2015

Assess Me!

I'm linking up with Rachel today for a fun little "get to know you" linky!
 

 
My assessment!
Jane Loretz
July 26, 2015
My wisdom teeth were taken out by a student oral surgeon.  One of the surgeons fainted in the other room and the one who took out my wisdom teeth left me with the a small section in the front of my chin numb as in forever,  so it must be nerve damage.  I was awake the whole time. I started laughing when I learned it was the dentist that fainted in the other room.  In my position I thought it was funny.  The oral surgeon didn't think I should have been laughing.  Hmm.. maybe that's why I had nerve damage. 
 
Have a good Sunday!
 
Don't forget to link up too!
 
 

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Las Vegas and a Makeover

This summer I was fortunate enough to have had the great opportunity to go to the tpt conference in Las Vegas.  I took my husband and my youngest son Logan along for support and when I was busy in the conference they were busy enjoying the sights of Las Vegas, and what 17 year old doesn't think Vegas is pretty cool. 
   
I learned a lot from the conference and met some amazing and inspiring teachers.  It was a little overwhelming for someone who is nervous around so many people. There were over 1,100 teachers at this conference. It hit me in the middle of the conference how I was sitting in a room full of teachers that have made huge contributions to education.  These same teachers have taught me to love teaching and that we are valued and it felt great to be surrounded by such devoted and inspiring people.
My husband Mike and Logan had a great time and we loved shopping, eating and seeing all the sights of Vegas.
Now that we are home I have been working on revising some products and working on some new ones.  My themes product which is my number one seller got a needed makeover. I used real photos and it turned out great.  Themes are really tricky for our students and this interactive bulletin board will make teaching themes easier for your students to understand.

Please check this product out here.
Enjoy summer everyone!
 

Monday, June 29, 2015

Biographies and a Wax Museum

I have been MIA a bit this last month but I am back and hopefully more on a routine.  I so needed a little break from well, everything.  The end of the school year was exhausting and I have never felt like I needed a break that badly.  May came with the end of the year to do lists... like memory books, report cards, and lots of paper work. This year was also my formal year with the new teacher effectiveness, which meant a lot of time on my computer getting my documents in order to prove that I am an effective teacher. That's all I am going to say about that.

Anyways... The last couple of weeks of school my students worked in their memory books and in their memory journals there are many pages that ask about their favorites. Like favorite subjects, story and projects.  Hands down most students picked the Wax Museum as their favorite learning activity/project.  It was also a project we had in May. So today I am going to tell you a little about that.

Biographies are a lot of fun and as a multiage teacher I touch upon biographies each year with my students. However, every third year we (as in our multiage team) do it up BIG as so each group of students that we have gets to experience this event!  It is BIG as it will take up a lot of your time, (another reason for the exhaustion in May), it will be a BIG hit with your parents, and your students will gain BIG knowledge of important people and will gain BIG knowledge on how to write and research a biography and they will remember this project and event FOREVER.  Many students that I have had in the past like to mention the Wax Museum, my son who is 24 still will talk about the wax museum and how he loved that project, he was King Tut! 

How does it all work?
Before we began this unit this year I wanted to make this a little easier on myself and my team members so I designed a quick unit that gives you information on how to host a Wax Museum and an easy way to write the biography reports.  If you are interested, this may help you put on a great Wax Museum.

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Biographies-biography-writing-and-how-to-host-a-living-wax-museum-1808822
click on the picture to check it out on tpt
Here is the skinny....
The students research a famous person.  They find ten facts that are important.  IMPORTANT is key and difficult and needs to be taught to your students.  Then they put these in chronological order and they are displayed on their backgrounds, then my older students wrote these into reports.  They all made their backgrounds.  For the Wax Museum the students stand completely still while their parents and other classes walk through and read their ten facts.  We had some Mozart music going on in the background.

The best part is that my students learned so much from this experience.  We read our facts and reports
 to each other, we watched exciting videos and movies about the famous people and when children
were done with what they worked on they helped each other finish their research and backgrounds.

 
Thanks for reading this post.
I hope all of you are getting some rest and relaxation too!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

End of the year memory books

Counting down the days! Only 5 more days until the end of the school year.  To keep my students busy writing this next week, my students will be writing in their Memories of my school year journal.  This has been a life saver because my students want to work in this journal and record their memories and they are staying busy.  Last year I used the same journal with Melonheadz clipart and this year I wanted to switch it up for my students so I made the same journal with On the Pond clipart.  This way it doesn't look the same for my students.   

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Memories-of-my-School-Year-on-the-pond-clipart-1858837

This cover has been updated.  
Here is a look at the journal pages.
Every year I put together a little album for my students.  I have made this easier on myself by purchasing these little picture albums at Walmart for $1.00 each.  Then I make a cover add a note and stick the pictures inside.  My students love it.  I could have easily made this into a slide show or made digital albums for my students but I think this is worth the time to put together for my kiddos.  On tpt you can download the album cover for free.  Maybe you can use it in your classroom too.  It looks just like the cover of my memory journals.  They are also editable so you can add your name and your school to the front of it. 
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Memories-of-My-School-Year-Mini-Photo-Album-Cover-FREE-1859593
Click on the picture to get the album cover free.
I am off to pick up my pictures.  

 

Monday, May 25, 2015

Dinosaur Unit

Are you counting down the days?  We have 9 more days left until the end of the school year. May has been exhausting so I am looking forward to summer. 
Last month we finished our dinosaur unit. I just love studying and learning about dinosaurs.
My students loved learning about dinosaurs too.  We read about dinosaurs, compared dinosaurs with reptiles, learned new vocabulary words, researched dinosaurs and wrote a report on them and so much more...
Here are some pictures of my dinosaur unit.
 

 My students pretended they were paleontologists and discovered new dinosaurs and wrote about them.  We also read the book If the dinosaurs came back by Bernard Most.
 We wrote our own version and turned it into a class book. 
Here are some examples.
This was a great unit to differentiate and work together in groups. My olders (3rd graders) in my class worked with the youngers to create their dinosaur reports. Working together to complete a project works nicely in my multiage class.
Some of my students brought their dinosaurs from home. 
One of my guided reading groups  read Dinosaur Before Dark by Mary Pope Osborne and I read to them Dinosaur Habitat by Helen V. Griffith. 


Click on the picture of my dinosaur unit and check it out on tpt.
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Dinosaurs-An-ELA-and-Science-Unit-619643
Have a great one!


 

Sunday, May 3, 2015

May's Top Pinterest picks


I am linking up with Inspired Owl's Corner and Pawsitevely Teaching for May's top pinterest picks. 


I saw this picture on pinterest and it totally sparked my idea for my Mother's Day project this year. My students will write why their mom is a super hero....and then they will draw and paint a picture of mom similar to this picture. My students were so excited.  Another art project, absolutely! This picture is layered and done in three steps.  Art with Mrs. Seitz has a great post on how to do this project.  Check out the original pin here.




A couple months ago I pinned Tour the States video, this is Tour the World video.  So cool and my students beg to watch them.  Original pin see here.



My last pin is of a summer project I found.  Kate Uppman took her plain tables and painted them with whiteboard paint and they look amazing.  She describes in detail how she does it.  You can check out the post here.  The original pin check out here.
 
and lastly just as Effie says


Please follow me also on Pinterest for other fun pins.

 

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Oceans

This past month in my classroom we learned about the Ocean and Water.  I love this unit as it is always a favorite of my students. We start off by learning about the water cycle.  This year my students made water cycle necklaces. 
Then we went into learning about the Ocean itself.  With some of my younger students (first graders) who can not read some of this text yet are partnered with olders (third graders) who love reading to these students.
 
My student's favorite thing is learning about the animals that live in the ocean.   They learned about octopuses, whales, fish and sharks, crabs and other animals. They made shark reports in small groups. They also read about octopuses and wrote 8 facts about them.  They painted big Octopuses which caught the eye of everyone walking down our hallway. 
 
 
 
 

We also compared fish to whales. 

We also read many different Ocean stories that are super fun.  We read the Pout-Pout Fish in the Big, Big Dark.  We practiced writing summaries with that story. The students paintings of Pout-Pout Fish turned out super cute.
We also made our own version of Down by the Bay called Down in the Deep.  I did this with my youngers (first graders) during word work time.
This truly is just a quick sample of this massive unit.  This unit is easy to differentiate and had many opportunities for group work which we encourage in Multiage.  You can see more of my Ocean unit in my preview in my store, and you may  also want to look at the Water Cycle unit too. 
 
Happy teaching!