Friday, October 4, 2013

Five for Friday (Pumpkins Galore)

Woo Hoo! The classroom full of kiddos I taught today is miles beyond the classroom last Friday. It is like all of my kids turned a new leaf. Even the one that had me nearly to tears last Friday had a good day. The revamped classroom management seems to have done the trick.
Dem bones, dem bones, dem dry bones.

We are in full swing with our skeleton unit in third grade. My cooperating teacher got this friendly little guy to help give kids a visual model of the skeletal system. I also picked up a cheesy dollar section skeleton that I am planning on spray painting purple to match the room.

About a week ago I was looking around the blogger world for inspiration for this week's personal narratives lessons in our Writing Workshop. Amy over at Step Into Second Grade with Mrs. Lemon had a wonderful outline of the lesson she did two years ago with her class. Her lesson used best friends as the topic of their personal narratives. I cannot tell you how perfectly this lesson fit into our classroom! Although her lesson was done in a second grade classroom, it worked well for us because we have a number of struggling writers and ELL kiddos but it was easy to adapt for our stronger writers as well.

This week we had our first lesson from the school counselor who talked to us about the importance of friendships and why we have friends. Not only that, but the book we are reading during read aloud is (There's a Boy In The Girl's Bathroom) also discusses topics of friendship, bullying, and school counselors. It was awesome to hear the kiddos during the councilor's lesson. They were bringing up topics they wrote about in their story rough drafts, they related to our read aloud story and real life, they were totally connecting everything I had hoped they would. By the time the councilor is here next week, we will have our final drafts of our stories up on our Star Quality Work Wall. I just love when things mesh like that.

I had to share my favorite October decoration I've picked up so far. I got these three adorable pumpkins in the dollar section at Target for a buck a piece. Sparky, purple, rhinestone pumpkins. Ah-Maze-Ing. I'm in love with them and I don't care that my students think in crazy because of it. They sit nicely by my desk and go perfectly with my cooperating teacher's green, blue, and purple themed room. 

Target also had a number of sparkly black pumpkins that I might have to find a reason to go back and get as well. I am thinking my kiddos might need to do some around the pumpkin rounding in math. 
For the month of Octpber our class is doing a reading challenge. Currently, they complete a minimum of 20 minutes of reading Monday through Thursday as thier homework. For the October challenge, they have to read a minimum of 30 minutes a night EVERY night in October with only 2 free passes. Not only is it an individual challenge but the class can win a reward altogether depending on the percentage of students who complete the challenge. Each student who completes the challenge gets to decorate a paper pumpkin to display in our pumpkin patch in the 3rd/2nd grade hall

A mother of one of my kiddos made these amazing pumpkin spice chocolate chip muffin balls. I don't even like pumpkin but these were delicious. If I can be the recipe from her I will share because these need to be more popular. (Because we all need another addicting snack right?) 

I know it's not really educational at all but I wanted to share about it because I was a little giddy about getting my first gift from a parent. Also I wanted to brag about my parents this year. I swear we have he entire PTA board in our class. I rarely even have to think about filing or stuffing folders because a parent has taken care of it already. They really are such a blessing. 

I'm noticing a theme in my post today. Pumpkins galore!

The E-Z ClassP.S. Make sure you hop over to The E-Z Class blog and check out their current giveaway! It send Saturday. You have the chance to win some awesome New Zealand picture books with the coolest titles! I recommend giving it a look!


  1. I love all your fall-themed goodies, Kayla! That READ sign is precious!

    Everyone deServes to Learn

  2. I love your 'READ' pumpkin. Did you make that yourself or is there a template floating around the blogging world? Such a fun challenge! :)

    The Brown-Bag Teacher

    1. Glad you like it! A template would have been nice, but it was just a freehanded project. It was done on regular butcher paper. If you can draw a pumpkin outline though, you can make it. Just sketch out letters using a pumpkin outline. Maybe I can try to do a quick tutorial soon.

    2. UPDATE: check out my newest post for a small template I created this evening!

  3. Guess what? I just did that Best Friend lesson, too! I LOVED it! Cute blog!