Sunday, January 5, 2014

A Peek at my Week - January 5, 2014

Well, I guess winter break is officially over tonight, so today I'm linking up for A Peek at my Week.

Monday is supposed to be SUPER cold (for the South, anyway). Right now it's 52 degrees (Does anyone know how to make the degree symbol?) and raining, which isn't fun, but certainly isn't that bad either. But check out where we're headed...

That's right, we're going to drop 48 degrees between now and midnight tonight! Which means this rain is going to turn into snow and ice. And tomorrow morning, at time for the kids to be walking to school (which all but 2 of my students do), it's supposed to be 0. Actually 0, with a wind chill between -15 and -25. As much as I need to maximize these next 7 weeks before standardized testing, I really hope they cancel, mostly because it's too cold for kids to be walking, some of mine almost a mile, to school in this weather. Most of the districts around us don't go back until Tuesday, so I think that's why there's been no rush to call it yet for our schools.

Anyway, my plans for the week are done, even though I don't know which day I'm teaching what, so here's what's up in my room this week:

Some of you may remember that I've been using for my vocabulary words this year. (Our reading series words are silly in my opinion...fastball was actually a vocabulary word, 'cause it's important for them to know different types of pitches and all.) Anyway, as much as I (and my students) love Flocab,  I've been feeling like we really need to focus on root words, prefixes, and suffixes more so that they can use them to figure out unknown words. So this week we're starting the Reading Olympians program.

If you haven't seen it, check it out on TPT! There are a bunch of options, but I'm starting with the lowest level, and I went ahead and bought the whole thing instead of unit by unit (I saved a TON that way!) The program focuses on 10 roots/prefixes/suffixes a week. I'm going to quiz my students on Edmodo so that they can work at their own pace, and retake quizzes if they need to. I'm hoping that it will be a good way to get them to master these word parts so they can decode harder words! I'll try to update with how things are going later in the week.
This isn't really about this week's plans, but I have to brag a little...We are having an AMAZING year with flipping our math class. The one group of students I was concerned about not doing well with the flipped model was my SPED students (I'm the inclusion Math teacher for my grade.), but they are actually the ones who seem to reap the most benefit from it! I am SO, SO PROUD to report that for 2nd quarter, 1 of them earned a legitimate A (no modifications to the math content, only to the reading/writing required), and 2 more earned B's!!!

This week, we are starting Algebra concepts, so we're going to be working on variables, expressions, equations, and next week, we'll hit order of operations. Nothing super exciting going on there, but I am really excited to be trying a new site to host our flipped videos (since my teammate and I make our own).

YouTube is blocked at school, and TeacherTube has been giving us lots of errors lately. There was one day that only one of my students had been able to watch the video at home, due to TeacherTube freezing up, so I had to actually give the lecture in class. It was a great reminder of how much better the use of time is when they get that part out of the way at home!

Enter Flipasaurus... It's a site dedicated to flipped classrooms, it's totally free, and there are ZERO ads! I uploaded our videos, embedded them into our site, and was able to watch them on my computer, android tablet, and iPhone, so here's hoping it works on all my kiddos' devices too!

The last thing I want to talk about is SS! We are doing the 13 colonies this week. I often find that there is way too much info in many of the resources I find. Our standards really only require students to know which states belong to which region and be able to compare the climates and economies of each. I was so excited to find this PPT from Carolyn Cloutier's TPT store. It covers just enough, but not too much, and best of all, it's FREE!

Well, I'm off to do my snow dance and say my snow prayer. Have a great week, everyone!


  1. On a Mac, the ˚ is alt+K :) We will also be starting colonization if we ever get back to school. It's up to feeling like -4˚F now, but yesterday it was down to -44˚F with wind chill. I assume we'll be back tomorrow!


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