Friday, September 25, 2015

Five for Friday: One bad decision (but only one)

Whew!  Busy week!

The privacy shields are to reduce noise - we don't all have headphones yet . . .

We started XtraMath this week.  I had used it for a couple of weeks at the very end of the year last year, but I didn't really get a feel for it.  So far this year, we've done it three days, and the kids and I are hooked!

They started with a placement test (three of them in a row on the first day, actually) which determined what they knew about addition and which facts to practice.  Each day, they do a practice session and a test session and play "Race the Teacher."

Engaged?  Yup.

When I log in, I can see how we're doing as a class.  Frankly, I'm a little worried, because on day 3, two of my kids were moved to subtraction.  That means they've mastered addition.  That means they're going to be finished with XtraMath very soon . . . and I'm going to need suggestions for challenging math sites where they can play while their classmates continue with XtraMath!  Help?! :)

Here's what I get to see:

If I click on the green/yellow/red shapes (which mean exactly what you'd think they mean: super/meh/yikes), I can see every math problem and how the child responded.  Pretty neat.

Seriously, though, if anyone has ideas for challenge/enrichment math for second graders (problem solving, logic, games, etc. using addition/subtraction), please comment below! :)

We learned how to do a blind sort in spelling yesterday.  That's when one partner, the "teacher," reads the word aloud but doesn't let the "student" see it.  The student points to where the word should go, and the teacher places it in the column.  Then the student gets to look at it and see if it's right, or if it needs to move.  

The kids loved it!  And I loved the collaboration going on. :)

Who loves assemblies?  We do!  Especially when the kids are totally engaged and the teachers are in hysterics.  (It was kind of like a Pixar film - humor for the kids, plus humor for the adults that went right over the kids' heads.)  

Thank you, Hal Trapkin, for the Percussion Discussion!

I introduced greater than/less than late on a Friday afternoon in the style of great teachers everywhere:  Here, play this game, figure it out.  

Hey, sometimes tired works.

Today it worked.

The children paired up and played "Recycle It" and those who didn't know about the greater than/less than signs taught their partners.  Nothing like a little one-on-one expert instruction, I always say.  Just like I planned it. ;)

Three well-mixed decks of cards later, I'd say it was a hit. :)

"Want to see a picture of a bad decision?" I asked my daughter.  She looked understandably wary. 

Yes, the poor bee is INSIDE the hummingbird feeder (which was just about out of nectar).  I'm sure it seemed like a good idea at the time, but then he got up inside and couldn't get a grip on the glass and kept sliding down into the nectar.  And no, I didn't open it to let him out, because I knew how it would end - and I didn't want to be the second one to make a bad decision that morning!

Have a great weekend!

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