Schoolroom Swag

Elementary Teacher

Having fun in the classroom and "balancing" life!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Easter math...freebies to come!

I think I am WAY behind in math. We're reviewing adding 3 digits and adding multiples of 10. Many of you are adding/subtracting  double digits with regrouping! Yikes! I better pick up the pace. I also feel like they don't really have a solid grasp of number sense. Do they really know what they're doing when they add and subtract. I'm just not convinced.

So next week, we'll be all about the number sense, adding and subtracting multiples of 10, all with an Easter theme. I'll keep you posted and send out some freebies.

Glitter Words
[ - *Glitter Words*]

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Experiential Learning

What do you know about Experiential Learning?  Did you see those capital letters?  I think it's a capital letter kind-of thing. To me, it's a teaching/learning model or method. Hands-on. Using authentic assessments. PBL. STEM project inclusion. Research-based. Using movement, music and arts. Limited worksheets. (I can't help thinking that a worksheet here and there is not all bad. But LIMITED.) Real-world. Tailored.

These are some schools I have researched that come to mind:

Tessaract School- Scottsdale AZ
Explorer Charter School- San Diego CA
Tuscon Waldorf School- Tuscon AZ
The Graham School- Columbus OH
Ron Clark Academy -?? Not sure if I would call that Experiential or not

What do you think about these schools? This kind of learning environment? It seems so engaging. Check out this video of a community/city/building project from The Explorer Charter School first grade. It's awesome! It's exactly what I would like to do. That is the teacher I want to be. How engaged are those kids? How fun would that be?

I know it takes planning. I know public schools can't do it, most of the time. I think you have to find your way, find your fit, find what kind of teacher you are, what methods you ascribe to, and go from there. I'm still finding those things! But looking at schools like these and teachers like theirs are helping and inspiring me!

If you know anything about experiential learning, please share!
Glitter Words
[ - *Glitter Words*]

Friday, March 6, 2015

Green Light Classrooms and 48 Days to the Work You Love

Are you a workshop lover? I could be a Professional Workshop Attender and spend the rest of my life living the dream. I had the opportunity to see Dr. Rich Allen last week here in Phoenix. He's a research-based teaching advocate. He was super funny and it was full of great ideas. He's all about movement and music in the classroom. Much like Rick Morris.

*have the kids stand in different sides of the room to give an answer (be it yes or no, opinion, or even multiple choice- it may take longer, but record whether or not they went to the right area, and walla! No papers to correct!

*instead of worksheets, have kids write answers on a markerboard and put it on top of their heads. It's fun for them, and easy for you to see, plus no one can look at each others answers. Again, record answers for an easy grade.
*cut up a worksheet and put it into plastic Easter eggs. The kids go on an egg hunt and record their answers.
*make a hopscotch on the ground full of letters. Hop out the spelling words. Or vocab.

I bought his book (, of course- $2.99 vs. the $25 at the conference) and am just starting it now.
Product Details
But I'm also reading this:
Product Details
I know I probably shouldn't admit that. If I love teaching so much, and have such great, innovative and creative ideas that I can blog about them, why would I need to read a book called "48 Days to the Work You Love"? 
Do you ever wonder if you should really be a teacher? Well, sometimes I do. If you read this blog, you might wonder the same thing about me. Ha. Don't get me wrong, I love the kids and truly do enjoy teaching. But with 4 kids of my own, and a husband and a house, it gets overwhelming. This book is SO good. It's not about finding a new job. It's about how your job/career/vocation is only a small part of your life. It's about finding a new job if that's what you need. But there's so much more to it than that. I highly recommend it.
Spring Break starts tomorrow!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And then for me, its 47 Days to the Summer I Love! Thanks for reading!
Glitter Words
[ - *Glitter Words*]