Sunday, March 3, 2013

Just sharing...

As an instructional specialist on my campus, I have the opportunity to write "creative" lesson plans for our teachers and students.  I don't do this for their classrooms; I do it for our Saturday Academy.  This is a special instructional time, where selected students get to learn skills they are struggling with in a "new" way.  I get to create games, and write unique plans.  Then, I have to gather the materials.  That's the hard part...I have to make foldables or game pieces for 7 classes of 10 students.  Time con-su-ming...and time is not what I have a lot of at the moment!!!

I wanted to share several foldables that our students have done.  Our 5th grade students are working on inferring (yikes!!) and our 4th grade students are working on revising and editing.  All are preparing for the first round of STAAR testing the first week in April.

Let's begin with a foldable and an anchor chart for FANBOYS.  These are the conjunctions students need to expand sentences.  They include For, And, Nor, But, Or, Yet, and So.

I did this activity with my small group first.  They looovvveeeddd it!! It's something they go back and tell their homeroom teachers!! Wow!

They have also worked on subject/verb agreement.  Here is a foldable we created:

Finally, here is the foldable we used for my 5th grade group to continue our work on inferring:

I truly believe that using creative ways to reach students, which includes creating fun foldables, reinforces learning and helps students gain ownership over what they need to know.  I love allowing students to use foldables to help them answer questions or create their own questions.

On a personal note, I am working on my Masters Degree in Teacher Leadership.  I am currently working on Student Motivation and Achievement.  Though I'm excellent at time management, I found myself, for the first time since I started in January, struggling to get motivated! HOW IRONIC! (Alanis Morrisette is playing in my head right now!)  However, I completed my assignment 5 hours before it was due.  So, at least I wasn't late. Hmph.

Here is a great quote from my the creator of my favorite cartoon characters, Calvin and Hobbes:

"You can't just turn on creativity like a faucet.  You have to be in the right mood.  What mood is that?  Last-minute panic"--Bill Watterson

My. Point. Exactly.