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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Managment Monday (Tuesday!) & other Randomness

Delay, delay, delay! Doing my delay dance right now! PA is super cold, so we have a 2 hour delay again tomorrow. We have state testing in about a month and we've had 6 snow days and TONS of delays. Starting to feel the PSSA push. are just a few things that we have going on...

 Since I started teaching, I've been trying to find a way to store the task cards and other games/cards that I've made. File folders didn't work, filing cabinet didn't work, etc., etc., etc. I finally found the perfect solution (for me anyway!). Sam's Club has these great 12x12 drawers. I labeled them with different skills. So far it has worked perfectly!

Third grade is the big year to start to learn the multiplication facts in our district. This is just a cup full of facts. I'll randomly pass the fact sticks out during transitions or extra free time. (Each fact is a different color so that I'm able to give more challenging ones to learners that need more of a challenge and less difficult ones to students that may struggle with multiplication. For example, all of the red sticks are 1s.)

The infamous Kiss Your Brain jar that I got from some terrific blog. (Sorry, I don't remember where... I've been to so many fantastic sites.)

I've just revamped the way I collect homework. i've always used the paper trays for homework. Typically the majority of the homework is due on Fridays. i've found that Friday morning homework collection was such a many papers, so little organization. This idea, although it is far from being a new idea, came from another teacher in my building. It has worked perfectly so far!

January Family Project - Each month I like to have the students complete a family project at home. This month was the missing mitten assignment (from ProTeacher). We used adjectives to describe mittens that were lost. The students had to then use the clues and other information in the descriptive paragraph to locate the missing mittens.

Another FAB ProTeacher idea....How to Blow a Bubble. I have to say that the students LOVED this project. They worked so hard and did a terrific job!

Every nine weeks we have a different AR incentive. Each student has an individual AR goal. Once he/she reaches his/her goal the reward is a cup of hot chocolate for breakfast. If they earn 5 points passed their goal they will get another incentive. I do the BONUS past the goal because typically the students reach their goal for the nine weeks and then stop. This encourages them to keep reading.

Each student keeps track of his/her own points. When he/she gets another whole AR point another marshmallow is added to the cup.

LOVE this.....POWER TOWER! I found this idea on another amazing blog. I made both sight word (fluency phrase) cups and multiplication cups. The students stack the cups as they read or answer the problem on the cup correctly. You can kinda make up your own rules, but I have them start over if they get a problem or word wrong. They also have to start over if they knock the tower over. This is quite a challenge and they LOVE it!

Vocab on the Move....during a unit review in reading we typically play this game. The students all have a sentence strip with a vocab word on it. They do not know what the word is though. They have to travel around the room to find a synonym, antonym, example, sentence, etc. The clues are used to determine the word on their heads. 

Hope you found an idea or two that you can use! :) 

UPDATE: Here are the links for a few of the documents that are listed on this page. I have searched my flash drive high and low for the labels that I put on the bins, but I can't find them anywhere. If I come across them I will post them.



  1. This is great! I have an idea for this in my room already :) I'll have to post about it after we implement it and I take some pictures.


  2. love the Power Tower! absolutely going to use that! those are Pringles cans, correct? you write the problem on the bottom and answer on the inside of the cup? very cute!

  3. Love the Power Tower and Kiss your brain jar! The how to blow a bubble activity is so cute too! Too bad gum is outlawed at my school. :(

  4. Mrs. Patton....Awesome! Can't wait to see it.

    Runny Babbit...yep, they are Pringles cans. I just used scrapbook paper to cover them up. I never thought about it, but you could use contact paper that had a design on it too.

    Mrs. Magee...gum is outlawed? Bummer! We only chew it for the lesson, but it was a great learning experience.

  5. I LOVE your homework organization... I have been looking for a way to organize our homework as well! Thanks for the ideas!

  6. I understood how to play the multiplication Power Tower. But, how do you play the sight words power tower?

    Sara Beth

  7. I love the vocab crown. do the kids know where to find synonyms if they don't know the word?

  8. Sara Beth, the students read the sight words. If they get it right, they can stack it, if not they put it back in the stack (I use this version for the first few minutes of a small group or individual time as some supervision.)

    Miss Gonzales, I use this only as a review to practice the words. I usually use it during a review week in reading. (We use the Treasures series.)

  9. I love the canister to go with the power tower activity. I have the cups but never thought of a Pringle's canister. How perfect. Do you have the the label you used? If so I would love it!
    Lauren Blackmon

  10. This is our year to get a new reading series. Treasures is one of the options. How well do you like Treasures?
    Also, what is the Kiss your brain jar? Oh, and what was on the Verbs on a Move worksheet?
    3rd grade teacher

  11. What an amazing classroom you have! I love the cup stacking idea!

  12. I love the way you review vocabulary words! Is there any way I could get a copy of the On the Move sheet you use? If so, my email address is Thanks so much! Carrie

  13. I think I just pinned five different ideas from this one blog post! AWESOME! Thank you for sharing! :)

  14. I love your ideas. You are very crafty. I was wondering what your labels were on your cart. Do you have a list? If you can, could you email them to me at Thank you!!!

  15. Can you share the vocab on the move printable?
    Love your ideas!

  16. What fantastic ideas! Can I download the template for vocab on the move question sheet and the power of tower labels anywhere? Thanks, ladies! These are inspiring!

  17. Love Power Tower and Vocab on the Move!

  18. Thank you for sharing these! I just found your blog--love it! I'm you're newest follower! :)

  19. Great blog! I love the vocab. on the move activity and the Power Tower! Happy New Year & thanks for sharing!

  20. Can you explain the Vocab on the Move in a little more detail? Sounds like something my third graders would love, but I'm not sure exactly how it works. And do you have a handout they fill in to figure out their word?

  21. I love those carts from Sams! I am looking for something to keep my games in as well! I'll have to look into those.


  22. Love the idea of Vocab on the move game. I've shared it on my blog and linked back to you.

    Kaylee's Education Studio

  23. I would love to use your Power Tower idea on Multiplication to help my struggling son, he is now needing to learn Division facts as well, can there be a Division tower?
    And on the cups, is the question inside the cup and the answer on bottom? I plan to make this asap, as my Son needs help!
    thank you for not only helping your students, but including help for us parents :) you ROCK!

  24. Do you have the labels available that you used on your storage carts? I have similar carts and can't seem to find a good label to fit.

  25. I LOVE your blog! In the fall I will be teaching third grade as well. Maybe I missed it, but what do you use the "Magic marble" pails for?

  26. I just stumbled across this post and I'm so glad! I love the idea of storing task cards in the rolling drawer thingie! I have one of those in my room and the majority of the drawers are empty- not anymore!!
    Thanks! I'm your newest follower

  27. I just found you through pinterest. I LOVE the vocal on the move. How fun!

    A Place to Thrive

  28. I'm your newest follower! I love the Power Tower idea! That is so fun! Thank you for sharing. :)

    Kristine's Book Reviews

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  30. can someone tell me what to do with the Magic Marbles, please? are they like the compliment jar? thanks for your help!

  31. What do you do with the Kiss the Brain drawer?

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