Monday, November 26, 2012

Saturday, November 24, 2012

If there was some magical way to take my thoughts and send them straight to this blog, I would be posting all of the time. I will be walking the dog or waiting for the bus or whatever and think of something to share on here. Of course, by the time I get a chance to be at the computer, the thought is gone! That happened a lot this past week as I was home sick. I would think of an idea and, the next thing I knew, I would be waking up again and the idea was gone, gone, gone!

So, today will be one of those days with a little bit of this and a little bit of that. All the bits and bobs I have thought of sharing over the past couple of weeks (in between sleeping, taking sinus meds and sleeping some more!)

Grab yourself a cuppa and stay awhile!

Science first...

Last week the class had their first Science lesson in the new DaVinci studio. They did an experiment where they had to predict what would happen to a cork if it was on a bottle with vinegar and baking soda inside. Mrs. V. said the interesting thing about the experiment is that although each class did the experiment, they all had different predictions. Most of our class predicted correctly. The cork flew off!!!!

Holiday time...

One of our School and Staff Support Workers (SSSW's) celebrates the Hindu festival of Diwali. It translates into "Festival of Lights." Many of the teachers were wearing saris for the occasion and we all enjoyed an amazing Indian lunch in the staffroom. Yummy!

I spent forever and a day searching for one of my stories on Diwali to no avail. One of the things I hate about moving is not being able to put my hands on things again right away. So, I borrowed a book from another teacher and told the class a little bit about Diwali. Then, we made our own candle holders in honour of the occasion. 

We started playing with mixing glitter into the play dough. It was so much fun and the results are so wonderful. See?

And some up close...


Aren't they pretty?

I have to say that the invention of plasticine and play dough may just be what gets me through the rough patches this year. The class loved it! I mean loved, loved, loved it!!!! They were on task and happy as clams for almost an hour. It was a miracle!

Stay tuned for more plasticine/salt clay creations. Now that I know how much this class loves to work in this medium I am all over coming up with new ideas!

We are Mathematicians...

This past month we have begun using math stations during our math time. They are called B.U.I.L.D. stations with the letters standing for different activities. I love teaching this way because I am able to group the students in many different ways. One week the groups might be based on needs. Another week I can group randomly. The groups are fluid and constantly shifting. Students get to work with all of their classmates over time but I am also able to separate students who need a break from each other for awhile.

B is for Buddy Games where the students practice addition, subtraction, regrouping etc by playing games (they think it is just playing but we all know that they are learning while they play!)

U is for Using Math Tubs. Some days this is free exploration of the variety of manipulatives in the tubs but, most of the time, there is a specific task attached to the math tubs. One week, we might be building (no pun intended!) addition sentences with dominoes and another week we might be solving puzzles with 2-D shapes.

I is for Independent Reading. At this station, students read books about math. They can use the story to solve a math problem using pictures, numbers and words.

L is for Learning About Math. This allows me to give students either extra practice on certain skills or extra challenges where needed.

D is for Doing Math with the Teacher. Here I work with small groups on reviewing skills or teaching new skills. Some days this means working in our JUMP math books. Other days it may mean teaching a new game or activity using the Math Tubs.

A new fun way to do our DPA (Daily Physical Activity)...

The class has been loving the new brain break video I found on youtube via pinterest. I have to admit that I have a lot of fun doing it, too! Check it out!

I am sure that as soon as I post this I will think of a bunch of other things to share but I'm going to call it a day on this post. Thanks for visiting. So glad to be able to say that I am back in the classroom as of this Monday. I hate being sick!

Ms. Hughes

Monday, November 19, 2012

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Monday, November 5, 2012

Today was a long, long, long, long, long day.





A day that felt like it would never, ever, ever end.

After two days with a guest teacher last week, the kids were a bit on the wild side. (I am being generous here - they were actually a lot on the wild side!)

After four days of sleeping, watching bad television, sleeping some more, taking way too many cold medications and hanging out on pinterest (during my lucid moments), I was tired, cranky, very impatient and wondering why on earth I decided to come back to work.

At about 9:10 bed looked better than ever.

I'd like to say that the day got better.

That everything smoothed out and we got lots accomplished.

That I turned it all around and ended up teaching the best lesson of my career.

Like I said, I would like to be able to say that.

Unfortunately... I can't.

It was an uphill climb all day long.

A very steep uphill climb.

Water spills.

Yogurt puddles.

A hair cutting experiment gone awry.

Lost pencils.

Incomplete work.

Lots and lots of talking. Did I mention the talking?

Like Alexander, in the great book Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst,

I spent most of the day wishing I could tell everyone that I was moving to Australia!!!!

Thankfully, I realize that some days are just like that.

Even in Australia.

Spelling Week 8 Nov 5-8

This week's words are:


Saturday, November 3, 2012


It is that time again...Time to link up with Oh Boy Fourth Grade with a Currently Linky party!!!!

So, Carolyn McDade...ever heard of her? No? Well she is awesome. She writes beautiful music that is very calming and I never get tired of listening to it. I have a couple of her cd's that I play regularly for writing time. One is this one...

CD2Cover.jpg (81019 bytes)

And the other one is this one...

She writes music that is then sung by women across North America. I used to work with a teacher who was part of the choir working on one of her albums and that is how I first discovered her.

Am off to check out some other teacher's November Currently's at the linky party. Have a great Saturday!

Ms. Hughes

Thursday, November 1, 2012

I may be sick but I still have school on the brain. After sleeping the day away I needed to be out of bed for a little while. So, I downloaded the photos from yesterday to show you.

And, now, I am going back to bed!

Ms. Hughes