Sunday, July 29, 2018


This is year 2 for Visible Learning in our District.  If you haven't heard of this yet; it is HUGE!  There are way more components than I can explain in this blog post, but in a nutshell- It is a huge, ongoing study of hundreds of educational strategies and practices, and how effective they are.  One component of Visible Learning is "The Learning Pit," where students learn to assess where they are and where they are going in their learning with a visual representation.

I have created several different "Learning Pits" to use in the classroom to coordinate with what you teach.  I am going to use the American History Themed Learning Pit, and I plan to take a picture of each of my students holding an American flag.  We will cut the pictures out, and they can actually move these along the learning pit as we take formative assessments.  I will update with a pic of what this looks like as we get school started.

Here is The Learning Pit I am going to use in my 5th Grade Class:

The Learning Pit - Social Studies American US History Theme
Here is one I made for an ELA Teacher in Intermediate:

The Learning Pit - ELA Children's Book Theme for Intermediate/Middle Grades

This is the one Annie is going to use in her 1st Grade Classroom:

The Learning Pit - Primary Picture Book Theme 
And last, but not least, a Math Themed Learning Pit:

The Learning Pit - Math Theme

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Graveyards in February!

I am diving back into the work of blogging, and I couldn't be more excited!  It only seems fitting to end this hiatus I have been on with something as unexpected as graveyards on Valentines Day! Forget the hearts and flowers, my kids are writing fractions on tombstones this Valentine's Day!  I know it sounds unusual, but I am desperate!  Really, I am!  Every year I dive into fractions, trying to get students to really u first and then and not be intimidated. For the most part it is usually successful and they do pretty well with them. I always have this problem though, with even my higher students getting into a rush and converting proper fractions into mixed numbers. I have pounded proper vs improper fractions and their value, but I still have at least one student per day who makes this mistake! So, I decided to do something crazy!  I needed a way to make them remember to never do this again. Thus, the "Proper Fraction Graveyard" was born! Here's how it works! When I am checking (usually formative assessments, so I am walking around the room checking as the students are working), if a student converts a proper fraction into a mixed number, the student must write the proper fraction onto a tombstone and we all have a little moment of remembersnce for the fraction. The students are excited (maybe too excited...), so I am hoping this problem will be solved sooner rather than later! So, tell me- is this something your students do too, or am I alone over here???

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

MIA, St. Patrick's Day Units, Giveaway, & a Freebie

Wow! We have totally been MIA lately.  This is the time of year when it starts to become hectic and crazy.  It will continue to be that way until the end of the school year as you all know.  Today however we are on our 3rd snow day of the week due to about 3-4 inches of solid ice and a couple of inches of snow on top of that.  Even our city school system has been closed all week.  So today since I am caught up on grading, I whipped up a little St. Patrick's Day Common Core freebie that includes a fictional passage, a comprehension page with 5 short answer questions, and a Figurative Language review page.  It is similar to the one I did for Valentine's Day.  I used that one to help review my kiddos on literature standards and practice answering short answer questions and providing evidence.  Click the Freebie cover at the bottom of the post to head on over to TPT and download this freebie.  Also a few weeks ago I uploaded a few St. Patrick's Day craftivities.  One is Main Idea Pots of Gold and the other is "Summarizing" over the Rainbow.  You can also get both units bundled for a cheaper price. Both cover informational standards and have a seasonal St. Patrick's Day theme.  Click the pics below to check out these two products.

I will give the bundled set away to one lucky follower who comments and gets the closet to guessing how many snow days Melissa and I have had so far.  

Now for your freebie! Click the cover to pic up your freebie.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Common Core Assessment Workbooks

Have you heard about the new Common Core Assessment Workbooks?  I just checked out the sample for 5th grade and I can tell it would be so useful.  There is an assessment for every single Common Core standard including math and ELA.  This would be great to assess each and every standard that you teach.  Looks like there is a variety of types of assessments and some rubrics included for some standards.  I have the Common Core Workbook for 5th grade and I love it.  This book looks like an awesome tool as well to make sure you are correctly assessing the Common Core Standards.  Click the link above the check them out!  Have a great weekend!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Giveaway Winners!!!

Congratulations to Martha M. for winning the $10 TpT Gift Certificate!  We will be emailing this you you!  Also a big congrats to Cinnamon S. for winning your choice of one item from either of our TpT stores!  We will also be emailing you!  Thank you to everyone who entered and became followers of our blog!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Follow the Trail Giveaway!

If you have not already heard about the Follow the Trail Giveaway that many upper grades teacher bloggers have put together, you must check it out.  Each blogger has swapped a product with another blogger, tested the product in their classroom, and has written a review of the product.  You can "hike around the trail" and see some amazing products as well as enter the giveaway.  I will set you up with the first blogger I started with on this hike.  Click her button below to get started!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Valentine's Day Math Libs!

Another snow day here in small town Kentucky!  I have spent my snowy morning snuggling my little one and working on this Valentine's Day activity for my Math students.  I made a Math Libs activity for my students to practice Mean, Median, Mode, and Range at the beginning of the year; and they absolutely LOVED it!  (You can check it out here if you'd like)  I was trying to think of something for us to do on Valentine's day that they would enjoy, but would still have them practicing skills we have learned this year.  So, I decided to do a Valentine's Day themed Math Lib to review some of the most important things we have learned so far (Numerical Expressions, Place Value, Powers of 10, Decimals, and Fractions).

This is a centers-type activity, where students move to each group and solve a problem to fill in a blank of their Math Lib.  At the end of the activity, they will have solved a problem from each of the 5 categories.  I can't wait to hear the Valentine's Day love stories they end up with at the end of the activity! (The students love them because they are about teachers or adults in your building... in this case a male teacher in your building :)

You can click here to see more pictures and info about this product in my TpT store.  I am also going to give this activity away to the first follower to comment with their email address :)

Also, don't forget to enter to win a $10 TpT Gift Certificate, or your choice of any item in either of our TpT shops by clicking here!