Monday, August 17, 2015

Monday Made It

It's time for Monday Made It with 4th Grade Frolics!

I was trying to think of a way to display exemplars for students to reference, so I put this on the bottom of one of my bulletin boards.  I plan to put student work samples there that meet exemplar standards with a note from me about exactly why they did.  I love these letters!  I also realized, after I took the picture, that yellow pennants hung a little closer would look like the sun's rays.  Hmmmmmm.  May be another MMI coming on.

Our PTO membership drive is beginning today, and our PTO officers always put up adorable decorations in the cafeteria to track how many memberships each class is bringing in.  This year the theme is minions, so each teacher was asked to decorate a minion to go on the walls of the cafeteria; they'll be judged by a "celebrity" judge and the winner gets a local gift certificate!

So, here's my George Washington minion.  Sorry about the glare.
The names of kids who join will be written on bananas and posted around our minions.  Love!!!

I love, love, love Catherine Reed at The Brown Bag Teacher.  She has posted about how she differentiates her learning centers, so I took the plunge with my math centers this week.

I love the visual directions she uses, too.  We'll see how they do with them this week!

This Monday Made It will definitely be a work in progress.

We are using Engage NY for our math curriculum, and I love it, but I didn't love how the student work looked.  The fonts are pretty small, and there seems to be a lot of white space on the page - my learners who need more scaffolding were struggling, and I thought that the work format may be part of it.  So, I redesigned the work for the next few lessons; I put boxes for them to write in and tried to use more rectangles than blanks so they could clearly see where to put their work.  I also included the learning target on everything (that's a big push in our district this year).  We'll see if it helps or not.

And speaking of learning targets, I made one of these for each of my reading groups.  It's hot glued to the side of a magazine holder I use to keep all of the supplies I need for each group.  Since all of my reading instruction is in small groups, and each group may be working on a different skill, posting the learning target on the whiteboard wouldn't make sense.  So, when I pull out each group's work, I'll leave this sitting on the table and use a dry erase marker to write the learning target for that group.  I've also included a general outline that each lesson follows so that kids have a visual reminder of what we've done and what we still have to do.

And that was one busy, but fun-filled, week.  I can't wait to see what everyone else has been up to!

Have a great Monday!


  1. LOVE the #exemplary board. What a fantastic way of sharing expectations and helping the children to understand given criteria.

    I am also IN LOVE with your George Washington minion. Too cute!!!

    A Crucial Week

  2. Your George Washington minion is super duper cute! I also love your #exemplary board!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

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  4. The exemplar board is an awesome idea! Definitely something I'll have to figure out how to add to my classroom (which doesn't have any bulletin boards).

    Teaching Voracious Learners

    P.S. As a fellow teacher runner I love your blog name!

  5. We also use Engage NY and I've been working on modifying the lessons to be kid friendly as well! And I love your exemplary board!!

  6. I love your #exemplary board! So cute! How did you get the tissue pom pom to stay on the board? I'm adding them to my boards for the first time so I've been wondering what's the best way to attach them.

    Teaching in the Tropics

  7. Love everything in this post! The exemplary board is so cute but so ready for kid work!

    I love your emphasis on learning targets-- it does make a difference when kids know what they are working towards.

    I also love the idea of a checklist for small groups!

    My Bright Blue House