Sunday, May 28, 2017

One Game, Six Ways (Morning Meeting)

I started to play POP about five years ago during Morning Meeting. Games are such a great way to build classroom community.

My kiddos love POP and when asked, "What game should we play?" POP is almost always the answer. I'm not sure if you play the same way, but I play it like this:

1. I pick a number...say 11.
2. We stand in a circle and start counting off one by one.
3. When the person who is 11 goes, he says, "POP"  and pops down to sit.  (Some teachers start sitting down and pop up.)
4. Next person starts at 1 and it begins again. Play continues until only one person remains.  We call the winner the King or Queen of Pop!

Yep.  That simple.  Here are some variations that my class has really enjoyed.

Play in Spanish or another language.  Okay...secret here.  I needed a chart sheet when counting in Spanish beyond ten so I actually made a set of these and hung them up.  A lifesaver for me!  :)

Count Back:  Start at any number and count down to 1 with a POP on the way.

Pick a DIGIT: Example: Any number with a 3 in it, you must POP.  They LOVE this one because the 30s wipe out 10 kids in quick succession!  The first time I did this, the look of shock was picture worthy!! Now they are prepared for the massive sit downs!

POP 1-2-or 3:  This has become our new favorite and involves a bit of skill.  Again, select a number. This time, kids can say 1, 2, or 3 numbers in a row.  For example: Number is 14.  First person can say 1 OR 1,2 OR 1, 2, 3  Next person can say 4, 4,5, OR 4, 5, 6.  Always interesting when you get close to the chosen number and see the kids trying to figure out if student next to them will be saved or out. EX: student next to me said 12...and then looked up and smiled a sly smile at me.  Then said 13.  So I was 14.  POP!  Little rascal got me out on purpose!  Always lots of laughs!

Skip Counting: This one takes longer because I usually pick a very high number like 120 that we not only COUNT to and Pop before starting all over again, but I make them say the number and the digits.  Why?  Because kids have a tough time with 105 when writing it (That tricky 0...where does it go?) or 102, 104, etc. if playing by skip count by 2.  (I usually say, "Let's start at 100 and skip count by 2s to 120)  This game has really helped kids solidify skip counting skills.

UPDATED TO GIVE YOU THIS CERTIFICATE  (Helps generate discussion at home.)

Have you played I Have, Who Has but have been frustrated?  READ about my love/hate/now LOVE relationship with the game!   (You'll be glad you did!)

Hope these posts have given you a few new ideas to try at Morning Meeting!  Have a great day!

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Throw Kindness Around Like Confetti

Two years ago, one of my students had the cutest shirt on with this saying.  

Since then, it's become our class motto.  Now I've been kicking it up a notch leaving these on desks (message on back):


They are pint size so easy to print four on a page.  

It's a great way to strengthen the home/school connection too!

I've also given to teachers who have done something especially kind so they can hang in the room.

Sometimes it's a challenge to do the KIND thing for little ones (heck, big people too!) 
but I have lots of reminders around the room:

This year, I'm going to give one of the full-size posters (printing on card stock) to my class as an end-of-the-year gift BUT I'm allowing them to pick their own color.

I was going to frame them but have decided to simply attach curly ribbon on the back so they can hang it easily anywhere at home.  Plus, it will save me a ton of money. 

I'm going to frame one of the You Threw Kindness Around Like Confetti posters for my room mom and have each child sign the back of the frame.  Gift giving made easy this year!!  If you need a gift, you can easily make this or check out my store.  Lots of way to use the product!

Have a great weekend!!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Problem Solved: Hundreds Chart Tool

A few years ago, I saw translucent tiles that could slide into the little pouches in your 100/120 chart to "highlight" number patterns.  What a great visual, huh?

 Problem was I wasn't spending $15 on them.  I looked everywhere for a cheaper set and couldn't find any at all.

really, really, really, really, really, really

Now thanks to this...


I have a few sets in yellow, blue, red, and green!  I don't know how I survived so long without them.  Honestly, it makes learning to skip count so much easier.

It's a bit embarrassing that it took me so long to realize that you can cut up a translucent FOLDER into small squares and use them.  Cost?  Under a buck!

Easy breezy!  Oh, so easy!  If you already did this, A+ for you!  
If not, get thee to the closest Dollar Store and have at it!