Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Fond Memories & On to Summer!

As always, I'm very far behind on posting, but I've finally combed through all of the photos and put them into Layout to share with you.

Created a "Reading Helps Your Mind Bloom" book display, to leave up as state testing started.  I pulled lots of gardening, bees, and butterfly books. Plus, lots of potential parents came through at the end of the year for tours, so it was good to have this out to keep it from being too sterile as all the library books started coming back.  

I did a "Hop Into a Great Book" display here to put an emphasis on some seldom-circulated books as well as to highlight nonfiction, though I also put out some fiction books too!

Kept on teaching kindergarten and first graders about different authors.  I did create some very fun centers for Mo Willems.  As one paraprofessional said to me, "You're brave to do Play-Doh on carpet."  However, we didn't really have any issues when I gave the kids clear expectations for use.  They're such sweet students, and they made it work!  LOVE the different ideas they came up with giving Naked Mole Rat clothes!  (see bottom left) 

Held a successful Battle of the Books for our school groups with the help of Mrs. Tate. Already looking forward to next year.  I went ahead and pulled all of the books we already own for the 2016-2017 list.

Look which book won the 2016 Georgia Book Award!  I was quite surprised. Not a lot of our students voted for this one, though it is an adorable story.  In this Layout, I also added a picture of "Celebrating Women's History" month and "Music in Our Schools Month".  My husband and I had just been to the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra to see an ode to Robert Shaw (my fave!) concert, and I read in the program about how it was "Music in Our Schools Month".  I immediately pulled books to do with music and songs and lyrics and put them on display, in addition to the display I was already planning to celebrate strong, brave, intelligent women of note.

We got in a HUGE order of new fiction books and books that support our teachers' standards!  Lots of student and teacher input went into this order, as well as a need to add books that match the shift in our school's cultural make-up.  Having desirable fiction titles is an easy way to keep kids coming back to check out another book to read!

I didn't get a chance to snap a picture of our third grade team at the county Battle of the Books competition, but I did snap one of our fourth grade team.  There are also a couple of shots of how ornately Haw Creek decorates its halls and doors for the competition.  I dressed up as a Hogwarts witch, as did Ms. Grimes, and we volunteered in the snack room.  The kids had lots of fun and friendly competition!

Here are just a few photos of 2nd and 3rd grade students' Passion Projects.  I had students choose a topic that they were interested in, but knew little to nothing about.  They investigated on Galileo and through Britannica online.  They chose whatever type of product they were willing to create, though I did show all of them Google Slides, and many opted for that choice.  We toured the room to learn from what others created.  Josh (top right) even brought a gargoyle statue in to accompany his project.

Bresden (bottom left) brought in a Polish flag, since he wanted to learn more about Poland, where his grandparents originated.  Other students (bottom right) made 3D informational cards.  It's difficult to see, but in the (bottom right) image, students included their Cornell Method notes.  
LOVE when they really take to a note-taking method!

More Passion Projects!
I also included a picture of me and Mrs. Johnson (bottom middle), all dressed up for our school's end of year celebration day!  It was a "Zootopia" theme this year, so we snapped a picture since we were both giraffes.  (I just chose giraffe since I'm so tall.)

Told my students all about Barnes&Noble's free book for summer reading program.  Added a link to the "reading journal" on our library ItsLearning course.  Also shared Get Georgia Reading and our new Follett eBooks with all students, K-5, before the summer break.  
Additionally, had our local, public library come and do 30-minute assemblies for each grade-level to entice students to get a library card and participate in some fun, summer programs. 
And, finally, did some weeding of unused reference books to teachers at our school and to a new elementary school opening in the county next fall.

One of the first things I've done this summer was go out and read a good book in the backyard with my dog, Brodie.  Our flowers in the yard are in full bloom and beautiful!  
And, my husband and I formally opened our Teachers Pay Teachers store, "My Dear Watson".

Here's to more sleeping in, reading kids' books, and more sunny, sunny summer days!