Saturday, April 26, 2014

Origami Stars

I love origami and stars-- so this is the perfect website to check out: I found this pin and figured I'd put it here on my blog to share. Great tutorials to go with each design. This will be one of my summer projects!

If you love this collage of stars, please click on the pinterest link below if you are interested in passing this along,  or go directly to the 
 website: It's a cool site to visit!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Love the New England Aquarium!

I can't get enough of the tranquility and fantastic world of sea creatures. The aquarium is always an inspiration whenever I visit. 

It's no wonder that the sea is a perfect springboard for writing and making arts and crafts. The colors and all the strange creatures are mesmerizing for all ages. 

Recently, we made coral reef books (Who Lives in the Coral Reef?) as a K-2 primary collaborative unit of study on habitats.  The kids were so excited to read, write and draw in their books. We had an open house to show off all their work. You can see my coral reef shape book in my TPT store. 

Before you leave my blog, click on the short video of the lovely and graceful jellyfish (below).

Jellyfish at the New England Aquarium, Boston, MA

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Have you checked out this amazing website yet? It's a resource you will want to visit, bookmark, and revisit over and over.  Are you looking for common core skills focusing on reading comprehension across the content areas? If so, check it out right away! 

I have taken advantage of their scores of leveled nonfiction passages. You can choose to do a unit, or just do the short reading passages. Questions and answer keys accompany each passage. You will love how you can save pdfs in a binder for the future, too. And here's the really good part... It's FREE!!!! Honest. 

Click on the right sidebar or go to READWORKS

(Please note: I am not a salesperson or rep for I just love 'em.)

First graders practice words with silent e.
Funny, they happen to wear the same shirt on this day. 

Friday, April 18, 2014

Reading "A Curve in the River" and Recycling

       My kids read from our Houghton-Mifflin Anthology, "The Curve in the River", an excerpt from The Stories Julian Tells, by Ann Cameron. We wrote messages for our message in the bottle activity yesterday. We recycled bottles by decorating them with stickers and flags, and rolling up our carefully written notes to place inside the bottles. The kids thought this was pretty special. But we did decide we weren't throwing them in the river! (No, we're not going to recycle and then pollute a river!  A wonderful idea to send it in a real river, but we just could not do that.) 

    So, we came up with an alternative plan to use our message bottles. Then they had to pick a friend or relative to give their message to. I do this every year with my kids, and it never gets old!