Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Atoms Family

Right now, we're studying atoms in science. They pretty much can be as scary as the Addams Family to me a bunch of 10 and 11 year olds! Chemistry was never my favorite subject and here I am, teaching it to a bunch of fifth graders.  Good thing my co-worker is the older version of Bill Nye!  He keeps me and my other coworker straight when it comes to this stuff.  I'm so glad we don't have to teach this in depth!  Did I mention that this isn't my favorite unit??  Anyway, despite my lack of deep understanding into the tiny world of atoms, we have been doing some pretty fun activities to help me the kids understand these beyond microscopic little critters.  Here are some of the things we've done to help: (Disclaimer-I'm not as dumb as this post makes me sound!)  LOL

Number 1:  The Atoms Family Song--No idea who wrote it (if anyone knows, please share that info with me)  It's catchy, I tell ya!

The Atoms Family Song

They're tiny and they're teeny,
Much smaller than a beany,
They never can be seeny,
The Atoms Family

They are so small (snap, snap)
They're round like a ball (snap, snap)
They make up the air.
They're everywhere.
Can't see them at all.

Together they make gases,
And liquids like molasses,
And all the solid masses,
The Atoms Family


Neutrons hang around,
Where protons can be found;
Electrons circle round

The Atoms Family

Second:  We built atoms out of paper plates, mini M&Ms, and Captain Crunch's Oops!  All Berries. They looked at a periodic table and chose an atom they wanted to represent with the materials in front of them.  They had to work out the color combinations too!  There were only two colors of mini M&Ms at WalMart, so they had to use their thinking caps and work it out amongst their teammates.  Afterwards, we did a fair share lesson with the leftovers and ate those protons, neutrons, and electrons right up!  BTW, this model is NOT TO SCALE, but gives them the idea.  The important thing is that they know the protons and neutrons are in the middle, creating the nucleus (with the same number) and the electrons move around the outside (same number).  Just something fun to do!

Third:  We made a human atom.  I printed of 10 of each:  P, N, and E and photocopied them onto different colored paper.  Here is our human nitron atom: (notice the electrons are running around the outside in wild abandon).  They had a blast! 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Finally....Giveaway Time!!!

I've been working on my National Boards, working with a student teacher, organizing a DKG brunch, and trying to have a life--sad to say my blogging has been left behind!  I promised a giveaway back when I hit 400 followers, now I'm close to 500 (461 definitely rounds up in my book).  So, this is the "400, Almost 500 Follower Giveaway!"  I can't believe how far this blog has come!  It hasn't even been a year since I REALLY started blogging and there are actually people that want to hear what I have to say.  It's pretty cool...definitely humbling.  I am so thankful to all of you out there who have left me kind comments, boosted my ego, or made my head swell in some way or another.  The blogging community is amazing!  Anyway, enough of that....This giveaway is for a $25 gift certificate to Target.  I can't offer any free products--all of my TPT items are already free--so I hope that the money will suffice.  It's not much, but hopefully it will be enough for someone to buy some school supplies, books, or just treat themselves for working hard!  Truly thank you....and especially to all of you who will spread the word and have spread the word in the past via facebook, your blogs, email, or Pinterest.  If not for you, I wouldn't be where I am today!  :)

So, enter on.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Adventures to Fitness

Rainy day?  Kids need to get their wiggles out?  Forget the old days of Silent Ball and Heads Up 7 Up!  Adventures to Fitness is the way to go!!  I know many of you have heard of this.  I was introduced to it last year when I stumbled upon Josh's post over at Mr. B's Beach Brains.  I immediately signed up and then...forgot about it.  About a week later, my PE teacher sent out the link and I decided the next rainy day we would do it....then I forgot about it and got in to Wii Dance instead.  This year I promised myself we would check it out and boy, let me tell you, I am so glad I did.  My kids LOVE IT!!!  My colleagues' kids LOVE IT!!  It's like being in a video game, getting a work out,  and learning all the the while.  If you haven't been using Adventures to Fitness, check it out! You do have to sign up, but there is no cost to you.  It's worth it....100%  Below is a video of my kids enjoying their indoor recess:

Move on.

Friday, October 5, 2012

TGIF--Friday Funk Game

At the end of the day on Friday I'm either feeling two ways:  1.  I've had a fantastic day and it was a great way to start the weekend  2.  GET ME OUT OF HERE!!!!  Those days when you are feeling the like #2 (pun originally not intended, but hahaha) this is a great game for you!  First of all, most importantly, make sure you have something academic and productive for them to be doing during this time.

Here are two versions:
 Version #1
1.  Give your children something (candy, pencil, sticker, pretzels, homework pass).
2. They cannot talk until they are on the bus.
3. If you catch them talking you will take away their item.  If not, they get to take their item home with them to keep. 

Version #2--this one can be a little sketchy depending on your children.  Use your best judgement.
1. Give your children something (candy, pencil, sticker, pretzels, homework pass).
2.  They cannot talk until they are on the bus.
3.  If you catch them talking you or whomever caught them talking--could be friends in the class--will take away and keep their item. If not, they get to take the item home with them to keep.

You'd be amazed how much they love being productive and quiet!  You'll also be amazed how quickly your mood will turn around if you were originally in a #2 mood!   You also have to tell them that they are allowed to talk to you or you will have them playing charades with you, and that can sometimes be more annoying than them talking if they're not good at it!  lol  Try it next Friday.  I promise, you'll love it.  Or try it any time you need them to be quiet...just remember to make sure they have something to do!

P.S.  You have to gauge how long you can successfully keep your class quiet.  The object of the game is for everyone to take something home.  I don't recommend keeping them quiet for too long...I usually have them start at the beginning of DEAR (they should be silent during this time anyway) and go until they get on the bus --about 25 minutes.  If you have that kid that just can't stay quiet, let them be your assisstant during this time. 

Clip art from :

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

E-learning Site

Have I been living under a rock???  Do you know about e-Learning for Kids?  Holy Moly!  I was just doing a search for a cool typing program and came across this amazing site!  This site has fun video tutorials and activities/games for the children to practice.  There is such a plethora of resources for math, language arts, science, computer skills, health, and life skills.  I've been making a long list of titles I'll use in my planning:  fractional parts this week.  Just another excellent resource for the whiteboard and student computers!  Enjoy (if you don't already)!

Learn on.