Thursday, August 11, 2016

Lesson Plan: Interpreting Remainders

Interpreting Remainders "DIRT" Anchor Chart
This lesson is intended for 4th grade Everyday Math, but can be translated to other math programs and grade levels.   The lesson is broken into different parts. The lesson starts with an anticipatory set, a warmup problem, minilesson, and then breaks into math centers (guided practice, partner work, independent).

Lesson: 6-8 Expressing and Interpreting Remainders

Objective: Students explore different ways to express and interpret remainders.

CCSS: 4.NF.1, 4.NF.2, 4.OA.3, 4.NBT.6, SMP1, SMP6

Warm-Up: Read Aloud: A Remainder of One, by Elinor J. Pinczes

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Lesson Plan: Distributive Property

Distributive Property game has been updated and
is available on TSN's Teachers Pay Teachers Page
This lesson utilizes enVision Math, but ideas can be adapted for other texts.  Many of the hyperlinks will direct you to a place to download the resources used throughout this lesson. (Note: You must have ActivInspire downloaded to view the Promethean Board slides)

Lesson: 3.5 Distributive Property
Subject: Math
Grade: 5th

Integration of Learning Outcomes: Students will be able to use the Distributive Property to simplify expressions and solve equations by constructing viable arguments and critiquing the reasoning of others, looking for and making use of structure, looking for and expressing regularity in repeated reasoning.

· 5.NBT.5: Fluently multiply multi-digit whole numbers using the standard algorithm.
· 5.OA.1

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Classroom Management: Clip Chart Alternative

For the last two years, I have been using "A Cupcake for the Teacher's" adorably awesome clip chart.  Students have their own clothespins clipped to the chart. For good behavior, students can move their clip upward, while poor behavior results in a downward motion of the clip.  

There are consequences for clipping down, and rewards for clipping up.  If they clip up to "Super Student," they get a star on their clip. 10 stars retires their clip into the "Clip Chart Hall of Fame."  I also included a positive reward system to go along with the chart, where clipping up earned them a ticket for a weekly raffle.  The raffle winner would recieve a prize such as a homework pass, or sitting at the teacher's desk for a day (a class favorite)!

While this is an effective way of classroom management, there is a new alternative to the clip chart game. The "Character Trait Clip Chart" promotes all positive behavior.  Instead of "clipping down," this chart is only for "clip ups." Students earn their clip on the chart by displaying character traits from the 6 Pillars of Character.  Students can also recieve a certificate for getting their clip on the chart.
Character Trait Clip Chart includes 7 different traits and an award certificate

I like this alternative because it doesn't draw toward negative attention.  It promotes a positive environment, as the negative behaviors can be handled without the student "clipping down" in front of the whole class, which many bring out other negative energy.

The clipchart alternative can also be used with a positive reward system. Students can earn raffle tickets for getting their name on the chart, much like the original.  It could also be used with Class Dojo, earning students points. I like the idea of Class Dojo because negative points will also hold students accountable, and gives leighway to address negative behaviors without being centerstage.

The intensions of the "Character Trait Clip Chart" are to promote a positive learning enviornment. There has been so much hate in the world recently, and the point of this clip chart is to bring out the good in the classroom.

Download the "Character Trait Clip Chart" on TSN's Teachers Pay Teachers page.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Display & Blog Post: William Glasser "We Learn..." Poster

Back in high school, I took private batting lessons to improve my softball swing.  My hitting instructor was one of the best in the business, as he could pinpoint the tiniest details in my swing.  He went beyond the fundamentals, sharing the best techniques and mechanics.  His knowledge for the game was through the roof, but perhaps the most unique thing about him was how he took the mental side of softball to a different level.

Every session, he would say "you only remember 50% of what you see and hear."  At the time, I never understood why he said this.  I figured it was an excuse that would benefit me in case I were to forget something.  When I became a teacher, I finally understood what he meant.

Lesson Plan: Multiplication Properties

Front of Properties Foldable
This lesson utilizes enVision Math, but ideas can be adapted for other texts.  Many of the hyperlinks will direct you to a place to download the resources used throughout this lesson. (Note: You must have ActivInspire downloaded to view the Promethean Board slides)

Lesson: 3.1 – Multiplication Properties
Subject: Math
Grade: 5th

Integration of Learning Outcomes
· Students will be able to identify and apply Commutative, Associative, Identity, and Zero Properties of Multiplication by reasoning abstractly and quantitatively, constructing viable arguments and critiquing the reasoning of others, looking for and making use of structure, and looking for and expressing regularity in repeated reasoning.

· 5.NBT.6: Use strategies based on place value, the properties of operations, and/or the relationship between multiplication and division.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Lesson Plan: Every Picture Tells A Story

Objectives: Students will be able to…
  • Brainstorm a topic for a narrative by looking at pictures
  • Independently start writing a narrative based on a picture they selected
  • Orally outline a story by looking at a picture
  • PA.R.1.4 – Types of Writing
  • PA.R.1.5 – Quality of Writing
Anticipatory Set: There will be a brief discussion. Ask the students, “What is a writer’s block?” Have students raise their hands and give the definition of a writer’s block. Ask the students if they ever had a writer’s block and how they felt during that time.  Follow this up by asking the students how they got out of the “writer’s block.” Share a personal experience or examples of a writer’s block so that the students feel comfortable sharing their own experiences.

This activity allows students to discuss a topic that they can relate to, but also connect to brainstorming. Explain that we will use one strategy that will help resolve the issue of a writer’s block.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Educational Apps #2: Math Apps

Below is a presentation on educational elementary-level mathematics applications.  The apps are great for home and school practice. Each slide provides an in-depth analysis on the app. All of these applications are available on iTunes or in the Google Play Store.

iPads are an excellent tool to use in education. 21st century learners would greatly benefit by the use of iPads. Not only is it a great tool for note-taking, but there are thousands of apps that can be used for education. iPads provide interactive activity that helps students learn. It is a digital manipulative that can be used for differentiation and help students succeed.

Also included is a handout for parents.  The handout is intended to be a resource for parents, especially to avoid the "summer slide."  The handout provides many math websites with games and practice programs.

In the comment section, please suggest some of your favorite educational apps or websites!

For  more app suggestions, visit the link for Educational Apps #1.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Math Game: Standard, Word, Expanded Form Matching

Download this Standard, Word, and Expanded Form Game on our Teacher's Pay Teachers page.  Use the anchor chart above to help students!

Here is how to play:

As a Whole Class:
  • Pair It Up: Give each student a card. Students will find their partners who have the cards that represent the same numbers in each form (expanded, standard, and word form)
As  Math Center:
  • Memory Style: Flip over 3 cards at a time until you find the three cards that represent the same number.
  • Matching Game: Match the cards, sorting through expanded, standard, and word form.
Have another way to play this game? Share in the comments below!

Monday, February 1, 2016

Lesson Plan: Colon Minilesson

Subject/Grade: Grammar, 6th Grade (can be adapted for other grade levels)


• Students will be able to determine when it is appropriate to use a colon.

• Students will be able to write three sentences properly using colons for each way that a colon is used.


• CC.1.4.6.F: Demonstrate a grade appropriate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and spelling.

• E07.D.1.2: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling.

• E07.D.1.2.4: Use punctuation to separate items in a series. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Assessment: Create Your Own

Finishing up a unit or chapter in science or social studies? Check out this "Create Your Own Final Assessment" project on our Teachers Pay Teachers site!

Students have the option to create their own final project. Students will choose any topic from the studied chapter. The project options include:

  • Comic Strip
  • Magazine 
  • Children's Book
  • Power Point 
  • Song 
  • Tri-fold/Poster 
  • Essay 
Rubrics are included in the package! Students can even present to the class, or you could have a gallery walk!

This assessment portion is different than the traditional test. Students are able to pick a project that they will enjoy, while also showing what they learned throughout the whole unit. Students will enjoy this form of an assessment much more than a test.

Lesson Plan & Scavenger Hunt: Landforms

This lesson was originally used with lesson 1.4 of "Social Studies Alive!" but can be used with any Social Studies program.  Scavenger Hunt materials can be located on our Teachers Pay Teachers Page!

Subject: Social Studies
Grade: 5th

Title: Landforms Virtual Scavenger Hunt

Integration of Learning Outcomes

· Students will be able to define geographic terms for water and landforms by completing a graphic organizer.

· Students will be able to notice the differences between certain landforms and bodies of water by using an interactive Power Point.

· Students will be able to act out or draw geographic terms relating to water and landforms with a partner.


· 7.1.5.B: Describe and locate places and regions as defined by physical and human features.

· 7.2.5.A: Describe the characteristics of places and regions.

· E05.B-V.4: Vocabulary acquisition and use

· R5.A.1.1.1: Identify and/or interpret meaning of multiple-meaning words used in text.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Lesson Plan: TAG Peer Editing

Subject: Writing

Grade: 5th, can be adapted to other grade levels

Integration of Learning Outcomes: Students will be able to peer edit their writing pieces with a partner.

  • 1.5.5.E: Revise writing to improve organization and word choice: check the logic, order of ideas, and precision of vocabulary.
  • 1.6.5.A: Listen critically and respond to others in small and large group situations.
    • Respond with grade level appropriate questions, ideas, information, or opinions.