Sunday, March 19, 2017

Virginia Studies SOL Review and a FREEBIE

Would you like some resources to teach and/or review your Virginia Studies content?  Then this post if for you!  I'm sharing my favorite resources for the following:  SOL review, the Civil War, the American Revolution, and a FREEBIE that focuses on abolitionists and the formation of West Virginia.

To read the full post, go to the Virginia is for Teachers blog.
Virginia Studies SOL Review and Grammar Correction







Virginia Studies SOL review and grammar correction



Major Civil War Battles of Virginia Map




Virginia Studies SOL review: Major Civil War Battles of Virginia Map






Patrick Henry Readers Theater



Virginia Studies SOL review: Patrick Henry Readers Theater








FREEBIE: Abolitionists and Formation of West Virginia PDF and Cloze Activity








Virginia Studies SOL review: Abolitionist and Formation of West Virginia





To read the full post, go to the Virginia is for Teachers blog.




What are your go-to review activities for the Virginia Studies SOL?  I'd love to hear about them!





Sunday, March 12, 2017

Growth Mindset Read-Aloud: Cornelius by Leo Lionni

As I was reading Cornelius by Leo Lionni, it occurred to me what a wonderful book this is to teach Growth Mindset.


Teaching Growth Mindset with read-alouds: "Cornelius" by Leo Lionni.


After being picked on for being different by his friends, Cornelius decides to set off into the world to live life for himself.  He soon meets a monkey who can stand on his head and hang from his tail.  Cornelius decides that he, too, would like to stand on his head and hang from his tail.

Teaching Growth Mindset with read-alouds: "Cornelius" by Leo Lionni.


The monkey reminds him that he can learn anything with "a lot of hard work and a little help."


Teaching Growth Mindset with read-alouds: "Cornelius" by Leo Lionni.



I love the part about achieving your goals through hard work and a little help!  Eventually, Cornelius does learn to do the seemingly impossible task of standing on his head and hanging from his tail.


In true Leo Lionni style, the pictures are colorful, the words are few but well thought out, and the lessons go deep.


Have you used this book for other lessons?  I'd love to hear how!






Sunday, March 5, 2017

Teacher Saviors: Beef Broth in the Crock Pot

It seems like everyone is getting sick right now!  Would you like to increase your immunity with an easy crock pot recipe?  If so, then read this post to see how I make Beef Bone Broth and Soup in my crock pot!


The first two steps are done the week or so BEFORE I make the broth.


1: I either save the bones from a beef roast/steaks, or I buy bones from the grocery store.  
These need to be stored in the freezer.


Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.




2: I collect the trimmings from my veggies as I cut them and put them in a Ziploc.  
Things I collect: The ends of carrots, onions, zucchini, celery and peppers, as well as slightly wilted spinach and leafy greens.  Basically, any kind of vegetable you'd expect to find in a vegetable soup.  These Ziplocs go in the freezer until they are full.


Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.




3: once I have a full Ziploc of veggie cuttings, I add those to the bottom of the crock pot.
You really only need to add enough veggies to fill about 1/2 of the pot.
****Add the following FRESH veggies if you haven't collected them as frozen veggies:  An onion, several carrots, and several pieces of celery.


Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.




4: I add the bones on top of the veggies.



Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.



5: I add 5-6 teaspoons of Better Than Bouillon.



Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.



6: I liberally sprinkle Basil, Parsley, Oregano, and Thyme on top of the bones and veggies.



Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.




7: I fill the crock with water, leaving about 2 inches at the top. 






8: I set it on low for 8-10 hours (overnight on a weekend is great).


Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.



9: I strain out the bones and veggies, leaving just the broth.
This is a strainer on top of a 4-cup Pyrex measuring cup.  Straining it into a measuring cup makes it easier to pour into the muffin cups in the next step.


Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.




10: I let the broth cool and then put it in 1-cup muffin tin to freeze it.
Once the broth is frozen, I pop it out of the muffin tin and put it in a Ziploc to store in my freezer.  When I'm ready to make soup, I just thaw several cups and use it as my soup base.


Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Easy Beef Bone Broth in the Crock Pot.  Increasing immunity while saving time.




Do you have any crock pot bone broth recipes?  I'd love to hear about them!





Sunday, February 26, 2017

Teaching/Reviewing The American Revolution: Can't You Make Them Behave, King George

Would you like to teach or review the conflict between King George and the American colonists, while incorporating Language Arts?  If so, then check out my Question Packet for "Can't You Make Them Behave, King George?"!



I'm always trying to find ways to incorporate reading into other subjects.  I especially like it as introduction to a concept or unit.  Jean Fritz's books are fantastic for this purpose in history!  I really love the book, "Can't You Make Them Behave, King George?" for this purpose!


Teaching/Reviewing The American Revolution: Can't You Make Them Behave, King George



After using it for read-aloud for a couple of years, I knew I wanted to take it to the next level.  So, I created comprehension sheet to go along with the reading. 


Teaching/Reviewing The American Revolution: Can't You Make Them Behave, King George
There are a couple of different ways I've used this sheet:

Option 1: have students read the book.  I've used pairs/trios and independent, depending on the level of challenge the student needs.  After reading it all the way through, I have them go back and answer the questions in the packet together or independently.  

Option 2:  Work with your small reading groups to read the book together and answer the question packet.  Again, I've decided whether to have students answer the questions as a group or independently to differentiate instruction.

In addition to a reading comprehension tool, it also serves as a great review when placed in your Virginia Studies/ U.S. History binder.  It reviews the difficulty the American colonists had with coming to the decision to declare war on King George, including:
French and Indian War
~ Taxation without representation
~ Intolerable Acts
~ The Boston Tea Party

It also includes an answer key, so important to make the activity self-checking!



Teaching/Reviewing The American Revolution: Can't You Make Them Behave, King George


You can pick up a copy of my packet at my TpT store by clicking here.

Do you have any other great books to use for the American Revolution?  I'd love to hear about them!






Sunday, February 19, 2017

Teacher Savior: Increasing Productivity by Prepping the Night Before

Raise your hand if you would like any of the following things:

1. A smoothly-running morning routine
2. Completing projects and to-do lists on time
3. Maximizing your productivity at home and at work

Is your hand up?  I know mine is!  So, it's in that spirit that I want to share my night-before-school routine that has changed my productivity and happiness level the next day.

The following are the changes I've made that have maximized my productivity:

Fill out a daily planner each night for the day(s) ahead
I have been printing and using this planner by The Momma Diaries, which is perfect for my needs.  I'm sure you could use an annotation app to write directly on the digital planner, but I just prefer the pen and paper version.

To fill out the planner, I look at the following things:

  • My calendar in my phone to see about upcoming events
  • My email to see what bills are due and what I need to buy
  • I also talk with my husband on the weekends to see what our combined schedule looks like for the week ahead.

I don't focus so much on filling out anything to do with work, unless I have to wear a particular outfit or bring certain materials to school the next day.  After all, I have a planner at school specifically designed for productivity at work!

                
Beg, Borrow, and Teach!: Increasing Productivity by Prepping the Night Before



In the morning, I take a few minutes to fill out the "Things I'm Grateful For Today" and "Mood" sections
I'm personally working on building more gratitude into my days, and it really helps me set the tone for the rest of the day.


I love filling this out while I'm drinking my Magnesium Tea.




Do you use a daily planner for personal or work productivity?  I'd love to hear how!





Sunday, February 12, 2017

Winter Creative Writing: Story Sparks

Would you like to fight writer's block with a piece that is seasonal, includes figurative language, and gives students a choice of their topic?  Then this Winter Creative Writing Using Story Sparks unit is for you!


Winter Creative Writing: Story Sparks writing prompts unit

Some of the mentor texts I use as read-alouds:


Winter Creative Writing: Story Sparks writing prompts unit



Winter Creative Writing: Story Sparks writing prompts unit



Winter Creative Writing: Story Sparks writing prompts unit



We collect adjectives, similes, metaphors, onomatopoeia, and quotes we would like to use on our own writing on anchor charts as we read.

After we've created our anchor charts, I introduce the Winter Creative Writing Story Sparks and students choose their writing topic.


Winter Creative Writing: Story Sparks writing prompts unit



Next, we review the rubric and graphic organizer to help guide our writing.  


Winter Creative Writing: Story Sparks writing prompts unit


Before I meet with small groups, I go over the editing checklist below and how to be a good buddy editor.  


Winter Creative Writing: Story Sparks writing prompts unit


As I meet with groups, the other students are looking at mentor texts, filling out their organizers, and editing their peers.

Easy and so much fun!  


If you'd like to pick up a full copy of the unit plans, click here.


Do you use choice boards or story sparks in your writing block?  I'd love to hear how!









Monday, February 6, 2017

TpT is Showing Some Love: Valentines Sale

It's a TpT site-wide 2-Day Sale!

It runs Tuesday, February 7th at 12:01 a.m. (ET) through Wednesday, February 8th at 11:59 p.m. (ET). 

So stop by my store for up to 28% off on Tuesday and Wednesday!




Here's to you finding something to sweeten up your day!


Happy shopping!