Sunday, September 16, 2012

New TpT Products!

If you read my blog yesterday, you'll know that I spent most of my Saturday creating stuff for my students! Imagine that, a teacher working on a!

Anyway, I thought I would let all everyone in the blogosphere know that I have two new products!!!!

The first is a 26 slide PowerPoint on writing! It teaches how to write an essay sentence by sentence. It includes examples of each sentence and of each paragraph. Pretty in depth!


The next product is an 8 slide PowerPoint that gives you some different activities with the affixes 'belli' and 'syn.' It includes 5 words to work with for each affix, a journal prompt, fill in the blanks, analogies, and sentences to edit for grammar, spelling, and punctuation. These are wonderful warm-ups to use at the beginning of class. They don't take very long (they usually take me 10 minutes, tops). :)


Both products can be found at my TpT store!!!


Saturday, September 15, 2012

Week 3 - DONE! :)

Well, it took 3 weeks, but I feel so good about how this year is going. I may not be moving as fast as I'd like but my kids are really getting it. The most common grade on a quiz that I just gave was a 100! How often does that happen? It was a quiz on inferences and conclusions, too. 7th graders have a really hard time with inferences. I'm so proud of all of them.

We're working on our first big writing assignment now. It's only three paragraphs - an introduction with a 1-2 sentences hook, thesis, and concluding statement and two body paragraphs. They are comparing two characters from different stories. It's really a struggle. It blows my mind still that my students have not really had any experience with formal writing. I'm breaking down the essay sentence by sentence and teaching them how to write. My hope is that, by the end of the year, they will just know how to do it. :) For now, I have giant sticky note paper all over my room with rules for writing, what specifically goes into the introduction, and how the body paragraphs should be organized.

We started working with our Latin and Greek affixes this week too. We did not start with an easy pair of affixes either. We began studying belli (means war. example - belligerent) and syn (means together. example - synthetic). The words are harder for them than any word they've had before. There are some words, like bellicose and bellipotent, that I'm not 100% comfortable using at the age of 22. However, I just really think that they'll get it and it will help them later in life (like during the SAT!!!).

Here's my To-Do list for this weekend.

  1. Grade papers.
  2. Enter grades into NCWISE.
  3. Create vocabulary exercises for the week.
  4. Create vocabulary test for belli and syn.
  5. Create writing powerpoint.
  6. E-mail out the vocab and writing pieces.
  7. Finish my lesson plans for the week (including something on 9/17 for Constitution Day).
  8. Laundry
  9. Cook dinner (Bacon Wrapped Garlic Chicken! Yum!!!)
  10. Play outside with my big man! :)

How is the school year going for everyone else? I am loving it so much more this year than I did last year. Maybe it's the group of kids that I have. Maybe it's the fact that I've got a year under my belt and just feel more comfortable teaching in general. I don't know.


Saturday, September 8, 2012

I'm Still Alive...I PROMISE!

I'm failing miserably at my posting every day thing. I don't think I've posted in over a week. I'm so sorry, to those of you who follow me! I will try to do better.

I've been back in school with my new group of 7th graders for two weeks now. Monday starts week 3. I love them. I can tell that the "honeymoon period" is beginning to wear off and they are beginning to test their boundaries. We'll see how that goes.

This year, they've added another class. Last year, I only taught three classes that lasted about 90 minutes each. This year, I have four that last around 60-65 minutes. I thought that this might mean that my class sizes would be smaller. NO! I have 98 kids! NINETY-EIGHT 7TH GRADERS! That's a lot of papers to grade, y'all. Especially with a focus on writing...and giving real feedback on the writing assignments. OMG! This is me, freaking out a little.

The actual teaching part is going well so far. The students are really picking everything up and we're having our first big writing piece next week. I hope to start it Tuesday and finish it Thursday (at the latest). They will be writing an explanatory compare/contrast piece. Oh, I hope it goes well. I really think that these students have the potential to rock it!

So, how is everyone else?! I'm about to lay here for a while and catch up on my favorite blogs! I only follow 83, lol! :)

I will do better, promise.