Hello Teacher Friends!
My flex seating classroom would not have been possible without a couple of generous donors (more to come on this in a later post). I really wish I had known about Crowdfunding before I begged and borrowed from family and friends to make my classroom seating dream a reality. Read below and see what this awesome company can do for you!
Crowdfunding Tips For Teachers and Students
Fundraising by teachers and students is not a new concept. The sad truth is, teachers have always relied on bake sales, candy sales, school carnivals, and other fundraising programs to provide their students with basic items needed to learn. Over 90% of teachers admit to having to used their own money to supply their classrooms. This is a very sad statistic. However, the good news is there is a better way! Bake sales have given way to technology and with Crowdfunding sites, the internet, and social media. Funds for large and small projects are being raised easier than ever before.
Here is how it works. Crowdfunding has many platforms which are available to set up your fundraising page. For example, Plumfund is a Crowdfunding site that is free to set up and free to contribute to. Once the site is set-up, teachers and students get to work. They blast their donation site all over the internet. They share it with everyone and encourage everyone to keep sharing it.
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I know I could plan a simpler activity to study globes, but the students really have a great time making papier-mâché globes and I love to watch them collaborate while creating them.
Here are the steps we took to create the globes:
Step 1: Blow up a balloon, tie a string around the balloon, rip newspapers into strips, place the strips into watered-down glue, and place smoothly on the balloon.
Step 2: Hang balloons by the string and paint blue when dry.
Step 3: Print continents found here on green paper. Cut them out. Use large rubber bands to create the Equator and Prime Meridian. Using cardinal directions and Hemisphere, hot glue continents onto the balloons.
Aren't they amazing?! And the students learned so much geography!
Place Value is one of the "power" standards in Fifth Grade, so we started our curriculum this week focusing on NBT 5.1 & 5.3.
Place Value Pirates is one of my favorite online games to practice the place value chart and students love it too! Even on Fun Friday when students could choose from a variety of math games and coding websites, many choose to play Place Value Pirates!
Students also played a version of Yahtzee to practice place value and work on collaboration and critical thinking.
The class finished off the week practicing the various forms of decimal numbers by completing a Seek n Solve. I have this version for free on my Teachers Pay Teachers Store. I love Seek n Solves because they get the students up and moving around and it is self-checking, so the students literally know how well they did immediately after they complete it.
We had a great first week of school and I am so excited to work with this group of Fifth Graders!!
At STEM Middle, we kick off each year with a signature event called STEM Fest. Each rotation helps students demonstrate one of our Habits of Mind: Collaborate, Persevere, Lead, Act Responsibly, Think Critically. Although this year was extremely hot and humid, the students (and teachers) had a great time!
Welcome to the 2016/2017 school year! I can't believe how quickly the summer went! I traveled to Aruba and had a relaxing week at Virginia Beach. I also spent many mornings learning to paddle board! Needless to say, transitioning back to school will be difficult, but I am super excited!
This year, I am attempting flex seating. Check out the pictures below:
I removed my teacher desk and organized all my teacher materials on the tall shelving:
Last year, students sat on stools I purchased from Target. They were great, but became rundown after one year. Still, I wanted to repurpose them, so I turned them on their sides and created storage cubbies. I also recovered the lids with fabric for floor seating.
The orange and yellow wiggle seats above were purchased from Amazon.
I purchased the Yoga Balls at Five Below. The instructions suggested putting a piece of tape on the wall as the "fill line" so that when they need re-inflated the kids know how high to pump it up. How smart!
To manage the flex seating, each area has a sign. Next week, students are creating a "selfie clip" with their name and picture. They will place their "selfie clip" on the sign they want to sit at. They will sit at that seating area for the entire week. If they make a bad choice, students will be removed from the area, given a plain chair, and I will assign them a seat. Students helped come up with the expectations for flex seating. We will see how it goes!
Students - How do you like the flex seating so far? Send me a message on Edmodo and let me know!
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