Sunday, October 14, 2012

Explanatory Writing Fun and updates!

Explanatory writing has always been part of our fourth grade curriculum, but we never taught it very often, maybe one or two short writing pieces and one bigger one.  This year, I've decided to implement all of the different writing pieces the common core requires more frequently.  So a few weeks ago I started off teaching the kids transition words and having them use them in a fun "How to Slide Down a Slide" writing piece, from Teaching Madness, along with a great game called "What's Next".  I highly recommend this mini unit.  I haven't used all of the materials, since I want to revisit explanatory writing throughout the year. 

After a couple small writing pieces, we went on to publish "How to Blow a Bubble" for our Open House display.  I purchased "A Mind Blowing, Bubble Bursting, Lip-Smaking Project- POP" from Teachers pay Teachers since I wanted a fun activity to do for Open House.  I used a little bit from this project and used my own "person" for the kids to decorate to represent themselves.  The kiddos glued their writing to pink paper and attached their drawing on the bottom.  We then put pink balloons in to look like bubble gum.  (The balloons are now deflating...)  I was so proud of how they all turned out just in time for Open House.  I still have a bunch of activities left to fit in sometime since we ran out of time that week! 

Just a few examples
Half of the hallway .... more on the other side since we had 69 kids
We have also been focusing on roots and started review three easier prefixes (un-, re-, and pre-).  Each time we focus on one the kids get a copy of the tree and make their own leaves based on words we come up with.  Each tree goes into their Reader's Notebook in the Roots section.  Here is a picture of our bulletin board so far...

Finally!!! My Nonfiction book cart arrived finally after being on backorder since August.  I was so excited to be able to put out some nonfiction books for the kids to read.  They aren't all organized yet, but will be shortly.
Our class reading competition is under way.  Look at all of those scoops on the wall!  Each scoop represents a book read.  The kids are really enjoying reading this year and get excited to mark in their reading log and put up a scoop.  They are really trying hard to read from different genres too!  (Sorry for the bad pictures, my camera ran out of battery before I could take better pictures!)

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