Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Seasonal Primary Grades Writing Prompts Freebie

Happy Holidays!

We are busy listening to holiday themed stories and writing sentences using the seasonal prompts provided by Grade One Fun.  I'm finding more and more ways to connect children's stories with writing activities. 
Recently, I read the book titled, Hurry Santa! by Julie Sykes.  In the story, Santa has overslept and is late delivering toys to girls and boys everywhere.  Animals exhort Santa to press on.  It's almost Christmas morning and Santa has finished just in the "Nick" of time.  There's one present left in Santa's bag.  It's a gift for Santa from the animals.  They have selected a thoughtful gift and one  Santa can use.  It's an alarm clock!

After the read and discussion about thoughtful gifts, we used one of the journal prompts created by Grade One Snapshots  "If you could give Santa any gift, what would you give him?  Why?"  Below you'll see some sample writings which I colored and created myself.  Your students are likely to come up with much cuter ideas than mine.


Grade One Snapshots used graphics from mycutegraphics.com.   They're adorable and so easy for children to color!  The writing lines on these journal prompts are a perfect size for beginning writers to use.  Some of the prompts relate to Santa and will be great this week before students have their winter vacation.  There are also some prompts related to snow.  These will be great for January when returning to school after the holidays.  Hopefully, we'll see some of the white stuff in 2013!  I especiallly like the prompt that gets children thinking about caring for others.  In that writing experience, a  situation about a child that lacks something the other children have is presented.  The students are asked to write what they would do.  You can get all the writing prompts created by Grade One Snapshots at TeacherspayTeachers by clicking on the word HERE.


Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Legend of the Poinsettia

A kind store manager permitted me to snap this picture of the display of poinsettias.
A few days later I was lucky enough to win a little poinsettia plant at a Christmas dinner.  They are such lovely plants to have around during the holidays and help brighten everything up.



I began thinking about the holidays, hot chocolate, and some of my favorite children's Christmas books. 

One of these is The Legend of the Poinsettia by Tomie dePaola.  The story is based on a folktale about a family of little economic means.  They don't have enough money to provide a gift at the local village's Christmas festival.  A child finds some weeds growing by the side of the road and pulls them up to be used as the family's gift.  The weeds miraculously transform into a thing of beauty!  The moral of the story is that any gift is beautiful when given in love.  Mr. dePaola's illustrations and text are simple enough for young children to understand the trial the young girl named Lucida faces during the course of the story. 

To add a "Wow" factor to your read aloud, conceal a poinsettia in a brown bag or somewhere in the classroom.  Reveal it when you come to the part where the weeds are transformed into beautiful plants.

I decided to make a holiday packet which includes a listening comprehension quiz that can be used after the read aloud.  You can get it at my Teachers pay Teachers store and it's free.  Click the last photo (the finished craft) in this post to get the free packet which includes the patterns.  You will need a copy of the book by Tomie dePaola to maximize the use of my file.  Click on the picture of the poinsettia to take you to a link to where the book can be purchased.  I also added a paper craft activity to make poinsettias. I used one of the leaves from the poinsettia I won to make the red leaf pattern. This craft turns out very large making it nice for displays where viewers are a great distance away.  The directions and photos for the craft are in the packet but I decided to put them on my blog as well. 

Trace and cut out the large leaf shapes on green paper.  Arrange the leaves so they are slightly overlapping each other with the pointed ends facing outward.  (Each child needs 5 green leaves.)  Glue on a large sheet of white paper approximately 12" x 18".  (Leaves will extended slightly beyond the paper.)


Trace and cut out the smaller sized leaf on red paper. Arrange the leaves on top of the green ones. The red leaves will overlap as well. (Each child needs 5 red leaves.) Glue on top of the green leaves with pointed ends facing outward.

Use a circle shape to trace a red circle on construction paper.     Glue in the center of the poinsettia.

Use a hole punch to make small yellow circles.  Glue these in the center on top of the red circle.


Now you have a pretty poinsettia to use as a story prop!


Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.








Thursday, November 22, 2012

Cyber Monday Is Almost Here!

For all you bargain hunters, I'm having a sale on Monday, November 26th.  Everything in my store will be 20% off!  Come shop with me and find some fantastic deals!  Touch the banner below to go straight to my store.

 


Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Election 2012 Obama and Romney Graphing Actiivty

Update June 2004!  Election Day has passed so I have deleted this file.  The link will not work.  However, if for some reason you really want this, add a comment to this post requesting that I add the link again.  Thank you! 

I've just uploaded another Election Day themed product to my Teachers pay Teachers store.  It's a free graphing activity.  Create a simple picture graph with your students using photos of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.  Each student selects the photo of the candidate of his or her choice and mounts it on the picture graph.  Use a large piece of paper, construction paper or bulletin board paper for the graph.  Then children can answer questions by referring to the data collected on the graph.  This packet includes photos of both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.  (I edited these so they're black and white.)  I've also included a ballot that's super easy for young children.  The bottom half of the ballot sheet has questions that can be used after the graph is created.  Click here to get the file.  Here's a photo of what the graph might look like depending on your class size.  Pardon the crooked line in the middle.  Scroll down to see the other Election themed freebie I posted a few hours ago.

Zoom Zoom Classroom  Copyright 2012  All rights reserved.


Election Day 2012! Who Will Be The United States President for the Next Four Years?

Election Day is almost here! Will it be Barack Obama or Mitt Romney? Based on what I've been hearing the two candidates are neck and neck.  We're going to have a close election.  Get out and vote!

I have just uploaded another SMART board file at my Teachers pay Teachers store.  It's here just in time for November 6th and it's free!  There are two activities. The first one is a sorting activity which uses a Venn diagram. One side of the slide is for characteristics that describe Barack Obama and the other is side of the slide for Mitt Romney's attributes. Students or the teacher reads the phrases and determines which candidate fits the phrase. In some situations, both candidates will possess the characteristic described. There is an answer key for the first activity. It is assumed that the students will have some background knowledge about the candidates prior to completing the Venn diagram activity.

The second activity is on the last slide. Have a secret mock election and collect the data from it.  Then record the results using the horizontal graph. Use the paint bucket feature and drop paint into each rectangle to represent one vote per student. Then write the totals for each candidate. Ask students to find the difference between the number of votes for each candidate.  Here are a few pictures:

Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Halloween Bingo

Greetings everyone!

From time to time I enter sweepstakes and contests online.  Usually I don't win anything but I still keep trying.  A few weeks ago I found a clip art website called Primsicalresale.  They were promoting their business with a monthly drawing.  Last month the winner was going to get some Halloween themed clip art created by Cheryl Seslar.  I entered the contest.  Guess what?  I won!  I used the line art to make the newest addition to my Bingo games collection.  The color clip art is just for the cover page which you'll see at my store.  I love creating Bingo games!  I call this rendition "Spooky" Bingo -  but it's not too scary.  I made one set instead of both a color and black and white version.  I targeted singular and plural nouns for the bulk of the words on the Bingo game.  The teacher could review nouns after playing Bingo.  I included a few adjectives and one interjection.  Here are two of the sheets from the packet.  (You get 25 different sheets so you have enough for the whole class.)  I've also listed a few follow-up activities to use after playing the game.
               Circle the plural nouns and draw lines below the proper nouns.   Use the Bingo sheets as a word bank for a creative writing activity.
 Here are some of the links to the Common Core skills you could review after playing "Spooky Bingo".  Kindergarten, First Grade, First Grade.  It's on sale until November 1st!  Click here to go get it.  Happy "Trick of Treating"!

Use Bingo chips, dabbers, or small candy to cover words when playing.
Primsicalresale is still giving having monthly drawings so head on over their and enter. 

Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Manor House Ghosts Read and Answer Key Details From a Text

I hope everyone is having a fabulous fall and enjoying the cooler weather!  

There's a new freebie at my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  I posted it just in time to go along with the festivities children enjoy during the fall season.  It's a SMART board lesson with SMART Response questions included in the file.  I used the adorable clip art ghosts from Graphics From the Pond.  Click on the "Little Friendly Ghosts Link Up" caption to go there and view more "Phantom-like" products.
Little Friendly Ghosts Link Up
 Here's a picture of Muchalls Castle.  It's a 17th century country house located in Scotland.  The ghosts aren't in this picture though . . .  they heard about the Spooky products at the Teachers Pay Teachers website and decided to fly over there!

Click the words, The Manor House Ghosts Read and Answer Key Details From a Text.  To go to the SMART Notebook file.
Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.


Sunday, October 7, 2012

Brain Friend or Brain Foe? How Does Your Brain Process Information?

Recently I was taking pictures and just blissfully clicking away.  I was unaware that I was snapping my final few pictures before my camera said "Out of Memory".  I had neglected to erase all the previous photos and my camera reached its limit. This got me thinking about how our brains store information and how the information we keep seems to go in either our short or long term memory banks.  Fortunately, human beings don't seem to have the limits that my camera does!  When someone asks you for your birth date, you'll recite the day, month, and year without a second thought.  Sign up for an online store that you'll use every now and then and it's likely you'll be asking the computer to send you an email reminding you of your password.  Good thing that the computer programmers knew something about human nature and how often our brains forget things!  As we age, our ability to retain new information seems to fall short of what it used to be.

Ask any elderly person and they'll attest to the fact that their short term memory isn't as good as when he was younger.  The fact is, for many of us, our memory skills decline by the time we reach senior citizen status . . . or sooner.  On the other hand, young children can have remarkable memory skills.  Have a young child play a memory card matching game with you and it's likely he'll win.  The young appear to have good short term recall.  As teachers, we want our students to remember for the long haul.  The manner in which material is presented may factor into the brain's ability to effectively retain  information.  These thoughts have prompted me to think about what strategies are used in the classroom setting are most "pleasing" to young brains.  It gave me reason to create my "Brain Pleasing" Numeral Cards.  

I thought it also might be fun to take a "Brain Pleasing" test.  Would you like to have a go at it?  Here's how it works:  Take less than 1 minute and study the nine words from the picture below.  Then look away and write the words down on a piece of paper.  DON'T PEEK!  Were you able to recall all nine?  If so, it may be due to the fact that the information was presented in an organized manner.  A senior citizen looked at the words for less than 1 minute.  She was able to recall eight of the nine words.  (She's over age 80!)  
A senior citizen looked at the words above for less than one minute and was able to immediately recall all but one word. She's pretty sharp for an eighty-something year old. Or was the layout of the words smart as well?
Now look at the second picture (the one below) and ask yourself whether or not you could have recalled the same number of words in the scrambled format.
  
Obviously, we don't present information to children in the cluttered manner above.  If we think about it, there are times that our presentation of a unit could be improved on.  We can make our lessons more . . . . "Brain Pleasing"!  Did you notice the font styles above?  The mix included bold, large, small, italic, and all caps.  My eyes pick up on the fonts that are bold and large first.  Those are the ones that stand out.  Perhaps we need to present the important information to our students in bold, large font (metaphorically speaking) and the less significant information on a smaller scale of instruction.

If we go a little further in our thinking, perhaps the first picture in not the best way of presenting a list of nine words that someone might need to memorize.  Take a look at the picture below:
  
Did you notice the difference in the fonts used in each group?  Perhaps our brains can memorize the words just a smidgen faster and with more accuracy by such a distinction within the groups.  As an educator, I want to utilize every "smidgen" I can get!

If you would like a print out more sheets to try the "Brain Test" on others, click on:   "Test Your Brain's Short Term Memory".


As I stated earlier, I created a set of "Brain Pleasing Numeral Cards".  Since the concept of zero is unknown to many young children, I started my numeral set with the zero.  The numeral cards go up to 120 so they could be utilized as teaching tool with this math standard: Common Core Standard for first grade math standard.    To make them "Brain Pleasing", I used a different color circle for each group of numerals in terms of their number of tens. When I arrived at seven tens, I restarted with the same color as used for zero tens. In all, I used seven colors.  The color coding is a helpful visual tool for the children to organize the information presented.  Plus, young children often gravitate toward things that are cheerful and colorful.  These numerals fit the bill!
Here is a close up of some of the cards.
These cards are easy to cut out.  Print on card stock and cut on the black lines.  Laminate for long lasting use.  I really like the font I used for the numerals.  It's very clear and the "nine" has a straight line.  "A circle and a line . . . . that makes a nine."  (No upside down numeral six!)

Easy, straight lines to cut on.

Below are two photos of my "Brain Pleasing Numeral Cards" on a tri-sectioned pocket chart. I prefer this type of pocket chart to the individual fixed pockets. It makes it easier for the children to manipulate the numeral cards. My numeral cards will also fit most educational calendar display charts.  I used a large sized font so that the numerals could be viewed from several feet away.  With some of the numbers, I had to adjust the size of the font in order for it to fit inside the colored circles.


I used seven colors for the circles.  This type of pocket chart holds numerals 0 through 120.
The children can use this as an extra math center or as a game. For a center, I scramble the numeric sequence in a few rows. They love to "fix" the numeric sequences. We also play a little game I call "Find the Missing Numeral". They close their eyes and I remove one numeral. I re-position the cards in the row with the missing numeral so the blank space is not obvious. Then they open their eyes and check through the sequence to try and find the missing numeral. The first one to figure it out is the "winner". There is always high interest in the numeric sequence when we play this game.

If you are interested in purchasing my "Brain Pleasing Numeral Cards", click on the image below to view this product at my Teachers pay Teachers store.
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/number-cards-332350
For student take-home or whole group practice, I updated this product to include a set of ink-friendly, black and white numeral cards that are shown below.


Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.




Thursday, September 27, 2012

Teachers Pay Teachers Was Showcased on CNN!

Just wanted to share my enthusiasm about CNN reporting about Teachers Pay Teachers on Erin Burnett OutfrontCNN!  See it on Twitter.  

Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Saga of the Bicolored Numeracy Beans

If you have taught for a while you might be familiar with a popular math workshop called Mathematics Their Way which was developed through the book, Mathematics Their Way by Mary Baratta-Lorton.  In the 1970's Mrs. Baratta-Lorton developed practical hands on teaching methods which consisted of using  inexpensive items.  The fact that these materials are inexpensive makes it possible for most teachers to implement her strategies in their own classrooms.  Mrs. Baratta-Lorton accomplished a great deal in her short life and teachers today are still using many of her ideas.

One such idea, includes the use of large Lima beans which teachers spray paint red on one side.  The other side of the bean is left white.  When developing the concept of the number four, teachers give each child four beans.  The children place the beans in a small plastic cup or some other type of container.  Then they dump the beans out of the cup with a red or white side showing on the bean.  The children record what they see on a worksheet, put the beans back in the cup, and repeat the sequence several times.  At the end of the activity, the students can record the addition sentences that correspond with the data recorded.  (I recommend that the students use the red color as the first addend when writing the addition sentence.)  Later on, when the next number concept is developed, students use five beans in the cup.  As the children advance in their understanding of number concepts, the number of beans used increases as well.  Click on the word worksheet to go straight to the bean worksheets developed by Mathematics Their Way.  Click on the word blackline to see more resources from the Center for Innovation in Education Inc.


These old beans served me well.  I'm retiring them now.
For many years I used my teacher-made set of two-toned beans to develop the concept of numbers four through ten.  They served me well with a few exceptions.  Exception one:  Often, children would not understand the need for recording the data when the beans landed on the white side.  After all, the beans were as white as the worksheet.  Why color?  My belief is that the students MUST color both the red and white to develop the concept most efficiently.  Exception two:  It's hard to check student work when the coloring was done with a white crayon.  On some occasions, I ended up "feeling" the crayon wax to determine that it was recorded properly.  Exception three:  Alright,  maybe I'm not the best spray painter around but . . . when the children saw a small speck of red on the white side I was asked, "Is this the red side or the white side?"

Then one year, I noticed another teacher's beans.  She had the brilliant idea for spray painting the other side of the beans blue!  So this year I got around to making my own set.  Here are my directions with "How To" photos . . . just in case anyone else wants to have a go at this. 

1.  Buy the large sized Lima beans.  Two 16 ounce bags should do the trick.  I used three bags and figured I could always give some away.

2.  Buy one 12 ounce can of blue spray paint and one 12 ounce can of red.  I bought my paint at Michael's Crafts.  You will end up with extra paint.  Make sure to get your teacher discount at Michael's!   

3.  Read and follow the directions on the spray paint cans.  

4.  Put on your old clothes and your old flip flops.  You might end up wearing a little paint!

Put your old flip flops on.  You might spray a little paint on yourself.

5.  Find a place outside with a flat surface.  I did mine on thick grass which made things a little more challenging. 

6.  Spread the beans out on newspaper.  Lay the beans flat.
Red and blue spray paint, Lima beans, and some newspaper is all that's needed!

Spread the beans out evenly on the newspaper.
7.   Spray one side red and allow to dry.  I allowed at least double the time the directions on the bottle gave.  (About 30 minutes)
The red side is finished

8.  Now comes the tedious task of turning each bean over to the white side.  Once all beans are on their white side, spray with the blue paint.  Allow paint on the beans to dry.
Flipping beans is a tedious task!
Gotta love the blue color!
Here's a close-up of the blue beans while they're still wet.


9.  Sorry, your not done yet.  You'll want to check through your beans for spots you've missed.  You won't want the little guys asking you if its blue or red!  It's a good idea to put a second coat on. I did this on the red side but didn't put an extra coat on the blue side. 
The final product.


Gift your extra beans to another teacher.
Children toss the beans out of the cups and record the outcomes on a worksheet.
Now my grass has a hint of red and a small patch of blue.


Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Center Idea For Building Addition Fluency in the First Grade Classroom


Numeracy concepts are one of the most important skills first grade educators are responsible for teaching.  Many teachers use songs, counters, rote counting, games, story problems, number lines, and the like to build numeracy concepts.  I have discovered that Rekenreks are also a great tool for developing numeracy concepts.

Gradually, teachers move on toward an introduction of addition concepts through the use of the same algorithms taught when they attended school.  Some teachers have branched out and have taken on the challenge of using innovative strategies like those proposed by Mathematics in the City.

Whichever method is used, educators are still accountable for teaching the objectives outlined by the state in which they teach in.  One such objective is for students to solve basic addition facts.  This would also include doing so at a reasonable rate of speed.  

I created an addition facts center for students to use to increase speed and proficiency with math problems.  This center permits children to practice addition in both horizontal and vertical form.  I chose not to use plus or equals signs when I developed the activity.  It took me a little while to put this together but it will be worth the time invested.  It was the laminating that took the most time.  I also wanted the children to have the fun of pulling the numbers on and off the center with the fasteners.  The graphics for the frames came from Scrappin Doodles (copyright) www.scrappindoodles.com which I was given permission to modify.

It's center assembly time!



View more about this center at my Teachers pay Teachers store here.


Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Labor Day Grand Opening!

Today is Labor Day.  While there are still a few more weeks left of summer this holiday is usually considered a time to mark the end of summer vacation when swimming pools close and students begin school anew.

This holiday marks a new beginning for me.  Two months ago I wrote that I planned to open a store at the Teachers pay Teachers website.  This Labor Day weekend I finally did it.  I posted products for sale!  I felt like it was the "Grand Opening" to my store.  I just have a few educational products but I am only getting started.  I never imagined having the opportunity to be a "business person".  I am finding it rather fun!

Enjoy the rest of the week!  

Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Educator Discounts Leave Money in Teachers' Wallets

A new school year has begun and you are well prepared.  The lesson plans are done and your room looks like "Paradise Island".  You completed a school purchase order before the end of the previous school year and by some miracle the shipment came through over the summer.  You were thrilled to see that box of goodies at your classroom door when the teacher work days arrived!  Besides that, you took advantage of those back-to-school deals the big named stores offered a few short weeks ago.  Thanks to your careful planning, your classroom is well stocked for the year ahead. 

But now you've realized there are a few more "must haves" to survive the school year ahead of you.  Like most teachers, you've already reached into your own pockets to make up the difference between what you were allotted by the district and what you will need in order to have a great year.  Unfortunately, you can't justify spending more money right now because you have your own personal budget to balance.  This usually includes a mortgage or rent payment, some dreaded student loans, and the everyday expenses of life itself.  You can't buy all the things you want for your students so you'll have to make the most with what you have.

The good news is there are great deals out there that teachers can take advantage of to save lots of money.  Three of my favorite stores are Barnes and Noble, Michael's, and Staples.  I use each one for different purposes.  Luckily, all of these "Bricks and Mortar" have a deal for educators. 

I love walking into Barnes and Noble and smelling the coffee.  But I'm not there for coffee.  I've come to get my hands on wonderful children's books that I can use for a read aloud or an informative book to compliment a science or social studies unit.  I've brought my faculty identification card along with me.  My identification card permits me to purchase any books for the classroom at twenty percent off.  Typically, at some point during the fall, Barnes and Noble will announce an educator's appreciation week.  During the educator appreciation week, an additional five percent is discounted making the total discount twenty-five percent instead of the usual twenty percent.  This promotion gets a little sweeter.  Teachers can also apply the discount toward the purchase of personal items during the educator appreciation week.  You will need to sign up for the educator's discount program in order to partake.  The sign-up process is easy and hassle free!

Take the ID card with you.
Michael's is the place for getting materials for arts and crafts activities.  Children always love a craft!  The little ones are so proud of themselves when they get to take home something they made in class.  I especially like the sparkly glitter glue.  It always seems to make any project look marvelous.  Michael's offers teachers a fifteen percent discount on materials for classroom use.  I also grab the forty percent off coupons in the newspapers and through e-mail.  I apply the forty percent off coupon toward my single most expensive item and use the teacher discounts for the other purchases.  You'll need to let them know you're a teacher and show your school identification card in order to get the discount.

 No teacher can function without basic office supplies such as tape and sticky notes.  The Staples office supply store has a unique teacher discount program.  Sign up with the Staples Rewards program.  Start saving empty ink cartridges and ask members of the school community to donate their empty ones.  Collect up to ten ink cartridges a month.  Take them to Staples and you'll soon be downloading a coupon from you computer worth twenty dollars.  Each ink cartridge recycled is worth two dollars back on materials for your classroom.  One of the new requirements of this program is that you purchase some printer ink from Staples every few months. 


Here are some pictures of the goodies I bought with my twenty dollar coupon the other day.  The eraser dice are for center games.  They were three dollars a pair.  I bought three sets so that was nine dollars of my twenty.

 
Most of my binder clips escaped into the abyss last year.  The replacements were three dollars. 

The coffee cup tape dispenser was a luxury item.  I wanted something cute for the children.  I think this will do the trick.  It was on sale for seven dollars.


The grand total for the items above was nineteen dollars plus about fifty cents tax.  But I got all of it for free because I recycled the ink cartridges through the Staples Rewards program!

It's nice that these big named stores have not forgotten about the teachers and wish to support education.  Get those discounts and use them!


Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.
Raw graphic components courtesy openclipart.org.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Children's Engineering Teaches Valuable Skills for the 21st Century

This summer I took a professional development course in children's engineering.  A good definition of engineering might be the use of creativity with math, science, and technology in order to improve life for human beings.  It has the same meaning for elementary school children with the process rather than the final product being of importance.


Children's engineering should not be confused with crafts or art projects that teachers might include in their daily activities.  A craft activity generally consists of ready-made patterns provided with step by step instructions given in order to achieve a specific result.  While the artwork completed within a craft may vary from child to child, the overall look of the project is the same  throughout the classroom.  An art activity might include a child's random painting on a large piece of construction paper.  The teacher's purpose for the painting activity might include the exploration of colors and how they interact when mixed together on paper.   


Children's engineering might include providing the students with a design brief that includes a list of the available materials to choose from in order to achieve a specified objective.  The objective could be something as simple as making a free standing paper doll or more complex like making moving structures.

During an engineering activity, students are given opportunities to experiment through trial and error until a satisfactory outcome is achieved.  I cannot begin to list the number of state and national standards that are utilized when engineering takes place in the classroom.  It fosters creativity, builds confidence, promotes learning how to work with others, requires hands-on learning, and provides for problem solving opportunities.  

While I was taking the class, we created several engineering projects.  One of the first projects was to create a free standing tower.  The tower had to be least 12 feet high.  We were given paper and tape to create the towers.  We also created supporting structures such as bridges.  A few of the bridges we made are shown above.   Later on in the week, we tried our hands at making transporting structures.  They're shown below.
                      

We made free standing structures which represented famous persons in paper doll form.  Can you guess who they're supposed to be?   
 

Betsy Ross
Robert E. Lee
Ulysses S. Grant


Pocahontas
Baseball Player

Here are some free standing critters made at the university.  Aren't they cuties?





We made pop up cards which I hope to have my students make this year.  I'll also be implementing some projects to support engineering within the classroom.  I plan to have the children explore things like a yo-yo, straws, and suction cups and get them thinking about how these things work and what sort of improvements these items have made for mankind.  As part of the course requirements, we needed to create a detailed lesson plan with a design brief which could be used in the classroom.  I created a lesson on water wheels and I plan for the children to design and engineer their own.  It will be interesting to see how this works out in the classroom albeit not so dry!  Thank you for reading!  

Lessons by Molly © 2012  All rights reserved.