May 31, 2013

We're done!!!

We finished our booklets today! Could you hear us cheering? 

Everyone worked so very hard! 

Milkshakes and extra dessert for all the kids (the big one too!) in Room 208!  

Congratulations boys and girls!  
I'm so proud of you! 

We're on Instagram!

You can now follow meandmythrees on instagram! Our photos will also display on the right side of the blog as well.  

There are a few things I want to share regarding the instagram photos:  

  • faces of children will not be photographed
  • the purpose of the instagram photos is to provide a light-hearted look at the day-to-day goings on in our classroom
  • comments on instagram photos must be in accordance with my blog commenting policy 
You can follow us on instagram by clicking here

You can also click on any of the photos on right to view and comment.  

May 30, 2013

"I don't think she'll remember me"

Recently, while out and about, my husband was asked if he was related to me. After some chitchat it was determined that I had taught this young lady many years ago.  What cracked me up is that she told my husband, "I don't think she'll remember me."  

Oh, I remember! Every. Single. One. Of. Them. 

Teachers don't forget. 

Now can I recall their names in an instant à la some kind of Jeopardy category? No, not so much, and if your hair is now purple and you're three feet taller with kids of your own, you might have to tell me who you are. But I'll remember ya! 

In fact, once a child  (okay she's an adult now) tried to tell me I was her Grade Five teacher recently and I was concerned for myself because her name didn't sound familiar at all. I thought I was losing my touch!  

Turns out SHE was wrong! For whatever reason, she had me confused with another teacher and more relieved I could not be.  

So there's a lesson for all my students. I will never forget you. We spend 190 or so days together but you are all forever in my heart. Don't ever worry that I'll forget you...the real question is, will you remember me? Because when I'm retired I'm going to expect a LOT of visitors! ;) 


It'll be pretty quiet here at the blog for the next couple of days. 

Everyone is working very hard to do their best and complete their booklets.  

We're all looking forward to Garfield's birthday in the next week or so as a way to celebrate our wonderful achievements this year and most importantly, our completion of EQAO! It'll be all about the orange and black that day. Former students tell me it's one of their most favourite days of the school year!  

To make the most of our time, we're not writing in our agenda this week.  Students know they are expected to read for 40 minutes a night, sleep well and bring a large lunch. Students know they must also get their agenda signed and show me any notes from home. Our focus really is on doing our very best in the event we've trained 36 weeks for.  

Please check back in on Monday for new posts. 

May 24, 2013

Takin' care of business!

We've worked hard this week. 
I mean really, really hard.  
We're so ready for next Wednesday.  
We needed to have a little bit of fun so to surprise the kids, I made this little video for them. 

And I also got them some new eye-glasses.  ;) 

Takin' Care of Business

May 22, 2013

Funniest Moment of the Day

This is the conversation I had with one Boy Classmate as I was dismissing the boys and girls today.  Let's call him "B.C"  

I think this exchange is hilarious.  I should also add that this Boy Classmate could not have been more polite in this entire interaction and high fives to him not only for great manners,  for his devotion to his beloved Penguins! 

BC:  Mrs. M, is it true that you are cheering for Boston?  

Me:  Well, I really just said that to be polite. 

BC: Oh. Okay, because I was worried and I thought we were going to need to have a talk.  

Me: (nods head) I see. (pausing dramatically)  Well who are you cheering for?  

BC: Pittsburgh. 

Me: Well maybe I should cheer for Pittsburgh too. That's where my brother lives. 

BC:  Ya, (very sincerely)I think that's a good idea Mrs. M. (long pause) Especially since your brother lives there.

Me: Thanks for settin' me straight B.C

BC: No problem Mrs. M.  

So there you have it! 
Go Pens Go!  

May 15, 2013

Social Studies Homework Tonight

We had a mini-social studies lesson today. We're learning all about Urban and Rural communities. Today's lesson was on maps.  
Children were asked to write just one fact in their Journal and a question.  

While we had about 30 minutes to complete the task, not all children were able to finish their Journals.  

My concern is that if they were not able to generate their fact/question in the time provided today, they may have even greater difficulty doing so tonight. For that reason, I've provided a pdf of my lesson taught today.  

May I also respectfully ask that parents discuss with their child, the importance of making effective use of their class time. 

All About Maps

May 14, 2013

What else do you need for a good story?

We've learned all about the said/replied/said method of dialogue in a story.  
We know that a good setting is also essential.  

So now we need to get down to the nuts and bolts.  We call it "H.C.P"  Hook, characters, problem. 

The boys and girls learned all about hooks a long, long time ago, so they have those down pat. Here's a copy of the portable anchor chart the kids keep in their Personal Dictionary.

Types of Hooks  

Then we need characters. At the grade 3/4 level, kids are allowed to have two or three characters, tops. 

That leaves just the problem of the story. This part's tricky. As authors, students have to come up a problem for their characters to solve. Some kids can do this all on their own, but others (like me) work best with a prompt of some sort.  A prompt is something like, write a story about two friends who solve a playground problem or write a story about friends who win a prize and need to figure out how to share it.  These are all great ways to kick-start an author's imagination.  

We have another Wednesday Workshop tomorrow, so we'll take a break from story-writing, but we'll be back at it for Thursday.  

Whatever doesn't get finished in our Workshop tomorrow will have to come home for homework in order to stay on track and on schedule. 

It's hard to believe, but EQAO begins in two weeks! 

May 09, 2013

Walking to Mass

I really need to cool my jets here. 

I think I'm out of control with these videos.

Anyways...this is the video I showed the kids this morning. They were highly offended that I intended to show this to next year's class to kick off our discussion about how to (and how not to) walk to Mass.  

I got the frowning of a lifetime for not showing them this on the day THEY walked to Mass. But in my own defense, the idea for the story came to me as we were walking!  

Hope it makes you smile.  :) 

May 08, 2013

We walked to Mass today (and we're pooped!)

We had a really nice walk to Mass today. I can't tell you what pleasure it brings me to walk with such a responsible and cooperative group of children. 

I reminded the kids of the rules: 

  • we walk quickly across the streets, but don't run
  • we don't hold hands while crossing streets
  • we stay off our neighbour's lawns 
  • we walk in pairs or in threes
  • we walk quickly, to keep the group moving along, but we're not in a rush 

Then we did a few safety checks: 

  • are your laces tied?
  • are you wearing your hat (if you brought one?) 
  • got your partner(s)?  

And we were off! There and back without incident.  

What a nice way to spend the morning. 

Father John delivered a beautiful Homily about how faith needs to be shared. He compared it to education and told us all that if we don't share our knowledge, we don't learn and grow. It was the perfect message for the Spring season.  

Every year around this time, I watch with patience and excitement as my ferns come back in my garden. They spread, and every year, more and more fern-babies come back.  This year, there's too many to count! They're hiding all over the place in my garden! Without spreading and sharing, my fern babies would have remained at the original one or two I bought years ago. I don't quite understand how it all works down there underground, but somehow my ferns share too.I love those little plants. No one quite understands my enthusiasm for them, but they make me happy.    

Something about Father John's Homily reminded me of how sharing enriches so many aspects of our lives. Ferns, knowledge, cookies, love and faith, if we don't share and spread good things, we don't grow.  

Fern Babies! 

Just for fun!

Parents, did you have one of these?  
One little Girl Classmate is reading one of the Wimpy Kid books and it references a Big Wheel and like a good reader, she came to ask me what it looks like in real life.  

One cannot merely describe a Big Wheel can they? No way! One must SHOW a Big Wheel!  

So we looked it up together on google and little Girl Classmate was impressed.  

Did you have one of these awesome toys?
Or perhaps you had the Green Machine! Remember how cool those were?  
The Green Machine 

The Big Wheel

May 07, 2013

Couldn't make it today?

If you were unable to attend our Morning Message presentation this morning, that's a-okay because here it is!  

I've made a quick video to show you what we did this morning. 

I apologize for the confusing narration at the 3:40 mark.  Sometimes I think a 4:00 cup o' coffee might be a requirement for this gal.  

Here's the video: 
Morning Message

And here's the Boy and Girl Classmate video I mention as well. 

Probably the oddest post of the year!

May I respectfully ask parents and those loved ones who prepare school lunches to make sure that when items are packed, the lids and what-nots are secure? 

About two times a week, I have a leaky lunch that needs to be mopped up/cleaned up/replaced in my classroom. This takes away from our all-too-precious instructional time.  

Any efforts you can make to ensure that lunches, water bottles, etc. do not leak is greatly appreciated. 

Please also avoid packing fruit juice as a water bottle refreshment. These bottles often leak and due to the sugary nature of the juice, clean up is that much more time-consuming and inconvenient.  

Juice boxes or factory sealed bottles are fine.   

May 06, 2013

Features of Non-Fiction Texts: Part 3

Well here it is! 
The third video of my "Features of Non-Fiction Texts" unit.  
The boys and girls have watched this video already. It's all about how to organize the information you gather from your non-fiction texts. This is especially important when students are working on reports and projects.  

We have a lot on the go right now!

It's time for another one of those "lists". 

It helps me keep track of all that we have going on in our classroom. Ask any Grade Three teacher this time of year and they'll tell you they feel like they have all the balls up in the air all at once. It's a bit of a juggling act, this here month of May, that's for sure. 

So here we go:
  • we're working on Unit 9 (Area, Length and Perimeter) in Math
  • we're trying hard to keep up with the intensive EQAO prep activities we do each Wednesday at our "Wednesday Workshop"  
  • some of these activities must come home for homework if they're not completed in the designated time provided 
  • we've finished comparative and procedural writing 
  • we're moving on to story writing in the next day or two
  • we're collecting a 60 cm stack of newspapers for a Science activity (Mrs. Renton-teacher) to be completed after EQAO 
  • we have learned about the features of non-fiction texts 
  • we're reviewing skills daily (both Math and Language Arts) in our Morning Message
  • we're looking at having our Unit 9 Math test next week -date hasn't been determined yet 
  • and EQAO is in three or so weeks! 
That's a lot!  

But now that I've typed it all out and organized my own thinking, I think it really comes down to three main things: 

  • We will be wrapping up Unit 9 in a week or so 
  • We are beginning story writing 
  • We will continue our Wednesday workshops right up until EQAO and some of that work will come home if it's not completed in the time provided in class. 

I hope this post helps you as much as it does me. This time of year, it's important for this gal to write it all down and since I can type faster than I can write, I figured, hey, why not make a blog post out of it. Perhaps there's a reader out there who loves lists as much as I do! 
Thanks for reading! 

May 03, 2013

Funniest Moment of the Week

The boys and girls moved their desks around this afternoon. As everyone was getting settled in and saying hello to their new elbow partner, I noticed one little Girl Classmate writing very quickly and with some serious intention.  

She was writing a contract. 

She was writing a list of rules for her and her partner to follow.  

The rules said: 
  • bring a healthy snack
  • don't loose points
  • be quiet
She then asked Boy Classmate to sign it.  Then she told him to wait because she needed to "add flowers to it". 

So after Boy and Girl Classmate sign the contract, they decide they need to exchange fun facts about each other. Girl Classmate is growing her hair long and Boy Classmate loves soccer.  

This Lady Classmate would also like to share a fun fact with you all: teaching really is the greatest (and funnest) job in the world.  

Happy Friday! 


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