Sunday, February 17, 2013

Learning Targets

So here's my take...

I have been wanting to implement Learning Targets in my classroom for sometime now and this past week I finally got rolling with them! 

I was a little nervous about implementing them but the positive feedback from my principal helped to build my confidence!

I started my learning journey about Learning Targets by reading the book by Connie Moss. It made sense to me that if students knew what they were trying to understand in a lesson that then they would be more engaged and take more ownership in their own learning. From there I watched a FREE Webinar on the book provided by ASCD. It helped to hear the author describe how to use Learning Targets with your students.

Click here to go to the FREE Webinar from ASCD!

I want to give some credit to the teachers whose signs I used to make my board! I got the Superhero Target sign from Stephanie at Primary Possiblities blog as a FREEBIE! I got the Learning Target sign as a FREEBIE from Stephanie @ 3rdGradeThoughts.

Next, I wanted to have more tangible evidence of using Learning Targets with my students and how they were using them too. I was going to create an 
exit ticket type assessment but luckily I found something from The Creative Classroom on Teachers Pay Teachers! 

I recently used these with my Math class. After our Math Huddle and mini-lesson I checked in with students by using these "I Can Exit Tickets". I was pretty please with how the students took to them and how they seemed to reflect on their Learning Target. I am still thinking of other ways to use them maybe a pre/post reflection of their learning!

I am an avid Pinner and have started a great board on Learning Targets. 
Check it out for more info! 
Click here to visit my Pin Board
My next steps are to make more visible the "Look Fors" students should be able to use during a lesson to see if they are on track for hitting a target in a given lesson!

If you have had success with using Learning Targets and have great tips on implementation, 
I would love for you to share!


Friday, February 8, 2013

100th Day of School...4th Grade Style!

So here's my take...

Our journey towards the 100th Day of School began way back on the very first day! On the first day I gave out a blank 100's chart for students to glue into their Math Notebooks. I explained that each day we would be coloring in one square. Of course someone had to shout out, "We did that last year!" I told them I know but I doubt they counted the days in fraction and decimal form. Oh yeah...dead silence!

Once we had our first square out of 100 colored in, I asked the class how many total squares there were? Of course they said 100. I wrote 100 on the board and drew a fraction bar above it. I then asked, how many squares did we color in? They responded with one and I wrote it in the numerator. 

I then said, "Welcome to the 1/100 day of school!". We then discuss how counting the days of school can look in fraction form and related it to decimal form. We even discussed that reading the fraction and decimal sounds exactly the same!

One of our classroom jobs is called the Decimal Counter. The person is responsible for coloring in the class 100's chart, writing the day in fraction form, and writing the day in decimal form. This past week was our school system's 100th Day. The class had been anticipating what we would do to celebrate and I let them know that it wouldn't be like any other 100th Day celebration they experienced in K-3!

Our 100th Day came on Feb.5th! Since we had finished our unit on division the students made an easy connection that the 100th Day equalled one whole! I announced, "Welcome to Celebrating the Whole!". The 100th Day kicked off our unit on Fractions!

We were sitting at our carpet area when I asked the class how many math students were present in our class today and they responded with 14. I said yes the number 
14 represents our whole class. I then asked how can you organize yourself so it would be easier to tell how many of you there are? Students responded that they could line up, so I had them do just that! 

I counted off each student and handed them a large index card with their number on it until I got to the 14th student. I asked the first student to tell me her number and she said one. I said yes you are one student out of a total of 14 students and with that I added a one in the numerator and then a fraction bar. I had the next student say her fraction and she finished writing it on the index card. Once we got to the 14th student I had her say her fraction, write it, and then say she equalled one whole! Sorry that the pic doesn't show up well...that is what you get with an iPhone!

We then had a lively discussion that about how 
fractions represents parts of wholes. We played around with what was the fraction of students that had blue and brown eyes, girls vs. boys, and their ages. I then went on to explain that the class was a human fraction line and that fractions "live" on the number line between whole numbers. I gave the ends a zero and a one.

The students then learned how to draw a fraction number line and label it. (If you haven't had your 100th day yet, make sure to pick up a copy!) Once they had completed their number lines, I asked how many students like donuts...can you guess the reply? Yup, all hands went up! I said well you are in luck, I brought in some donuts today for our celebration! Since we are celebrating the whole today, you may each have a whole donut hole! (I love to be corny but at the same time I snuck in Homophones!) Took some students awhile but then they caught on! We ended our lesson making sure we ate the whole holes!! (Sorry, couldn't resist!)

The Decimal counter was eager to know how to do their job now that the 100's chart was filled in. Some students asked if we would erase the board and start over and that is when I brought out another chart! We had a discussion as to how to write the fraction and the decimal now which lead to a mini-lesson on Mixed Numbers!!!

This was the first time I had approached the 100th Day in this manner. I must say it provided a great intro to Fractions and the kids seemed to pick up on constructing, labeling, and understanding fraction number lines much quicker!

If you have any unique ways to celebrate the 100th Day, 
I would love to hear about them!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...