Saturday, February 26, 2011

Art Lessons!!!! K-2nd Graders

Hi Everyone!! This week has been crazy!!! SOO MUCH TO DO.
So let me add another to the list, teach art after school to 20 K-2nd graders. I really do love it, so fun!!! I am so thankful for Patty over at DEEP SPACE SPARKLE, she is awesome! I got all of these ideas from her and put the links below each picture if you want to check out the instructions and materials needed.

Give Away!

Calling All Teachers!!! Check out this awesome giveaway for 10 free books!!!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Discovering THEME

This week we are learning about THEME and how do determine the THEME of a story.
I couldn't find any lessons or activities that were exactly what I was looking for so I decided to try and make my own like all the other awesome Teacher's who I blog stalk. You are free to use any of these you would like. Let me now what you think!

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

Sheila Rae the Brave by Kevin Henkes

Hooway for Wodney Wat! by Helen Lester

Saturday, February 19, 2011

- Symmetry

We have been learning about symmetry and observing and determining where the line of symmetry is in shapes and designs we have in our classroom. For this lesson students use:
* small mirror
* pattern blocks
* construction paper
* document camera

First, students fold their paper in half ( hamburger fold) and crease
Second, students place a pattern block on one side of the fold
Third, students hold their mirror upright where the bottom of the mirror and the crease of the paper are touching
Fourth, students observe what they see in the mirror and describe to the class

* Vocabulary Terms
* Symmetry
* Line of Symmetry
* Half
* Equal

Students use between 2 and 50 pattern blocks and create a design on one side of the paper. After they have finished they have to create the exact design on the other side of the paper to where the crease will become the line of symmetry of their completed design.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Catch a WORD! - Increasing academic vocabulary

We use this book before we start our daily Math lesson. When we come across new vocabulary we add it to the jar. It really surprises me how quickly the children understand the concepts and start using their newly acquired vocabulary when describing what they see. I added information about the activity below. It also has a few downloadable quick images you can try for free. I found it at

** I use my document camera, if you don't have one you could use your overhead projector. I put the image up but keep it covered so the students can't see it. I then say, " Pencils Down" and look around to make sure all eyes are on the smart board. When they are, I show the picture for approx. 5 seconds and then cover it again. The students will pick up their pencils and draw what they saw. After about a minute or so I ask if anyone would like a second look. If so, I give them another look for another 5 seconds. Then I uncover the image while students compare their drawing. I ask the students who would like to share what they saw and call on a few kids. It's really interesting to hear how they saw the image and how they describe what they saw. Here is where we discover new vocabulary and I will write the new words down for the day and put them in (on) our jar. We do 2-3 images a day. It was a little challenging for the kids at first but they improved quickly.

All meaningful mathematics learning is imaged-based. While there may be certain forms of mathematical reasoning that seem not to use imagery, most mathematical activity has a spatial component. If school mathematics is procedural, students may fail to develop their capacity to form mental images of mathematical patterns and relationships. It is well documented that students who reason from images tend to be powerful mathematics students. Further, we know that the ability to use images effectively in doing mathematics can be developed. When students are encouraged to develop mental images and use those images in mathematics, they show surprising growth. All students can learn to use images effectively. Thus, developing spatial sense should be a priority in school mathematics.

Quick Draw is an engaging mathematical activity that helps students develop their mental imagery. A figure such as the one shown below is presented briefly to students. They are asked to “Draw what you saw.” When students have drawn their figure, give them a second look. Finally, uncover the figure and ask students to describe what they saw. Encourage a wide range of interpretations. Some will see it as a two-dimensional figure while others may give it a three-dimensional interpretation. When they draw, they must work from a re-presented image since the figure shown is no longer in view. Finally, they are asked to describe what they saw and explain how they drew their sketch. As students listen to the ways others saw the figure, they are stimulated to reflect on their constructive activity and to consider other interpretations. It is often the case that students will describe new ways of viewing the figure as a direct result of listening to the descriptions of others.

The discussion of what they saw is a crucial component of the activity. Encourage students to talk about their drawings. Show enthusiasm for all interpretations. Be nonjudgmental, accepting all descriptions. Some students will be inspired by what others say. It is not unusual for five or more different ways of seeing the figure to be described. The whole class discussion of Quick Draw figures helps students get comfortable explaining their thinking to the class. There are no wrong answers. This carries over to lesson discussions of other topics. In learning mathematics, it is important that students become competent at articulating their thoughts as well as listening to other students.

*** I would love to know what you think about this. Have you heard of it, have you been doing it for years?? I would LOVE to know!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

CrAzY about ART!

I absolutely love Art. Now, I am not particularly a talented Artist by any means but more of a creative and sort of weird person. Not bad weird but ya know. Anyway, I LOVE this website! Patty is AMAZING!
Check her out!

I teach the After School Art Program and I break into two groups. During the first semester I teach 3rd-5th grade after school and Kindergarten-2nd grade in the second semester. I really like it and it gives me a chance to work with children I wouldn’t normally get to. Here are some of the projects we have done.
I would love to hear your ideas!!!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Eric Carle is one of my favorite Author/Illustrators so we love to learn about him and read his books in the first grade. He really is amazing!

We have to make caterpillars after reading THE VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR
We also make a caterpillar cake because well...who doesn't love cake?

Eric Carle has written a ton of books!
Here are some that we really enjoyed
  • The Foolish Tortoise
  • The Little Cloud
  • The Very Clumsy Click Beetle
  • The Very Quiet Cricket
  • The Grouchy Ladybug
  • The Tiny Seed
  • Rooster's Off to see the World
  • Walter the Baker
  • Have You Seen My Cat?
  • The Mixed Up Chameleon
Eric Carle also is the illustrator of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

I would love to visit the Eric Carle Museum someday!

Click below to check it out

I was so excited and surprised when I had to google something on his birthday and saw this

I would love to know if you study Eric Carle
and some of the activities your class

Classroom Color...what's with the LIME?

I am super lucky to have a classroom mother who is a professional organizer and interior designer. Can you say LUCKY?!?! Well she helped me pick out a super awesome paint color AND bought all the paint! Can you believe it? Then, my sweet hubby and awesome friend ( who is also a Teacher) helped me paint. My classroom color is definitely different. Think GREEN APPLE! She also told me that black and white accents would compliment the color so who am I to disagree? I love the outcome. Thanks Mrs. C!!
Oh and did I mention our classroom parties are beautifully decorated?

One of my sweet kiddos reading

The cute girls in black and red are my homeroom mom and her daughter. They are adorable!

Who is this Mrs. Tackett????

Hi Everyone!
I have been doing some serious blog stalking since I have been out of school with snow days and I had a minor surgery (blech) so I have had a lot of time on my hands! {biggest run on sentence}
I teach first and second grade. I am a LOOPING TEACHER so I have the same kids for two years and it is a wonderful experience. I also teach the after school art program at our school. It is very fun and it gives me a chance to work with students I wouldn't normally get to work with.