Corridor Display

Our classroom is on one of the school's main corridors. As a result, we get a lot of traffic outside our class from students, teachers, executive staff and parents. Because of this fact, I try to spend a little more time and effort on my corridor displays, knowing that a lot of people are going to see it.

The other morning as I was in my room preparing the day's lessons, I heard some little voices in the corridor. They were reading out loud to each other from the work on display. It was so sweet hearing them talk about the work, finding the ones that belonged to their older siblings and telling each other which ones they liked the best. That moment made it worth all the time and effort I put into making sure my students' work was displayed.

This work is based on something I saw on Pinterest (that site is seriously addictive), "The Best Part of Me".

"The Best Part of Me" display

This was done at the start of the school year as a 'getting to know you' activity. Each student took a photo of the part of themselves they thought was the best, then wrote a rough draft in their English books to explain why they thought that was the best part. Once they had conferenced with me, they published their writing and it was displayed with their photos in the corridor. 

The amazing background is courtesy of my lovely friend, Holly, who made sure it was stapled and bordered while I was away sick. Holly, I can't say it enough: You rock! 

We also did a multiple intelligences test to see how we all learnt best. These are our graphs showing our strengths.

Multiple Intelligences radar graphs

Here's a little sneak peek at what the inside of our classroom looks like:

Name art display

This is our name art display. We used warm colours or cool colours to create our design. I gave them a light spray of gold paint for warm colours and silver paint for cool colours to give them an extra sparkle.

That's all for now. I'll post more photos of the classroom later on.
Thanks for visiting!

Non-fiction text features

How do you get students to identify non-fiction text features? With sticky notes!

Last week we took a closer look at two non-fiction texts about plants. We focussed on two pages about leaves. Using these non-fiction labels, we identified several features on the page.

Go to Ginger Snaps to download these cute cards for FREE! 

Here's how they look after we labelled both pages' features. We didn't use all the cards in the set as some didn't apply to our text. 

Information Report display

Once I had modelled it on the whiteboard, using my awesome students as assistants, they then chose a text to examine and label for themselves.

Student work samples

Student work samples

All of my students were able to complete this task at some level. A few chose the easier text (the bottom one in both photos) and only labelled a few main features. Some chose the more challenging text (the top one in both photos) and not only labelled all the different features they could find, they also counted and recorded how many instances of each feature! It was one of those lessons where I could see so many light bulbs turning on and connections made. 

Once we were all happy with the placement of our sticky note labels, we glued them down so they wouldn't fall off. 

This lesson is the starting point for us to further investigate how to write our own information reports. Instead of paragraph after paragraph of boring information, we are going to include features like the ones we found.

We are really excited about plants now! More on that later.
Thanks for visiting.

Farewell April

Yesterday, something sad happened at my school. April, my beautiful Learning Support Assistant (LSA) from last year, had her last day before moving interstate.
Last year, April was instrumental in keeping me on track with her caring and no-nonsense manner. She is dedicated, enthusiastic and incredibly hard working. We are going to miss her sorely, but know she'll be an asset at any school she works in.
Farewell April and good luck with everything!