Friday, March 4, 2016

How Do You Teach Kids to Cite the Text?

I have been trying to teach my students how to cite the text, but my lessons haven't taken. I have begun to look around for some quality ways to do this, and look what I found.
This 3 minute video clip by Imagine Easy Solutions walks the students through the steps of citing and explains when and why to use citations in a much clearer way and it is more entertaining.

During my first year as a 5th grade teacher I had a group of students working on a PowerPoint presentation for the CyberQuest competition. We were near the end of the project and the students had to make a bibliography. All but one of the students had no clue what a bibliography even was, so I started to explain. The one student who knew what a bibliography was piped up, "I know what we are going to do, we are going to use EasyBib." She gave the lesson, and presto! Instead of one expert, I now had eight of them. 

Here is a student testimonial about EasyBib for your students, by Michael Dodge.

Here is a great tutorial for EasyBib.

The kids need to read this one.

PressEnglish does a really nice job of demonstrating how to cite the information on EasyBib.

Google Docs has made it even easier to use EasyBib write in the document.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Kids' Day ~ March 8th

One day a year the Fresno Bee is sold on every corner. This year, March 8th is the day, so get your dollars ready because the proceeds go to support the efforts of Valley Children's Hospital, and the families with sick children!

Each year, my fellow teaching buddy, Marie and I, purchase newspapers for our students. This year we thought we would share how we use the newspapers in the classroom with our simple PowerPoint and directions. We have altered our leson plan several times by adding to the workload to create rigor and then taking away parts of the lesson to make it practical. We think we have hit on the perfect combination to promote reading, comprehension, and authentic discussion; as students navigate through the newspaper.

The kids are amazing as they read the paper, see the pictures, and talk about the articles. This is authentic discussion at its best. We don't have to say, "Partner A talk to partner B."  Our students actively engage in reading these articles since the articles are about kids like them. Periodically, a child in the community has been ill, so our children can relate to the articles in a way that a regular book often doesn't.

There are three different worksheets you can use to have your students record. I personally like this one the best. There is plenty of room to write, but general enough that I don't have to redo the questions each year to fit the articles. The questions also allow the kids to make choices about the articles that catch their attention. The discussions happen naturally, because the students connect with different families in the articles.

If you would like more information on Kids Day, or would like to volunteer, just click on the links.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Celebrate Reading with Dr. Seuss

Schools all across America are doing special activities this week. Our school will have a Literacy Celebration with special readers and then classes will showcase literature in the amphitheater.
Here are a few sites students can use to find out more about this special week.

One of my favorite books is Barholomew and the Oobleck. Of course making Oobleck is one of my students favorite things to do with cornstarch, water, and green food coloring. Watching the properties of liquid and solid change in front of your eyes is just plain fun. Here is a fun video to go with it.

Here is another.

and finally,

All three of these is posted on my webpage for students under the Dr. Seuss Picture like the one at the top of this post.

Here is a demonstration video clip for making Oobleck.

I also like to do the play, "The Sneetches" by Dr. Seuss.
which can be purchased in my TpT Store. I have also blogged about it HERE, plus a FREEBIE