Friday, December 5, 2014

Five for Friday 12/5/14

Even though Doodle Bugs Teaching is taking a break from her linky parties, I decided to post this up anyway! Happy Friday!

 We use Sadlier's Vocabulary Workshop Book A. It is a middle/high school SAT/ACT vocabulary prep workbook, and I have to say, some of the words are really hard. There are words in some of the units that I've never even heard of before...words like "manacle." I don't think I'd ever heard of that before, or at least, not to my knowledge.

Anyway, my (special ed) students had trouble with a large chunk of the words this week, so I decided to do what works best for them - I used picture clues to match to the words. I made flaps with the words on the outside. They cut out the word flaps and glued them onto a large sheet of construction paper. They then used picture "cards" that I had made for them to glue the pictures under the correct vocabulary word flap. Some of the pictures were obvious as to which vocabulary word they matched, but with others, they had to really think about what word the picture was showing. For example, I had a picture of Santa Claus to match "jovial" - that was easy. But, for the word "onset," I had a picture of a kid with chicken pox on his back. It was meant to show the onset of chicken pox, or the beginning of the illness.

Here is a look at the flaps. I put them out in the hallway, and we did a last "look-through" the cards and pictures before our test. It really helped them. Their post-test scores improved tremendously!

I just used Google images to search for pictures. Otherwise, I would share the file with you!

What do you do to help your students with difficult vocabulary???

We're obviously in the holiday spirit and doing some holiday-related crafts and activities, and one of the fun ones my technology students did this week was from Computer Teacher Solutions. It was a technology-related version of the 12 Days of Christmas. It was a simple MS Word activity where the students typed the techie version of the song and made the page "their own." They added a festive border, fun fonts, and changed the font colors to Christmas-colored fonts. They really enjoyed it! I have to say, too, that they look great outside the tech room door for the season! Here are some student samples:

(Again, I couldn't get these darn pictures to turn upright - I tried everything. If anyone has any tips for fixing this, please help!) :)

We had to do report cards for term 2 this week. We used to have 3 terms, but we added a fourth one this year because our progress reports weren't "very helpful" to the parents. I don't mind doing report cards, but man, I feel like I just finished the last round. I have a literacy class with 7 students, and that's no issue, but I also teach technology to the entire school. I have over 100 report cards with grades AND COMMENTS for all of those kids. I know I'm whining. I need to be thankful that I have a job, and things could definitely be worse!

Two words: CHRISTMAS. SHOPPING. I feel like I haven't done ANYTHING yet. I know I've shopped for my own child, but I still have so much more to be done. Is anyone else feeling like they're barely treading water???

My literacy class is reading the book, Wonder, by RJ Palacio. It is an amazing story about a boy named August who has a deformed face. All he wants is to be treated normally since he feels that he is completely normal. He gets bullied and mistreated, as one could imagine, but the story is about how he overcomes all of this and how his friends (and classmates who are not his "best" friends) change and become better people because of him. I think it's the first time since high school that I've cried as much as I have, especially while reading a book. It is SUCH a good story. I can't recommend it enough. If you are looking for a great book to read over the holidays, pick this one!!! You can click here to get it.

photo courtesy of Amazon 

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