Thursday, April 30, 2015

And They're Off...a Day Full of KY Derby Fun!

What a fun day! I've celebrated nine Kentucky Derby events, but I must say that this week, especially today, was the most fun I've had with my students yet!

This is a postcard I bought locally. It is framed and stays on my wall all year long. We are proud of our city! You can see Churchill Downs in the bottom left corner!

Our principal, Mrs. Hoffmann on the left, and our PE teacher, Mr. Carden on the right - they are rocking the Derby hats and suits!

Mr. Carden again, in his suit - check out the white shoes and all! He is ready for Derby!

There was so much going on all week. Just take a look at the fun we had and pin some ideas for next year. Or, if you have school tomorrow, you could easily spend a few minutes and do something horse-related with your students to celebrate! 

First up, my intermediate technology students used the website, Instant Poetry Forms. You can see this simple, but amazing website here. I've blogged about this site before, but it's worth mentioning again! It is a very basic poetry writing website with templates/forms for writing all kinds of different types of poems. Just write (type) and print! You can also fill in the blanks, then copy and paste into a Word document so students can format their fonts, add pictures, and basically jazz up their poems. The site is connected to other sites you might have heard of...Read, Write, Think and

Here's just a few of their poems and pictures! We used the horse pop-art pictures from Art with Jenny K's Wild West Coloring Sheets. She has amazing art activities that you can use for a variety of content areas and seasons/holidays! Check out her store here.



My planning period is the first class of the day, when all of our students are in math class. So, I went up to my two favorite colleagues' classrooms (shout out to Mrs. Payne and Mrs. Matthews!!!!) and shared in some Derby fun with them.
First, they played my Derby Race probability game. It's a FREE file you can get here. They had a blast! You can also play this file at any time of year. It works for studying probability and subtraction.

Then, Mrs. Payne had made up a Hovercraft Disc Derby. She attached balloons to plastic thread spindles, and she blew up the balloons. All of the students chose a disc that they thought would win. The students took turns holding a balloon until she said, "Go!" They then let the balloons go...and they were SUPPOSED to hover above the ground and "race" to the finish line. Well, it didn't go exactly as planned. Some of them just stood still. Some flew upwards a little, and other just fizzled out. It was great that the experiment didn't work perfectly. There was great discussion as to why it didn't work, and they hypothesized how they could get them to work in the future...don't use discs to attach the balloons-find something smaller and lighter, try different balloons that aren't so flimsy, etc.  




Before I left, I checked out some jockey silks (shirts) that her class had completed the day before. She cut out colorful shapes and created these simple worksheets for them to practice shapes and patterns. They are also working on measuring, so they talked about the size of the silks and estimated how many shapes could fit on the silk.

During literacy, we made hats from Babbling Abby's Derby Days unit. We're doing our end of the year activities (more about that tomorrow, along with some freebies!). It was just a fun addition to all of our work and fun stuff we did today! I have to say, their hats turned out great!

Love the bright blue feather on this fedora!

Look how colorful this hat is!

Have a great Oaks and Derby, if you plan on going. If you're betting, good luck! If you're just watching, enjoy the beauty and tradition of the day. At the very least, have some fun!

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