Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Skip counting rap (poster freebie)

I found this skip counting rap on the Education Posts forum and made a poster for it. I don't know who originally posted it so I can't credit the author. Thank you, whoever you are! I just took the verses relating to counting in 2s, 5s and 10s as that's my teaching focus this week. I got the lovely chevron background for free from Natalie at Doodle Craft. 

Download the poster for free from Google Drive (it's going to take a while to start saying that instead of Google Docs!) by clicking here or on the image below. 

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Heart and lungs resources - all free of course!

Last week, as part of the "Healthy Body, Healthy Mind" unit, my children were learning about the heart and lungs and how to keep them healthy. I found some nice resources for the interactive whiteboard and other activities related to the topic and thought I'd share them with you. I used these resources with children around 7-8 years of age.

Finding the heart using a stethoscope on the interactive whiteboard: This one is a great way of remembering the location of the heart. They move the stethoscope about until they can hear the heart beating. 

The children did an experiment to see the effect of exercise on their hearts. This involved sitting, standing, running/dancing and hopping. Of course they loved this! Click here or on the image below to download my heart investigation sheet.

After having experimented on themselves, they then had a go at changing Ruby's heart rate in this fantastic game from the BBC Schools website. It was a great assessment tool. I asked them to make Ruby's heart rate go up/down a little or a lot.

I found a huge selection of heart-related resources on the American Heart Association website. They have heart lesson plans divided up by subject and age level. Here, I came across this join the dots activity where the children follow the route of blood through the heart.

After this, we moved  on to learning about the lungs. Mr. Hardy's simple flash animation shows the movements in the respiratory system very clearly.  Having watched this, we then set out to make models of the lungs. I followed these instructions except we used plasticine instead of clay. 

At the end of the lesson, the children watched this video to summarise. Again, there is a simple animation with commentary (not in the clearest English though!). This provided more detail in a visual way.

The children also designed anti-smoking posters. I found it very difficult to find classroom resources relating to the dangers of smoking that would be suitable for children who are that young. Quite a lot of the posters, videos, etc. were very gruesome. I thought this was a nice little animation to show how smoking affects the teeth, lungs, heart and brain in a not-so-gruesome manner. One word of warning - the brain is a bit scary!

Monday, 17 September 2012

Blag iontach ó dalta meánscoile

Thug múinteoir meánscoile, Maighréad Ní Iarlaithe, an nasc seo domsa. Is blag lánghaeilge é, scríofa le  Sionainn Ní Ghreacháin, déagóir ó Luimneach. Tá cuma proifisiúnaigh ar an mblag seo. Mar seo, tá sé dochreidte nach bhfuil an t-údar ach cúig bliana déag d'aois!

Tá Paisean le hAghaidh Faisin lán le moltaí faoi stíleanna gruaige, brógaí, cláracha teilifíse agus a domhain féin. Tá leathanach Facebook ceangailte leis comh mhaith.

Is áis iontach é an blog seo do dhéagóirí chun an teanga a léamh i slí suimiúil. Níl sé éasca píosaí léitheoireachta nua-aimseartha atá oiriúnach do dhaltaithe méanscoile a fháil. Mar sin, is blag leithleach amach is amach é!

A Shionainn, maith thú!

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Free addition facts loop games

I have found loop games great for developing mental maths abilities.They take away from the monotony of learning tables by heart. The children all have to co-operate in order to complete the loop/chain game. When you take note of the speed, children generally love to try and beat their best time. 

This year I'm only have 6 children in my class. I made these loop cards with this class in mind. Each child will have two cards each and I will have the start card. In this way, they can practice the addition facts from +1 to +12 of any given number. If you have a class of 24 to 26 children, they can all have one card each. You could also split the class into two teams and see who can finish the loop/chain faster.

These are very simple addition cards. Previously I have made loops with 24 cards and with double digit addition, subtraction, multiplication and division for larger classes with more children. 

I have double checked each card for mistakes but I'm still not confident that they are perfect. If anybody notices one, please let me know and I will update them!

Click here or on the image to download from Google Docs.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Healthy teeth and bones assessment sheet

Bone clipart source

My class is exploring a "healthy body, healthy mind" unit this side of the mid-term. Last week we covered teeth and this week we were looking at the skeleton. I'm going to do a quick assessment tomorrow to see how much they know about keeping their teeth and bones healthy.

Click here to view/download that assessment sheet.

Monday, 10 September 2012

Question prompt posters - English and Irish versions

I originally shared these posters as Gaeilge (in Irish) during the last school year. As I'm now teaching children with English as a second language, I decided to create an English version of the same. Click on the image below to download these who, what, when, where, etc. posters.

...and for anyone who wishes to get the Gaeilge version, click on the following image.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Skeleton lesson ideas

I apologise for my very inconsistent blogging patterns! I'm still very busy with a new job and country so it's hard to find time. Lots of things that I took for granted in Ireland (driving to work, knowing where to buy household things, speaking the same language, much less bureaucracy) make everything a little more time-consuming. That said, I'm delighted with the sunshine, the views of the ancient city, being in the city centre and listening to and seeing Italians everywhere!

Anyway, I just thought I'd share this link. My class will be looking at the skeleton this coming week and, when searching for the classic "Them Bones, Them Bones Need Calcium" advertisement, I found this series of lessons. They're really fun, creative and integrate lots of subjects.

I also found this cute video called "The Skeleton Dance" (AKA Dem Bones) and of course, all 90s children from Ireland and the UK will remember the strange wooden man dancing and singing, "Them Bones, Them Bones Need Calcium!"

Sunday, 2 September 2012

Before and after classroom pics

Hi there,

It has been quite a week! I moved from Ireland to Italy 8 days ago. I've hit a couple of speedbumps (which are to be expected when you move to a new country, particularly when you don't speak their language very well) but so far I'm enjoying the experience. This week I've been getting my classroom ready. I'm quite proud of my Angry Birds display (see previous post for a close up). The rest is at least more colourful. I hope to decorate it a lot more with the children's work as the term goes by. It's definitely a work in progress!

Here are a few before and after photos of my classroom for anybody who's interested. 

A dopo!