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Pizzeria Room Transformation

Math, Reading, Writing

Today I’m excited to share my second room transformation with you!  This one was a Pizzeria Room Transformation.  Our pizzeria was called Village Pizzeria.  I’m going to take you through the decor and the different activities that we did during the day.

Decorations and Room Set-Up:

Picture of Pizzeria with lights off and candles on

Here you can see the set-up with the lights out.  The tablecloths are from the dollar store, the battery candles are actually from my wedding registry, and my teaching assistant made the flowers out of tissue paper.  On the Smart Board I had a photo of a pizzeria and played Italian music to help set the mood.  They have tons of great options for this on YouTube!

 

Picture of Pizzeria set-up

 

Picture of pizza banner and pizzeria decor

On the back bulletin board my teaching assistant made the cute banner of pizzas.  We also found pizza and pizzeria pictures online and hung them on the walls.

 

Picture of Village Pizzeria backdrop

My teaching assistant also traced and made this sign from one we found online. We used this as a backdrop to take each student’s photo with their chef hat and mustache that you will see later in the post.

 

Costume and Staff Roles Idea:

Picture of teacher dressed up as server in front of welcome background

For the pizzeria room transformation I decided to be the server.  Since I wasn’t a teacher that day, I decided to have the kids call me Giana and that would be my pizzeria server name. I wore a name tag, had a server apron, and glasses at times.  My teaching assistant dressed up as a chef with a chef hat and apron.  We also got my assistant principal involved. She helped with the first activity below.  She was the owner of the pizzeria and her name was Barbara.  She dressed up, had an Italian accent, and had a lot of fun with her role in our pizzeria!

Opinion Writing Activity:

Picture of Oreo cookies and writing piece

We have been working on opinion writing in class and I wanted to tie that in to the pizzeria room transformation.  “Barbara,” our owner (our assistant principal) came in and asked them if they would help taste test two different Oreo’s to see which should be added to her menu. The kids were excited to do this and enjoyed trying both. I was surprised because red velvet won and I was sure that many of them would go for the peanut butter. After testing both cookies they wrote their opinion and had to give reasons to support the cookie they picked.

 

Menu Math:

Picture of math menu and worksheet

I created pizzeria menus that we used for our math lesson. I also created differentiated story problems for three different groups to work on.  All story problems fit around the menu theme and definitely made them think outside the box.  My goal was to push all of my students/customers and these problems did just that.  They loved choosing their own items from the menu for question 2 and did a great job showing work for how they got their answers.

 

Picture of Menu Math story problems

Above and below you can see the three different story problem pages.  As you can see they are similar, but differentiated to meet all of my learners.

Picture of Menu Math story problems

 

Book Tasting:

Picture of book tasting table set-up

Picture of book tasting table set-up

The book tasting was another perfect event for our room transformation.  After lunch the kids came back in and I had it all set-up.  There were six tables and three different genres – fairy tale, fiction, and nonfiction. Students were assigned as a specific seat by the hostess (me) and then given directions.  They had about 5 minutes to “taste” their book and write the title and genre.  On the page they also could give their book a rating with stars.  A 5 star book was a fantastic book that they wanted to read again and a 1 star book was one that they were not interested in. They were very honest with their reviews and also had a chance to read books from a variety of genres.  Below you’ll see the book tasting form.

Picture of book tasting form

Making a Mini Pizza:

Next came the part the kids had been waiting all day for! Each student got to make their own mini pizza.  We used english muffins, marinara sauce, mozzarella cheese, and pepperonis.  Our chef (my teaching assistant) did a demo cooking lesson and then each child got to make their own mini pizza.  They wore the cute chef hats pictured below and also each got a mustache.  I took pictures of them in front of the backdrop with both props and they turned out adorable!

Picture of chef hat and mustache

 

Writing a How To:

Picture of how to writing piece sample from a student

After creating their own mini pizza, each child wrote their own “how to” explaining how to make a mini pizza.  They loved that they got to write down their recipe so they could make them again at home.

 

All in all it was a wonderful day and the second room transformation of the year was a success! Stay tuned for future transformations and ideas!

 



Common vs. Proper Nouns

Language, Writing

Being back in first grade this year I’ve had to revamp the way I teach grammar and go back to the very introductory steps of teaching these skills.  Second graders had some background knowledge on nouns, verbs, etc., but first graders are just starting out!

With teaching nouns, the first week we just focused on common nouns. We created an anchor chart together, made lists of common nouns, sorted nouns by type, and more.

The second week we added in proper nouns and kids had to understand the difference between the two. In addition to watching a Brainpop Jr. video and creating anchor charts, I also created this sort.

I also had students do the below activity which turned out to be easy and engaging…

Common vs. Proper Nouns Sort

To start off, I put common nouns and proper nouns written on index cards in a bucket.  For example, cat, student, school, McDonald’s, Legos, etc.  Students then got to pick out a card.  They had to draw a picture to represent their nouns (I made sure it was nouns they would be familiar with) and then bring the card down to the carpet.

Once everyone was finished we took each card and sorted it one by one together into the correct category.  They did a great job and their pictures were pretty cute too!

Just wanted to share this simple activity. If you are looking for more introductory noun practice, check out my Common Noun Task Cards below… They can be found in my TPT Store – Team J’s Classroom Fun.



Football Room Transformation

Math, Reading, Writing

So today I am super excited to share with you my room transformation that I did a few weeks ago.  For my first room transformation this year I decided to do a football theme. What started out as just a transformation for a math review turned into why not make the whole day football themed! Go big or go home – right?? So this room transformation took on a life of it’s own and I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out!  In this blog post I’ll take you through the decorations and different events of the day.  I had a blast and my kids had a blast! It was probably one of the best days we’ve had this school year so far.

 

Room Transformation Info:

For the room transformation I got items from Amazon, Party City, and we made many of them too.  The football backdrop and football runner were from Party City. My ref shirt came from Amazon. I printed and made the football logos.  My teaching aide made the tablecloths with a football stamp and the other football signs.  The decorations definitely helped set the mood!

Each child had their picture taken in front of the backdrop. The posed with the football. I so wish I could show you the pictures because some of them took it rather seriously!

 

If I Were a Football Player Page:

During morning meeting, which I called a team meeting, we discussed some of the questions on the page above. Students then got to create their football name, pick their number, decide the team name, mascot, etc.  They had fun being creative and coming up with some interesting mascots and names!

 

Jersey Design:

Next students got to design their own jerseys. I showed them a few examples of real NFL and college jerseys and then they got to work. They used their team colors and number on the jersey. The t-shirt page was from Heather Toomey.

 

Football Math Review Game:

When students came back from PE I had the game set-up for them. I used a long football yard-line table runner on the floor and that was how we showed we each team earned a point (10 yards) for each correct question. When they came in the room I had the Sunday Night Football song playing to get them pumped up and ready!

I broke the class up into two teams for the math review game. Each team had a designated “captain” who came forward for the coin toss. Another teacher happened to stop by so she became our NFL commissioner and actually tossed the coin for us!  Heads won and off we went!

The review game included some of the questions above. This unit in math covered items such as: combos of 10, counting and adding on, solving word problems, identifying and labeling numbers.  Teams worked together to figure out the answer and a different child gave the answer each time to make sure everyone was included. Each time they got an answer correct they earned 10 yards. I planned it ahead of time so that each team would end up with the same points so we had no hurt feelings.  At the end of the game, each team added up all of their tens to see who won! Since each team won, each player got a football bracelet from Party City that had sports sayings on it.

 

Football Math Stations:

To continue reviewing for out test we also completed math stations with activities practicing the different skills.  The football popcorn holders held the activities and these were from Party City. Each group rotated to each station as you can see below.

 

This activity was completed with my teaching aide. She would give the kids a number and they would fill it in on the ten frame. Then she would ask further questions like how  many more would you need to make 10.

This tens frame Around the Room activity I got on TPT from Resource Ranch. Students would add the two numbers together and record their answer on the recording sheet.

Students worked on football story problems when they came to my station. I created similar problems but differentiated the numbers to meet the different levels in my classroom.

Students worked on ordering numbers at this station. There were baggies with ten numbers in it and the kids had to put them in order from least to greatest.  The football numbers are from Teacher Trish.

At this station students played Memory with the football cards.  This was a great way to practice combos of 10!

 

Reading:

During reading we read and discussed the story Football Dinosaurs.  Then, during snack we watched the Tiki Barber story on Tumble Books.

 

Writing:

To tie in writing, students wrote their opinion about their favorite sport. We brainstormed all the different kinds of sports and students picked one to write about. They also had to give a reason for their choice.  This page is from The Simplified Classroom.

 

Conclusion:

All in all this one was of my favorite teaching days ever! We had so much fun and was I tired at the end of the day!  You exert so much energy during days like this that I had no trouble going to sleep that night!

 

Stay tuned…I have another room transformation coming in a few weeks! Be sure to follow me on Instagram to stay up to speed with all of the latest in my classroom!

 

 



TPT Bonus Sale Tomorrow

Reading, Writing

Tomorrow – Tuesday, August 21 is the TPT Back to School BONUS Sale!! My entire store – Team J’s Classroom Fun- Jordan Johnson – will be on sale for up to 25% off with the code BTSBONUS18!

Here are a few ELA resources you might be interested in:

Grammar Fix-It BUNDLE: Great way to practice a variety of grammar skills! Can be used as a formative assessment, in a literacy station, or as a whole or small group activity.  Includes: capitals, end marks, commas, apostrophes, high frequency spelling words, quotation marks, and verb tense agreement.

Grammar Practice BUNDLE

Opinion Writing Prompt Cards: Great way to cover opinion writing for first and second grade! These are perfect to throw into a Writing Station! 30 different opinion prompts included.

Opinion Writing Prompts

Surprises According to Humphrey Book Study: I use these during literacy stations. I have students partner up and work on book studies together! I then meet with students to discuss and we have a little book club of sorts!

Surprises According to Humphrey - Book Study

Load up those shopping carts for tomorrow! Also make sure you leave feedback on past purchases to earn credits that you can use on future purchases.

 

Quick Comma Intro

Writing

 

Commas has been on our class schedule for multiple days and each day it got pushed because something ran long. While commas are important and do have their value, as we know we often run out of time in any given school day.  Anyways – the kids were excited because we finally, finally, finally got to talk about commas the other day.

Now, there are many different times we need commas and it can be a bit overwhelming. To start, we watched the Brainpop Jr. (maybe it was Brainpop) video about commas.  Moby is always entertaining and the kids enjoy learning along with him.

After watching the video, we started a class anchor chart about commas.  As I mentioned there are many times to use commas, but to make it a little less overwhelming on Day 1 we focused on three specific times.  On the anchor chart, we talked about using commas for the date, between city and state, and when listing items or events.  I put up each instance and we also came up with an example or two that matched that situation.

Then, since we were running out of time again and almost late for library, I gave a quick exit ticket type assignment. I had students go back to their seats and write down a sentence using commas as a list on their white board. I wanted something that would be quick, but also something that I could do a quick check that would be a formative assesment.

It went great! The kids wrote their sentences and headed to library. While they were at library I went around to see if they understood how to use commas correctly in a list and almost all of them did.  Then, they returned from library and their sentences out with their table group.

          

So super quick, easy way to introduce commas and a great way to do a quick check for understanding.

If you’re looking for more comma practice, check out my Grammar Fix-It Commas product.

Grammar Skills Included:
• Commas separating single words, capitals, and end marks
• Commas separating cities and dates, capitals, and end marks
• Commas used in introductory phrases, capitals, and end marks
• Commas used in compound sentences, capitals, and end marks
• All types of commas, capitals, end marks, and apostrophes (possessive nouns and contractions)



Verbs, Verbs, and More Verbs

Writing

Today I’m going to share some ideas with you for how I teach verbs in the classroom.  Verbs is a typical grammar skill that I know is taught in most primary classrooms – so most of this info will be applicable to K-3.

I love using Brainpop Jr video clips as a way to introduce content – especially grammar skills. Brainpop Jr has video on verbs and one on verb tenses.  When I introduced verbs we just watched the verbs video.  Afterwards, since I teach second grade and know most of my students had worked with verbs before, I had students create their own circle map of verbs.  I challenged them to come up with 20 or more verbs on their circle map.  Once they finished that, I gave each student two small post-it notes. I asked them to pick their two best verbs and write one on each note.  Then, they came up and put it on our whole class verbs circle map. I like having anchor charts be interactive and this was a way for everyone to participate.

Since they have a good understanding of verbs we next played Act It Out – Verbs. This is a FREEBIE in my TPT store. This is pretty much verb charades.  Students pick out a card and act out the verb. The rest of the class has to guess the verb they are acting out. They had a blast doing it and have been requesting to play it again. This is great because it gets kids up and moving – and kids can always use movement!

Next up and the large focus in second grade, we were going over verb tense agreement.  We again started by watching a Brainpop Jr video and discussing what the different tenses were – past tense, present tense, and future tense. I then created a tree map (no picture unfortunately) with three branches – one branch for each tense. Then, the kids and I came up with some verbs and modified them for each tense. We practiced regular verbs and irregular verbs.

Then, we worked on my Verbs Around the Room Activity. I normally do this as an Around the Room activity, but due to timing it was easier to do it on the white boards.  This is available in my TPT Store.

I also have two more verb activities to show you.  Grammar Fix It – Verb Tense Agreement provides students practice not only picking the correct verb tense, but also fixing capitals, end marks, and apostrophes.

And, I’m super excited to show you my newest TPT product.  Verb Tense Printables are super easy to use – just print and go! They work as formative assessments or independent practice. The printables could be used whole group, small group, in a literacy station, or for independent work.  I have two different printables.  One provides practice changing the verb tenses.  The second practice option has students choose the correct word/verb tense to complete the sentence.

Be sure to sign up for my Team J Newsletter! Tomorrow I will be sending out a freebie to my email subscribers from my new Verb Tense Printables pack!



Holiday Activities for the Classroom

Holidays, Math, Reading, Science, Writing

I know how crazy the last few days/week before winter break can be. We are entering crazy times teachers and we need to have as many fun, educational activities in our back pocket ready to go as we can.

So, here are a few things I will be using with my class this week….

Christmas Writing Prompts – This is a FREEBIE in my TPT Store.  It includes two writing prompts that are focused on personal narratives.  Great way to incorporate writing into the holiday excitement.

Candy Cane Science Lab – I did this activity with my class last year and will be starting it this week. We’ve been learning about lab reports during Writing Workshop and this is a fun science experiment to do this time of year. Check out my blog post on it….here

Olive, the Other Reindeer Book Study – This is a cute story and my students love hearing it every year.  This book study is now in my TPT Store. It includes comprehension questions and four different writing prompts. This could be used whole group or as a small group activity.

Christmas Story Problems – We will be starting these today.  I love using holiday story problems as one of my rotations during our daily math time.  The kids love that they are themed and fitting of the season.  The Christmas Story Problems include addition and subtraction problems with and without regrouping.

Winter Story Problems – I will actually be using these when we return to school in January, but if your school focuses on winter instead of the specific holidays – these story problems would be great. These can be used whole group, small group, or at a math center.  These winter themed problems focus on ice skating, hot chocolate, snowmen, etc.  Includes addition and subtraction problems.

Hope these activities and ideas help with the last bit of school before break. I’m down to 7.5 days left with students. We can do it teachers!

New Product Alert and the BTS Sale Starts Tomorrow!

Writing
The TPT Back to School Sale has returned! So excited to stock up on some new items for the new school year! My whole store (Jordan Johnson) will be 25% off with the code BTS2017.  Check out one of my newest products below…
Would you rather create your own writing prompts or have a set of 60 already created for you? If you answered have them created for you, then you are in luck! My newest writing product is a set of 60 writing prompt cards. Each card has a different Would You Rather prompt on it that provides students with the chance to practice writing their opinions.  In addition to picking one of the choices, they also have to explain why they picked it.  This covers Common Core Standards W.1.1 and W.2.1.
Check them out…
Fill up those wishlists and carts today! The sale starts tomorrow, August 1! Happy Back to School Shopping!

Guess What?

Math, Reading, Writing

The TPT Big Teacher Appreciation Sale begins tomorrow! You heard me!! Tomorrow!  My entire store – Jordan Johnson – will be on sale May 9th and 10th for 28% off with the code THANKYOU17.  This is a great time to stock up on some goodies for the end of the year and for early planning for next year.

Download for Facebook - 740 × 400

Check out my Instagram to win a $10 gift card that you can use on the sale – Team J 2nd Grade Fun.

Check out some of my bundles below…

Grammar Fix It Bundle Provides practice with capitals, end marks, apostrophes, commas, verb tense agreement, quotation marks, and spelling high frequency words.  6 products make up this one mega-bundle!

Grammar Fix It -  BUNDLE

Nate the Great Bundle – Includes two Nate the Great Book Studies (Nate the Great Goes Undercover and Nate the Great and The Lost List). Perfect for small group book studies.

Nate the Great Book Study BUNDLE

Graphing Galore Bundle – Includes 3 of my popular graphing products – Graphing in 2nd Grade, Learning About Line Plots, and Create Your Own Graph Project. Perfect for covering the 2nd Grade Data Analysis standards!

Graphing Galore BUNDLE

These are just a few of my bundle products! Add them to your wishlist today and purchase tomorrow in the sale! Happy Shopping!

Comma Practice

Writing
We recently covered commas in my class. I’ve always found commas kind of a boring thing to teach so I tried to spice it up a bit this year. I’ve also always found that they confuse kids. When you use them? When you don’t? When you need more than one? And so on..
So here’s what I did this year…
We started out by watching a Brainpop Jr on Commas that went over the basics. Then, we created the anchor chart below together. I decided to focus on using commas in a list, to separate two adjectives, separate city and state, and using commas in a date. I feel like these four were age-appropriate for second grade and ones they’d be able to understand. When creating the chart, I had the kids help me. I wrote the topic and they came up with the sentences. This sparked great conversation because if someone didn’t use the commas correctly we could discuss why.
After creating our chart, we read the book below – When Comma Came to Town. This is a cute book and explores commas in a silly way. I highly recommend Grammar Tales – they have books on many different grammar topics.

Then, we practiced in small groups. We used my comma practice for separating words in a list from my Grammar Fix It – Commas product in my TPT store.  Students have to fix the errors in the sentence and re-write the sentence correctly on their recording sheet (included in the product). In this one, students had to fix the capitals, end marks, and comma errors.
Then, later in the week we worked on Grammar Fix It – Commas whole group.  This time I projected the sentence onto the board and students had to fix the errors and re-write the sentence correctly on their white board.  They were looking for comma, capital, and end mark errors.  After the students finished writing their sentence on their individual white board, we corrected the sentence together on the board.
My Grammar Fix-It Commas Practice includes:
  • Commas separating a list of words
  • Commas separating city and state
  • Commas separating information in a date
  • Commas used with introductory phrases
  • Commas used with compound sentences
The packet also includes practice with all of those types and capitals, end marks, and apostrophes.
Check it out…here… in my TPT Store!