Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Getting Spacey!

As I mentioned in my last post, going with a classroom theme is kind of a rule-breaker for me... but I'm having too much fun! I put on my alien headband that I made and got to work.
See? I told you space was kind of my thing... It's all over my house!
My first projects, if you didn't catch them, were my Voice Levels chart and name plates:
Click to download!
Click to download!
Then I added my new Scrappin Doodles clipart to my classroom rules, too. 
Click to download!
Now for some new ideas. I found an excellent post about Super Improver Walls here, and it finally clicked! The different names and colors for each level overwhelmed me at first, but not when they're spacey!
Click to download! 
Each student starts off on the first level and must earn 10 points to move to the next level. I will use foil stars to keep track of the points on colored card stock stars, like Mrs. Shipley advised in her video tutorial. Students earn points by showing improvement in behavior AND academics. Their improvement goals will become very differentiated and meaningful as they redefine what "growth" means for them. Genius!

When the student collects 10 stickers on their colored star they get to take it home and travel to the next planet, or level. I'm so tickled that my levels, including the sun and our moon, makes for an even 10!

The neatest part about the Super Improver Wall (gotta get on board with the acronyms... The SIW) is the photo op at certain levels, denoted on my version with a picture of a satellite.
On this level I take a picture of the student with some friends and put it under their star. The picture is posted FACE DOWN. The student must advance off of Earth in order to take the picture home.

I think my SIW will be a tremendous metaphor for my kiddos as they track their personal growth. Mrs. Amanda even suggested that if you run out of levels, add more! There are so many possibilities... comets, far-away planets, galaxies, nebulae...

The Orion Nebula has always been my favorite to look at.

My last new idea has to do with my tables. I have trapezoid tables this year, and I'll probably put them together so I have groups of 6 students at a "table".

I want to have an icon at each spot to use when giving directions, getting supplies, and dismissing from tables, even. If I need someone to get paper for their table I could call out an icon and away they go.

I would run the icons off on colored paper (they'll be colored inside, of course, not white). I really hope this system works because I want to give students many opportunities to be helpful and "in charge" of something instead of relying on one or two kids a week as a classroom job. 

I also ran to the toy store yesterday and got a space puzzle for my 100 Days of School project:

And last, but not least, is a new friend. I've been keeping him in the back of my head for a month now and today I finally got him. 

Meet NomNom. :)


MexicanHat said...

Just wanted to say a big thank you for your resources. They are well made and I will definately use them in the classroom :P

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