Phys.Ed. + Writing = Success! This Week in 7E.

Teaching an intermediate has it's negatives and positives, as does any grade. But with 12 year olds, their attitudes towards school have been slightly more ingrained in them. I am seeing a lot of fears that have been brewing and stewing inside of them for years, now. The fear of math and the fear of reading and writing have been observed most. In previous blogs I have discussed a few things here and there about how I am using A LOT more technology in my room this year, as well as going back to the basics! I am also trying a lot more cross-curricular activities.

For example....

My kids LOVE being active!! Love recess, love phys. ed. and love DPA. So, this week I broke the students into groups of 2 or 3 and they did a little recipe writing--- For Phys.Ed. class! They created 5 center cards. Each Friday (which is Fit Friday in my gym class), one group will use 15-20 min. of the class to run their fitness centers. They are responsible for the following:
*making fair groups (with varying abilities in each group)
*setting up and taking down their centers
*explaining and demonstrating each center
*circulating and making sure each group is on task
*providing alternate exercises for students that cannot do certain exercises

Group #1 centers-- ready to be taped up!

Here is group #1 setting up their stations, while the rest of the class does the warm up laps.

The class watches, while the leaders explain each station.

The kids did an awesome job--- both, leaders and class as a whole! Now that's cross-curricular!

If this is something you would like to try with your class, here is a primary/junior template recipe card pack that we created last year. It includes some sample DPA/Phys. Ed. recipes to try with your class, as well as templates for your kiddos to make their own.

This month we are working on Oral Communication/ Public Speaking! Erin Cobb of Lovin' Lit (just adore her) gave me a GREAT idea that I am going to run with! I am going to use the various football player interviews before and after the Superbowl to demonstrate public speaking habits.
For example---There are two people in this interview. One (Marshawn Lynch) who hates public speaking and is only talking so he doesn't get fined, and two (Michael Robinson), who loves the camera. Tomorrow we're going to discuss how each player demonstrated public speaking skills and habits in two different ways and which person you would rather listen to and why.

I am going to have the students brainstorm a list of the public speaking gestures that each player made..... Similar to the chart below.

I am hoping this give the students some ideas and something to work on/ think about when they perform their readers theater this week! :) They have been working hard on becoming the characters in Deb Hanson's "A Day at Miller Mountain".
Each group has been assigned a scene. So far, so good! I love how this script is generic and all of my kids can participate!

In writing, our focus is on making our writing more descriptive and maintaining order.
We are continuing to work on IDIOMS this week.
Last week, I introduced this idea by using this compilation of clips (only 1/2 of them so far).
It *perhaps* seems "too young" for 12 years olds, but lemme tell ya-- It's not. They laugh at cheesy things just like the primary kids! So I embrace it!

 While watching these clips, I paused it after the speaker introduces the idiom. I made this sheet for my students to complete to see what they knew about idioms.
You can pick that sheet HERE.
I am already beginning to see the students use the figurative language in their writing. We recently wrote Dream Vacation Narratives and some of the students nailed it!
I know these aren't the clearest of pictures--- but if you can read them, you can begin to see how some of the students are beginning to include figurative language into their writing. It's quite lovely.

Busy week full of History Trading Cards, Theatrical Performances, Newsela Reading Quizzes and "How to do REAL Reasearch" Lessons!

Have a great week ahead!