Friday, July 4, 2014

Antique Vanity Table Makeover

This is my Granny's vanity table that she used everyday. She passed in the late 80's and my sister has had her vanity for quite sometime. After years of sitting in storage, she let me take a stab of a makeover. I must say, I am very happy with the results! I found the neatest store in Austin for the paint and best advice to complete this project! Thank you to A House & A Tree.
1st restoration done in the late 90's

Started with sanding to remove the chipping of the old polish

Maison Blance Paint and Wax Wrought Iron, Franciscan Grey, Dark Brown Antique Wax
1st coat of Wrought Iron, removed old hardware

Martha Stewart Stencil from Michael's and Franciscan Grey paint
2 coats of Wrought Iron paint and stencile left to dry 
This was very easy! I used spray adhesive and a tiny bit of paint on the spouncer

New hardware from Home Depot
Before the Antique Wax
After the Antique Wax left to dry for 2 hours

Top of desk

J and O initials for my Granny

I love it!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Teaching Time With an Ipad

Get you classroom discussion going and let your kiddos explore using technology they already LOVE! You can download my PDF's FREE on Teachers Pay Teachers.

If you are already using iPads or iPods in your classroom then these clocks become interactive and work great with Educreations app (or any interactive whiteboard app) and Apple TV through AirPlay.

This is how I use it in my 3rd grade math resource room.  I simply instant message the PDF file has an image and have the kids save it to their camera roll. They then pull up the picture using Educreations app.  I then ask them to draw a specific time in one color.  Then I ask them a couple elapsed time questions and they draw those times in different colors. They record their answer and share it in our class account in Educreations. Then we share as a class through AirPlay using Apple TV.

Here is one example.

Look for more PDF's soon that work great with iPads and iPods using AirPaly.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Google Chrome Read and Write App

It's new! It's Awesome! Kids and teachers are loving it! 

This app is helping bridge the gap for our struggling readers and writers. Google has developed a system that allows you to collaborate with others while providing a contextual spell checker, a word dictonary, a picture dictionary and a text-to-speech program  (reads back your text),  ALL in one document!  This is huge for our struggling readers. Students are able to hear what they write and see a picture for a word they type, this is amazing!  Example. I ate ice cream for "desert" or "dessert". Not sure of the correct word to use? Then use the picture dictionary and choose the correct spelling!

You can find the app in the Google Chrome's Web Store  FREE! It works with Google Chrome's web browser in Google Drive with all of Google Documents.

Check out Leander's Assistive Technology In Action  blog, for an example of Google's Read Write App and how technology is being used in the classroom's of Leander ISD!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Cognitively Guided Instruction

What is CGI??

Understanding how children's mathematical thinking develops and reflection on how to help children build up their concepts from within (Carpenter 1999).

Children's Mathematics Cognitively Guided Instruction, Thomas P. Carpenter, 1999.

After attending a series of Cognitively Guided Instruction (CGI) sessions, provided by our district, it was a no brainer for me, this is the only way to teach math!! My students turned into little math investigators! They were exploring and discussing math and developing their own understating of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.

I promise, if you as a teacher have not tried CGI in your classroom then you have no idea all the math your students are truly capable of and already know!!

The hardest part, as a teacher, will be letting go of the teaching. Once you stop talking and start listening, you will finally be teaching! Seriously, I kept hearing this and it hit home one day when I was with a student who was just not getting the concept of what I was teaching. After trying several different strategies I eventually said, "Okay, you teach me." It became apparent, the misunderstanding, as he was explaining it to me. The CGI for his learning became simple once I stopped talking and started listening!!

Here is link to read more on CGI from the developers. Cognitively Guided Instruction: A Knowledge Base for Reform in Primary Mathematics Instruction

The most importan thing to know in CGI is; there are three levels of developmental strategies.

1.  Direct Modeling Strategies- These kids must see exactly how the problem goes! They  need to see every number.

2.  Counting Strategies-  These kids are FINGER counters. They dont necessarily need to see every number, but use a counting strategies to go up or down.

3.  Number Fact- Theses kids know facts and know how to get to other facts from "derived facts".

A teacher needs to identify these students and place them into these category and then build their understanding of number sense to move them to the next step.

Don't tell your students how to start a problem. Only help them to "unpack" the problem. You might have to ask a question 10 ways to get them to figure out where they might need to start, but you have let THEM figure it out so they can own a strategie that works for THEM not YOU! Just remember, the one doing the talking is the one doing the learning! So teachers, STOP talking and START listening!

Below are examples of 3rd and 5th graders work, using CGI math problems.  You can see the difference in strategies. They all got the answer but in 3 different ways.

Counters and Direct Modeling

Direct Modler and Derived Facts

Your job as a CGI teacher is guide their thinking and develop higher level thinkers through the use of inquiry! will be posting lessons and centers from my CGI classroom soon!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Bear Toast for Kids

 LOVE, LOVE this easy, fun breakfast toast for my 17 month old and so does he!! This idea, I know, is not new but it's new to me and WE love it! 

Bananas, blackberries and cinnamon toast are his favorite, so we just combine them in a fun way and GRRRRRR, we eat and enjoy!!