Saturday, March 31, 2012

Science Saturday ~ Animal Specimen Lab & a Freebie


This week's Science Saturday is all about an Animal Specimen Lab we completed in my classroom.

It was very quick and easy to set up.  I am fortunate to have a rather large collection of specimens to use at my school.  However, if you don't have access to specimens at school, you could always display quality pictures for your students to assess and achieve the same results.  I used 20 specimens so students could be as spread out as possible around the room, but you could certainly use less...or more if you have the materials and the time!


Here's my classroom set up and ready.  I don't have room to set up a lab like this without using student tables for most of the display area.  I do have a few on the back shelf, another small table off to the side, and on my demonstration table at the front of the room.  I simply wrote 1 - 20 on sticky notes and placed the specimens beside them so students would easily see at which 'station' they were working.



My students were VERY engaged in this lab!  Many had never seen or been so close to the specimens I chose.  I heard so many great conversations and explanations of why a certain specimen was this or that.  It was an awesome day!

Here are a few pictures.  I so wish I didn't need to cover their faces because not being able to see their eyes takes away from some of the amazement and enthusiasm they have.






I thought I would share a few of the actual specimens as well.






Now for the freebie that goes along with this lab!  This was used as a culminating task at the end of the unit when students knew everything needed to complete this lab on their own.  

Click on either image to go right to the download page at my TPT store!

{This image shows all pages.}



{This is the first page...there are enough spaces for up to 20 different specimens.}


I hope you will find a way to incorporate this lab into your classroom!  I would love to hear from you if you do!



Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},












7 Weekly Pins ~ Week 13








I hope you'll enjoy this weekly feature and check back here often to get some inspiration for yourself!

As always, I'd LOVE for you to follow me on Pinterest!  Click here to see all my Boards.







My Own Pin





Educational Pin






Crafty Pin






Organizational Pin

 






Delicious Pin







Apparel Pin







Random Pin







Enjoy :)


Making It {and smiling},

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Around the World Wednesday ~ Global Teacher Connect {and a Linky Party}


Hey guys!  This week's Around the World Wednesday has a slight twist!

I would like to share a global teaching blog...appropriately titled Global Teacher Connect.




GlobalTeacherConnect;



This is the brainchild of Heidi Raki of Raki's Rad Resources.

Raki's


Here's the tagline Heidi has for Global Teacher Connect:

Global Teacher Connect has been designed to be a collaborative blog for Global Teachers - teachers who are in the classrooms all around the globe creating global learners.

There will be up to 5 bloggers from around 20 countries contributing to this new project....a total of 100 bloggers from around the world!!!  

As a Social Studies teacher, I can just imagine Skyping with a class from The Middle East or Africa....but can you imagine what that would mean to your students!!

I am SO excited about this blog {which I also happen to be a contributor to} and I would love for you to head over and consider following it and the other authors as well!

Now for the Linky Party...

Heather from HoJo's Teaching Adventures is hosting a Top 10 List Linky Party!

{Click the link above to see the rules for this Linky and to check out other posts!}

So here are my... 

Top 10 Reasons to Follow Making It As A Middle School Teacher on Facebook!

10.  We all love wasting spending time on FB, right?

9.  I asking nicely...

8.  Seeing my numbers increase puts a genuine smile on my face. :-0

7.  I am a Pin-aholic and I often share great finds on my FB page!

6.  I like to ask questions of my followers to create some interaction and a feeling of community.

5.  I post FREEBIES which you can also find in my TPT Store

4.  Middle School teachers are just cool!  ;-)

3.  I've taught Math, Science, and Social Studies, so I offer a little bit of everything.

2.  I've taught grades 6 - 8, so I have a feel for the entire Middle School experience.
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1.  It would make me the happiest gal in the whole wide world!!!  {OK, that may be stretching it, but I would LOVE for you to follow me!}


I hope you'll check out both blogs mentioned above...actually 3 including Heidi's and tell them who sent you over!


Enjoy :)


Making It {and smiling},




Sunday, March 25, 2012

Share-A-Blog Sunday ~ Lessons From The Middle

Happy Sunday Morning!!

I am so excited to bring you the first post for the new and improved, updated version of Share-A-Blog Sunday!

I'm confident the changes I've made will make this a more meaningful and beneficial feature for you, the Spotlighted Blog, and me.

The first blog I'm sharing is a great one - Lessons From The Middle from Krystal Mills!  Keep going all the way to the end of this post an amazing bit of info...



Krystal has been teaching for 5 years.  She currently teaches Math, Language Arts, Social Studies, and Health to Grade 7 students on Prince Edward Island, Canada, but she has taught Grades 6 - 9 in the past.


{Not being a great Geography student, I had to look up PEI, Canada...that's it in red up there ;-) }


This is what Krystal says about Lessons From The Middle and what makes it special:

"I try to provide a variety of actual lessons from the classroom - actual content, as well as ways to work with students, issues that middle school teachers may be interested in and also lessons for us as people - such as how to take time out for ourselves...etc..." 


I LOVE that Krystal shares about real life 'stuff' on her blog.  You feel as if you can better relate to her!


When I asked Krystal to tell me about a favorite teaching moment, she shared this:

"A student once told me that she didn't hate math anymore like she used to. That was pretty special." 


I completely agree!  Being a math nerd myself, anytime a students loses their hatred of math, we've once a small battle!  Way to go!!!


Here are 3 things Krystal shared about herself:

  1. My blog was just awarded the "Lovely Blog Award" and the "Liebster Award" for blogs.
  2. I live in PEI, Canada (with my 3 men - hubby and 2 sons) and I teach in the same town that I grew up in. 
  3. I can't start my day on the right foot without a cup of coffee. 


I also teach in the same town I grew up in and I also have all sons...3 of them.  From reading Krystal's blog, I know that she married her high school sweetheart, which is also exactly what I did!  Quite a bit in common for 2 blogging gals living so far apart.  {I also teach 7th Grade!}


Now, for the amazing info!

Krystal is having her 1st giveaway which runs through March 31st.  Don't think that this must be a tiny little giveaway since it's the 1st one!  Oh no...this is possibly the best one I've seen yet!!!  Everyone wins something and several win a lot!



Head on over to her Spectacular Spring Giveaway which includes over $250 in prizes and enter to win.  There are many ways to enter multiple times.  I just entered several times myself!

Leave her a comment and let her know who sent you! ;-)



Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},




Saturday, March 24, 2012

Special Day ~ Our 22nd Anniversary!

Hey everybody!

I wanted to share a personal bit with you today.

My husband, Olin, and I got married 22 years ago today!  Sometimes it seems like forever, but more often it seems like only a wee bit in the past!

Marriage is never all birds singing and sun shinning, but I think we have a pretty great one going!

We've been together since high school, through the Marine Corps, boot camp, Desert Storm, and 3 boys!!!

Also, our 25th First Date Anniversary is only a few days away!

Here's a picture from last Christmas!  {I'm too far behind on loading pictures to do anything much more recent than that...yikes!}




It's a beautiful day here in sunny Georgia and I hope you are having a beautiful day as well.  


Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling big today},


7 Weekly Pins ~ Week 12




I hope you'll enjoy this weekly feature and check back here often to get some inspiration for yourself!

As always, I'd LOVE for you to follow me on Pinterest!  Click here to see all my Boards.







My Own Pin





Educational Pin






Crafty Pin





Organizational Pin





Delicious Pin






Apparel Pin
{I know...not practical, but I love it!}





Random Pin





Enjoy :)


Making It {and smiling},


Friday, March 23, 2012

Fun Friday ~ A Little Giggle After A LONG Week




Fun Friday is running a little late because this has been THE longest week EVER!!!

I had to take a quick {2-hour} nap when I got home from school again today!

Anyway...I thought I'd share a couple of fun teacher memes with you today.  I just love these little things. :)

If you love them too, make sure you follow my Teacher Memes Board on Pinterest!




                                                                      Source: 9gag.com via Michelle on Pinterest





                                                              Source: handmaderyangosling.tumblr.com via Michelle on Pinterest




Enjoy :)


Making It {and smiling...although I'm exhausted},

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Happy Spring & A Science Vocab Freebie


Happy First Day of Spring!

I hope the weather in your neck of the woods is being kind to you. :)

If you're in need of some light reading, here's a post on The Old Farmer's Almanac about today and other seasonal days for 2012 and 2013!


In honor of today, I posted a new freebie to my TPT Store.  Here's a brief description and the instructions.

Click on the image below to go right to the download page!



With the end of school fast approaching, what a great time this would be for students to reflect on all the Science vocabulary of the year!

For each letter in SPRING, think of at least one vocabulary word you have learned in Science
 this year which begins with that letter.  Write the definition in your own words, give details
or examples, draw a picture, or list anything else you know about that word.






Enjoy :)


Making It {and smiling},