Friday, March 7, 2014

Currently loving penguins

Goodness... it is already time for another Currently! I cannot believe it is already March. I am seriously wanting time to slow down. Most teachers are dying for summer, but not this one. Nope...not me at all! I don't want to give away too much because that would tell you what my secret question is. If you have followed me for long, I am sure you will know exactly why the month of March and April can take their sweet, sweet time!

We had a busy week last week, and I have a lot to share, including a few great Critic's Corners. So you have to be sure to stick around until the end. :)

Since I am so late as usual, I thought that not only would I hook up with Farley for her super fun Currently linky, but I would also join my other fave Doodle Bugs for her Five for Friday!

Because I have been working on this one post forever now, and I do mean like FOREVER, it will most likely be a long one....just getting you ready.....

The big hit this past week has been the little
guests in Mrs. Whitt's room.

The kiddos are having so much fun watching these little eggs make their way to tadpoles.

A great support for this fun is the picture book Polliwog by Tammy Carter Bronson. The illustrations are so beautiful, and Polliwog has such a sweet little story as she comes to understand her transformation. This book also has a great timeline for tadpole growth in the back. The kiddos have really been checking that out, and I'm pretty sure I've seen Mrs.Whitt studying that timeline a time or two.


Mrs. Whitt being all scientific ;)

We took some time last week to look at our reading habits. Check out all those tally marks! Whew.... I am so proud of all the nonfiction my awesome readers have tackled this year. My nonfiction library has always been a weakness, but I can see that all the titles that I have added in the last two years have really paid off!

I love to see my kiddos become lost in their reading.  I know you can't tell, but this cutie pie is just on the verge of tears as she reads the final installment of the City of Ember series. See her review of City of Ember here

Before the latest winter event that left us all iced in at home...we managed a few days of spirit-lifting warmth last week. I couldn't help but take us outside for a bit of reading in the sun! When I was a kiddo (you know like a million years ago according to the kiddos in my class), I loved taking a book outside, so I try to find a chance to do the same every spring.




Our school is so blessed to have an amazing art teacher that goes above and beyond for all our kiddos. In celebration of our Literacy Week and Parent's Night, she helped arrange for Arkansas Arts Center's Artmobile to pay us a visit for the week. I was so impressed and enjoyed it so much! What an awesome program!


Enjoying the art discussion and storytelling.

This was Jonah's favorite exhibit...
hmmm...wonder why?

I cannot express enough how wonderful this program was!
Loved it!

Fourth grade took a quick trip to see the high school kiddos' (Can I still call them kiddos if they are in high school?) production of Beauty and the Beast. Every year I am so impressed with the wonderful job these talented students do. 

Of course this is all I could think of :)

We are wrapping up our One School One Book Program with Mr. Popper's Penguins. The school has had so much fun with this, and the family involvement in this program has been so energizing to witness. 

All of our activities for this book have led up to our Literacy Week and Parents' Night. 

For our great event, fourth grade hosted The Penguin Toss...

We made penguin eggs, (rolled up socks to be donated to the nurses station afterward) and the kiddos had to toss them into a basket for a prize.

Our helper for the night! 

We sure had tons of fun, and it was great to see so many parents and kiddos hanging out with us little ol' teachers!

Well....Lord knows that I have to say all that fun sure left me one tired teacher! Mrs. Hitchcock and I skedaddled on out of there as soon as it was time to head home, and I promise you that as ashamed as I am to admit it....this is what my desk looked like! I am NOT even playing at just how overwhelming it was to walk into my classroom this morning with this desk leering at me from across the room. I was secretly hoping for some magic desk fairy to come and clean and organize it for me.

Well ...any who....the really big deal was our stinkin' cute little visitor today....

Mrs. Hanna getting the kiddos ready for our visitor
Please meet Laura, the African penguin!

I want a penguin now! :)

Was I telling the truth or what? So sorry for the long post, but keep holding on because now we need to get a little bit bookish! But don't forget to visit Farley at Oh' Boy Fourth Grade and Doodle Bugs for Five for Friday! 

With no further ado....

Critic's Corner

This book lover had me cracking up with her responses to this one. I can't wait to read it myself!

"This Journal Belongs to Ratchet by Nancy J. Cavanaugh is about a girl named Rachel, called Ratchet. Her mom was in a car wreck when she was 5, and her dad takes care of her. I don't know if I would say good care of her. Her dad has to do community service. He helps kids build race cars, and they get to race! Moss Tree Park is turning into a strip mall, and they have to save it. My favorite character was Rachel because she loves her dad even though he sometimes can't control his anger or doesn't listen to her.  Rachel was so confident when Moss Tree Park was being turned into a strip mall, and she wrote about it. Her friend, Hunter, sent it in to the newspaper. I really didn't like her dad too much because he couldn't control his anger. When Rachel read a note from her mom saying she was leaving him, he got really mad and threw a tool. It almost hit Rachel in the head! I would recommend this book to Mrs. Dunn because I know she would love it because she is awesome like the book! I give this book 5 out of 5 stars." ~ Chloe

This reader is surprisingly new to graphic novels, but he has definitely fallen in love with them!

"Amulet The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi is about a girl, her brother, and mom trying to make it through the difficulties of losing their dad that died two years back. My favorite character in this book is Emily because she is one of the toughest in the whole series and is brave through the whole series. I liked this book because at first I thought the whole series was just going to be about a rock, but they proved me wrong! It's a book that you would want to read for years. I would recommend this book to my friend, Christian, because he loves these types of action book series. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars." ~ Will

This cutie took on one of my all time favorite can't go wrong with Judy Blume!

"Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume is about a little boy, Fudge, who likes to ride his bike, and Peter who loves his turtle, Dribble. People call Fudge, Fudgie, but Peter calls him a holy terror. My favorite character in the book is Fudge because he always gets attention, and one day he fell off the monkey bars. He was crying, "Birdie, birdie, birdie," and trying to fly like a bird. I liked this book because it was quick and very funny. I was always turning pages and responding! My favorite chapter was chapter 10, Dribble! I liked this chapter because Peter's turtle, Dribble, gets out, but you won't even believe what happens to poor Dribble. You will have to read Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing to find out what happens next! I give this book 4 out of 5 stars." ~ Grace

Just one last book for you....

I stumbled across this picture book this week, and cracked up laughing...way out loud laughing...enough to destroy the peaceful quiet of my reading students laughing...

Oh my...I am so loving If I Had a Dragon by Tom and Amanda Ellery! Cutie patootie story and hysterical illustrations...

Of course the AAAWWUBBIS was screaming, "Think of all the fun writing you can do with me!"


Check out any of the plethora of posts about Jeff Anderson and Mechanically Inclined here, here, here, and here

So as the grammar teacher in me is reading...I turned the page....and the kid in me busted out laughing, and I knew I had to save this one for a fun writing project later!

"If I had a dragon, I would teach him to ....

Ha's the little things that make my day!

I actually had more to share with you, but because I am sure I am on the verge of blowing up your laptop, or computer, or whatever....I will say goodnight and happy reading for now!

Happy Reading, friends!

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  1. What an exciting week! I think the question to your answer is "Where were you born?"

    Hope next week is just as exciting!

    Reading Toward the Stars

  2. WoW! What a great post! How do you plan for your parent night? That was very interesting to me. I would like to do this at my school. How did this all come about? Another question I have is where did you get the eggs for your tadpoles? I have always just found small tadpoles in the ditches were I live but I would love to get eggs and have the students watch from the beginning. That is sooooo cool.
    Thanks for any info that you can give me. I'm glad that I found your blog with the March Currently.

    Mrs. Flickinger's Butterfly Oasis

  3. I can not believe your kids were reading outside one day, and then we were out for snow the next few days! Only in Arkansas!
    The Critic's Corner is such a great idea to motivate readers and giving book recommendations to other students. I will have to incorporate this in my classroom!
    I loved reading your post. The longer the better!