Saturday, January 31, 2009

Chicken Stacker

Who would not love a classroom stacked with chickens?

The Chicken Stacker game from PBS is a fun game that reviews short vowel sounds. First, you select the vowel sound that you want to focus on. Then, as the chickens walk by, you click on the chickens that contain a word with the selected vowel sound. Each chicken that contains the correct vowel sound will be stacked on a ladder. When you have five chickens stacked you have won! I had a blast playing this game and your students surely will too.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

State Facts

February 14th is a special day in Arizona. It is the day this great state was granted statehood. To commemorate this day you may want to teach students some facts about Arizona. Below are a few resources that will help you share facts Arizona State facts, or facts about any state, with your students.

State Facts For Students

The US Census Bureau dedicates a portion of their site to state facts for students. There is a wealth of fun facts just waiting to be discovered on this site. For
example, did you know the state gem of Arizona is turquoise? I knew there must be a reason I love turquoise so much.

Enchanted Learning
Enchanted learning has links to facts about all 50 states.
This is a click on site that is kid friendly. This has all of the traditional facts plus a few that you may not find elsewhere, like where dinosaur fossils have been found.
Arizona State facts can be found here.

Fun Geography Games

is a fun game and interesting game that is a mix of Tetris and geography. However, instead of positioning Tetris blocks, you must position states in their correct location on the US map.

States Experiment

Sheppards Software also has a state positioning game. This game does not have a timer or Tetris feel to it, however it great fun as well. houses a variety of interactive games for your classroom. This resource is FREE. The flash templates are customizable and can be embedded into blogs, wikis and websites. There is no signup, no passwords, no charges... and it is a lot of fun.My students enjoy the random name picker (thanks After you customize the random name picker, it becomes an instant student-engagement generator as well. The random name picker is called a fruit machine, but resembles a slot machine. It can also be viewed as a typewriter, if you wish.

There are a variety of other tools on this site also. You can explore your options by clicking on the Select a Template pull down menu towards the upper right side of the page.

Splat Square

Splat Square is a 100 grid that begins as a blank template. You are able to choose a color on the right side of the screen to accompany each number. This interactive grid will be useful for a variety of activities in your classroom.
Thanks to, for posting this!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Promethean Resources & Activslates

Davidson teachers our Activslates will be delivered soon!

Activslates allow remote control of lessons that will enable teachers and students to communicate with the Activstudio software. The Activslate interacts using the Activpen, with the same precision as on the Activboard and is small enough to be passed around the classroom to facilitate collaboration.

Promethean offers a a few website that will assist you, as you begin to utilize the equipment in your classroom.

Promethean Planet is a free online community designed to provide teachers the ability to share lessons, access a wide variety of professional development materials, and connect with fellow Activclassroom teachers from around the Planet. This site, with over 260,000 members, contains more than 10,400 resources that are simple to access. Visit Promethean Planet today to register for your free account and start searching!

Promethean Learning is dedicated to providing teachers with high quality online courses and certification. An introduction to the main features of Activstudio software is available through an interactive, self-paced, FREE course on Promethean Learning. To enroll in this course you will need to create a new account. This account will be separate from your account on Promethean Planet.Please be sure that you are signed up for the course designated Mac Level 1 for Activstudio.

These two sites will help you become familiar with the possibilities that an Activclassroom holds. You can begin exploring today! :)

Friday, January 23, 2009

Base Ten Game

Learning box
has a interactive game, Base Ten , that your students will love to play. The hands play the drums and move along the number line as you play the game.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Even and Odd Number Resources

A few resources for teaching odd and even numbers for primary elementary students.

Math Cats - Idea bank for odd and even number lessons
- practice identifying odd and even numbers.

Read a book on about two bugs named Even and Odd. has a story about twin sisters to help teach odd and even numbers.

Two different web based games where you
exterminate ghosts depending on whether they are
odd or even.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Watching the Inauguration with Students

Would you like to watch 2009 Presidential Inauguration with your students? This post on The Innovation Educator will explain the different options you have. There is also a nifty link to engaging lesson ideas that will help generate excitement about the inauguration.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

January Resources From BrainPOP

Here are the new content and curricular tie-ins directly from the BrainPOP January newsletter. You can sign up to receive the monthly BrainPOP newsletter by joining the FREE BrainPOP Educators Network.

January 15: On what would have been his 79th birthday, watch the movie about Martin Luther King, Jr. and discuss the activist who became a civil rights icon.

January 19: The Benjamin Franklin movie teaches students about this U.S. founding father and his vast contributions to society; celebrate his 303rd birthday today!

January 27: On Holocaust Remembrance Day, observed since 1951, show the Holocaust movie and explain this difficult topic to your class.

January 29: Cleopatra, Queen of the Nile, and Oprah Winfrey, Queen of Media, share a birthday today. Watch their movies on Cleopatra and Oprah and discuss the lives of these powerful women.

January 29: Hit a homerun! Watch our Jackie Robinson movie on the birthday of this baseball great, the first African-American to play in the Major Leagues.

Celebrate BrainPOP Jr.'s 100th movie - and honor the 100th day of school - with their topic on the number One Hundred. Students can watch Annie and Moby use a hundred chart and learn different ways to skip-count.

Help the class determine whether 493 is greater or less than 943 with the movie on Comparing Numbers.

Duck and ducks, goose and geese! Join Annie and Moby as they learn about Plural Nouns.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Verb Tenses

In Arizona, according to House Bill 2064, we are required to provide grammar instruction to our English Language Learners for 60 minutes a day. This was a bit difficult for me at first because I was not sure how to fill an entire hour with grammar instruction. However, now I really enjoy teaching grammar, and I have found that in-depth and focused instruction in grammar has helped my students immensely.
Recently, we have focused on verb tenses. Last week we learned about present tense verbs and this week we will discuss past tense verbs.
These are a few resources that I found useful that pertain to verb tenses.

Esnips has an online board game where students must use the past tense verb to advance in the game. The game also assists in developing vocabulary by providing sentence starters that correspond with the number a person rolls on the dice. For example, if the player rolls a one they must begin their sentence with "yesterday" or if the player rolls a four they must begin their sentence with "last month". You may download the game, print it, or play from a web browser.

On Brainpop Jr. you will find many resources. They have a movie titled: Tenses that reviews several types of verb tenses. They also have activity pages, a game, word wall words, (which are vocabulary cards with definitions), and leveled pre-made quizzes about tenses. Full use of this site requires a paid subscription. However, you can sign up for a free trial.

School House Rock
On YouTube, I found the beloveded School House Rock song about verbs. The students love this song. We watch this movie periodically in class. It is a fun way to review what a verb is. Now when we watch it they point out the present tense verbs. :)
If YouTube is blocked at your school, you can download the movie using Zamzar. Zamzar will email the movie to you so you can view it at school. This link will explain how to use Zamzar to convert videos.

Saturday, January 10, 2009


Literactive is a free online collection of literature and interactive activities for pre-school, kindergarten, and 1st grade.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


When two halves of an object are mirror images of each other, the object is symmetrical.

Students can benefit from learning about symmetry through a variety of methods. It is beneficial to have students explore objects and pictures that they can manipulate with their own hands. However, it can also be beneficial to show students samples of symmetry that occur in the world around us. One way to do this is by using web-based resources.

Here are a few web-based resources that can help define and explain symmetry. has a short video that helps explain symmetry. It also has an interactive portion to the video where students will have to identify the line of symmetry.

This is a webquest that will guide you through a variety of examples of symmetry.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

StoryPlace: The Children's Digital Library

Story Place is an award-winning bilingual (Spanish and English) site. It is sponsored by the Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County in North Carolina. The site includes a collection of interactive online materials for elementary students including texts and activities.