Sunday, July 19, 2015

Adventures in 4th Grade

The end of last school year brought some changes. I accepted a position that was closer to home and cut my commute time in half. Yay! With it comes a whole host of changes, like a new classroom, new teammates, and new grade level. I'll be teaching 4th grade starting at the end of next month and I am SUPER excited for it.

Going from a 1:1 environment to a room with 3 computers, access to a laptop cart weekly and an interactive board ( I had one of those too the last 6 years), I feel like I get to take all the good things that I know work for a lot of kids and really hone in on my center skills. I hope to be able to write a grant or two this year to get some more tech in the classroom but it's not a bad start.

The end of this month is busy too. I'll be speaking at a local Tech Expo about robotics both in the classroom (grades 4-8) and as an after school program. Luckily the new school that I am at also has a robotics team so hopefully I will still be able to help out with that. At the very least I hope to be able to help my new teammates (and anyone else who needs it) with their technology.

Over the next few weeks I'll be posting some pictures, ideas, and progress of my new classroom and technologies that I plan to incorporate. One of the first things that I made were brag tags, or physical badges. In the past I used an online medium (3D Game Lab) to facilitate the gamification of my classroom. Because I do not have enough computers to do this right now, I was so excited when I found a teacher on atozteacherstuff (I feel so bad that I cannot find the exact link to her post because hers were adorable!) that uses them also. She used dog tags, but I opted for book rings. This year I am doing a whole Mario theme and so here are my Mario inspired badges for this year.

Here's a screenshot of the PowerPoint that I started with then saved it as a .PDF for printing. I tried to align them both behavioral things but also some of the Common Core Math and ELA standards.

Here they are ready to be cut. I should have about 28 students so I printed out 20 copies of each page on cardstock. 

Here they are all done and in baggies ready to go. Thankfully I had a teacher friend to help me cut out the 1,000+ badges

I am really looking forward to this next year and the chance to introduce my love of gamification with a whole new bunch of students.

Here's to our new Adventures in 4th Grade!

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