“Giftedness is not what you do or how hard you work. It is who you are. You think differently. You experience life intensely. You care about injustice. You seek meaning. You appreciate and strive for the exquisite. You are painfully sensitive. You are extremely complex. You cherish integrity. Your truth-telling has gotten you in trouble. Should 98% of the population find you odd, seek the company of those who love you just the way you are. You are not broken. You do not need to be fixed. You are utterly fascinating. Trust yourself!”

Linda Silverman~Gifted Development Center Denver

Friday, 11 May 2012

APEC (Answer, Prove, Explain & Extend, Connect)

Here in Ontario there is  pressure for our students to do well on standardized tests such as EQAO (Grade 3 and Grade 6) as well as standardized assessment tools such as DRA and CASI.  In my school, we have used the APEC framework to assist students in improving the quality of their written responses.  Using APEC throughout the grades helps students learn that there are parts of a response which are essential for demonstrating learning.

The A stands for ANSWER the question.  Make sure you stick to answering only the question asked and rephrase the question in your own words as the beginning part of the response.

The P stands for PROVE it.  Use information from the text/math problem, underline or highlight parts of the text.  Include direct quotations from the text or use paraphrasing.

The E stands for Explain and Extend your answer.  Using your own words be sure to explain how you know that the answer you have given is correct.  If it is a math problem be sure to explain HOW you solved the problem.  Add more information that will help, from your own experience or from other information you may have learned about the topic.

I started asking students to use the C stands for Connect last year after I realized that if my students were able to make connections (text-to-text, text-to-self, text-to-world OR math-to-math, math-to-self, math-to-world) their written responses were richer and more developed.  Not all questions necessarily lead to all students making connections all the time…but this has turned out to be a good addition to the standard APE framework.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Open House Project

We just had Open House at our school and I always like to have something interesting on the bulletin boards to show off what a great class I have.  This year we have been spending a lot of time examining figurative and descriptive language.  I found a neat project on Teachers Pay Teachers and modified it slightly for my classroom.  The results were outstanding!  Each student created a foldable using materials I had purchased at the dollar store and craft section.  On each tab they had to write a different heading...Simile, Metaphor, Idiom, Antonyms and Synonyms, Character Traits and My Theme for the Year.  All of these sections relate to lessons and activities we have completed during our Literature Study of the novel "Airborn" by Kenneth Oppel.  Inside each tab they wrote an entry which reflected themselves.  After that, they decorated the "glyph" on the front of the foldable, and then put information relating to themselves on the inside.  Have a look at the results!

Laura Candler over at Corkboard Connections is having a Fantastic Foldable Freebies Link Up.  If you would like to see more examples of this exciting and interactive teaching strategy go to:Fantastic Foldable Freebies Link Up.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Follow me on Pinterest....

I don't know about you...but I am addicted to PINTEREST!  Have any of you used it?  I didn't realize how visual a learner I was until I started PINNING!  I set up a Pinterest account...and now I am pinning like mad!  I have posted lots of great ideas there...so look for me! Follow Me on Pinterest

Friday, 4 May 2012

EQAO is coming...I should have baked a cake...

Still trying to get used to using Blogger....I used it with the kids last year and I think I had a better handle on it!  Had a long, hard week but I found some things which are really useful.  I found a website with a theoretical probability worksheet generator!  Perfect considering EQAO is coming up.  You can see the site here http://www.worksheetworks.com/.  I also posted it to my Pinterest board.  Oops there's the timer for dinner...gotta jet~!