Monday, 19 November 2012

Kids are blogging

Today I introduced the kids to!  They all have their own page and boy is it busy!  I checked on it several times tonight and the kids were blogging back and forth.  They had questions for others to answer, or just a little note about their day.

I'm planning on giving them assignments to blog but for now it's so fun to watch them enjoy it.

The other site they are HUGE on is sundog, we have an account there too and they love to practice their math and complete challenges.  I can't believe how often they go on!

The power of the internet!

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Pinterest peeks my interest

Hello!  Long time no blog.

First an update on how my risers and carpets are doing.  The kids LOVE the risers.  They spend almost all their time working on the risers or tables.  Many kids like to be on the shaggy carpets for games or sit outside when it's nice out.

I often forget how different my room is.  A group of Strong Start parents did a Halloween parade into my room on Wednesday and had some interesting reactions to my room.  They were chatting about how different it was and how the kids were spread out and working.  I think I may have opened a few new eyes to classroom difference in design.

Secondly, I have been having a GREAT year without planners.  None of my kids had to pay for them ($8) and no one has missed them.  Parents constantly tell me that they love the fact that the planners are gone because the kids would never show them or they would lose them.  Everyday or two I send a quick group email to all my parents that says two or three lines about what is happening in the week or what went home that day.  I get MUCH higher home reading participation, more interest in what is being taught and I get a very high percent of returned forms and documents!!!  I highly recommend switching to no planners.

The email takes me about 2 minutes out of my day, unlike the 15-20 for copying planners and children whining about it.

And now onto my MAIN topic...Pinterest.  I was reluctant to try a new form of social media because we get so much as it is.  But pinerest has really excited me!  I've found new creative art projects, ideas for my classroom, Montessori equipment that is less costly.  And that is just my classroom uses for it!  I also found that it has lots of great ideas for my home and my life!!!  New love = pinterest.

Animoto slide shows are going over really well with the class.  They love seeing their month in review and like to watch it more than once!!!

So far new ideas are working well.

One more thought:  I think it shocks people that I don't like to rely on PAC funding for my classroom or for anything I do.  It's not that I don't appreciate the parents working hard to do that for us...but I feel they shouldn't have to.  The government should be funding our classrooms!  Not parents.  Public education should be FREE.  So my goal is to charge my parents as little as possible for their kids education.

So where do I get my funding?  I look to the school funds for furniture, the pro d fund and also the Montessori Society funding.  I know most teachers don't get society funding but I take advantage of it.  Because Montessori is a special program they do charge parents for it.  So that is the only parent funding I try to use.  I encourage teachers to find out what funding the school gets for certain things and not to rely on parents having to fund raise for everything.  Put the pressure on the government where it belongs.