Friday, April 19, 2013

Positive Reinforcement and Plants

Positive Reinforcement

It's the time of year where everyone is antsy.  It's the time of the year when the same old positives don't work so well.  So, it's the time in my class that the carnival comes to town.  Yes, the carnival!  

I use class dojo in my room to track behavior.  But the usual rewards for positives just don't seem to work by this time of year.  So, I have combined class dojo with my carnival games.  We're starting out with a target toss.  Every five dojo points, or when I give out a "target ticket" students get to throw a ball at the target.  If they hit the bulls eye, they get a prize from the prize box.  They love having the chance to just shoot at the target.

The balls have velcro attached and stick to the white, black and red parts of the target.

I also have some circus games I purchased from oriental trading that I'll use once this no longer works.  


When you find something as great as the Brassica Rapa plant, you just have to keep using it.  So, this is my third year teaching my students the life cycle of a plant.  We planted our seeds on Monday.  I'm happy to say they started sprouting on Wednesday and by today they were all sprouted! 

Starting to sprout on Wednesday--two days after planting.

How our plants look under their lights.
I'll try to update you on the plants as we go.  :)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Still Recovering from Spring Break

Hi all,

I returned from a wonderful, but exhausting trip to Washington D.C. last weekend.  I came back mentally refreshed, but physically tired.  I'm going to put up a few of my D.C. pictures here.

Tomorrow we will be planting our Brassica Rapa plants.  It's such a fun and exciting thing for my students, and with this being my third time through the process, I'm hoping I'll be more confident and comfortable with it (I have a black thumb).

Here are some vacation pictures.

There were two highlights to the trip.  The first was going onto the House of Representative chamber floor in the capitol, the second was the night time tour we took.  The monuments have a whole different beauty and feel to them at night.

Not bad for a hand held night scene.  You can just see the capitol's dome to the right of the Washington Monument.

It was raining by the time we got to the new MLK memorial.  This happened to be the anniversary of his death.  I loved this memorial.  It was very inspiring.

The capitol on a very cold morning, but it sure looks nice!

It was too cold for the cherry blossoms to fully blossom, but by our last day, we caught a few blossoms.   There were several signs of spring around the town, especially when it finally warmed up on our last day.

This is a really cool spiral staircase at the Supreme Court.

The Smithsonian museum of the American Indian was one of the best surprises of the trip.  We went there on a whim when our tour bus driver told us their restaurant would be less busy.  Not only was the restaurant less busy, the food was wonderful, and the museum itself was excellent.  I highly recommend a visit to this museum.

The Pentagon's 911 Memorial.  Pictures don't do it justice.  It's an experience.

I loved the World War II Memorial.  This one was new since the last time I was in Washington D.C.  I think they did a spectacular job of memorializing that time.  I only wish the water fountains were up and running, I guess they only work them during the summer.

Daytime shot of the MLK memorial.  There are quotations all around it with his inspiring words.

Mount Vernon, George Washington's home.  I knocked on the door, but no one answered.  LOL

Lincoln Memorial.
So there's a quick glimpse at just some of the things I saw on my Spring Break.  I'll try to get something school related up this week.