Saturday, 17 May 2014

Five for Friday (whoops, it's Saturday...)

What a busy week!! It was lots of fun, too. There has been a few changes in my class, so to bring everything back together and put a bit of excitement into the weeks of testing leading up to reports we had Pirate Week! It was awesome. Time for ...
I made it Pirate Week this week. It was inspired by our Science curriculum, actually. One part of Science this term for Foundation at my school is to look at maps, so what better way than to make some pirate maps. That was last week. I continued the idea into this week by having a week full of pirates. My kids had heaps of fun, and one of my EAL (English as Another Language) kids loved walking around the school at playtime and going up to students to say "Aaaargh!!" It was very cute.

On Monday morning we started Pirate Week with some writing. I made up a sheet for my students to use, and they had to finish the sentence "If I was a pirate..." There were some excellent answers! I have quite a few students who are struggling with writing so for them I use a light coloured texta to write what they dictate to me and they trace my writing. They still have to be able to read back what I have written for them.
We also wrote about treasure, and we did a pirate listening task. The listening task was really interesting. Some instructions had two steps, and it was surprising to see how many students didn't cope with that. For example, it might say "find the pirate with the map, colour his shoes brown" and some students would colour both the map and the shoes brown.

I came across this awesome game from the lovely Lauren at Love, Laughter and Learning in Prep. My students worked in groups of three. Each student had a 10s frame and a 'treasure chest' (we used Pirate themed cups). They shared a bowl of 'jewels' for the counters and had a 'pot of gold' full of gold nuggets to win. Students roll the dice, and add that many jewels to their tens frame. Students take turns, and add to their own frame. When the 10s frame is full, they exchange their jewels for a piece of gold. I absolutely love this game!! My students were totally engaged with it. But, more than that, the amount of maths happening was incredible. It works on the sense of ten-ness (as my maths coach would say), they had to say what number they rolled and how many jewels they still needed to fill their frame (tens facts), I also asked students what number they would want to roll for their next go so that their frame was full (if they had two spots left they would like to roll a 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6, but couldn't roll a 7 because that is not on the dice, and wouldn't like a 1 because it wouldn't fill the frame). Even though Pirate Week has finished, we're going to play this game again next week - I LOVE IT!!

We did a bit of craft, too. On Tuesday my students made hats and hooks. The hat was just the pirate hat shape glued on to a strip of paper (a bit like a crown). The hook was made with a paper cup and a straw that was rolled up in aluminium foil. They loved playing Pirates. On Thursday they also made maps and telescopes. I wasn't in class on Thursday so I don't have a photo of them.

I bought some SitSpots! I installed them Thursday night, and my students weren't at school on Friday, so I'm excited for Monday when they get to see them for the first time! I chose to use different shapes and colours for the rows. I plan on playing some instruction games with them (eg. step on the yellow circle, then the green square; or what colour is the square, and what shape is the pink shape). I love the bright colours!!

We had a very busy (slightly stressful, for me) week. I am my school's reports coordinator, and reports are due in two weeks so I had a busy time setting the reports up for our teachers. It is the first time I've had this role, so there was lots of new learning. I'm excited for next week because it is Education Week and we have our school Open Day. We have special events on everyday this week, so there'll be lots of photos to post!!


  1. I so, so pleased that your kidlets loved Pirate Treasure Ten Frames! I told my class that some other children would be playing it after they saw us having so much fun, and a few were quite worried that you might not give our treasure chests back. :) I had explain that you would get your own and we could keep playing.

    Good luck for your busy week!

    Love, Laughter and Learning in Prep!

    1. Hi Lauren,

      Some things those little guys worry about are so cute. Maybe we should have a competition - how many times can you fill your tens frame in 5 minutes!


  2. I've been eyeing those dots for a while. I can't wait to hear how your kids react on Monday! :) It looks like you had a fun week! Pirate theme must be a huge hit. :)
    Sarah's First Grade Snippets

    1. Hi Sarah,

      They were a big hit! I'm going to blog about them this weekend. The Pirate theme was a huge hit, and ended up going for two weeks in the end!!