Monday, 2 December 2013

Christmas Cards to Make With Children

Hello everyone. Today I would like to share with you some craft ideas. Each year, I make Christmas cards with my class. As I work in a Flexible Learning Space, it is now with my grade. This year I plan to offer two styles of cards to the children. As they get to use some of my craft tools, they get really excited and they especially love the results.

We are using the cards as part of our Social Justice focus. To assist the children in their understanding of the importance of giving during the season of Christmas, the children have generously donated some lollies. They will bag them and they will be given to residents in an aged care facility. To sweeten their gift, their cards will be included. Any extra cards will be distributed during Night Patrol. The College invites staff members to assist in the distribution of  tea/coffee/sandwiches to the homeless, facilitated in the Night Patrol van.

These cards require some basic cardmaking skills. The dimensions and construction of the cards are as follows:

Card Front - 15x10.5cm
Coloured Mat-  14.5cm x 10cm
Patterned Mat - 14cm x9.5cm
Patterned Strip 14.5cm
White  Strip 14.5cm x 3cm

1. Glue patterned mat onto coloured mat. Then attach to card front.
2. Using threading water punch, punch along the long edge of white strip.
3. Glue patterned strip to punched white strip, then attach to card front.
4. Ink and stamp bauble, then punch out using ornament punch.
5. Punch two holly leaves using holly leaf punch. Bend the edges of the leaves to add dimension.
6. Stamp Christmas sentiment and punch using Label punch. Using a sponge, ink the edges.
7. Using foam tape, attach bauble to card front. Glue the holly leaves at the stem and glue into position.
8. Glue sentiment into place.

Here are some photos...

Clever Patch Greeting Cards and Christmas Craft Bumper Pack
Stampin’ Up! Gumball Green and Real Red Ink Pad
Stampin’ Up! Delightful Decorations and Ornament Punch
Stampin’ Up! Decorative Label Punch
Sullivan Holly Leaf Punch
Fiskars Threading Water Punch
Merry Christmas Stamp
Glue Stick
Foam Tape
Red, white and green cardstock

I have also supplied a video tutorial for you to view. This is really helpful when demonstrating techniques and also in showing the sequence needed to create the card.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Monday, 21 October 2013

Using Twitter In A Primary Classroom

Hello everyone! This year, I began my journey with Twitter, adding it to the other social media tools which have become part of our lives. At school, part of my Professional learning has been around developing a PLN and Twitter was a tool that has been show cased. After doing some on line reading, I decided that the children would really enjoy it as well.

To begin our first Twitter session, we discussed what Twitter is and I also introduced some of the Twitter lingo .

We then looked at how we would use Twitter in Year Three....

The children really took to it so easily! They brainstormed possible #tags, used @mention so confidently.

There is so much potential for extending their thinking and learning.

Here are some photos to show how it all went....

Thanks for stopping by!

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Saturday, 5 October 2013

Classroom Management Strategies in a Primary Classroom part three

Hello everyone! Today I am sharing with you my final strategy that deals with consequences. It is the third installment of my classroom management approach and it works well with the reward ladders. The children have lots of opportunities for rewards, but I also feel that they need to know there will be consequences for 'bad choices.'

(sorry about the photo..its laminated and not good with a flash...when school resumes I will take another photo!)

The children really respond to earning tokens and this system incorporates this in terms of a fine. If a student demonstrates poor behaviour, they will receive a warning (name on the board). Should this continue they then place their peg onto the chart onto the warning card. If the behaviour improves, they can take their peg off or if the poor choices continue, a 5 token fine is given. The children really dislike this and usually if this happens, the negative behaviour ceases. Using this system, it has been extremely rare for me to write a note in a child's diary to communicate any poor behaviour with their parents.

The top section again rewards good behaviour. If a child is exceptional, they can also receive rewards from this system. If they manage to make it to the top of the chart, they receive a huge reward...20 tokens and sometimes a prize from the prize box!

This is an easy system to set up. All you need to do is select what your rewards and consequences will be, purchase some pegs and write the students' name on them. Its easy and is a good visual for the students.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Classroom Management Strategies in a Primary Classroom part two

Hello everyone. Today I am sharing part two of my classroom management strategy. It too works in the same way as what has been shared in my part one post. This post will look at group rewards.

The system is also based upon the idea of progressing up a ladder where the most desirable reward is at the top. In order to obtain points, the class must earn compliments. A compliment is a verbal reward/praise which can be given by any teacher. One compliment is the same as one point. In order to redeem a reward, the class must agree upon a reward through a vote.

There is no time limit to redeem rewards from both systems.


Both the individual and group rewards are negotiated by the class. The children suggest rewards that they would like to have. The rewards duration is for a semester.


The presentation of the rewards ladder is the same as the individual ladder.

Some years, the top reward has changed to a movie. The suitability is always based upon G Rated movies that have been negotiated by the class. This system has been quite successful in focusing the students to work toward achieving some together as a group.

I hope that this might give you some ideas. It can easily be adapted to suit the interests of any class. Student voice is a powerful tool that can help motivate students.

Thanks for stopping by!
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Thursday, 1 August 2013

Classroom Management Strategies in a Primary Classroom part one

Hello everyone. It's been a while since I've posted anything. I have been busy working over on my craft blog Sew Creative. Recently I have been accepted onto the Kaisercraft Design Team and have had project deadlines, thus have been busy creating. It's been busy, but it's ok! Something I have been wanting to share is my classroom management system. I am very systematic and have a number of routines in place that the children follow and I feel have been successful with. These structures I feel make my classroom a good place to be in.

Some background info:
I had been teaching infants classes for a while and was moved to a primary grade. I needed to devise a reward system suitable for Year 4 students that would motivate them. My school was undergoing ‘The Practitioner Inquiry’ approach. My investigation was:

“How can I empower students to interact positively with their peers in social and academic situations?”

‘The Practitioner Inquiry’ model provided me with a scaffold to reflect on my own teaching practice within the classroom.Through collaboration and dialogue with the students, we designed a reward system based on students’ interests.

Consequently students are:

  • Motivated to earn rewards 
  • Enjoying their rewards 
  • Able to share their success with their family
  • Becoming more skilled in working within a group
  • More settled as a class 
  • Setting personal goals and targets

Reward System

The system is based upon the idea of progressing up a ladder where the most desirable reward is at the top. The children earn tokens and are able to cash them in order to redeem a reward. These rewards are recorded in the children’s learning journals which then provides a record of their achievement as well as a document that the children can share/celebrate with their families.
I found some great tokens from the Ed Helper site. They come in different quantities, one, five, ten and twenty.I have photocopied a number on them onto coloured paper. The children are rewarded frequently and respond positively to them.
I have supplied a blank reward ladder below. You can modify it to suit your grade. I currently am teaching Year Three, and this system is just as positive as it was when I started it a few years ago.

Thanks for stopping by!


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