Monday, June 18, 2012

Chair Pockets, Interactive Notebooks, & Powerful Writing Strategies for All Students

Happy Monday! :)

So this weekend, I decided to dive into a few projects for my classroom. I have already posted about my Student Work Display and a Learning Game that I created on Saturday. (See previous post

My next few projects involve sewing! So yesterday, I asked my lovely hubby showed me how to run our sewing machine. I know, I know...You're probably thinking how can your husband know how to sew, but you don't?! Lol...Well, he's the artsy fartsy one and the last time I sewed was in 8th grade for Home Ec. class. Needless to say, I couldn't remember how to go about it. After a brief overview and some trial and error, I created my very first masterpiece! :) 
CHAIR POCKETS
Front of Chair Pocket (books, folders, etc. go into pink pocket)

Back of Chair Pocket (canvas part goes over back of chair)
This is a chair pocket that I made! (Not to shabby for my first time sewing!) It is made with canvas and sheet material. I got the idea on Pinterest, of course... (Source) I am going to be making one for each of my students (I only have 7, so it shouldn't take too long...). Pink for the girls and sky blue for the boys. This will provide my students with another way to become more organized. Now, they won't have to try to cram all their textbooks, workbooks, folders, notebooks, etc. into their desk. I am planning on personalizing them as well. I will be uploading the final products as soon as they are complete! :)

FOLDABLE FLOOR PILLOW SEATS (For Learning Centers/Games)
After accomplishing my first chair pocket, I decided to create another idea that I saw floating around Pinterest. It is a simple project of sewing pillow cases together, stuffing them, and sewing them shut. SO EASY!! I created these so my students can use them when they are doing activities that involve sitting on the floor (learning centers, games, reading, small group work etc.) These will be much more comfortable than sitting on hard tile flooring and can seat up to 3 students at once. I don't know what to call them exactly (Foldable Floor Pillow Seats??), but here are some pics... :)
3 Standard Pillows (sewn together)


Easily Folded for Easy Storage
Another View :)












INTERACTIVE NOTEBOOKS
This year I am going to be utilizing Interactive Notebooks in my classroom. If you haven't heard about this strategy, I highly recommend you look into it! 
Here are a few sites I recommend you check out for more information:
If done correctly, it is a GREAT way to get your students to become active thinkers and to track/see their thinking. One of the things I want to accomplish this summer is to start coming up with activities/foldables that will be utilized within my students' interactive notebooks this coming year. So,  I'm going to be collecting, creating, and putting ideas/examples into notebooks while planning this summer. However, during the school year, I will be creating a notebook that will be an exact copy of my student's, so we have the same layout as we journey through the units together. I am super excited to see how this works in my classroom!
My Interactive Notebooks for Social Studies & Science
POWERFUL WRITING STRATEGIES FOR ALL STUDENTS
Along with sewing chair pockets and creating my interactive notebook activities, I am planning on reading POWERFUL Writing Strategies for All Students. (Get your copy here!) I will be sure to share any ideas and thoughts that spring from this reading! :)

Well, that's all I have to share for today! It's going to be a BUSY week... Can't wait! :)

Ta-ta for now...
~Sara~

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