Friday, April 6, 2012

Twas the Day Before Spring Break

Twas the day before springbreak and all through the school, the kids were so excited they forgot all the rules! Ha! One of my kids wrote that on a card he gave me. I thought it was so funny and so TRUE! The day before a break can be a tough one for kids and their teachers. My day actually started on a good note as a little girl in the class brought me this:
Kids were definitely wound up as they came in but I already had my plan in mind and it involved candy. A good way to get the kids' attention. First we reviewed our student responsibilities. We use a PBIS behavior system in our school:

We are the Wildcats so they needed to be PRRing all day in order to earn the right to fill their Bunny Cups with this:
I showed them the stash first thing in the morning and then held it over their heads all day long.
I showed them the chick tickets (post it notes). They needed a ticket to be invited to this filling station. In order to get the ticket they needed to be PRRing with wildcat pride for the entire day. PRRing stands for: productive, respectful, responsible. These were at the filling station too:
They loved these bug eggs!
Most of the activities I planned did relate to spring. With only about 8 weeks of third grade to go I did end up keeping the focus on the curriculum though and found ways to tie it all together.
We worked on our language arts skills through the poem: "Patience".
I gave them a recipe for Robin Egg Nests. I had them read it and then we analyzed it. A recipe is often found on the third grade spring test. So I formatted a few SOL type questions for this recipe and we worked through reading strategies as we read and answered them. Then we set up the cooking station:
Kids came over to help cook in small groups while the others worked on their poems. We followed the recipe for the spring treat. Lots of good teaching points were made through this activity. We worked on fractions as we measured, we touched on vocabulary and science concepts like physical changes. Kids loved doing this and thanked me again and again.
They ended up looking like this:
We wrapped them in sandwich bags and tied them tightly with a pipecleaner. All ready to take home!
I gave them an opportunity to make a bunny cup next. Again, we read a how to on this and sequenced the steps in a flow chart. We're using lots of graphic organizers (they always appear on our state test).
Kids got to show of their originality as they created their cups:
They turned out adorable!
Time for filling! Those who earn the "chick ticket" got to come to the filling station:
We ended our day outside with a math Easter egg hunt. The eggs were numbered and the kids worked with a partner to find an egg, crack it open and solve the math problem.
A good opportunity to review lots of different math skills.
Kids were given a recording sheet to write answers on.
I told them they needed to get at least 18/23 correct in order to find a special prize on their desks when they got back from spring break. They took the hunt and the math seriously and all were productive! I've done the hunt after Easter too, kids just love it and it is great review. These math problems and the recording sheet are available (see the previous posts if you would like to try it).
I was happy with how my day went but even happier that my Spring Break has begun!!! Have a great Easter everyone!


  1. Fun! Do you teach at a private school? It seems like so many of the blogs I read (and love) have Easter and Christmas activities in class.

  2. I am on spring break right now but I LOVE your math egg hunt idea. I'm having trouble finding the previous post you mentioned.

  3. LOVE all these ideas- especially the egg math review hunt! Adding that to my idea bag!

  4. I'm so jealous. I wish I was in your class! Thanks for sharing all your ideas.

    Luckeyfrog's Lilypad

  5. What a fun jealous that you can do Easter activities and FOOD!!!!

  6. Thanks for all the comments! Yes, it was a good day and it just flew since we were so busy. I was going back and forth about the food part but my fifth grade daughter insisted that I do it and I was glad that I did. The kids kept thanking me, it was sweet. I do not teach at a private school but could justify everything I did as a learning activity. We had fun but worked on our third grade learning at the same time. Love it when I can make that happen!