Friday, December 11, 2009

Calendar Skills

We work on learning to solve story problems during calendar time. We focus on strategies such as acting out, drawing a picture, and looking for a pattern.

We have a clip collection that goes with the number of days in the month. We use our clip collection to work on place value and skip counting.

This month, we added a thermometer to our calendar. Now we keep track of the temperature each day. We compare the temperature to the one from the day before. We also compare the temperature outside to the temperature inside. We discuss how the temperature changes with the season.

Each month, we make a different pattern on our calendar. This month, we are making a positional pattern- right side up and upside down.

We learn about odd and even numbers. Each day we add one cube for the day in the month. We add a blue cube one day then an orange cube the next. We also add them in pairs. We learn that numbers that end in "0", "2", "4", "6", and "8" are even numbers and we learn that when a cube does not have a partner, it is an odd number.

We keep track of the date with money. We add a penny for each day of the month. We trade pennies for nickels, dimes, and quarters. We learn what presidents are on which coins and how much each coin is worth. We sing lots of money songs to help us learn about money.

We sing yesterday, today, and tomorrow songs. Keep with with the days of the week, and record the weather. We look for weather patterns each month that relate to the season.

We learn how to make tally marks. We use "tall soldiers" and "lazy soldiers." We learn that when the date ends in a "0" or "5", we make lazy soldiers and we learn that after every 4 tall soldiers, we need a lazy soldier. After 10 tally marks, we make a gate (draw a circle) to help us see "10." We, also, learn to write the short date so that we will be able to do this in our writing journals.

We keep track of the number of days we have been in school. Each day, we add one straw to our straw collection. This helps us to work on place value. We, also, add a number card to our 100 pocket chart. Each day we look for patterns when we add the next number. We count to 100 with Dr. Jean's Zero the Hero Number Stomp. We, also, count by 2's, 5's, and 10' using Dr. Jean's Macarena Math song.

We are learning to estimate. I use 2 jars to teach students to estimate. One has a set amount of cubes in it. Right now, we are working with the number 10. Then each day, I fill the other jar with a different number of cubes. Students estimate how many cubes they think are in the jar. We talk about why some guesses are good guesses and why some guesses are not.

We, also, use calendar time for Zoophonics and singing our word wall songs. Heidi Butkus has several great sight word Cd's. Her Sing & Spell Cds can be found at

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