Cow Eye Dissection!

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We dissected cow eyes in science class and the kids were so amazed and interested!  I ordered them from BioCorp for a great price and then I found an easy to follow packet of information on-line for FREE!  Gotta love that!  This site even has a video of the dissection that you can watch!

The most amazing part had to be seeing that the pupil actually is a hole!  The lens was also pretty amazing!

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This was a great ending activity to our color/light unit of study!





Rock the Test!

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My class is ready to ROCK those tests! We have a rock star theme going this year and the kids are soooo excited!  Last year, this was a freebie on TPT, but unfortunately it is no longer available…

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I painted the lettering on white bulletin board paper and then surrounded the words with these great posters the students filled out!  Amazingly simple and effective!  In addition to the display, we ordered a bunch of goodies from amazon, like inflatable microphones, sunglasses, disco ball necklaces and inflatable guitars (click on each item for the Amazon link)!  Each day the kids come and do their best, they will receive one item!  At the end of the week, my teammate and I promised the kids we would dress like rock stars!  Hahaha!  Should be fun!  Here is the link to a FREE pack of Rockin’ Test Materials!


We are so going to ROCK those tests!  🙂

Teacher Feature…with Teaching to Inspire in 5th!

My name is Jennifer Findley and I have been teaching in Chattanooga TN for the best 4 years. I have spent all four years in intermediate grades in an inner city school. I love it! I went into education to make a difference in the lives of students, particularly those living in poverty. I remember the first time I read Ruby Payne’s A Framework for Understanding Poverty. From that moment on, I knew I needed to do something that would help our youth overcome the endless cycle of poverty. It is heartbreaking at times, and extremely hard to say goodbye when the year is up. However, I truly hope that I am giving the gift of an education and a life time love of learning to my students each year.

Teaching inner city children is tough because they come to me lacking many of the necessary skills that most children their age have. One thing that I have always done to combat this is create sentence stems to help my students communicate verbally or using written language. I have compiled a list of my favorite sentences stems for reading comprehension into one pdf which can be in my TPT store for free. Click on the image or here to download your copy today!

Another strategy that I use is to make sure my items are carefully aligned to the standards. I don’t want my students to be surprised on a state test at the end of year! I want them to be as successful possible in whatever they do, even on those dreaded tests! With that in mind, I have created Test Prep Helpers that are directly aligned to the 5th grade Common Core standards. I have several individual test prep helpers and one awesome bundle that covers 19 of the standards that are trickiest for my students. Check it out by clicking here or on the image!

Last, but not least, come visit me at my blog and my TPT store! I would love to see you there!

Test Prep Linky Party!


Hop on over to the Teaching Is A Gift blog to grab up some fabulous test prep materials, many of them are FREE!  Since it seems to be testing time ALL over North America right now, this is the perfect linky for this time of year!

I am giving away a FREE pack of test related materials that will encourage your kiddos to ROCK THAT TEST!  Click here for the FREE file!

We are Rockin’ the Test!

This page has to be one of my favorites!  My kids love wearing their “backstage passes”  once they are finished with the test!  I even found some great pencils from Amazon (click here) with the same theme!

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Good luck to everyone on those tests!  I sure your kiddos will ROCK them!

Wacky New Animals Activity and Display

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I just got this great book that the kids in my class just love to read!  It is a book of weird new animals that have been discovered since 2007.  There are things like the blue earthworm and the glassfrog!  So cool!  Click on the cover picture for the link to Amazon!



I am always amazed by how many new animal species are discovered all of the time!  I put the students into pairs and each group created an informational page for one of the animals featured in the book.  They turned out great!

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The students had to create an eye-catching title, an illustration, a quick fact and a summary!  These look so great hanging in the hallway and when people go by they cannot help but to stop and look at the display.  I made the blank layout on Powerpoint so it was a super easy prep!

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Why not get the book and try this idea out?

Planet Flapbooks…I LOVE using Flapbooks in Writing!

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While we were studying the solar system, we completed planet reports!  My students love to use the flapbooks for their reports and they are a great way to focus in on some non-fiction text features!  Each student chose a planet and then researched their planet using books and the website:   (I love this website for building background knowledge!)

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The information on the Enchanted Learning website has headings and sub-headings (non-fiction text feature mini-lesson) and so the students used those on the different flaps of their flapbooks.  The labels for the flaps are unique for each planet since some have moon, while others have rings, etc.  We decorated the title using crayons and markers.  They were supposed to use a color scheme related to the planet!

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The students then wrote information for each section as well as including an illustration or two for each one.  They had to write a topic sentence and supporting details based on their research!  Once the report was complete, they make a model of the planet using Crayola model magic (love that stuff) and we displayed the model with the report!

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Why not try the flapbook format for a report today?  Need FREE directions on how to make a flapbook?  Click here!