Happy Halloween 2016!

This year Halloween is on a Monday, but our school decided to have our Halloween festivities on Friday instead.  We went ahead with our traditional Halloween Parade, which travels down the street near our school and snakes along the campus of Aberdeen Heights–a retirement residence next door.  We have a great partnership with them and love to delight their residents with our cute costumes, big smiles and happy waves as we walk by.

This year, however, instead of having a typical “party” after the parade, we decided as a grade level to have a more low-key afternoon, and just watch a movie and have a snack.  My kiddos seemed really excited about this (as excited as kiddos usually are for a “regular” party) and I was, too. Sometimes less is more. 🙂  I mean who doesn’t love some popcorn and a show?  Oh, and throw in a couple of Oreos and it’s even better, right?  I even heard a couple of friends say, “This is the best day ever!”


At our school, kiddos bring their costumes and put them on just before we leave for the parade.  For us, that was around 1:45, which meant that they’d been waiting pretty much all day for it!  Sometimes (which I am sure is not surprising) this can mean that kiddos are little more amped up and full of lots of pent-up energy.

What was SO great, though, was that instead of that reality, this was THE BEST putting-on-costume time I think I’ve EVER experienced with a group of kiddos.  Part of it, I think , is that we really emphasized that costumes would be easy to put on and go over clothes (rather than having to have kiddos change anything), and so we could all just find a quiet spot in the room and quickly get ready.  Kiddos gathered on the carpet after that, and we even had time to read two books before they called us to line up!  Talk about efficient!  Forgive me for not having better pictures of the parade, but I was busy having a great time like the kiddos and couldn’t snap pics of it!

When we returned, however, we did have a chance to capture pictures of our great costumes!  We noticed that there were many costumes that went together, and so kiddos planned how we should group for our pictures.  Check it out!






Star Wars!





We had so much fun!  Happy Halloween from Rm. 202!!

Another Number Skype–Inside Robinson!

On Friday we were able to have another Mystery Number Skype, with some friends INSIDE ROBINSON!  We’ve done this before, the last time I taught 1st grade when we were learning to Skype and we called Ms. Turken’s class who was in Mrs. Fry’s classroom.  This time we answered a call from Mrs. Dix and Mrs. Bell and talked to their second graders.  We were excited!

We are getting so good at this and at asking questions that knock out a large group of numbers at once.  Our 2nd grade friends guessed our number and we did, too!  What a great way to practice what we know about numbers and place value!

Do you want to Skype with us, too?  Leave a message here, or tweet to us at @jbeardensclass@jbeardensclass.  WE LOVE TO CONNECT!

Location Lessons and a Human Bookshelf!

This week during our visit to the library learning commons with Mrs. Meihaus, we had a lesson on how to find things in the library.

She taught us how to find things in the library, using call numbers.  We learned the difference between FIC books (chapter books), E books (everybody picture books), and books that have PB in front of the FIC and E (which means that they are paperback).  We also learned (or were reminded) that nonfiction books have numbers along with the first three letters of the author’s last name.

Then, she had us create our own call numbers–because we are all authors, after all!  Some kiddos had blue cards that were for FIC books and yellow cards that meant we were E book authors.  Kiddos wrote their call number on the sheet.

Then, we created HUMAN BOOKSHELVES, ordering ourselves based on our names on the shelf.  This was really tricky, but since we are Roadrunners, and show our GRIT all the time, we did it!

Math Warm Ups: Week of Oct. 19-21, 2016

I used to blog our math warm-ups every week.  Then this year I changed our warm-up plan again and sometimes they are questions other than math problems and so I never really got into that routine.  This week, however, they were indeed all math warm-ups so I thought I’d share what we’ve been doing!

(This was a short week of school, with only 3 days and 2 warm-ups.  Small but mighty math thinking!)


My kindergartener, Allie, created this one for Rm. 2o2 kiddos and was very excited to share it with them.  I was impressed with how they are getting better at telling stories and creating word problems to solve.


Some highlights of the answers to this one:

We also tried one during math on Friday as an extension after we’d talked about the warm-up together.  We’re learning how to use Padlet, so it’s been the place we’ve been sharing our thinking lately (and since we’re still working on the logistics, some friends didn’t quite get their answer on the board).


Great thinking lately, Rm. 202 friends!  More to come soon!