Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Days 4 & 5: Is there another one where we can make a burrito?

These two days are getting combined - frankly because I can't remember what happened on Tuesday since I completely got my schedule confused and everything got rearranged. I need to get better about blogging on the day of, before everything gets muddled in my head. This was our first foray into using a Foldable® as an assessment.

We've been talking about decimal place value (or as I like to refer to it the "th th th" period). One of the changes from 4th to 5th is that the kids move from going to the hundredths place to the thousandths. For some of them this is a bit confusing, so I usually dedicate at least a day to breaking down these "new" decimals from standard form into expanded form and also word form. Yes, we do models as well - but those tend to come a bit easier since they're easily visible. After some instruction I had the kids pull 6 digit cards to create the largest possible decimal number that went to the thousandths.

We then used a three-tab vertical fold from the Notebook Foldables® book. We wrote standard form, expanded form, and word form on the outside of the tabs and used the portion underneath for the demonstration of the concept. For the kids that this was really easy for, I challenged them to use the same digits again, but this time create the smallest number possible. It was a quick way for me to get an understanding of who was and wasn't internalizing the concepts. Although, note to self - the kids need to let the glue dry a bit before writing, especially when we had just glued a worksheet (folded down into quarters) onto the other side of the page!

Later that afternoon came the activity that I was eagerly anticipating and simultaneously dreading - creating the field packet that was going to be our science notebook for this nine weeks. I was excited because I felt that this would be a great solution for keeping our science information, especially since I knew it would allow the kids to take some ownership of what they would be using as a study guide. However, having done a recent training with some teachers on the same packet - I was also a little bit apprehensive. The training went well, but I worried that the kids might struggle a bit. It turns out I was the one who struggled.

After firmly and repeatedly reminding the kids NOT to shave the sides of the envelope with the pocket - I did it myself. Luckily, it was not when I was demonstrating, but rather when I went to help my one-armed friend with his. I realized immediately after I did it, but it was of course too late. But, it was a good opportunity to show the kids why not to make the cuts there - and I just gave my correctly done demo to the student who I had been "helping."

The kids really did love the field packet and immediately wanted to begin personalizing their packet, but I think their favorite part of it all was when we put the paper inside and I had to show them how to "burrito" the paper. Apparently after days of hotdogs and hamburgers the advent of a new fast food was beyond thrilling. I didn't dare mention the taco fold for fear they'd just get out of control! LOL.

Anyhow, we successfully completed the packet, but since then I've fielded the following question from at least three different kids, "Is there another one where we can make a burrito?"

1 comment:

  1. I always love seeing what cool foldables other teachers are doing in their classroom. I have a page of my website,, that is dedicated specifically to foldables. The page actually has video tutorials to walk you through the creation of each foldable. Please check it out at Thanks so much, and if wouldn't mind, I would like to share some of your foldables with my readers as well. Let me know.