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Sunday, October 7, 2012

Smash Book

I've been eye-balling these K& Company "Smash Books" for a few months.  They are simply a sketchbook with some cool pre-designed pages for you to write things in.  I have spent many hours of my life staring at the horrifying "blank" page and thought this was a great way to avoid this.  However, the original price was about $16.  There was a display at my local grocery store. I didn't buy due to the price plus I felt like these were marketed to high school kids.  HOWEVER, one days I was cruising through Giant Eagle and noticed that these Smash Books were 50% off. I bought one of all from the whole display and everyone of the types of "list pad." The list pad is like a journalling starter with an image and prompt to write on.  Now, I could KICK myself for not buying all of the Smash Books because I love mine.  I've turned mine into a HAPPY BOOK.  Why a happy book? Why not? I have a lot to be happy about so I like to write about it.  It's easy to glue things in because the cool sharpie like pen also has a glue stick on one end.  I've been sticking in smelly stickers, post-its, tabs, and collage images.  It makes me feel inspired.  Why didn't I buy more?  

I will post more of the "finished" or "in progress" pages.  I've kept a sketchbook and journals for as long as I can remember.  However, I just down write as much as I used to.  Now, I'm back to writing down book ideas.  I'm going to start writing the next bestseller today!  

I've been coloring over my cover in marker.  I'm not quite sure how to handle the textured cover.  I'm so used to collaging things but I don't think that would work well here.

I couldn't resist buying one or more of each.  At 50% off, they were pretty cheap.

These huge rubber bands go around the cover and then you stick things in them.

Hanging Out with Seventh Grade

Hangin' Out with 7th Grade
Close up of some t-shirts

Side view of bulletin board


Classroom view

September 2012
This is a great beginning of the year project for language arts.  Every year I do this "Bio-Poem" project before our Open House.  Parents always like to read their child's poem.  All I did is:
1.) Google a template for a bio-poem.  I've used a series of them.  My favorite is Laura Chandler's.  You can find her work on Teachers Paying Teachers.  I downloaded her handouts for free.
2.) Download a t-shirt template that you like.  
3.) Make a simple rubric for assessment:
   -Followed template
   -Checked spelling
   -Proper capitalization
   -Appropriate design
4.) Make copies for students. Show examples of prior student work or teacher made sample. Tie-dye or school colors always look great.  Students can use any design for their t-shirt as long as it is school appropriate. Some students may cut off the sleeves or re-design the collar.
5.  After completing the prewriting, I have students spell check.  Before they begin their final project, I check spelling and capitalization.
6. PUBLISHING:  We hang these shirts on a "clothesline" made out of yarn.  We staple them and then put little clothes pins on them. Students make a sign that says. "Hangin' Out with 7th Grade." Early finishers can make a pair of "Summer Shorts."  (Also found this for free on Teachers Pay Teachers.)