Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Positive Thinking Thursday & Bringing Science into ELA

Is it Friday yet?  This week, which is our first week back from break, is flying by.  I almost forgot what day it was....Yes, it is Wednesday.  But it is not too early to share with you my positive thought for tomorrow's linky, Positive Thinking Thursday, in case you would like to share my thought with your staff or link up to share your own! (If you would like to read about how I use Positive Thinking Thursday with my fellow teachers and staff, you can read about it here.)
This week's positive thought is in honor of all of us who are trying many different things to keep our students (and ourselves!) engaged until the end of the year:
Sayings by FMMCM
I think I made it all the way to "Plan E" today!  :)

If you have a positive thought (or picture, story, or video) to share with the rest of us, I hope you will link up at the end of this post.  It can be anything inspiring, funny, positive or motivating that you found through sources such as Pinterest or your own life.  (Please don't forget to credit your source!)
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I don't know about you, but finding time to fit everything into the day is quite the challenge!  I would love to have science and social studies class every day, but unfortunately, that doesn't happen.  (We currently have one or the other for about 25 minutes a day.) So, given that I don't have a lot of dedicated time to these content areas, how do I incorporate these topics into our day?  By bringing them into our ELA block!

As you know, April is Poetry Month.  A few weeks ago, Susan at Adventures in Fourth Grade shared with me a resource that she uses to teach poetry, The Poetry Friday Anthology.
This is a great resource to use for teaching poetry throughout the year and there are poems that range from being silly to being serious.  I love the variety!

This week, I chose a poem called Centipede by Micheal Rosen that talked about the important job that centipedes do in breaking down materials to create compost.  From this poem, students learned that centipedes live in "sodden" (soggy) places (love the new vocabulary!) and that what they eat helps produce compost for growing other plants.  

After reading this poem every day, we did a short activity -- We discussed new vocabulary (sodden, hoarded, milkweed pod), talked about figurative language used in the poem, discussed how the colon (:) is used to set off a list and more!  The best part is that this only takes 10 minutes a day!  

We also looked up facts about the centipede on the internet and learned some amazing things about them!  

Did you know...

  • Centipedes don't have 100 legs?
  • They become dehydrated easily which is why they don't live in deserts very often and like to stay under damp rocks and earth?
  • Their front legs are actually poisonous fangs?
  • They can grow new legs to replace those that are lost when attacked by a predator?
I'm sure you are fascinated...Well, my students were and all of this came from a simple poem!

 I'm excited to link up with Ideas by Jivey today for her Workshop Wednesday linky to share how I incorporate Science into my Reading block.
I hope you will head over to her blog and check out other great ideas for Science integration!  Jivey has a great post today in which she shares lots of mentor texts to use for Science.  (I'm sure my friends at Amazon will be hearing from me soon!)


  1. Centipedes creep me out! BLECH! I bet the boys loved writing a poem about them. You should totally check out the book Where Fish go in the Winter! It's a Puffin Easy-to-Read book that asks science questions and answers them in poems. It's not a long book, but it is a resource that I often pull out throughout the year just to introduce a topic or to pose a question to the kiddos. I am DEFINITELY checking out The Poetry Friday Anthology...thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank you for sharing those enlightening facts about centipedes!! :-P have a great rest of your week! Thanks for linking up!

  3. Poisonous fangs???????? I will never sleep tonight....ahhhhhh! I'm staying away from underneath rocks. My kids would be LOVING this if they got to see me squirm over centipedes!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  4. I have centipedes in my house, so I'm not too pleased about these poisonous fangs that I had never knew about before reading this:(

  5. I love poetry! It is one of my favortie units! My students' poetry portfolios just came off the copier and they smell fresh and ready! Although I teach poetry throughtout the year, I can't wait to do a weeklong unit for review! Another great motivator is to teach poetry through lyrics! I haven't met a fourth grader yet who won't bob his/her head when I put music on for poetry!
    P.S. I have a great friend from Wisconsin so I had them to win the basketball tournament. It was a close one!
    Rockin Resources Blog

  6. Ewww!! Bugs are the one thing I hate about teaching Science!! I can handle any other topic! Why do kids love them so much?!?

  7. We had an infestation of centipedes a few years back. They would appear out of nowhere in the shower! They are fast. There ow as a lot of screaming during that time.

  8. I love your new linkys. I went to the science focused sites and I love what they are doing to add science into their school day. We are getting meal worms next week and painted ladies the week after. I love worms and bugs! As for the snow...shhhh...don't talk about it. I see grass.

    Renee at the Science School Yard


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