Monday, 17 July 2017

IB PYP and MYP posters in French

Well hello there,

I hope you're all enjoying summer (or winter, depending on which hemisphere you're in!).

As promised, I've made some IB MYP poster sets in French. Each of the sets are available in my TPT store individually but if you want all of them, be sure to get the above bumper poster kit and save $2 in the process!

The 72-page bumper poster kit contains:
*Les contextes mondiaux (Global Contexts)
*Les concepts clés du PEI (Key Concepts)
*Les savoire-être de l’IB (IB Attitudes)
*Les groupes de matières du PEI (MYP Curriculum Subjects)
*Les approches de l’apprentissage (ATL skills)

*Profile de l’apprenant de l’IB (IB Learner Profile)

There are also English and Spanish versions of all of these sets in my TPT store.

Just a note that the Learner Profile and Attitudes poster sets would also be suitable for older children in PYP schools. They're intentionally a lot less cutesy and childish than the other PYP resources I made. Click on the images below if you'd like to purchase either of those.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Activities for the last week of school

So you've finished the curriculum, the reports are done and dusted and finally you have the chance to do some nice, relaxing activities in the last week of school. Here are lots of ideas for nice activities to do (some that I shared last year and some that I added this year!)

For the little ones:
Have a teddy bears' picnic. It doesn't have to involve too much organisation. They could just eat their normal school lunch and do it at a different time and with their favourite teddy bears in tow. If it's dry, it could be a treat to eat their snack on blankets on the grass. If not (for my Irish teacher followers, this is the more likely option once the Leaving Cert weather is over!), you could just clear a space in the classroom and put down the blankets there. They could read "We're Going on a Bear Hunt" and sing "Teddy Bears' Picnic" and the horrifically catchy, "Yogi Bear Song" - WARNING: Do not, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES show any video entitled "Yogi Bear Song" on YouTube without listening it to yourself first. There is a very non-child-friendly version out there!

image souce

For the older children:

3-D hand drawing: This one is pretty easy to do and the results are really striking.

Create their own Harry Potter-inspired plant:
Read and respond to some descriptions of magical plants from the Harry Potter series. This article from Garden Design magazine could be useful to jog students' memories. There's lots more information available on the Harry Potter Wikia. The children could then create their own plant(s), draw them and write about them - an art and literacy activity all in one!
image source: Wayne Dorrington

"I Am" poem to get them reflecting about their personal characteristics, strengths and characteristics from Who's Who and Who's New.

image source

 This end of year scavanger hunt from Jonathan Pearson.
 You might need to modify this a little to make it suitable for your class. Here's another free one from SuperTeacherWorksheets.
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Introduce your children to these inspirational quotes (from Jason's Online Classroom). They can then design a poster to write them beautifully and illustrate accordingly. They could be used as a writing prompt so that their story uses the quote as its core.

Image source: Jason's Online Classroom

A table quiz. I'm a self-confessed quiz nerd and am quite happy to ramble off table quiz questions off the top of my head. If you need a bit more guidance, why not use a ready-made quiz like Seomra Ranga's wonderful art quiz (on PowerPoint, created for Digital Art Week but could be tweaked to make it suitable for your needs - non-Irish teachers, there are some questions you might want to change/remove) or this one from The Telegraph (answers are here).

For younger and older students:
Fidget spinner stations: If your school hasn't already banned them, why not use this latest craze for some maths, English, P.E. and art stations? Download my free station cards and worksheet pack for this by clicking here or on the image below.

A "field trip" to the next grade. Your children think of questions they would like to ask to children in the class above them. Then they go to that classroom and find out the answers from the "experts." What a fantastic idea from Melissa at Inspire Me ASAP.

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Going the other waythis end of year book allows your current students to give advice to incoming students. It's a great way for your students to reflect on what they have learned and it's a lovely thing to begin the school year with if you have the same class level.
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Create a memory book:
Use this free template from Sara Rucker's TPT store to create a cute and simple end of year memory book.

Minute to Win It games. Maybe you're familiar with the gameshow "Minute to Win It." I wasn't until Ginger Snaps shared this great idea for some fun class challenges to complete within a minute. She has given the link to the timer (for your board) and a playlist of the instructions to the challenges. She has also given a list of ones she has used and the required materials.

Orienteering around the school grounds. I've created a resource pack with instructions on how to set it up and carry it out and the resources needed. All you have to do is make a map of your school grounds, stick the clues around and hand out the students' sheets. Click here to download it for free from Google Drive.
Superlative Olympics. This is a game I have used to teach comparatives and superlatives to children with English as a second language in summer camps. I made my own cards to go with the game. Click here to read my blog post about how to play. It's suitable for primary school children of all ages and it's loads of fun! Click here or on the image below to download the resources for free from Google Drive.

This summer writing activity from Educating Everyone 4 Life:
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Create a wordsearch with all of your children's names in it. Thanks to Jordon at The Half Full Cronicles for this idea.

image source

One of my favourites is to create a maths table quiz to revise the topics you have covered in the year. I put different maths questions on a PowerPoint/Keynote presentation, split the children into teams of 3 or 4. They love working together to solve the problems. Just make sure you put in a few really tricky ones to get them fully engaged!

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Have an end of year compliments box. All you need is a box/basket, small pieces of paper and an envelope for each child. Obviously, it would be better to do it a day before they take them home so that you can read them and make sure there is nothing bad in there. Here's a ready-made compliment kit to get you started.Thanks to Blair Turner for creating it.

Image source
Create an alpha-autobiography. The children choose words that mean something to them and explain why, for example: A is for Adam, my brother's name, B is for Belfast, where I was born; C is for cycling, my favourite sport... I've made two free-to-download versions, one with lines, one without. Click here or on the image below to download from Google Drive. I'm going to enlarge mine to A3 to give them more space to write/draw.

*The clip art in main image is from My Cute Graphics

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Tech Tip Tuesdays: Organisation Hacks

Welcome back to the final installment of Tech Tip Tuesdays. Click here to view any of the other posts in this series. 

This week I wanted to share a couple of hacks for getting your techy items organised.

This first hack has helped to keep my desk clear and I haven't lost a remote control since! Simply attach adhesive velcro squares to the back of your remote control and another to the edge of your board. 

This next hack is if you need to move your computer to another place but you don't move the power lead. I use a binder clip to attach it either to my noticeboard or to the nearby speakers wire. Then I don't need to go hunting under my desk on my return.

Credits for Tech Tip Tuesday logo:
Keyboard lettering  licensed by Dancing Crayon Designs © 
Glittery clip art from Glitter Meets Glue Designs 

Clip art frame from My Cute Graphics

Thursday, 8 June 2017

FREEBIE: Fidget Spinner Stations

If you can't beat 'em, you may as well join 'em!

If the fidget spinner craze has hit your school and you'd like to incorporate them into their learning, look no further. I've made a six-station activity pack which you can download for FREE from my TPT store. I'm going to use this in the last week of school as a revision activity.

This freebie contains 6 different station headers and the following instruction sheets and worksheets:

Graph template for how long the spinner spins (You will need a timer)
Single digit addition
Double digit addition
Multiplication (up to x12s)

2 persuasive writing templates
Phonics worksheet - Long A (ai/ay words)
Phonics worksheet - Long E (ee/ea words)
Phonics worksheet - Magic E words
Phonics worksheet - sh words and -tion words

Collaborative drawing instructions

Exercise instructions (including dabbing!)


Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Tech Tip Tuesdays - NCCA Planning Tool

Welcome back to another Tech Tip Tuesday. Click here to view any of the other posts in this series. As always, if there are any technology tutorials that you'd like me to feature, be sure to comment below!

This week's post is dedicated to teachers in Irish primary schools. It's a tool that has saved me HOURS of time I could have wasted scrolling through the curriculum documents. It's the NCCA online planning tool.  If you haven't used it before, be sure to check it out. You can select your class level (or multiple levels if you have a mixed class), subject, strands and strand units in order to find your desired objectives. You can select them to create a bank of resources in the panel on the right of the screen. You can then copy and paste these into your fortnightlies or cuntais míosúla.

Credits for Tech Tip Tuesday logo:
Keyboard lettering  licensed by Dancing Crayon Designs © 
Glittery clip art from Glitter Meets Glue Designs 
Clip art frame from My Cute Graphics

Friday, 2 June 2017

IB MYP Bumper Poster Kit in Spanish

This is for all of you MYP Spanish teachers out there! I've just put together several sets of MYP posters in Spanish and added them to my TPT store.

This 80-page IB MYP poster pack contains the following sets:

  • El Currículo del PAI
  • Enfoques del Aprendizaje
  • Actitudes del IB
  • Los Contextos Globales (2 versions - pastel / world flag frames)
  • Conceptos Clave del PAI
  • Perfil de la Comunidad de Aprendizaje

All of the poster sets are available individually too. The total cost of all of them is $12. If you purchase this bumper kit, you can save $2.

For anybody looking for MYP resources/posters in French... They're coming to you this summer!

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Tech Tip Tuesdays - App for slideshows

Welcome back to another Tech Tip Tuesday. Click here to view any of the other posts in this series. As always, if there are any technology tutorials that you'd like me to feature, be sure to comment below!

This week's post is an app I've recently discovered for making slideshows of pictures and/or video clips. It's called Quik (by GoPro) and it's available for free on iOs and Android. It's so quick and easy to use and the results look really cool. You can select from one of the many templates that already has layouts, filters, music and different text/picture transitions, or you can create your own style. 

So if you've got a school event coming up or you'd like to put it together for the end of the school year, get on it!

Credits for Tech Tip Tuesday logo:
Keyboard lettering  licensed by Dancing Crayon Designs © 
Glittery clip art from Glitter Meets Glue Designs 

Clip art frame from My Cute Graphics

Sunday, 28 May 2017

IB MYP complete poster pack

Hi all,

I've been busy putting together a bumper pack of all of my IB MYP poster sets.

This 80-page IB MYP poster pack contains the following:

  • 8 curriculum subjects posters (and heading)
  • Approaches to Learning skills display on cogs
  • 12 Attitudes Posters (and heading)
  • 6 Global Contexts Posters (and heading)
  • 16 Key Concepts Posters (and heading)
  • 10 Learner Profile Posters (includes "risk takers" and "courageous" as well as "thinkers" and "global thinkers") (and heading)

Where necessary (regarding the spelling of "organise" and "behaviour" etc.) I have included two versions, one in American English and another in British English.

All of the poster sets are available individually in my TPT store. The total cost of all of them is $12. If you purchase this bumper kit, you can save $2.

This is a fantastic purchase for IB MYP teachers at back to school time!

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Tech Tip Tuesdays: Worthwhile purchase -a clicker

Welcome back to another Tech Tip Tuesday. Click here to view any of the other posts in this series. As always, if there are any technology tutorials that you'd like me to feature, be sure to comment below!

This week's post is a recommendation for a simple tool and how it can be used in your teaching.

This little thing has proven to be very useful over the years. I got it cheaply on Amazon and it has been worth every cent! Don't worry, this isn't going to be a post about clicking through a PowerPoint full of information text. Here are some practical ways to use it in the classroom.

Student presentations:
In my school, it's not uncommon to see children doing oral presentations making use of a Keynote/PowerPoint presentation. You'd be amazed to see the boost of confidence they get when the clicker is placed in their hands!

Teaching new vocabulary (great for ESL/other second language):
I absolutely love having my students play Kim's game (known to Irish teachers as Cluiche Kim) to teach new vocabulary in another language. It's very simple. Pick 5 new words and put their pictures on slide 1. Then copy and paste that slide several times. On slides 2, 4, 6, etc. delete one of the pictures (moving the position of the other pictures or deleting more than one picture at a time if you want to create an extra challenge). Simply use the clicker to make the board blank, have your students close their eyes and then click to the next slide. They then need to name which picture is missing. 

Student selection:
Many of these pointers have a laser on the top. Children LOVE using these! It could be used for phonics. Put a sentence / several words on the board and ask a child to use the pointer to show the "ch" sound. Similarly, it could be used to point at the photograph representing a new word in another language. They could use it to show where they found a word on a Boggle board (with letters or numbers - if you don't know what I'm on about, Google "Math Boggle"). 

Behaviour management aid:
If you happen to use PowerPoint/Keynote for any of the above ideas, this clicker allows you to use the classroom management strategy of proximity, ie. standing close to the children who are likely to misbehave (or have already begun misbehaving!). You can still play the games or go to the next slide of a text from any corner of your classroom. This gives you endless freedom to keep a close eye on those who need it!

Credits for Tech Tip Tuesday logo:
Keyboard lettering  licensed by Dancing Crayon Designs © 
Glittery clip art from Glitter Meets Glue Designs 

Clip art frame from My Cute Graphics

Friday, 19 May 2017

IB Attitudes posters for MYP/older PYP students

There are lots of PYP resources online. However, it's more difficult to find IB attitude posters suitable for older PYP students or MYP teenagers. 

Hence I've created this set of IB attitude posters designed with tweens/teen students in mind. You can pick them up in my TPT store for just $2.50. 

There are lots of other IB resources in my store too so be sure to check out the IB section if you are a PYP or MYP teacher. 

Here's a preview of the full contents:

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Tech Tip Tuesdays: PowerPoint Tutorial for Beginners

New to making resources using PowerPoint? Here's a simple tutorial to get you started!

This post is part of my weekly Tech Tip Tuesdays series. If there are any other technology tutorials you would like to see, please be sure to comment below.

I've laid out every step in this tutorial to make it accessible even for people who do not feel very confident using Microsoft PowerPoint. Follow the steps to make your own teacher sign. It's very easy to adapt these skills to make other posters, classroom labels, worksheets, etc.

How to make a teacher sign - a PowerPoint tutorial for beginners.

1. Page setup:
When I begin making any resource on PowerPoint, I always set the page size to A4 or A3 so I can picture how big it will be when I print it. To do this, click on the "Design" tab and then on "Page Setup." Select your chosen size in the dropdown menu and choose whether you want the slide portrait or landscape.

2. Choose a background. 
I got this one from TPT. You can always to a Google image search for any type of digital paper or background. Copy and paste this onto your slide. Then crop it (in the "Format" tab) to make a rectangle. I also added a thick black border by changing the colour and weight in the "Picture border" dropdown menu (still in the "Format" tab).

3. Make a frame.
For this one I did the simplest type of frame. You could also download a clip art frame and paste it in. For mine, I added in a rectangle from the "Shapes" menu in the "Insert" tab. I clicked on the "Format" tab and changed the "Shape fill" to white and "Shape border" to black. In order to have it perfectly centred in the coloured background, select both the background and the frame (CTRL and click on both), then go to the "Format" tab and in the dropdown "Align" menu, select "Align centre." Repeat this and select "Align middle" too.

4. Add the text.
Simply click on "Text box" in the "Insert" tab and draw it where you like. If you want to see how I install pretty fonts, check out last week's tutorial. Again, you might want to select both your text box and the frame in order to align your name how you wish.

5. Add an image.
There are tonnes of avatar creator websites to make a personalised version of you. I used the South Park Avatar Creator. I particularly liked this site because it allowed to me to add an iPad in my hands. Simply follow the instructions, download the image and paste it on to your slide.

And you're done! 

I hope you found this tutorial useful! Please let me know how you got on in the comments below!

Credits for Tech Tip Tuesday logo:
Keyboard lettering  licensed by Dancing Crayon Designs © 
Glittery clip art from Glitter Meets Glue Designs 

Clip art frame from My Cute Graphics

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Get organised for the summer hols

The summer is so close, we can almost smell it! As you all know, May and June are particularly tiring months with report-writing, squeezing in the last curriculum objectives and dealing with the energetic behaviour that comes part and parcel of the approaching summer holidays. So why not get a headstart on organising your classroom so that you're not trying to deal with it in the last week of school when your energy is well and truly drained?

Here are my suggestions for 5 simple tasks. Set out some time to do these over the coming weeks, in whatever way suits your schedule and you'll thank yourself when the final week rolls round. You might need to break down these tasks into smaller parts. I, for one, could only face one desk drawer at a time!

1. Deal with your drawers!
I decided to start with this one because it was pretty messy. Though my cupboard is much more painful to look at, I couldn't face that as my first task for fear of being disheartened! I have that habit of just throwing anything and everything in my desk drawers. I picked up a cheap drawer organiser to help me out. I was inspired by one of my colleagues who used simple plastic containers to split her drawer into compartments. It looks so organised! I already feel so accomplished!

2. Declutter your desk!
Admittedly I keep my desk relatively neat and tidy. However I know a lot of you out there have desks that look like a bomb just hit it. So get on it, sort it out! If your problem is caused by lesson resources hanging around, go and invest in a set of 5 A4 drawers (mine is pictured below). This has made my life infinitely more organised. It's so easy to check if you have photocopied everything you need for the next day and it saves sifting through unnecessary piles of copies.

3. Attack the cupboards!
I know I'm not the only one who has a tidy classroom on the outside but a cupboard full of resources just dying to burst out at any moment. Every time I tidy it up, I vow to keep it in order and every year I end up creating an ungodly mess in there. If you can't see it, it doesn't exist, right?

4. Sort out THE PILE!
THE PILE deserves capital letters. We all have one. It's that pile of paperwork waiting to be filed, it's the laminated resources you want to keep but never put into folders, it's the random sheets on your desk that you thought might be useful but you didn't bother finding a home for them. 

5. Do a techy tidy!
This is one that can often be neglected. Many resources get saved under names that make them difficult to search for. Rename anything unrecognisable. Lots of files get thrown into a big folder with no real order. If you haven't already done so, have a folder for each subject area/year group and subfolders for each curriculum area/strand/unit/topic. Tidy up your desktop. Delete unnecessary files. Sort out your school email. Delete anything you don't thing you'll need in the future. Oh, and most importantly, BACK EVERYTHING UP!!!!

With all 5 of these tasks tackled, you'll feel like the summer is so much closer!