End-of-the-School-Year Madness

I’m going to zoom you through the last week of school so then maybe you’ll understand why I’ve been on a 2 week retreat from anything school-related (including blogging about school! : )).

On your marks…. Ready… Go!

My 5th graders and I took a trip to Springfield to sight see and to conclude our Abraham Lincoln studies, so the next day, we made scrapbooks (chaos pictured above : )). 

Here they are posed with a young Abe Lincoln at the museum. They thought the wax figures were creepy but yet they were so fascinated that it was hard to leave.

We went inside the new capitol building as well. Here’s a photo I captured of the outside, and a student added his thoughts on the printed photo with his Sharpie marker. (To see closer, click on the image above.)

The 6th graders and I went to Six Flags as a reward for following through with their behavior contracts. Somehow I was signed up as a chaperone for an all-boys group (my 6th grade boys plus 2 more from another class). Here we are after our third time on their favorite water ride. These boys sure talked a lot of smack on the bus ride to the theme park, but once we were in front of the X-Flight (the latest amazing rollercoaster), their inner chickens surfaced and they refused to even get in line to wait while I rode the coaster. Bummer. Maybe next time : ). 

Then the 6th graders graduated from elementary school. I was strict about dress code: boys had to wear ties and girls had to wear skirts or dresses. My class was the finest looking 6th grade class this year. Of course, I may be just a bit biased : ).

(Note: To look at the pictures in a larger view, click on the image.)

During the 6th grade graduation, my 5th graders were industriously helping serve cupcakes to the many 6th grade family and friends that attended the celebration. Here’s the aftermath:

Valeria and Tamara not willing to show off their blue mouths…

Oscar and Marcelo begging for a third cupcake…

Ariana’s natural hospitality shining through…

And as Marcelo phrased it: ”Miss Siscoe, I think I just died by cupcake.” (a.k.a. too many cupcakes)

Then I concluded this field-trip-loving lifestyle by packing up yet another classroom… nothing like teaching at 4 different schools in 5 years (hopefully I’ll stay put in this next school for a while : )).

27 boxes of teaching tricks. Impressive considering last year I was only able to bring back 100 pounds of anything from Costa Rica (in other words, I hardly brought any teaching items back to the U.S. lol… seriously, how did I accumulate so much in just one year??!)

And the classroom ready for the next teacher to move in…

Whew! There you have it. The end-of-the-year madness marathon.


Thanks to the Bus Driver…

…We have a class photo! We took a field trip today to the planetarium, and the bus driver offered to take our photo while waiting before the presentation.

And then we had to get a silly one, of course, except that I missed the silly face memo, lol:

Team Builders

Team building is very, very important in a classroom environment. If you doubt how that might play into putting 20-some kids into one room and expecting them to get along for 9 months, reflect back to your elementary days, haha.

The 6th grade classes recently ventured out on a camping field trip, and I was introduced or reminded of the many team-building activities that are out there that could easily be adapted for classroom use. I will be using some of these ideas in the fall to unite my next class.

Note: Click on individual photos to get a closer look.

Field Trip Photos!

Thanks to a co-worker, I have a couple photos to share from our field trip last week! I ventured to the Museum of Science and Industry with my eight 6th graders. Here’s Miss Siscoe in her element:

Front Left to Right: Tomas, Luis

Back Left to Right: Yessenia, Sofía, Gabriel, Christina, Miss Siscoe, Mario, Josúe

Left to Right: Josúe, Mario, Tomas, Yessenia, Luis

What a Field Trip!

Good news: We went on a field trip today!

Bad news: I discovered this morning that my Nikon blinks ”Error” when I turn it on which means still no photos for the blog…

We had read the picture book Jumanji last week, and today, we went to see a dance interpretation of the storyline. I almost cried (haha, but seriously) to think that for many of my students this was the first live theater performance they had ever seen. It was fun to see them amazed by the dancer’s abilities (everything from ballet to break dance) and to hear them following along with what they knew about the book (”Oh, there’s the lion!”). When we got back to school, we had a lively discussion about the similarities and differences between the book and the play. Some students even connected it to what they saw in the Jumanji movie (”Peter turns into a monkey in the movie, but not in the book or the play.”)

One student was not able to participate in the field trip as he has been in quite a bit of trouble in the last week and his mom decided that losing the field trip was part of his consequences. Here’s a note he wrote me while spending the morning in another 5th grade classroom:

Hi Miss. Sisco

I ame sory for all the bad bejavior and I ame going to be a beter porson and not be so roud and I will rase my hand when I want to spece I ame sory for what I have don to get the referals I will do extra homewerk



Mental note: Do a mini-lesson on using punctuation. : )

Jumanji Reader´s Theater

I went scouring the Internet last night for a Jumanji Reader’s Theater… and it´s nowhere to be found. For those teachers that will be searching the Internet for hours like I was, here it is! : ) I wrote it for 15 students to be able to participate, and the approximate reading time is 12-15 minutes.

We will be seeing a dance interpretation of the book Jumanji next week as a class field trip, then we will perform our own Reader´s Theater of the book — no better way to motivate fluency practice : )

Copy and paste the following link in your browser and wa-lah! Feel free to edit the document for what you need.