A Review Championship

We have started state testing and after testing each day I wanted the kids to have fun while still going back over standards from the year, so I planned a mini-transformation. By “mini” I mean minimum amount of transformation— it is state testing after all. I have no decorations up in the classroom, but I have plenty of excitement!


Let’s start with my getup! I am wearing my husband’s referee shirt over my regular school clothes each day, a black baseball hat (Walmart for $7) and a whistle on my lanyard.


I found some old trophies under our new house and decided to clean them up, spray paint them solid gold, and give them to the winning team each day. They can take pictures with them, share them (who gets to have it on their desk), and I send a brag picture to the parents at the end of the day.

Then I needed to build the hype. I made a few short clips on Snap Chat using the filters and put them on Google Classroom for the kids to watch during homeroom. They were cheesy (me as an old lady talking about my grand kids telling me about a championship review at school, me as a girl with curlers in my hair talking about the latest gossip – something about a review championship, etc.). The giggles were contagious as they watched and re-watched the videos during homeroom.


Now, for the games! I picked a new game for each day. Some they had played before, some they hadn’t. Some games had a spin on them, but all were guaranteed to have each student working and able to earn points for their team.



This was the first game and had us all laughing. This idea came from Wade King of RCA (I follow him on Instagram and always get good ideas from him). How it works: Each team is assigned a color of paper to get off the floor. Students have Vaseline on their nose (you can add green food coloring to make it look like snot) and have to pick up the questions with their noses (NO HANDS!). After the entire group has answered the question and agrees on an answer, they can “pick” another question! The only problem I had with this game was the dependence on the whole group to work at the same pace…it didn’t work for some of my ESS students, so I will make adjustments to this game next year for sure! If you want to use my questions (adding fractions) or get the directions for the game for FREE click here.


They have team names with a running score board that continues to grow throughout the championship! We have had several different winners throughout the first week and all of them have enjoyed the trophy!


The second day, we played Jenga! For each correct answer students earned a point for their team and were able to move a Jenga block. At the end of the time, the team earned bonus points for how many rows high their Jenga towers were. If you would like my Jenga questions (subtracting fractions) for FREE click here.


The third day, we played corn hole! For each correct answer, students earned a point for their team and were able to toss a bean bag. If the bag landed on the corn hole board they earned one bonus point. If the bag went into the hole in the board, they earned three bonus points.


The fourth day, we played Trashketball! For each correct answer, students earned a point for their team and a shot at the trashcan. If they made their shots, they earned bonus points!


The fifth day, we played Connect Four! The teams were given the same color post it notes, but were assigned to play on different Connect Four boards. The students were given 10 word problems. They had to write the question number and answer on the post it notes and place them on the Connect Four boards. They were only allowed to place one post it note at a time, couldn’t move any post it notes on the board including their own after it was placed. I was going around checking answers on the post it notes. If they had the correct answer, the post it note stayed on the board. If it was incorrect, I would take the note off the board and throw it away. Teams earn points for correct answers and bonus points for having four post it notes in a row.


As a closing for each day, we do a Number Talk with the points they earned for the day and the previous day’s total. It is a great way to keep our mental math sharp and bring everyone back down to reality from the awesomeness of the games!

I cannot wait for the second week of games! it is going to be a BLAST!!!

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Moving Kids UP!

As I shared on the Facebook page a few weeks ago, I am piloting standards based reporting with two other fifth grade math, science, and social studies teachers. So far we all love how well we know our students. We know who needs to continue to work on each standard. Who has met the standard and needs to be pushed to exceed it. We know our kids. The struggle for me has come in getting the students (and parents) to understand that standards based reporting is a growth model. We want to see students grow throughout the year! Success does not come immediately but must develop over time!

Image result for standards based reporting

So I have finished teaching Unit 1 (order of operations, numeric expressions, multiplying and dividing large whole numbers, and powers of ten with whole numbers). These standards have made their way through Teach 5. Now I need to work with the students in small focus groups to Move Them UP to the next level.

We are using the Georgia Milestones Achievement Level Descriptors to determine the level of mastery on our report cards. This has allowed us to align ourselves to the state’s assessment and should give us a good idea of how the student will perform on the standardized test at the end of the school year. It also allows us to know how to move our kids up to the next level.

I am meeting with all of my level one students in a standard one day, doing a few practice problems, talking about what they are capable of doing on this standard and what I want them to try to do on this standard. Then I reassess with a quick “Move UP!” sheet. Some students show they deserve to move up a level, and others show we need more time working on this standard. The next day I will meet with my level twos, then my level threes on the following day. My goal is to meet with my students each nine weeks to work on our “Move UP!”s.


I have two Moving Kids UP! products completed and will add more throughout the year as I get them ready. And of course, as I grow my resources for this, I will add to these packets. But as the packets get bigger the cost gets higher, so grab them while they are cheap and redownload them as I update them!

Order of Operations

Numeric Expressions

Multiplying Whole Numbers

Dividing Whole Numbers

Comparing and Ordering Decimals

Rounding Decimals

Operations with Decimals

Powers of Ten with Whole Numbers and Decimals

More Math

Teaching fifth grade this year means I am creating a TON of stuff…it is exhausting! I just finished the second nine weeks worth of Teach 5s last week and you can find them here. If you are not sure what … Continue reading

Spiral Review

As a third grade team we have started to discuss how we did on last year’s GMAS (If you aren’t sure what that is take a look at this). We have discussed how a great spiral review in mathematics really seemed to benefit the students and keep all of their learning in their minds.

I use Teach 5 to do this with mathematics. To learn more about Teach 5 read some of my older posts about it and take a look at these resources.

Teach 5 Sample

Teach 5 Bundle

One of my coworkers found this great resource for social studies today.

Social Studies Review is created by Ashleigh over at Ashleigh’s Education Journey.

We are still on the hunt for a great science spiral review for third grade Georgia Performance Standards. If you know of one comment with a link to the product. I am open to all things at this point. That or I am going to have to make one!

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Must Haves for Interactive Notebooks in Third Grade

Do you teach third grade?

Do you have a friend who teaches third grade?

If your answer is yes to either of these questions keep reading.

I purchased and USE these two interactive notebook products from Teachers Pay Teachers CONSTANTLY!


This amazing interactive notebook product can be found here. No, it is not one of my own, but I use it like it is! Man it is GOOD!


This product can be found here. This product has tons of material for third, fourth, and fifth grade social studies. It was a GREAT buy and I use it constantly!

Just wanted to share some AMAZING resources!

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In third grade we teach measurement to the nearest 1/4, 1/2, and whole inch. This is always fun with students who are not so coordinated with their hands and small objects, BUT we try our hardest. I finished updating my openings (which of course are on the SMARTboard) and have put them on TpT for FREE so grab them here and leave some feedback (I like constructive criticism).

Measure 1 measure 2

Teaching measurement can be fun! We talk about the height of each student in the class (yes we measure them…Line Plots, hello?) and who is taller or shorter. Eventually a student asks why they are short (or tall). The answer is simple…because God made you that way.

As a student who was always the tallest kid in class (I’m 6 feet tall) I understand this question all to well. “Mom, why am I so much taller than everyone else?” Sometimes her answer was simple. “Well your dad and I are tall.” But the more I asked this question the deeper her answers got, or maybe the more mature I got.




Eight year old students may not get it, but they were knit together in their mothers womb. They were fearfully and wonderfully made. And each student is God’s masterpiece.


Next Teach 5 is Here!!!

I have been a very bad teacher. Not to my students, but to you all. I have made the new set of Teach 5s ( grab it at 3rd 9 Weeks of Teach 5 ), but I did not include an answer key this time (for a good reason) or write the standard down for each problem each week (it got confusing).

A Good Reason

So I didn’t bother making an answer key (yet-it still might happen) because my students have become so dependent on the answer key. I hang my answer key for the week on the bulletin board backwards so that if they need the answer they can find it. Here recently though the students have all been wanting to check the answer key. They constantly will “try” a problem and then rush to the answer key to see the answer. It isn’t healthy and defeats the purpose behind talking with group mates about their answers and how they solved.

SO…no more answer keys.

I know what you are thinking, I could make the answer keys and just not hang them in my classroom. And I might do that, but I wanted you all to have time to grab the new set of Teach 5s. If I update and add answer keys then I will send everyone who buys the packet a new packet for FREE! So no worries if you go ahead and buy it.

It Got Confusing

The past two packets I have included a table which told which standards went with each problem for each week. This time I didn’t include that much detail because I begin to include fourth grade word problems into the Teach 5 in the third and fourth nine weeks. This makes the work more challenging but it also over prepares the students for the standardized test (whatever yours may be) coming later in the year. If a student can solve a 4th grade word problem they can definitely solve a 3rd grade word problem.

SO… when I started to put the standards in I was mixing third grade with fourth grade, PLUS some weeks the problems were different standards for each day so then I was listing between 20 and 25 standards for each week. CrAzInEsS was occurring! My mind was whirling and I needed to simply not try that.

For those of you who still have not tried Teach 5 please know that I swear by it. I know I shouldn’t swear, but when my administrators, fellow teachers, or parents ask what I do that helps their students learn math so well, I tell them, “Teach 5.” Several other math teachers in my school building have started using it and have seen the results on the standardized tests. They are now believers and I promise, THIS is how my students remember what they have learned all year long.

Teach 5


Stamp Shortage

Stamp Shortage is another great math activity which was provided by the Georgia DOE a few years ago. The problem says:

The local grocery store has run out of 47 cent stamps. The only stamps left are 2 cent, 3 cent, and 4 cent. How many different combinations of stamps can be used to make 47 cents?

 My students were given 47 uni-fix cubes and told to make groups of 2, 3, or 4 to represent the stamps. They then had to write matching multiplication sentences and add their products to make sure they did not go over the 47 cent stamp cost.

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I only required them to find one way to solve, but gave extra credit for every way beyond the first way if it was accurate. I had one student come up with 10 different, accurate ways to solve! AWESOME, I know!


Please check out the Georgia DOE Frameworks for FREE lessons which can be used in guided math groups easily!



Teach 5– 2nd 9 weeks

The second 9 weeks of school is approaching which means Teach 5 must be prepared for the kiddos. I love my Teach 5 time and most of my students love the be the teacher for just a few minutes at least. To get the next set of Teach 5 for third grade click here.

teach 5 second 9 weeks

I have added a small portion to my Teach 5 groups this year which I think has made even more of an impact. Before my students go to there teaching group they get to meet with the other students in the class which teach their same problem. This gives them an opportunity to make sure their problem is correct and see multiple ways to solve their problem some times.

If you have no idea what Teach 5 is check out How to set up Teach 5 and Teach 5 packet.