Getting Ready for Spring

Aloha friends!  Welcome to Spring! hopefully you are enjoying your Spring Break or it's very close!! I just returned from a wonderful trip to Seattle and loved it!!!

I am back at home now and doing a little prep work for my classroom.  I finally finished some math centers that I have been working on.

I love have new activities each month for my students to use during our Math rotations.  These centers include 10 different skills to keep everyone engaged and challenged. Skills include Place Value, 3 Digit Addition and Subtraction, Measurement, Time, Money, Fractions, Arrays, 2D and 3D shapes.

I copy, cut and laminate each center and place them in manilla envelopes for easy storage.  I also include a laminated copy of the skill sheet to save on paper.  Students can do the work right on the laminated cards/sheets and wipe off with a dry erase marker.  I have also included a black and white version to save on ink!

I also had a request from a teacher who uses Class Dojo in her classroom. She wanted a money system like my Beach Bucks to use in her classroom with a Monster theme.

I had a lot of fun making these and they came out so cute!! I kind of want to use these instead!  I'm pretty sure my friend and her class are going to love these!!

You can check out both of these items in my TpT shop.

I am off the do a bit of Spring Cleaning today and hopefully a bit of napping too!


Getting Your Daydreamers To Focus

Aloha!  It's that crazy time of year right before Spring Break, but still a few weeks off.  Are your students getting a little squirrelly and easily distracted?  There are always certain times of the year when it's hard to keep everyone on track.

However you always have a few, sometimes more than a few, that can't seem to focus and complete their work at any time of year.  This year I have several little guys who are constantly off task.  One is just very hyper active and needs to move constantly.  He gets up and wanders around the room and then doesn't remember what he is supposed to be doing.

My other friends stay in their seats, but are full on daydreamers.  I could be standing right in front of them giving directions and they will not hear a word I am saying until I physically touch them on the shoulder or say their names to get their attention.

I was recently contacted by FokusLabs to review a new product that can help remind students of what they are supposed to be doing.

Basically this wristband is like a Fitbit.  
It vibrates to remind students to focus.

 Students learn to refocus themselves and make sure
they are on task when they feel the vibration.

Well let me tell you I was excited to try this out and see if it would be beneficial for some or even one of my students!

I tried it on my mover and shaker first.  I showed him what it was and told him it was going to help him remember to stay on task and finish all of his work.  I let him know that when he felt the buzz he needed to notice what he was doing and make sure he was completing his work.

I think he felt pretty special wearing it.  I kept my eye on him and noticed that he wasn't talking as much and completed much more work than he normally does.  He didn't seem to be distracted by it either since it is such a simple design.  No lights or sounds to bother him.

I had him wear it the whole week and I saw a significant improvement in his work.  At lunch and recess I had him take it off so it wouldn't get lost or ruined outside.  One afternoon I didn't tell him to put it on and he came to my desk and asked if he could wear it!

The following week I used it on one of my major daydreamers.  Again I explained what it was and why I wanted him to wear it.  It definitely kept him focused and I rarely saw that glassy eyed look he gets when he drifts off.

The wristband can be easily charged by plugging it right into your USB port on your computer. When you see the blue light it is charged.  The charge lasts the whole week.  The instructions walk you step by step on how to set it up and change the timer.  There is also a homework mode for parents to use to help work get completed at home.

So what do I think of this little gadget overall?  

I think it is a great tool to help keep daydreamers on task while doing independent seat work.  I found it very useful in the morning, but not as effective in the afternoons.  When I asked my students who used it what they thought, they said that they really liked it and wanted to keep wearing it.  My little guy with lots of energy liked it, but I don't think there is anything that could keep him  focused for longer than a few minutes before he gets up.  A treadmill desk would probably be the best thing for him!!

This would be great for a variety of students with different abilities and ages who have trouble keeping on task. I love that it also lasts a whole week without having to charge it!

What are some cons of this little gadget?  The biggest problem I found was that students forgot to take it off and it went out to recess a few times.  I am afraid it might get lost or damaged. Students also forgot to put it back on when they came back from their breaks.  I am sure a little visual reminder on their desks to take it off and put it back on would help. 

The other thing is the price.  It is quite expensive for teachers.  I will have to write a Donor's Choose project to get a few more of these in my classroom.

Does this sound like something that would be helpful for students in your class?  Check out this video to get more information or check out the Fokuslabs Website to learn more.

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