I've been living in this black hole that is National Boards (I'm telling you, if I don't pass this, I will cry TEARS for YEARS).
Also, I've been teaching. And managing. A lot of classroom management makes for one tired teacher.
One of my saving graces with my charming active and interactive group this year is my Flocabulary subscription. I'll be honest... when my subscription was up, I really thought about whether it was going to be worthwhile for another year. I'm usually a big fan of free online resources, but my students last year LOVED using Flocab for vocabulary. I stuck mainly to using it only for our vocabulary instruction last year in 4th grade.
So this fall when the time came, I did stop and think. I tried it a couple times with my 3rd grade class to see if I had the same buy-in...and I did. Then I spent a little while hopping around and discovered a lot of the videos matched my curriculum, so I forked over the cash yet again.
WORTH IT. My class LOVES it! This year I branched out and we've been using videos for...
...Digital Citizenship (hey this helps out with that required lesson for my district, yay!)
...Science (rocks & minerals is coming out soon and we are super psyched about it in 3rd grade)
...Math (multiplication facts, they love it)
So basically I just use it completely the opposite from last year. Last year I used it strictly for vocabulary instruction, and this year I haven't used the vocabulary component but I've used everything else. Isn't it weird how different classes require different instruction?
We watch the same video MULTIPLE times. I do this because once just isn't enough for students to really get the concept. Particularly with content specific songs, I do a lot of teaching the content prior to showing the video. The video is really helpful for reinforcing a topic or important words, as well as helping students to remember it.
Here's one of our favorites for reading/writing this year:
This year I have even used the quizzes that go with the videos (some of them are pretty helpful if I'm teaching an entire unit).
Flocabulary has a convenient little special happening right now. If you sign up for a free 75 day trial (it's 15 more days than any other time of year...so this takes you to mid-late April depending on when you start, of course) and you can sign up your whole school for the trial. That way you can check it out for FREE for a bit! Last day for the trial is Feb. 29th, so you can even bookmark it and think about it until then if you want.
We sing. We dance. Students feel like pretty hard core rappers. It's hilarious for me. So it's pretty good all around.
Disclosure: This has been written in partnership with Flocabulary; opinions, classroom uses, & money I paid for my own classroom subscription are my own.