Monday, April 16, 2012

WWII Lapbooks

How many of you have heard of "lap-books"? I don't know how I have missed out of these for so many years, but thanks to Pinterest I've been brought into the light! Lapbooks are (to my understanding) interactive notebooks where students can keep all the information on one topic in one place. The lapbook contains many mini-books or foldables and makes the whole note-taking process more creative and thus more enjoyable. Around Christmas I started researching lapbooks and couldn't find the large resource for middle grades that I had hoped was out there. I knew I wanted to make one for WWII so I started planning mine out long before I knew we would start the unit with the students. 
One file folder with an additional half attached
My main focuses in WWII according to the TN standards are the causes, key participants, the Holocaust, Japanese internment camps, and the atomic bomb. There is a secondary (lasting big idea) that is to focus on how WWII lead to the United States being more involved in international issues and wars but that's asking a lot of a little lapbook made from a file folder!  
Open View 1 (The map is doubled:
There is a hidden map beneath with
the Pacific Theater of Battles)
Open View 2
For this lapbook, it required one and a half file folders. The only pre-assembly that was done before passing them out to students was to tape the extra half of a file folder to the top to make the extra flap. Other than that, the students each made all their mini-books themselves. This was very much a cumulative activity. Each foldable directly related to a lesson so it was built piece by piece. If I tried to have them make all the foldables in one day I would not be blogging you from my classroom. I'd be blogging from prison after going on a rampage about folding, cutting, stapling, and taping in the wrong spot. That would certainly be more memorable, but alas I took the slower option. 

     Leadership during WWII
Frayer Model



The Atomic Bomb:
A picture of the atomic bomb was cut and then adhered to each level of the What? Where? When? Why? so that when all doors opened you can see the picture in full effect.  

The Nazi State and the Holocaust:
The foldable on the right is a pyramid that lies flat when not in use

The Homefront
 This one was probably my favorite. Probably because I think it's the cutest. It's a house with a roof that expands to show all the different things Americans were doing at home to help the war efforts.

 Our focus on the Japanese Internment Camps was, of course, what they were, but also how they stood in direct contrast of what we were fighting for and against. 

Timeline: I used register tape to make the timeline. Students completed an activity where they first had to put given events in order and then place them in the correct place on the timeline. 

I've got the rumblings of an idea for next year trying to make a lapbook for each of our eras that we do in Social Studies. Then come TCAP time we just have to take out our lapbooks and we've got great study materials all in one place (unlike their mess-of-a-binder that they've got this year). We'll see how I feel about it when I'm trying to plan it all. Sometimes my Pinterest "eyes" are bigger than my real-life ability levels.

Hopefully this is something that can get you started thinking about using lap-books in your upper grade classrooms!

Until next time,
Mrs. J

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Hot Particle - Cold Particle Tag

I'm sorry I've been missing these past few weeks. TCAP is around the corner and it seems to be all I can do to make it through the day! Today was a fun day though and I wanted to come and share some of our learning with you.
Heat Transfer!

We've been studying Heat and yesterday's lesson was on how heat moves (hot to cold, etc). The kids all got to enjoy my complete and utter lack of drawing skills as we entered examples of conduction, convection, and radiation into our notes. Friends that I play "Draw Something" with can bear witness to my skill-level. Well, today as a review we played Hot Particle-Cold Particle Tag.

Here's how we play it. 
1. Half of the students are designated as hot particles, while the other are cold particles.
2. The cold particle students have a piece of paper clipped to the back of their their shirt. The hot particles are given 10 stickers.

The Goal:
Five Heat Particles!
Five Heat Particles!
Students play a game of "tag" where the hot particles are to give away their heat (their stickers) to the cold particles until they are at equilibrium with all heat particles having five and each cold having five. Once the heat has given away five or the cold has five on it, students are to sway in place.

A few rules we made:
I had a set zone for students to run in.
Once tagged, the cold particle had to stand still so the heat could transfer (stick).
A cold particle had to be given a head start if they just got a sticker--no attacking someone just because someone else had tagged them.

It was a lot of fun and it only took like 10-15 minutes and it got us outside so I'm happy. :-) When we returned to class we did a bit more on the study of Heat, but their ticket out the door was to relate the game to what we know about how heat travels. After reading their responses, I know a few misconceptions that I need to address, but overall the kids seemed to get it. Phew!
A few "Ticket Out the Door" Responses

Until next time,
Mrs. J