Saturday, June 30, 2012

Summer Update

I love summer! This June, between trips with my wife and our four year old daughter to Gilroy Gardens, Children's Fairy Land in Oakland, and the playgrounds around the city, I've finished posters for three more grades, and a couple of free, teacher-requested themes.

Grade 1 Illustrated Common Core Standards Posters 
Grade 2 Illustrated Common Core Standards Posters
Grade 6 Illustrated Common Core Standards Posters 

Common Core Standards Posters - Rock Star Theme
Common Core Standards Posters - Pirate Theme

Baby number two is due in mid-July, so I'm racing against the clock to finish Kindergarten and Grades 7 and 8 before she arrives.

Below are a few posters from the first, second, and sixth grades. There are about a eighty illustrations in each poster kit. Some of it I created myself. Most of it I made by combining clip art from different sources. All of the art is used according to the terms of its creators. No art is used without permission.

I've made an effort to include plenty of ethnic and gender diversity. Some of the standards have more than one option to choose from.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Hangman Escapes!

News Alert! Hangman has escaped from the gallows in a daring helium balloon stunt! A small red bird is believed to be his accomplice! Any persons with information about these fugitives is asked to contact authorities. They are believed to be unarmed and not very dangerous at all! (In fact, this reporter believes hangman was unjustly accused of his crime, whatever it was. But that's a story for another day.)

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Hangman is a lot of fun but it's too morbid. If you are looking for something that plays just like hangman but without the creepy gallows, you might like this version of the game. The PDF printable version is free!

There is also an interactive PowerPoint version of Happy Hangman. It works on SmartBoards, too. It requires PowerPoint version 2002 or newer on a PC or PowerPoint version 2011 or newer on an Apple computer.

The Happy Hangman PowerPoint game is a lot of fun. It has sound effects and animations. You can use any word up to twelve letters. If you want more than twelve let me know (or if you have a little PowerPoint acumen you can probably figure out how to add more pretty easily.) Either way let me know if you would like more letters, or if you have any feedback at all. I had a lot of fun making it. I hope you enjoy it, too.

Its good for Grades 1 - 6. To be honest, I use it with my high school students.(I call it "Airman" instead of "Hangman.") They complain and say its corny but they still have fun when we play it.

Here's what some actual teachers had to say about using Happy Hangman in their classroom.

"This is great for the end of lesson, or when there is a few minutes left over before transitioning to the next subject/special/etc"

"This is so much more fun than the old hangman. Just what I need for a student reluctant to learn spelling."

During game-play, the airplane flies across the sky. The clouds drift down so the man appears to be ascending. The balloons make a “popping” sound when clicked. The letters make a typewriter sound when revealed. The bird squawks and flies away when the red balloon is popped. (It returns in a later part of the game). “Letters Used” turn black when clicked.

There's more details about the game in the free preview that you can download at this link.