Sunday, November 11, 2018

Celebrating Veterans Day!



On November 11, America celebrates Veterans Day. It is the day we honor the men and women who have served in the armed forces. Veterans Day is a national holiday. This year, Veterans Day is observed on Monday, November 12. 


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Photo by Mrs. Yollis




Veterans: Men and women who have served in the armed forces.
Soldiers: Men and women who are currently serving in the armed forces.

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Here is a link to a wonderful BrainPop

 video about America's Armed Forces.





What did you learn about the 
Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard?

Here are some fabulous "Make a Map" 
examples made in class!


Kishor's Map





Samantha's Map




Katie's Map






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To help us learn about Veterans Day and the men and women who serve, I asked my students if any of their family members are in the military or are veterans. We honor our veterans and soldiers with this blog post! 


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Our superintendent



NAVY: Meet our district superintendent, Dr. Stepenosky. As you can see, he served in the Navy. From 1990 to 1994, he was on the USS Chancellorsville which was a guided missile cruiser. It was 9,000 tons and had a crew of 330. Notice the destroyer in the background.


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Lily's grandfather




ARMY: Meet Lily's grandpa, Dr. William Zanger. This photo was taken in 1971. He served in the Dental Corp as a Captain of the United States Army. He was stationed in Fort Benning, Georgia and Fort Polk, Louisiana from 1970 through 1972. The baby in the picture is Lily's mother, Sybil.



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Scarlett's grandfather



NAVY: Meet Dr. Tocchet who was born and raised in Summit Hill, Pennsylvania. He joined the Navy in 1963 while attending medical school at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Following his studies, Paul assumed active duty as an intern at Camp Pendleton, California, before serving overseas. He was attached to a Marine Corps combat M.A.S.H. unit in Viet Nam from 1966-67. He then completed his final two years as a general medical officer at the Naval Station in Monterey, California, until his honorable discharge in 1969. 




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Hana's uncle



MARINE: Meet Hana’s Uncle Josh who served in the United States Marine Corps. He was an electrician who worked on FA-18 jets. He was stationed at Miramar Air Station and was deployed to the Persian Gulf twice. He also went to Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates.






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Rebecca's grandfather





ARMY: Meet Rebecca's grandfather Barney who served in the army during World War II. He was a private and served in the Aleutian Islands in Alaska. His brother Sammy was also a private in the Army and fought and died in the Battle of the Bulge.



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Faith's great-grandfather


NAVY: Meet Grandma Barb's dad, Faith’s Great-Grandpa, who served in the Navy during World War II. He served on a destroyer called the USS Gainard. Though his mother was a widow and none of her five sons would have had to enlist, they all did. 

Faith’s great-grandpa was the youngest in his family, only 17 years old, and a few months away from graduating from high school when he wanted to enlist in the Navy. Since he was under 18, he had to get special permission from his mother, Faith’s great-great-grandma, to enlist. At the time of his high school graduation ceremony, Faith’s great-grandpa was already in the Navy so his mother went to school that night to receive his diploma for him. 


Faith’s great-great-grandma was very proud of all of her sons. The second photo shows all five sons in their uniforms. One son was in the Navy, one was in the Air Force, two were in the Army, and one was in the Marines. They were stationed all over the world. During the war, families put a star in the front window of their homes to indicate they had a loved one in the war. Faith’s great-great grandma had FIVE stars in her front window. Miraculously, Faith’s great-grandpa and all of his brothers returned home from war safe and sound and proud to have served their country.


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Ben's great-grandfather








ARMY: Meet Ralph Linore, Ben's great-grandfather. He was a United States Army sergeant who proudly served from 1942 to 1945 in WW II.



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Are any of your relatives or friends veterans?



Please tell us about them and thank them for their service!

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Family Blogging Month :: 2018

Mrs. Yollis and her students  to share what they are learning and experiencing. In an effort to include more family members in our online community, we are proclaiming: 

November is Family Blogging Month!

Each student made a list of their family members. 












After looking through the archive of our class blog and our Yollis 365 blog, students selected specific posts tailored to the interest of a particular relative. Selecting a good post for mom and dad, another for grandma.






A dog post is a great one for siblings!




We're inviting everyone to comment: moms, dads, brothers, sisters, grandmothers, grandfathers, uncles, aunts, and cousins. 
We welcome friends, too!





Students will be inviting their family and friends to participate in a conversation! 
Maybe we'll get some 2-point comments

(We frequently evaluate the comments that our blog has received. In order to earn the 2-points, a comment must be error-free and add something to the post.   Many of Mrs. Yollis' third graders have already met the challenge!)



If you don't know what to say, here is a video made by Mrs. Yollis' third graders.




If you don't know How to leave a comment, here is a video tutorial about HOW to leave a comment on our blog.







How do you get comments typed and published?
Here is a video made by my students explaining how:

  







Here is the key we will use for  Family Blogging Month.





 
What do you think of our idea?

Who are you inviting to be a part of our online community?

Please leave a comment and introduce yourself!

Friday, October 19, 2018

What is Family Blogging Month?


This is a post written by Linda Yollis sharing her idea called Family Blogging Month. It is cross-posted at The Edublogger. I hope this post inspires you to host your own Family Blogging Month! 





I have been an elementary school teacher for 32 wonderful years. Building relationships, fostering a love of learning, and promoting reading and writing are the foundations of my classroom. 






Mrs. Yollis Classroom Blog

I started blogging in 2008 and quickly found it to be a fabulous way to meaningfully connect parents and other learning partners with our classroom. I use the classroom blog to share what is happening in our room. Everyone enjoys seeing what we are learning, but it is the comment section that I really love.  The comment section is where the blog comes to life, where learning is extended, and relationships are built. Reading and writing in an authentic way with a real audience makes learning and connecting fun! 


Why Host a Family Blogging Month? 

In an effort to promote blog commenting and family interaction, I created Family Blogging Month back in 2010. The idea of Family Blogging Month (FBM) is to encourage as many family members and friends to contribute to our learning via the comment section.  FBM has proved to be a successful way to create an online learning community and build relationships. 



Why November?


I run FBM annually in November for a couple of reasons. First, after being in my classroom for two months, most of my students and their families are following the blog and understand how to navigate it. Everyone seems to enjoy reading the blog, so I feel that it is time to step up the process and encourage commenting. By November, everyone is ready to level up!  







Second, Thanksgiving in America is in November. Our school has a week off and many families travel to spend time with their relatives. FBM provides a great opportunity to introduce the blog and connect new friends to our learning community!  



How Do I Kick It Off? 

I update and publish the following blog post every year and "November is Family Blogging Month" begins!

____________________________________

Mrs. Yollis and her students  to share what they are learning and experiencing. In an effort to include more family members in our online community, we are proclaiming: 

November is Family Blogging Month!

Each student made a list of their family members. 






After looking through the archive of our class blog and our Yollis 365 blog, students selected specific posts tailored to the interest of a particular relative. Selecting a good post for mom and dad, another for grandma.






A dog post is a great one for siblings!




We're inviting everyone to comment: moms, dads, brothers, sisters, grandmothers, grandfathers, uncles, aunts, and cousins. 
We welcome friends, too!





Students will be inviting their family and friends to participate in a conversation! 
Maybe we'll get some 2-point comments

(We frequently evaluate the comments that our blog has received. In order to earn the 2-points, a comment must be error-free and add something to the post.   Many of Mrs. Yollis' third graders have already met the challenge!)



If you don't know what to say, here is a video made by Mrs. Yollis' third graders. 

Learn FIVE tips for writing a quality comment! 









If you don't know How to leave a comment, here is a video tutorial about HOW to leave a comment on our blog.











Here is the key we will use for  Family Blogging Month.





 
The top three bloggers with the most comments will win a free post on Mrs. Yollis Classroom Blog, a free meal at a local restaurant, and bragging rights! 



What do you think of our idea?

Who are you inviting to be a part of our online community?

Please leave a comment and introduce yourself!


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Too Many Comments?

Yes, that can happen! The enthusiasm is often very high, and we end up with too many comments in our kick-off post. When the comment section gets too long, it makes it difficult to read and to follow. So, once the comment total gets too high, I start a new blog post. This directs our bloggers to a new topic. 




Ideas for additional November is Family Blogging Posts

Having at least one new post per week during the month of November helps keep the comments fresh and interesting. I often come up with a new blog topic from the comment section! Here are a few ideas I've used over the years. 


  • Veterans Day is in November and that has become one of the annual FBM posts. I email the parents at the beginning of November and ask them to share a photo and information about family members who are veterans. There is tremendous pride from military families. For many students, it is the first time they are hearing about their grandparents or aunts and uncles who have served our country! Here is a sample post: Family Blogging Month :: Happy Veterans Day 2015









  • A blog comment about travel opened up a discussion about the 50 states. Soon families were counting and sharing how many states each family member had visited. It was a great post integrating geography, data, and proper nouns! Here is the post Family Blogging Month :: The 50 States























Beautiful Moments from Family Blogging Month!


Everyone benefits from the quality reading and writing opportunities that blogging affords. But I must tell you, there have been some truly magical connections made over the years. Here are just a few. 





  • Where Nonno? Series  Ben's grandfather lived in Italy and was a guest writer on the blog for a year. Everyone loved learning about Italy from Nonno and then meeting him when he came back to America.



  • Meet Grandma Barb Troy, Nolan, and Faith's grandmother has been a fantastic blog commenter over the years. When she comes to California from Wisconsin to visit, everyone wants to see her! 





Tips About Family Blogging Month!


1. When you publish a post, email all the parents so they know a new post is available.

2. Feature people and ideas from the comment sections in your blog posts like I shared above. It's a wonderful way for the class to get to know one another. (Reminder: limit personal information!)

3. Provide blogging time during your ELA block. I have found that not every family participates, so a student can grow as a blogger and earn blog comments during class with their friends.  


A Few Former Family Blogging Month Winners!


Here are some former winners and their guest posts!









What do you think of Family Blogging Month?

How would you tailor it for your students?



Monday, October 15, 2018

Teaching Commenting Skills!

Mrs. Yollis' class is participating in the International Student Blogging Challenge!





The focus of week 2 is composing QUALITY comments!




Parts of a Blog

Blogging has many parts: the post, the comments, and the sidebar. If you do a good job with all of the parts, your blog will be more interesting. Today we will focus on quality comments! The comment section is where the blog comes to life and a learning community is built. 



Content is key!


In our class, we evaluate our blog comments. A one-point comment is a general comment that doesn't add very much to the post.   Example: I like your blog. Please visit mine! 

two-point comment adds something to the comment conversation. A commenter might compliment the writer in a specific way or add new information. Another idea is to make a connection. Maybe the post reminds you of an experience that you've had. Share that connection!  Try to end your comment with a relevant question. That way, an interesting conversation can develop.


What should I say in my comment?


Here is a video made by Mrs. Yollis' students called How to Compose a Quality Comment!  It offers FIVE tips to help you take your comments to the next level!






We like to open our comments with a greeting and end with a closing. We choose to do this as it makes it easier for us to follow the conversation within a comment section.





How do you get comments typed and published?





-For Advanced Bloggers-

Some bloggers like to use HTML code to make their comments better.  Learning to write HTML code, or HTML tags, is a somewhat simple way to take your comment to the next level.


HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) is a language.



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To write HTML code, use the following symbols:


Important: Do not add a space between the HTML tag and the word or sentence.

                                                                                                     

1.  To put text in italics, place this HTML code around the text:

 

 

The sentence will look like this when published:
  

Bloggers should always proofread a comment before publishing.


                                                                                                     


2.  To make text bold, place this HTML code around the text:

                           



The sentence will look like this when published:  

Bloggers should always proofread a comment before publishing.


                                                                                                     


 

3.  To make a hyperlink, it gets a little tricky.

Use the following HTML code around the URL and add your own link word/words:







  [The URL is the address of the web page. It starts with http://www…]

The HTML code below:





Will become this hyperlink when published:


                                                                 Mrs. Yollis’ Website


Sometimes it is hard to remember the HTML codes. I keep an HTML word document on my desktop with all the common codes, especially the one to create a hyperlink. Here is a video demonstrating how easy it is to a create a hyperlink if you have the code set up in a Word doc.




If you like to add fun shapes...here are those codes!



My class, DO NOT sign into anything. Instead, choose NAME/URL


Use FIRST NAMES ONLY. 







What did you learn about quality commenting? 
 Why is it important to proofread a comment before pressing publish? 

Here are some comment starters:

What do you use to learn typing?

What are some famous landmarks in your country and have you visited them? 

What are some traditional foods from your area? 

What are some professional teams in your area? 

What languages do you speak?