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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Only 23 Days Until the Iditarod Begins!

If you like to use real-life events to spark student enthusiasm, don't miss the Iditarod!  The race begins March 7, 2015.  Students LOVE this 2-week Iditarod Musher Math and Language unit for grades 4-6!

Each March, my fourth grade students eagerly await of the start of the Iditarod - and with good reason!  We customize the online countdown timer and display it daily until the start of the race.
Students draw the name of a musher and follow his or her progress as the race progresses real-time.
Next, it's time to make desk name tags.  Students color, cut out and glue their dogs and dog sled onto their triangle folded name tag.  LOVE to name their dogs with a theme.  Mushers have lots of dogs and to keep the litters easy to remember, often name their litters with themed names, like this coffee-themed litter.
Now it's time for you (the teacher) to sneak in some much-needed language review and math problem solving using the Iditarod excitement as your theme.  This is provided in interactive SMART Board format and also in PDF format so you can use it with a document camera.
A long time ago, we used to make a big wall map, and students would move their dogsled on the map as mushers moved down the trail - but that was THEN and this is NOW!

Now, we use the real online race stats and students check their musher's race standing.  Students use my website and simply click to check their musher's race position.  Then, they find the bookmark with their number on it and put it into their desk name tag.  That's ALL the class time it takes!
And there's extras included:
There's 100 pages of materials! 
Enjoy the Iditarod!

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