Monday, December 31, 2012

Eagle Eye Activity

I thought I'd give a free preview of my newest activity.  This activity was designed for teaching the Eagle Eye decoding strategy! This strategy is simply getting the students to look at the pictures for help with unfamiliar words.  In this activity, the students have to match the words to the correct picture.  These are words and pictures that they might find on the page of a book!

You could even take it a step further and have students use the words to write their own story about the picture.  Or for higher learners, just give them the pictures and have them infer the words!

Hope you enjoy the freebie. You can grab it here!

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Beanie Baby Decoding Strategies

I am introducing the beanie baby decoding strategies to my class of first graders and I have discovered that there is really no good way for the students to practice each of the strategies (aside from just practicing reading).  I have modeled each of the strategies, but I would like to have an activity that they can do to practice using the strategy.  So, this is my new create some activities!

First up, I needed a Flip the Dolphin poster!  What do you think?  I am still working on activities to go with it but I think it looks good so far!  You can get a copy of it here.

Then I began working on Eagle Eye!  I created a poster and an activity to go with it! I am so excited to use this when we get back to school next week! (I know...that's a lot of exclamation points! lol)

The activity includes several different pictures that students might find in story books.  Then there are sets of words that students might find but not be familiar with.  The objective is for students to be able to match the words with the pictures that they would describe (the words that might be on the page with that picture if it really were a story book).  There are a total of 90 pictures!  These will be great for centers or individual practice!

You could make it more difficult for higher learners by just giving them the picture and making the students come up with their own words that might be on that page (also teaching how to making inferences!).  And you could extend the lesson by having the students use the words to write a story about the picture!  How great is this?

I am going to work on activities for each strategy so make sure to check back for more!

Hope you enjoy!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Buckets and Tattling

When we return to school, I have big plans for teaching some conflict resolution skills and the difference between tattling and telling.  After winter break, I usually review the rules and being nice to one another, but I think that this year’s class will need a little extra review!  They are not a bad class by any means, they just have a little difficulty getting along. So….

We are going to begin bucket filling! I have done this in years past and I am not really sure why I didn’t start it from the beginning of the year, but it’s better late than never!  I am setting mine up so that each student has a cup to hold their warm fuzzies.  They get warm fuzzies each time that they fill someone’s bucket.  At the end of each week I plan to give them PAWS (our school reward system) for each warm fuzzy they have in their bucket.  I picked up my warm fuzzies at the Dollar Tree!  What a great find!

If you don’t know what bucket filling is, check it out! There is a copy of the book on YouTube!

I also created this telling vs. tattling minilesson.  First graders have such a difficult time understanding the difference between tattling and telling.  I created several posters to help them with understanding the difference.  It also includes three sorts in with the students have to decide if the situation is tattling or telling.  Believe it or not, most of the situations are ones that I hear in my classroom on a regular basis!  And there is also a worksheet for students to draw a picture of an example of telling and an example of tattling.

Hope you enjoy!

Friday, December 28, 2012

My First Linky Party!

I am trying out my first linky party with Second Grade Shenanigans! She is doing a linky party about New Year's Resolutions and today is all about organization.

As a teacher, I find that I actually make most of my new year's resolutions in August when the new school year begins.  Do you do this also?  This year's resolution was in fact organization! I am not the most organized person (meaning I am not organized at all) and it was becoming so frustrating!  With all of the increases in expectations this year (more meetings, more data analysis, more assessments, more paperwork, and so on!) I knew that if I didn't do something I was going to go out of my mind!  So this year, I put together my Teacher Notebook and now I can't live without it!

This is my teacher notebook: just a basic 3 ring binder (but it is huge!).

It includes a divider for all of the important things that I need at our school.

 I keep all of my data on my students here, my class lists, class schedules, passwords, everything!  And it goes with me to every meeting...that way I can refer back to the things I need if I am in an important meeting about a student.

I also have a binder for my lesson plans that would include everything that a sub would need (another copy of my class list, schedule, bus list, etc) I found that I keep my Teacher Notebook with me so often that it wouldn't be at school when I had to get an emergency sub (not to mention that I was uneasy about keeping so much student data available for a sub). Sorry, I don't have a picture of that notebook but it is very similar.

I am a binder person so all of my master files are also in binders.  I think it is so much easier to contain it all and look for it all when it is in a binder.  So all of my master copies are organized into binders for each subject area that I teach.

The only other thing that I have been organizing is my computer.  I have organized all of my files and pictures into folders so that I can find it easily.  I have even organized Pinterest!!  lol  How bad is that?  I have become so addicted, I have found that I can't find anything on a generic math or reading board, so now I have individual boards for addition/subtraction, time/money, phonics, comprehension, etc.  SO much better!

Next up...YouTube.  Do you use YouTube like I do?  We use it just about every day (that or some other type of music).  I need to organize it better into some good playlists.

How do you organize?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Retell Bookmarks

This is one of my most popular items in my TPT store and one of my most used items in my classroom!  I don’t know about you, but we practice reading aloud and retelling stories every day.  I created these because it was so frustrating getting that look from students when you tell them to retell the story.  You know which one I mean?  That look like, “You said I had to read it.  You didn’t say I had to think about it!” and “You want me to do what?”  Really, I found that most students had no idea what I wanted them to do and “retell it to your partner” turned into “did you see what Sponge Bob did last night?” 

So I created these bookmarks for students to use when retelling a story as guidance during their retell.  Throughout the year, students get better at it and don’t need the bookmarks to help them retell the story.  There are two sets of bookmarks, one that includes problem and solution and another that includes sequencing of events.  I put mine front to back with a piece of card stock in between for sturdiness.  I usually tell my students which side I want them to use but as they get better, I encourage them to include both the problem and solution AND the sequencing of events.  Mine look like this (mine were made a couple of years ago with different clipart, but same concept!):

I also made story element posters to go with the bookmarks.  Each poster has a different element that is also on their retell bookmark (with the same picture for reference).  The poster includes questions for the reader to think about when reading/retelling their story.  These are great for teaching the story elements and for students to use as reference throughout the year!


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Word Work Freebies!

Here are some things that I use to try to make word work a little more fun!  First up are my fun writes.  This is a list of all the different, fun ways that my kids are allowed to practice writing their words.  And of course they love to make up their own fun writes too!

Next are my word finders.  My students use these to hunt for their words.  The kids love to look for words and make them fit into their little window!  I also use them a lot in math.  I will give my kiddos a hundreds chart and ask them to find certain numbers (it may be for place value, number recognition, the sum to an addition problem, etc).

To make them, cut out the little window with an exacto knife, laminate them, and glue them to a popsicle stick.  I glued mine to cardstock before laminating to make them sturdier!



Sunday, November 25, 2012

Hidden Pictures for Number and Letter Recognition

No matter what group of students I have, I always seem to have that one student that just seems so low it is beyond belief.  Do you have this also?  Being a first grade teacher, I expect to have a handful of students that still struggle with some letter sounds and the idea of blending the sounds together.  But this year, I have several students that are still struggling with letter recognition!  One student only knew 3 letters when she walked into my classroom: A, B, and C!  So here goes…I created these to help with this problem.  It is a great way to get the students to review letter recognition and maybe soon I will use it for letter sounds also.  These are hidden pictures for each letter of the alphabet, capital and lower case.  How it works is that you have the student color all of the given letter one color.  The end result should be the letter they have been looking for.  I put the letter they are searching for at the bottom of the page so that they have something to refer to.  As we get better at this, I may cover that part or even just give them the sound and have them find all the letters that make that sound.  You can get a copy ofthese hidden pictures here!


While I was at it, I went ahead and made ones for number recognition too!  These go from 1 – 30!

 Hope you enjoy!