Sunday, March 30, 2014

Wrapping Up Narrative Writing

To wrap up our Narrative Writing Unit we talked about editing our stories to make them the best they can be. This book was great.
The book opens by first telling you to read the story then go back and read the tips on how to make a good picture book. Now not all the tips are good for kindergarten but you can skip over them and it doesn't take away from the message of the text. The kids really got into the story. After we were done reading I introduce our editing check list. They were so eager to finish their stories I couldn't get them cleaned up for lunch. Grab a copy of the check list here.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Next Steps in Guided Reading

I read this book over the summer and loved all that I learned and all the ideas that it had. I don't know what made me look at it again but I decided to check out her website and see what resources she had. What I found was amazing!!!! especially for new teachers.

In college we learned about creating lesson plans and standards we never spent anytime really learning how to conduct a guided reading group. Over the years I have tweaked things and figured it out on my own. When I found these videos on Jan Richardson's site everything came together.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Writing about Community Helpers

This week we started our community helpers unit. My kiddos are so excited to learn about all the different people that work in our community/neighborhood.

We have been using PebbleGo no stop to research different community helpers. They have tons of different community helpers and the text is easy for kinders to understand.  We have also read a couple of books about community helpers. 

We have also been working on writing about what we're learning. For this unit we are writing mini books about different people in our community.

Grab this community helper mini book and others at my TpT store

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Did we trap the Leprechaun?

Looks like we didn't catch him but he left his pot of gold behind. :-)
My Little Leprechauns...

Click here for to make your own Leprechaun hats. Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!

Monday, March 17, 2014

View From My Window

Happy St. Patricks Day!!! I thought I would be spending my St. Patricks Day with my kiddos and that pesky Leprechaun but when I woke up this morning and looked out my window this was my view....

I guess we will have to wait until tomorrow to see if we caught the Leprechaun and what goodies he left us.

But believe me I would rather be at school. At this rate we will be in school until July and I am not kidding! If my calculations are correct students last day will be the 25th of June and teachers will go 1-2 after to close up our rooms. Looks like summer will be short :-(

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Adding Some Green

To get us in the St. Patrick's Day spirit on Friday we made these cute shamrock light catchers. I love making these because they are easy and add so much color to my classroom. 
To make I copy the shamrock pattern on green construction paper and cut out around the shamrock and also cut out the inside. Peel off the paper on the back of contact paper. Stick the shamrock to the sticky side of the contact paper then fill in the middle of the shamrock with green tissue paper. Again cut around the outside of the shamrock and tada!! Instant sun-catcher! 

Friday, March 14, 2014

Friday Inspiration

One of my co-workers shared this with me yesterday! It was a great pick me up. Enjoy your Friday!!!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Tattle Tongue

I don't know about you but tattling has become a big problem in my class. I am scared to see how much time I spend on tattling problems a day. So I needed a solution... Here is what I came up with.

We are going to read Tattle Tongue by Julia Cook

Then we will create an anchor chart giving students questions to ask themselves when they come to me with a "problem".

I also found this catchy movie from Harry Kindergarten that will help remind students what tattling is.

I also love this idea form Mariah at Giggles Galore

For more information on the Tattle Monster and how to make your own, go to Mariah's post Tattle Monster. You can download the poem that goes with it for free. 

Monday, March 10, 2014

Leprechaun Traps

Lucky visited our classroom this morning and my kiddos went nuts. They were soo excited!!!! We decided that we needed to make traps to catch our silly leprechaun. We started our research by reading a couple of books about Leprechauns to figure out what Leprechauns like.

Students then decided on what they would like to make their Leprechaun traps. While my kiddos were at specials I emailed there moms and dads stating our plan and asking for supplies. 

Here is what they wanted to build their traps. 
·        Paper towel rolls
·        Tin foil
·        Straws
·        String
·        Old show boxes
·        Pringle containers
·        Egg carton
·        Gold foil
·        Gold beads
·        Sticky gems
·        clovers
Anything shinny!!!

Our plan is to start making our traps tomorrow. Stay tuned for pictures!!!

In my writing center I added this mini book so that students could write a book about Leprechauns. They were so excited!!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Rainbow Word Practice

To help students practice their sight words our team took the Dolch primer and preprimer list and grouped them in sets of 8. We then assigned each group a different color. In October students take home their first set of words. They practice them all week and we test them on an assigned day. If they know all of the words we give them the next set of words. Once they have mastered all of the words we move on to writing the words. It is amazing how motivated students are to learn their sight words. They can't wait to get the next color!

To practice the words in school students take a plastic school box and build the words using lacing letters. They build each word and string it in a pipe cleaner. Every so often I have to re do the boxes because the letters get mixed up. My kiddos had so much fun mixing all the letters up today and sorting them back out into the correct boxes. 

I store all of the pencil boxes in a plastic container.
These would also be great to use during your guided reading groups. 

St. Patrick's Day fun!!!

Any one else gearing up for St. Patrick's Day? Here are a couple thing I am planning for next week.

My kiddos love read the room activities. So I whipped up this St. Patrick's Day themed read the room.  Students will be searching for gold and then determining if the word on the gold is a real word or a nonsense word. You can check out the game on my TpT store.

Searching for Gold. Students draw cards from the deck. Each card has an addition sentence written on it. If the student can answer the addition sentence they can keep the card if not they put it back, but beware of the leprechaun he is out to streak your gold. Hopefully you will get the pot of gold before he steals all yours. Click on the picture to check out the game on my Teachers Pay Teachers store.

A great silent e game. Where students are looking for the Leprechaun under rainbows.  In order to turn the rainbow card over they must read the silent e word on the card.  Click on the picture to check out the game on my Teachers Pay Teachers store.

I also have a STEM project in mind but I will share more about that later. Stay tuned!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Grace for President

Last year in preparation for Common Core my reading teacher did a PD on close reading. At the time I was super excited and used it at least once a week if not more. With everything that we have been doing this year I kinda forgot about Close Reading until the other day when I was searching through my guided reading binder and found my notes from the PD. I love it when I find things that I had forgotten. I added Close Reading to my To Do List... with the intention of doing a couple of close reading in the up coming weeks.

Now I don't have a mounted SMART Board but I love using SMART Notebook to organize and teach my lessons. So with that and knowing that I wanted to plan a couple of Close Reading lessons I sat down to create a template of what I wanted the lesson and SMART Board to look like. Here are a couple of snap shoots of what my SMART Board for close reading looks like.

I am not sure how it works but I am going to try and see what happens. If you want to see the rest of my slides in this lesson head over to my teacher pay teachers store and download the SMART Notebook file

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Gearing Up for Addition

Monday was supposed to be the first day of our addition unit in math but it looks like MOTHER NATURE is not done with us yet. So we are going to have to put off our addition unit until Wednesday. Here is what I have in mind...

Technology Connection (click on the image)
***Harry Kindergarten also had a great video explaining addition but he recently took it down. He promises he is going to be up loading new videos here soon.

Images from my SMART Notebook

You can get a free copy of my independent practice here