Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Let Them Research

The other day I wrote about how engaging research can be for your firsties.  So... I decided to create a Social Studies unit around my tourist craftivity that I made originally for the story, A Trip to Washington, D.C.   Basically the craftivity becomes a large foldable book with four mini foldables inside. 

This is such a fun activity. My kiddos loved it and it looks fantastic hanging in the hallway. :0)  

We created an anchor chart to hang with our tourists, but it's hard to see in this picture.  I'll take an "up close" of the anchor chart and post it next week. 

I have integrated the common core standards, W1.8, RI 1.5 and RI 1.7.  Your firsties will research four attractions in D.C. that they want to learn more about and create mini-foldables with facts and pictures.  I always partner my firsties when researching.  They learn so much from each other!  Go HERE or HERE to get this unit.  Have fun!!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

First Grade Reading Street Unit for A Southern Ranch

Here is my latest Reading Street unit.  It is for the story, A Southern Ranch.  In the unit you will find:

  • 1 anchor chart: “Facts & Details” This can be printed poster sized or sent to Staples to be printed.
  • High Frequency Words Matching Game
  • Kn & Wr Word Sort game
  • Mighty Flies Game for igh and ie words.
  • Adjective task cards…can be used at a center or can be used to play Scoot
  • Amazing Words: one page for each word with a picture and definition. These pages can be printed for display or can be projected on Smart Board when introduced. Words are also written on stars to be put up in the room.
  • Stamp a Word Recording Sheet
  • Sheets for high frequency, amazing, and spelling words…laminate and place in word work area. Students can use wipe off markers to write their words.
  • Write the Room for ie and igh words
  • Spelling Practice Test sheet: during buddy reading students give each other a test
  • Fluency Recording Sheets: during buddy reading students time one another and record the results
  • Writing a Realistic Story about children who live on a ranch: includes story board, rough draft and final draft printables.
  • If I Were a Cowboy/Cowgirl writing craftivity.

 The Craftivity
 The Story Board
 One of the amazing words you can print for display or project onto your smart board
The Mighty Flies game for ie and igh words

Go to  Teachers Pay Teachers or to Teachers Notebook to get your copy.  

Friday, March 22, 2013

Two Quick Tips

Yay!!! I made it!  Hello Spring Break!  Now that I have a few days to catch up I wanted to share a couple of tips with you guys.  This past summer I kept seeing the adorable crate seats that were pinned all over pinterest.  Well....I needed a couple of stools for my word work area and I wasn't willing to pay big $$$ for what I wanted.  Then I had a light bulb moment...stack two crates on top of one another and tie them together with zip ties!!!  Top it off with a chair cushion and you have an adorable stool. I found the cushions at Target.  The cushions have a rubber grip bottom so they do not need to be tied on.    My firsties love sitting on them and the stools are sturdy. 

My second tip is something my teamies came up with and I think it is brilliant!!!!!! Way to go Sayward & Marcia!  Lunch is always sooooo LOUD!!! So this past week we started listening to books on tape during the first part of lunch.  I'm telling you our firsties are loving listening to these stories!  Shhh....don't tell them that they are working on those visualization skills!  Why haven't we been doing this for years????!!    Try it!!  I think you will love it!  Leave a comment below if you have a great tip to share.   Have a great weekend!!!!!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Can We Research Weather Now???!!!!

We started a weather unit yesterday and my firsties are loving it!  First we read Storms and then named all of the different kinds of weather.  After our whole group meeting I paired them up.  With their partner they had to decide which type of weather they wanted to research.  I gave each set of partners a post-it note.  On the post-it they drew and wrote the type of weather to be researched.  Here is a picture of our anchor chart.
Well.... today when my firsties came in many asked..."Can we research now???!!!!!!"  It doesn't get better than that!  These kiddos were so excited and ready to dig in!!!!  Today's assignment was to find at least five facts about the weather they had chosen to research and write those facts in their science notebook.  On Friday, I raided our school library for every weather book I could find so we had plenty of resources available.  My firsties also use kidrex.com to research online with their iPad.  I'm telling you they were ENGAGED!  I loved walking around and seeing their little heads bent over the books and iPads reading away!!!  These three girls were totally engrossed in their book about tornadoes....
These boys were loving all the info they found on tornadoes...Yes, tornadoes were quite popular....but living in the south means you hear a lot about that weather. :0(
These boys sought me out several times to tell me all about the neat facts they had found!  :0)

Here are some notes in progress:

Tomorrow each pair will get poster size paper and begin to create a poster with pictures and facts.  Then, on Friday they will record their information with a picture of their poster on the app, Screenchomp.  My firsties will present their info about the weather using Screenchomp or the poster they made.  It will be their choice.  I am all about independent learners and these lessons this week have been AWESOME!!!  No copies to run... just a little time finding the resources and making an anchor chart.  

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Reading Street Units

I think I can. I think I can....we have one more week until spring break....I know I can! We are in the countdown mode for spring break!  Woohoo!  5 more school days!  Well we all know keeping our kiddos engaged towards the end of the year gets a little more difficult.  With this in mind I have been creating literacy center activities that go along with Scott Foresman Reading Street.  I will confess...in the past I did not change out my centers.  However after creating these units I see how excited my firsties get when I tell them about our new games for word work each week.  It makes my heart smile!  It's the little things that truly do make a big difference.  You can get my newest unit for A Trip to Washington, D.C.  at Teachers Pay Teachers or  at Teachers Notebook.
This is the craftivity for the unit.  My kiddos loved making their own tourist to look like them!  I'm thinking I may have to create a social studies unit around this little character for those of you that don't use Reading Street. :0)

I also wanted to show you guys a picture of the anchor chart we created for our invitations to the ball.
This craftivity is included in the unit for the Reading Street story, Cinderella.  Go to Teachers Pay Teachers or to Teachers Notebook for your copy. 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Games, Games and More Games

I've been so busy creating new phonics games for literacy centers.  I use these games when introducing new phonics concepts.  I put them in a word work literacy center and leave them for a couple of weeks before I change them out. My firsties love these games.  I simply laminate, add dice, and two cubes for game pieces.  So simple and yet so engaging!  
"Happily Hopping" focuses on reading words with ed and ing endings where the last letter of the base word is doubled.  You can purchase the game @ Teachers Notebook  or @ Teachers Pay Teachers.
Super Girl to the Rescue focuses on reading er and ir words.  You can purchase the game @ Teachers Notebook or @ Teachers Pay Teachers.
The Fudge Shop focuses on reading dge words.  You can purchase the game @ Teachers Notebook or @ Teachers Pay Teachers.

I know your kiddos will love these games just as much as mine do!
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