Monday, September 12, 2016

Back in the Swing of Things--(or Sometimes Last Minute Interventions)

I have finally assessed all first and second graders with a DRA, helped with AIMSweb, helped with Sight word checks, helped with Star Data----do you see the trend here?  I have been assessing out the hiney for our starting data points for intervention today, when my classes finally started, I was so shocked at how quickly the day went.  My little intervention groups are about 20-30 minutes.

So today, I'm feeling all good about classes starting. Lessons plans done on Friday before I left school... I have all my things ready to go in my basket on my guided reading table--books laid out--things organized for most of the week......and it dawned on me.  I am teaching MATH this year too.  Oh no! 

So, I do just like any teacher would do, and I "wing it."  I knew that our 2nd graders were struggling with fact fluency, so we went back to the basics. 

We talked about adding 0 and adding 1 to numbers.  We talked about turn-around facts.  The page has the numbers listed in order from 0+0 to 10+0 and 0+1 to 10+1, with the 2nd column flipped.  There are a total of 44 math problems, I believe on the page. 

My students have always liked time tests.  I don't make them as a way to "beat" other people--just that it's always a competition with yourself.  They have always loved racing with their last time to see if they can go farther.  Today, we did the same thing...I gave them 2 minutes to see how far they could get.  I then boxed the portion they missed after their 2 minutes and had them complete it, untimed, and then checked their paper.   

We followed up with a spinner fact game of adding 0 and 1.  Having the answers at the top helped some of my students look back at the answer ,but they were reading their math problems as they were doing it. I thought surely it is going to stick.  I think as one of my students finished up, he had finally got the hang of adding one and 0, and was moving much faster than he did when he started out.  The fact that when the students spun a math problem and the sum wasn't on the paper, helped constantly reinforce math facts as well. 

They enjoyed this activity.  I try to model a lot of my classroom activities like this where they practice a skill, it's checked, and then there is a game to play.  It seems to follow the "I do, we do, you do" that we often do as educators. 

The activity is nothing fancy, but if you'd like to grab your own copy, simply click HERE.  

I have also finished and uploaded a new Sight word activity. It is called Fun Phonics.
Fun Phonics-First Grade and Fabulous

Students will practice beginning sounds, sight words, handwriting, and simple comprehension all on one page.  I am all kinds of excited for my students to begin practicing their Fry words with this activity.  You can check out this pack by clicking on the image above. 

Happy Monday! :)

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Fry Words--Check list and a Freebie

I've mentioned a few times that our district finally has agreed on what our sight word list should be.  Most of the teachers I worked with used Dolch words.  Then the past two years, we had some sort of CRAZY combo that I have no clue where some of the words on the lists came.  This year, it has been determined that we are going for Fry words.

I started transitioning to Fry last year when I heard that this was the direction we were going.  I even made Fry Fluency Reads that were similar to the Dolch Fluency Reads that I mentioned I was finding much success with. I even decided that I was going to continue using the Dolch reads as it adds more fluency practice...AND when the words overlap in both sets, it's a different practice page.  There are NO duplicate reads.  You can click the images below to check them out!  (And they will be on sale tomorrow--8/22/16)

I keep these as a guided reading warm-up, for  book boxes, for homework practice, for one-on-one--they are by far my FAVORITE product I've created to date.  (Making Words rank right up there close too!)

After these were created, I got to thinking, I would like to have a check list to progress monitor their sight that I can keep right at my fingertips...or a book that I can use to track their known words.  Seeing how I never know exactly what my schedule looks like, or what grades I'm servicing (since I'm Title One now)--I needed something simple for me to manage, something that I could share with co-workers and/or parents.  

I shared this with both a first and second grade co-worker who think that they can use what I came up with.
I divided the Fry words into 4 lists.  There are 25 words on each list.  I often try to fold in 5 new sight words with the words that they already know.   I think that arranging it like this will make it easy for me to help monitor their progress.  Also, since the sight word fluency reads I've created review previous Fry words, this will go hand in hand!

First, I've taken all the Fry words for the First Two Hundred and  put them all on one page for a quick check guide.  

Next, I created the booklet pages with 25 words per list.

This was the image BEFORE I fixed the word for that is running into my border.

I also took the Fry Phrases and created lists for them.   I came across 81 phrases for the First Hundred and 91 for the Second Hundred.  They were divided into four lists as well.

Maybe this will be an easy way for you to manage as well. 
 If so, you can click below to grab you a copy of the sets.

Click below for the check list for the First and Second Hundred Fry Words

Click below for the Fry word Booklets.

Tell me in the comments--how do you keep track of your sight words?
Do you use Fry or Dolch?

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Back at It...

I have to keep asking myself, "Where did my summer go?"  
We didn't go anywhere.  We didn't do anything.  But, I honestly can't tell you where my time went.  I think it was probably spent on a ball field or two--or waking up early to get everyone up and at it so the darling daughter could get to Softball conditioning.  It wasn't a summer spent vacationing---but it sure did quickly vanish.
 I'm just not quite ready to let summer go.  

Don't get me wrong.  I LOVE my job.  I really do.  It's just to be able to feel like a family for a few weeks out of a year is HEAVENLY.  I get to see my kids, talk to my kids, play games---and not feel rushed to get everything done, plan lessons, clean house, do laundry, run 50 places during the week---it's just nice!
---even if sometimes I DID want a vacation from my own kids! :)  You would think with a 14 year old and a 10 year old that this wouldn't be the case---BUT some days---it most definitely was! Ohh that TOGETHERNESS! :)
So that brings me to the start of my school year.  I always have these thoughts that I'm going to work on school stuff during the summer.  However, that didn't get accomplished either.  I will chalk it up to the fact that it's because I'm not sure what grades I'm working with this year, or what subjects. True story.  I will probably be servicing 1st and 2nd...and probably back to doing reading AND math this year.  Regardless, I base my instruction around my students levels, so it's hard to guesstimate what to work on.

BUT---today---TODAY I DID work on something.  I woke up to this sweet email.  An email asking me if I had any other stories like this freebie I shared a while back:

The Little Cat Freebie-First Grade and Fabulous

You can click the image above to check it out. 

So I thought to myself...why not try another story?  After all, my kids started back to school today, and I was home with hubby.  If I made myself busy or at the very least ACTED busy, he would eventually find his way to the laundry and housework.

I thought about the what I could probably use for intervention with my students.  Our district adopted Fry Words for this school year.  I have already made Fry Fluency Reads like the Dolch Fluency Reads that I've shared on this post.  See link HERE.  You can check out the Fry Reads on TpT from this link HERE.

Since we are working with Fry words, I wanted to stick with using the first few words on the Hundred list.  I came up with this story called The Dog.

Several sight words are used throughout the story, 
as well as CvC words for decoding, and simple use of picture clues.

These are the words I focused on in this selection.

I also wanted to include a simple comprehension component.

Finally, just like in the story The Little Cat, I made sure to include some word work/sentence work.

If this looks like something that you could use for Back to School with your students, or for intervention groups, you can download this freebie on TpT.  
Check it out by clicking the image below.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Addition Yahtzee

Where is summer going?  I even want to ask where did spring go?  Between softball and baseball, life sure has kept me busy.  One would think that both of those would be over--but my son decided he wanted to try travel ball---and now he's talking Fall ball.  Mom's thinking, it's not even Fall---let's just calm down for one week.  Heck, next week is 4-H judging for general projects--then the fair for our market animals isn 't too far away either.  Life would be simpler without kids, that's for sure---but I definitely think they add some excitement to my life.  As a matter of fact...that's where some of my ideas come from--my kids.

We spend a lot of time camping.  We're always looking for new things for "entertainment" when we go.  Did you know that with kids---camping isn't supposed to be relaxing.  Who knew?!  My husband built us a new Hillbilly Golf set as our old one wasn't very stable.  I love this.  We just store it in an old folded chair bag and it has worked perfectly for us.

 Then that made me realize that I needed Yard Jenga 
Image Source:  Creative Green Living

and Yard Yahtzee
Image Source: Rogue Engineer

Then it hit me---if we like these games as a family, and my students like dice games--
Why not try to incorporate it into the classrom??!

PLUS, I am just LOVING these big dice I picked up from 5 Below.

I thought using these in a jumbo classroom edition of 
ADDITION Yahtzee, may just be the Fun needed in my little room.

I tried this out with my daughter too. 
I needed to know what direction to take this idea, what would work, and what wouldn't.

I think I finally came up with directions that will work with any student needing to practice basic math facts.
I also included a CHALLENGE that will use all 5 dice. I thought this may be a good review for my 2nd graders in the fall.   In this version, students will be encouraged to make a set of ten in hopes of adding numbers easier. I even have a big tub that they can roll them out onto the floor. FUN, right? :)
 Regardless of the version you choose to play, it will be a fun way to get students adding and writing equations.  AND--Best of's free.

Addtion Yahtzee-First Grade and Fabulous
You can click the image above to grab yours off of TpT.
Please remember that feedback is important and encourages more freebies! :)

**NOTE, you do not have to play this game with the big dice. 
It will work just as great with dice in a little lidded container! :) 

Thanks for stopping by!! :)

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