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Monday, December 16, 2013

Rockin' Reindeer Centers

After all the prepping I did for stations, and sub plans for today------we ended up with a Snow Day!!
Now I love snow as much as the next teacher, BUT----it doesn't really help me out in this situation! ;)

 I'm thinking we may be off to a snowy season here in Ohio, and it's about time! They are even looking at a weather model that may be bringing a foot of snow to our area next weekend.  Yes, the snow is pretty--but next weekend?  Come on mother nature--just a dusting for Christmas--just enough to make it look pretty! :)

I can't have it both ways can I?   My coworkers have laughed at me because I've said that if the snow doesn't benefit me...I don't want it!  I mean what's the perk of being a teacher in Ohio if you can't have a Snow Day once and again!  Not snow on the weekend...not snow on the holidays like the trending pattern, BUT a SNOW DAY!   Okay, enough of my snow rant....moving on!

We have daily math intervention in my building.  During this time, I like to play games or math stations and then work small group (or one-on-one).  When planning for subs, I try to make it easier for them.  My kiddos, for the most part, adapt well when I'm out.  (It helps that I've told them that subs may do things differently than I do, so just roll with it.)  When my kids are at stations, the noise factor needs to be monitored, so I change my stations into whole group activities.  They are still meaningful, they still provide review, and it's still engaging.   

For example, in my Reindeer Games math pack,
Click image above to see it on TpT. 

I have a sorting center with fact families.  
I quickly changed it into a whole group activity just with chart paper. 
It's nothing fancy, but it works. 

I had four fact family jars in the sort, so I folded chart paper into fourths.  Students will be given an equation card to determine if the answer is correct on the card.  They can self check using their number line.  The chart paper will be hung on the board and students will put their candy card into the correct section on the chart.  Then as a class they will check over their work.  (The fact family cards all have the same piece of candy for each fact family for quick self checking.)  Then they will write the fact families on their recording sheet.   This station made for quick sub plans with just a quick alteration.  Even if you don't do math stations in your classroom, you can always adapt them for whole group activities.  It makes for fun, engaging lessons and there are TONS of ideas on TpT!

Then this weekend, I worked so hard using these ADORABLE graphics from Nikki at Melonhedz!

And prepping these literacy centers.
Click the above image to see it on TpT.

This may be my FAVORITE literacy station pack.  

Let me break down this pack a bit.
 It contains a phonics, parts of speech, reading and writing.
It's a great literacy pack with minimal teacher prep, and the only "Christmas" thing included was the use of red and green and reindeer!

For the phonics portion, my focus was on S blends.  
 Students will match the s blend pictures to the correct beginning sound.
Instead of a recording sheet, I opted to use a coloring page. 
 Students will read the  s blend word and color by the code
Finally, I included a center game.  Students will spin the beginning sound spinner and find a word with the same blend on their game mat. 
 I also included an s blend picture page for students (or teacher) to reference the pictures used.
Below is a sample preview pic of the some of the phonics pages included.
For parts of speech, it is designed the same way as the phonics.
There is a sort, recording sheet, and a game.
In the sort, students will determine if the word is a noun, verb, or adjective by placing it on the sort mat.  I included three mats with prompting questions to ease students in the sort. They then will record their findings onto the answer sheet provided.  A game has also been included.  
Students will spin the spinner and determine which part of speech is being used and find that answer on their game mat.  Below is a sample picture of some of the pages for the parts of speech activity.

The last two activities in this pack are for sight words and sentence writing.
The sight word activity is a game where students will read a sight word sentence and determine the missing sight word (among a select group of answers). Partners can check the answer sheet that is provided before students roll and advance around the board.  The final activity is an independent activity.  Students will be given a sight word spinner page.  They will spin the spinner, and create a sentence with the sight word on which they land. I'm using this to reinforce sight words and sentence structure.  My kiddos are still having a hard time with remembering a capital and a period. 
Here's a preview pic for the activities as described above. 

Now, I'm always late to the game because I try to  make my stations based on my students needs  each week.  So this is on sale through tonight (12-16-2013) and then it will go back to regular price tomorrow.  This really is one of my favorites!   Since these are crucial skills and need constant review for my kiddos, I may have to make a winter pack just like them.  What do you think?


  1. DeAnne, I think your pack looks great. I also like that it isn't just totally Christmas so you can use it all winter. Are you on Unit 3 Week 2? I should be going to Unit 3 Week 3 after the break, but I got behind a week from our pacing guide due to snow days, I enjoyed being off, but I sure hated trying to squeeze it all in, especially with it being right before Christmas. Today was our last day, but I'm teaching intersession through Friday.
    I'm Not Your Grandpa, I'm Your Teacher

  2. Hi I love the reindeer graphics did you join the Melonheadz club? Is that how you got the graphics? Gwyn can you e-mail me your answer gsheets2@gmail.com


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