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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Bushels of Fun (with Apples)

First of all, let me say KUDDOS to any parent who is a stay-at-home!  For those of you that follow me on FB, you know that my son has been sick for almost a week.  (He's better and can go back to school tomorrow WOOT WOOT!)  Here I thought HEY.  I can get some things done around the house, do a little baking, maybe work on a few things for school---uhm, not so much.  When you have little ones home, you don't get much done except for tending to them...Which that's really the way it should be!  So kuddos to you mommas, pappas, and caregivers!  You are SUPERHEROS in my book!!

While prepping for my subs the past few days, I tried to stick as close to routine as possible, do the basic stuff with the basal, etc. However, last night---I thought...UGH! Our skill through Treasures is R blends and well, I'm SOOO not ready for that with most of my class... So I went and browsed TpT and I found some great things to use with my kiddos today.

I love Cheryl's Sub Tubs.  
This is great for a K-1 (and even 2) classroom to have on hand for those emergency situations.  
I bought both of the ones below.  
One to "have on hand" and the fall one because it is just PERFECT for this time of year. 

Since I was focusing on the story There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Leaves, I searched TpT just a little bit more (BIG MISTAKE).  Do you know how many products are out there? ;)
So this is what I purchased:
I like the activities Carrie (Buzz into Kindergarten)included.  The math activities were perfect for my students for "centers" and it went well with Chery's Sub Tub.
Another cute activity I found was a craft by Mary from Sharing Kindergarten.
It goes well as a retelling with the story.  It's cute how the kids can "feed her."

So that sums up my activities for today. 
 Luckily my subs have been retired teachers from my district--and they are WONDERFUL! :)

So what's in store for the rest of the week?
Well, I'm a little late to the party, but Johnny Appleseed's Birthday is this week. 
Have you seen the amount of products on TpT for this? 
 (Don't look---you will be there FOREVER and end up broke! Well, at least I did lol) 

Here are a few things that I hope to use this week and next in our studies.

I love Alisha's unit.    Her colored reader that's included is perfect to project on the board and read to my students for students in social studies.  And there's an interactive reader too--so it prompts questions for my students for discussion.  Ohh and it's packed with writing and I can integrate science and well, it's Just FABULOUS!

I also LOVE Kristin's packet. 
She has designed a unit with suggested activities throughout the week.  The math and science that was incorporated in it though make it fun and engaging.  She also has a writing activity to go with the crockpot applesauce, and I love the black/white version of her Johnny Appleseed Book.

These two ladies have me set for a while for science, writing and social studies (along with the other great things that are included).  Be sure to check them out if you still need something.  

Now I've been working on some apple things too.  Now my hubby said to me, "Why are you working on things?  Didn't you make things LAST year?"  Uhm...well, yes.  So my response to him:
"Every year is a new year.  Every year my class has different needs.  I can't work on things that I did this time LAST year if my students aren't able to do it."  
He knows this---he's a teacher.  He just likes to get under my skin sometimes lol
My kiddos are struggling this year.  I feel like I am overwhelmed, so I once again went back to the basics.  My new stations for Math and Literacy.  They are in two separate packs.
You can click HERE to see the Math Edition.
What's included:
Apple Counting: Number Recognition 1 to 20
Apple Counting: Sequencing Numbers and Comparing
Apple Addition: Making Ten
Here's a sample from the pack that you can place at  your stations or use during your intervention time when students are working on one-on-one correspondence when counting, when learning about ten frames, or when making addition problems.
 (The border from this is from The Bubbly Blonde--I love her work all around, can ya tell)
the literacy pack....
You can click HERE to see it on TpT.
What's included:
Missing Apple: Finding Missing Letter or Word
Apple Matching: Matching upper and lowercase letters or words
A is for Apple Pie: A Beginning Sounds Game
Apple Rhyme Time Sort Activity
Real or Nonsense Sort Activity/Sentence or Not a Sentence

Here's a sample from this pack.
This can be used as a morning worksheet, or a quick check for rhyming.
You can click HERE to grab it. 

Both packs were designed to use in my classroom, to meet the needs of my students.  I have some lower firsties so we will continue to work on this important K skills.  
Both of these packs are currently on sale (until Friday 9-27-13) if you are interested. 
I have also included black/white versions in most of the activities. 

All this apple stuff is making me hungry now 
(which reminds me I do want to try an apple pie cupcake) ;)
I will leave you with a quick little reader.
Author unknown--but I think it's a fun little reading/coloring activity to add to your classroom if you are working on making applesauce (or even just doing apple activities).

 You can click HERE to grab it. 

By the way, I do ((Puffy HEART)) love comments! 
They are like cupcakes---they make me happy! ;)

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Making Life Easier (For Me!)

So this week, I started Math Stations (for the first time ever).  I've done math centers before, but due to timing I always had just one block of time for centers and I just had  math/literacy stations together.  This year, I was ready for a change.  I posted a little bit about it HERE where I included some freebies.

For the most part, it went pretty well.  I have an aide for about 45 minutes during my morning time 2-3 days a week.  I made sure I scheduled my math station/group time when I have her help.  She works with my low group during stations.  It is a BIG help!! :)

*I had originally thought I had cute colored baskets at school--but I was using them for book boxes. 
But these black shower caddies from Wally World work wonders. 
I labeled my tubs (3 different groups).

Then I labeled Ziplock baggies with the color of the group and a day of the week. 

Then I dropped in the center/station that I wanted the group to do each day.

The Ziplock baggies fit perfectly in the bigger part of the caddy, and I could add manipulatives, dice, pencils, etc. to the other parts of the caddy to keep everything right at the fingertips.

 Since I'm differentiating my stations, the work may be a little more in the beginning, but as the weeks progress, I can just bump things down from my other groups--saving time in the end.

And it's all right there---in those little caddies.  And having it ready to go for the week makes it easier on me if I have a sub or a helper in the room. 

The kids seemed to enjoy them.  Their biggest comment was "we get centers TWICE?" 
I don't think they realized they were learning! :)

Since I'm trying to make life easier (for me) ;) -I created a list of my Super Reader Sight Words.

 I had made the Super Reader Sets for a few of my struggling firsties last year...and though I'm going to use it this year, I also wanted to be able to find the word easily.  The words all come from one of these sets:

You can click the links to see the product on TpT.  

I thought that having the word list would help me pull resources as needed for words (whether I use it with the basal or continue using it the way I designed it).  It also lets me see what words I'm missing so maybe I can get a new set going! :)

*If you own the Super Readers Sets, you can click on the word list above to grab you a copy of the words that are in the packs.  I hope it helps you too! :)

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Centers, Work Tubs, Freebies--Oh My!

Wow!  Why is it the weekend goes so fast and the work week kinda drags at times?  Maybe it's because I slept my whole day away today..I dunno?  Literally people--I CRASHED!  I woke up and found that my little dude had given me a stuffed animal to sleep with.  How sweet! He knew mommy wasn't feeling up to par yet, and he was trying to tend to me!  LOVE HIM--isn't he just adorable?
Moving on..
Last week I was going over word families with my students.  I'm not sure they did them last year because as I was talking about them, I had some blank stares.  I always introduce word families with a house, and the "Davis" family.  I tell them that everyone in my family has the same last name.  We also talk about how that doesn't always happen as we have other brothers and sisters, family members get married, etc. I draw a little house on the board and label it with a word family and we talk about only members with that last name go in that house.  We went through several words both ones that fit and ones that didn't--which brings about this center.

I had shared this a few years ago, but I've switched up some graphics. 
*Note the primitive clip art....I do love me some salt box houses and "junk" 
(As you can see in the pic above)
You can click the image above to grab yourself this free activity.
 Students will sort between -an and -at words and record them.

I thought this would be a good review for them as I explained it to them as "houses"
and be an intro to our other sorts we will be doing throughout the year.

I just uploaded this pack today.
Click the image above to see it on TpT.
It is currently on sale until 9/9/2013 til 4:00 pm EST.
It is on sale for $3. 
 I am loving this pack and look forward to using it with my students throughout the year.  
It's simple, and ready to print makes it even better for me! :)

In years past, I couldn't figure out how to get math tubs started.  I would differentiate my instruction during whole group, and call students up one-on-one.  I never had a separate block of time for stations, so I always added math in during the time I was doing Guided Reading as well.  This year, I"m going to **TRY** to see if I can change that.  

I am going to do differentiated math tubs and guided math groups.  
God willing, I will be able to do this! 

I color coded my groups. 
 Yes, I used cupcakes! Imagine that!
If you want it, grab it HERE.
Thanks to Ashley Hughes for the great graphics! :)

I will put them in coordinating baskets I picked up from the Dollar Store or Target a few years ago.
I have my groups paired up by ability to make it easier for me to instruct my groups during work with teacher time.  This way we can also work on the games together should they be confusing or too difficult. 

I have this great Pattern Block Book that I can use for exploration. 

And I have other things to include as the year progresses--geoboards, clocks, flash cards, etc. 

My Easy Peasy Math Games are going to be great to include now during this time as well.
 You can click the image to see it on TpT. 

But since this is new to me (and them), and we haven't been in school for a very long time...I'm starting with some things I know that they can do or need more practice with. 

Below you will find some activities that I'm going to get started with.  I'd like to share them with you as well.  Some I've posted before (years ago) and I've just revamped them.  Directions are included for each activity in the download.  Click the top picture to grab the whole set (because I'm too lazy to upload several sets!) ;)

 I hope you can find use of some of these activities.  

I am off to laminate before one of my favorite shows come on.  
I'm a huge fan of Unforgettable.....the funny thing is, I always have to ask my hubby what the name of the show is--because I FORGET!  (I'm getting old friends---old!)

Have a happy week!!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Number Recognition Game

Happy (almost) Friday!!  We made it another week.  I'm telling you though, I'm EXHAUSTED!!!

I posted on FB that I thought some of my kiddos last year were a challenge, but BOY, God must REALLY have Faith in me.  I always say everything happens for a reason. 

Mother Teresa once said:

Which brings me to my memory verse for the YEAR!

I can do this!  We can do this!

For those of you who don't know, I teach in a low socio-economic school.  We have free breakfasts and lunch--and I don't want to be stereotypical---but usually that means some learning gaps in some students.  Gaps that I desperately want to fix.

Today we continued working on the short vowel a.  This book seemed to be a hit.
Next week, I will be able to use the stations in this pack--and my goal is to make our cat tomorrow.  
It may also become a station next week! :)

Click HERE to see it on TpT.
Click HERE to see it previewed with a freebie.

We also worked on number recognition to 20 again.  
A lot of my students can orally count, but become confused when asked numbers randomly, or to write a given number.  I started with Kindergarten Common  Core standards.  We will master those numbers to 20 during our intervention block.  I'm also hoping to begin guided math groups soon. 
This can be a skill we work on during that time too.

When reviewing our numbers, I had my kiddos use their number line 
and touch the numbers as they counted.  
I also held up the number for them to visually see it after they attempted using their number line. 
*Note, I just use ones cubes for markers/chips....simple and easy to pass out. :)
They seemed to like our quick little Bingo game.
 But I made it during lunch, and I wanted to "cutesify" it just a bit.

And I thought--MAYBE, someone else could use it too?
It's print friendly, and would work well for small group games (There's a set of 19 though)

So if you'd like, you can click the image above to grab yourself a freebie. :)

Have a great night, and a happy Friday.  


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