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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Last Minute Halloween

So, tomorrow is Halloween.  OY!  In my city, it is (or was) supposed to be trick or treat too.  It has since been postponed til Saturday due to some severe weather we are supposed to be getting.  Last year it was postponed as well--due to snow!  Yes friends...snow in October! Welcome to Ohio!  Stick around, because if you don't like the weather, there's a new day ahead of you with who know what type of weather! ;)

My building decided to allow students to wear their costumes to school tomorrow (again, thinking that it was trick or treat).  We don't have a Halloween party, but they are allowing the students to parade around in their costumes.  The kids enjoy it---this teacher--
AHH--well, let's see how the day goes! ;)

I had planned on sticking as close to my lesson plans as I could, but I thought...surely I know better.  The kids are excited for the holiday--they are excited about their costumes---they are just excited about EVERYTHING! :) I thought I better have a bag of tricks JUST.IN.CASE.   

I have the Little Old Lady who wasn't Afraid of Anything ready to go, but I decided to make some activities to go with Splat.  I LOVE SPLAT!  
I think we will use the craft template from the Back to School Splat I made last year and add a pumpkin to him for Scaredy Cat Splat.   I have also found a lot of GREAT crafts online too that I may also pull from.  Ya do whatcha can on this CRAZY days right? :)

I thought I'd share some of the things I made.
You can click on one of the images below to snag yourself a FREEBIE!
I do PUFFY HEART comments though---I feel my blog has been quite quiet lately! 
(Then again, I'm very windy on FB I know)




Sunday, October 27, 2013

Fall Center Fun

I know it's almost Halloween, but I chose this year to keep my stations more fall themed.  This way I can use them and reuse them up til Thanksgiving! :)  The skills that are in these fall packs are just perfect for my first graders, but they can also be used for Kindergarten or interventions for other grade levels. 

First up, Happy Fall Y'all---Differentiated Math Centers.
There are 4 station activities with differentiated skills for the activities.
I also included "I Can Statements" in this pack. 
You can click HERE to see it on TpT. 

Fall Literacy Stations are also differentiated.
Choose between phonics skills of short vowels or digraphs.   
There is also a noun activity, and a question/statement sort. 
 You can click HERE to see it on TpT.

After making this pack, I decided that I needed MORE review with short vowel sounds.
We use Wilson's FUNdations in my building, and this activity I think is perfect for tapping out and recognizing the sound of the words.  Students will roll the the die cube, identify the short vowel sound, and place a marker on their game board if they have a picture with the same sound.
This can also be used for one-on-one reinforcement, or students can write the missing vowel sounds.

 You can grab the above FREEBIE from TpT.  
Please leave feedback if you find it useful! :)

**The other fall stations are on sale now for $1 off--check them out! :)


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Gone Batty!!

Yes!  That title suits me perfectly right now.  With all the current changes in education here in Ohio--You know how test scores are 50% of my evaluation--with demands from administrators, data collections, TBT meetings, evaluations, testing, and parents---UGH! Somewhere along the line I forgot why I started teaching.  OHH YES!!  Because I wanted to be one of the ones that helped mold our future....to teach students to think for themselves..not be robotic and heaven forbid these students become just a number!   What happened to education?  None of this was around when I was in elementary school.  I *think* I turned out okay, though some may argue with the definition of "okay" ;)  I just wish that things could be less stressful, and more meaningful!! 


This week is one of those weeks.  It's a short week for us in my district due to an Inservice, and then a (nonpaid day) for Central Ohio Teachers Association.  I like these short weeks because I pull away from our basals and curriculum just for a bit.   For example yesterday we did various activities for Christopher Columbus.  Then today (and tomorrow) we are working on bats. 

I have Erica's bat unit that I bought (and loved) last year.  We are using it again this year. 
Click HERE to see it on her blog.  Click HERE to see it on TpT. 

We read/looked through a few non-fiction bat stories today. 
Here is one that the students enjoyed.
Click the picture to see it on Amazon.

We completed an anchor chart to help students for tomorrow's writing and 
we completed the bat diagram.

We sequenced numbers for math, comparing them and discussing the tens/ones.

 We also watched Magic School Bus Gone Batty.  
(You can still find it on youtube if you search by episode numbers..I do think they keep trying to take them down as soon as they get put up.)

Tomorrow we are going to read Stellaluna and use more of Erica's pack.
Click the image above to view it on Amazon.

We are also going to be using Teri's bat craft and writing a fact (or facts) we've learned about bats.
Click HERE to see it on TpT.  Click HERE to see it on her blog.

I also am going to use this nonfiction reader with my students. 
At our school library, many of the non-fiction readers are above my student's level. 
They lose interest due to the length, but enjoy the content and the pictures.
I try to skim over a lot of the material, but decided that it may be easier 
to write my own story for them.  
 You can click HERE to grab you a free reader.

Next week will go back to a normal week.  
We will be working on these in our math stations/tubs.
You can click HERE to see them on TpT.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Collecting Data

Mondays...I tell ya!  I posted on FB that I may have came home, taken a nap, got back up and was ready for bed all over again.  I'm usually not this drained.  Maybe it's the change in the weather---because here in Ohio--it FINALLY feels like fall!!  :)  I'm ready for those hoodie/jeans around the bonfire nights.  I'm a camping/outdoorsy gal!  The cool nights, the fall colors---it's pure Heaven for me! 


My state has developed a new way of assessing teachers/students--SLO's.  This is part of our teacher evaluation as well.  We have to show how our students are making growth.  My district chose to use a vendor program--in which case, ours is Star.  We are using the Star Early Literacy component to measure student success.  Though there may be some validity to it, it can also come up faulty with wrong clicks, quick clicking, etc. so I wanted to make sure I had something quick to pull and reference from that matches Common Core as well.  We are always collecting data from our students in some regards (we also use Fundations), but I wanted to "cutesy up" what I was already using. 

I thought maybe some of you could use this quick checks in your student data binder/folder as well.
First up, a Reading Level Data page. 

 I had originally made one and shared on FB, but due to everyone having different goals for end of the year, and a different way to measure the levels, I removed the goal and the levels.

Then I was asked if I could remove the months that I used as testing dates, 
so I created a blank one as well. 

 You can grab an editable file by clicking on any of the images above.  It will come up as a PowerPoint presentation.  All you need to do is add a text box to where you would like to add your goal, levels, months, etc.

I've also wanted to work with my students on being accountable for their sight words.  They love the sticker books, but because each pack of Super Readers I created only focuses on 25 words at a time, I wanted something more visual for them.  There are 100 words on the sheet below.  The words are a combination of Fry and Dolch and come from all 4 packs of my Super Reader sets in my TpT store.
Click HERE to grab a copy.
Students will color in the words when it is mastered.  I will continue checking over their words as well to see that they have truly "mastered" them.

Finally, another skill I'm wanting to continue to improve with my class are numbers--reading, recognizing, writing, counting.  I have several who are still having a hard time with the teens.  Here is my data sheet for numbers.  I will continue checking on students starting with zero each time.  I wanted to make sure that previously learned numbers haven't been forgotten as we continue to learn other numbers on our trek to 120.

Click HERE to grab a copy.
I hope you can use one of these data pages in your classroom! :)

Now I'm always late to the game on being seasonal and timely.  I wish I could be better about that, but I'm just not---I could make a thousand excuses for why I'm delayed:  mom, wife, baker on the side,  I facilitate our TBTs (both 1st and then K/1) in which I need to plan and schedule topic discussions, etc----but the fact is--I enjoy the TV and my favorite fall shows have returned!  ;)  Speaking of which--it is almost time for Two Broke Girls!

HOWEVER, here is a cover preview for what I hope to have finished (before Christmas!)--if not there are TONS of great products on TpT to help me out with center time! :)

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