Spring is here!

Spring is here!  The days are getting longer, the trees have blossoms, flowers are everywhere, and the little darlings are bouncy and chatty.  Spring break is next week, so we need to have FUN in the classroom this week.   This spring word building activity is the perfect way to teach or review the -ing chunk in words.  This set has all you need to build the words in the -ing word family as well as word cards for a sort.

We will be building the words with magnetic letters.  The set also includes little letter cards that are just the right size if you like to use those.  I prefer the magnetic letters because of the tactile feel and shape of the letters.  I also like to save the paper and printer ink by not printing out the letter cards.

Students will record each word on this cute sheet after they build it.   In my Kindergarten class, 10 words seems to be just the right amount to keep them focused and on task.  More than that and I start to lose them.  So, this set comes with 16 words; enough to do this two times if you feel it is appropriate.  Or, you could differentiate the words used in groups based on student needs.  The simple words king, wing, sing, may be more appropriate for some students while others need the challenge of string, spring, thing, and even- wring!

This is an example of the word sort using the -ing words and other words.  The other words will give your students a review of 2 and 3 letter blends and the sh, ch, th digraphs as well.  This word sort could be done as an extension of the word building or as a completely separate literacy center.  There is an additional recording sheet included in the set for that purpose.

If you would like to use this fun word building activity in your classroom, you can find it on my TPT store.  Just click on the image or link below to get it.

We are also going to review addition and subtraction with a fun game.  This one will be used several times in the upcoming weeks because it does not scream Easter, but rather is a colorful spring theme.  It really can be used at any time of year.

This game can be played 4 ways.  It can be used with addition problems, subtraction problems, 10-frame number identification, or mixed problems.  It is simple to play and could be done independently by students after they have been trained.

This is the game board without the answers covered.  I'm loving it right now.  And for those of you that know me.... of course I had to get some butterflies on there.  I think games are such a great way to learn.  I use lots of games in my classroom.  Young students need to have FUN in school!  This is a print, laminate, done! set that will provide many no prep lessons in the future.  Gotta love games!

If you would like this game for your classroom, you can get it on TPT.  Just click on the image or link below:

Happy Spring!
Happy Teaching!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

How do you catch a leprechaun?
We read several books about leprechauns so we could learn more about them.
Then we gathered up lots of good stuff, like above.  And we added:

You can use everyday things you have around the classroom to make a trap.   The green berry baskets were very popular, so were the paper towel tubes and tp rolls.  Just about anything can be used.  It is also a good idea to have some green paint:

and glitter is always fun:

Then you let kids use their imagination and support them with whatever help they need.  And you get amazing Leprechaun Traps built by five and six year old students!  Those are the best kind!
Here are a few photos of ours:

If your traps are set out on a table, it is a good idea to make leprechaun ladders for the little fellows to climb up on...

We didn't actually get any leprechauns, but we did see evidence that they stopped by the classroom.  And they left us some gold! YUM!

We had lots of fun this week reading stories and talking about ideas related to this theme.  The sweeties wrote about why they are lucky.  I was so impressed with how most of my students immediately knew how to finish this prompt.  Boy, we sure do have so much to feel lucky about:

"I'm going to cach a leprechaun."

"my mom found a four lef klofr"

We also had a very thoughtful discussion about whether leprechauns are real.  It is a very tricky question.  There are many things that we believe in even though we don't see them... 
Do you believe in leprechauns?  Here are some of our ideas:

Do you need some sweet practice pages to compliment your St. Patrick's day activities in your classroom?  Look no further.  This is a great set of pages for March in kindergarten that cover lots of math and literacy skills.  They are fun and engaging with cute St. Paddy's graphics.  Most are interactive with cutting and gluing, dabbing, or coloring.  Hope they are a help to you.  You can find them right here: Print and Go! St. Patrick's day Math and Literacy (NO PREP).  You can see a little preview below.

I hope you had a wonderful St. Paddy's day.
May the luck of the Irish be with you!
Happy Teaching!

CVC Word Fluency

We have been working hard in the classroom to make sure that all students are able to read and write those little 3 letter words fluently.  It is such an important early step in reading and literacy.   This set of cards has made it easy and fun for the kiddos to master cvc words.  It is a big 70 card set and we use it for games, sorts, building words, and other great activities. 

This is an example of a word sort we did.  First the sweeties sorted the pictures by medial vowel sound.  Then they matched the word to the picture.  Then they recorded the words on a paper and read them all back to me before they left the center.  Powerful! 

Here is the work:

Here is the nonsense/real word sort we did.  There are 20 additional nonsense cards in the set.  The kids liked the silly words.  They just sound so funny.  But, reading those silly words really helps reinforce the skill of phonetically decoding words.  It also reviews  the letter sounds needed to be fluent.  This is the same activity as above without the pictures and just using words.  

And some student work:

I love this set of cards, because it has so many of the center activities I like to do to support cvc fluency, but just the one set of cards.   It makes my life easier to just have one set for everything and not hundreds of cards and game pieces for all the activities.  Although I like to have a variety of activities and games in the classroom,  I have found the storage, organization, and maintenance can become cumbersome.  Sometimes LESS is MORE.  That is why I made this set of cards.  One resource with some of the most powerful word work activities around.  

This card set can also be used to support learning for rhyming, and other phonemic awareness skills.  I also have my kids pull a picture card and build words with magnetic letters.  This set could be used for write the room, and many other literacy centers in the classroom.

Just a few examples of some other activities in the set:

This is a 4 in a row Bingo game:

These are some examples of the cards in the set:

This little board game is included too!  This is another fun way to practice cvc word reading.  

If you would like this valuable resource to use in your classroom you can find it at my Teachers pay Teachers shop.  Just click on the image or links below:

Happy Teaching everyone!

Fishing for Numbers!

We have been having "oceans" of fun fishing for numbers in the classroom.  My kiddos really enjoy fishing out magnetic numbers and recording subtraction problems during centers time.  I remembered this idea when I found it on Pinterest.  So, I made a full set of center recording sheets for addition and subtraction.  Thank you to Make Do and Friends for the post!  Here is the link if you want to check out the blog:  http://www.makedoandfriend.com/2012/02/learning-numbers-magnet-fishing.html  This has been re-pinned by lots of people.  I pinned it quite a while back from Charlotte Braddock- this is her page: pinterest.com/kindkids/.  Thank you ladies!

So,  if you are interested in fishing for numbers in your classroom, here is what I did:

I made recording sheets for adding, subtraction from 5-10, and two sheets for decomposing numbers for 5 and 10.  I also added some fish cards to be used as a manipulative for students who need the support. There are also some fish number cards for teachers who cannot or do not want to use magnetic numbers.  These are the fish cards:

You get two full sets of each fish card in this set.  There are also directions for a little number identification game called BANG!  It would be perfect for beginning of the year in Kinder.

If you would like to use this in your classroom you can find it on Teachers Pay Teachers.  Just click the image or link below to get it!

Thanks for stopping by!
Happy Teaching!

All-Star Student Writing Rubric

We all know how important it is to let kids know what is expected of them.  If students are ever going to reach the learning goals we have set for them, we have to let them know how to get there and what it looks like to reach them.  This student rubric was a wonderful support for my young writers this week.  The first thing we did was look at each piece of sample writing and talk about what was good and what could be improved.  It was easy for the kids to decide how many stars each paper should have.   Here they are up close so you can see too:

I got some of the best writing I have ever seen from my class that day.  Even better, we now have a permanent tool for referring to expectations for conventions, ideas, sentence structure, and drawings.  Even though we talk about those all the time, it made a big difference for the kiddos to actually SEE the difference between what is below expectations and what is 4 star writing.  My little students were highly motivated!

The best thing is that now, I have a laminated, permanent tool for my classroom that I can adapt and re-visit throughout the year.  The poster is on a regular size chart paper.  I took my 8.5 x 11 writing paper and shrunk it on the copy machine to 80% to make the little papers for it.  I have extras so that I can make examples for different times of the year, as well as ones that demonstrate specific traits of writing.

I have seen some student rubrics on Pinterest, but never pinned any.  This is just my take on the idea.  I like that I can adapt it to the needs of my students from year to year.  It only took me about an hour to make it and the samples.

Happy Teaching!