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Monday, February 23, 2015

What's Your Opinion Minion?

What? What are you talking about? Is it really true? Is it really happening? Where did you hear that?
Yup, TpT is honoring teachers by having a special sale in recognition of  their super powers both in and out of the classroom. Are you feeling the love? This puts a lump in my throat and brings tears to my eyes. This this a wonderful way of acknowledging the important work we do each day with children. I am sending a huge, global thank you to each teacher out there for loving and caring for our students. You make such a difference and I feel gratitude everyday for the hard work and long hours you put in. You all rate as super heroes with super powers. Remember that and carry it in your heart. Many of us do not hear that enough!

10 Reasons Why You Should Love A Teacher:

1. Teachers manage to love all of their students, even the challenging ones who drive you crazy. 
2. Teachers can get their point across to any parent, on any painful topic and put a positive spin on it. They are communication rock stars. They learn to be experts by practicing on report cards when leaving comments. We speak in our own code!  
3. Teachers are generous to a fault. They create beautiful classrooms for their students that are often nicer than their homes. They offer their peers support, ideas, and curriculum at a moment's notice.
4. Teachers are organizers: They can take all kinds of junk and organize it in a purposeful way. The can create order from total chaos. They have systems for everything imaginable and can find  anything in their files! Warning: Do not mess with a teacher's files or paperwork.
5. Teachers are flexible and never let unexpected announcements, fire drills, lock- downs or vomit impact on their ability to roll out a lesson. They never let you see them sweat!
6. Teachers wear a million hats all day long. They are mom to an entire classroom, therapist, nurse,  drama queen, and decision maker. 
7. Teachers are feisty! They will scream and yell to protect the students in their room. They will challenge administrators and beg, borrow, and steal to help students to be successful.
8. Teachers are so sentimental. They love to hug their students, give a high five for a successful moment, and have been known to cry over a child's homemade card or gift.
9.  Teachers are loyal and never stop talking about their profession with their fellow teaching friends.This is tough on spouses and a teacher's own children but they learn to endure. My husband can verify this. He warns those that are meeting me for the first time.
10. Teachers are the best friends to have. I know this to be true. I am a teacher and proud to be one.

Fill your cart with amazing materials. I have a few things that I have worked hard on but my favorite is my opinion writing. I hope you will take a look at it. It is some of my best work.
I am using this in my own classroom.  Have you tried doing opinion writing in your classroom with 5 year olds?  They love it because they ALL HAVE OPINIONS ON EVERY TOPIC IMAGINABLE. My students love taking surveys, graphing the results, and writing their opinion on a variety of kid friendly topics. You can see it right here.
Happy Shopping.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Lincoln is so Stinkin' Cute

My students have loved reading these 2 emergent readers about Lincoln and Washington. They are right at their level and they feel so proud and successful. I have them in my TpT store for just a couple of dollars... no big deal. We read many different stories and compared and contrasted him to Martin Luther King. Their understandings were amazing.
We guided them through these drawings, first on a white board and talked about Lincoln's tall hat and how he stored important papers in it. They were fascinated by his ability to teach himself how to read and we also talked about how he persevered (our unit of study) and set goals for himself. Whew, that's a lot for a 5 year old to take in but they really loved hearing all the non fiction stories. I swear a 5 year old can make a connection to almost anything you throw at them! 
How adorable are these. We hung these in our window and it looks precious from the outside. Both classes are there and I love watching our students proudly show their parents which one they did. My administrator laughed so hard she almost choked! Try this with your kids.

So naturally our sight word practice was using Abraham Lincoln and this time we hid a penny behind one of the cards. My kids do not get tired of this activity and thought the penny was so much fun to find. This is a great way to build sight word fluency with young children. We chanted, "Abraham Lincoln was his name. He wanted men to be the same." Okay, don't judge. This was not my best...
The Ikea frames come in red, white and blue so I took advantage of this and did the teen numbers in ten frames for my students to practice and do with a partner. They adored this activity and it really keeps them engaged. They picked up the frame, brought it to their seat and each student counted and recorded their response after they both agreed on the answer. I love these frames and use them all the time! 

Where did that 4 day weekend go? I am preparing for a conference and trying to finish up my PowerPoint. I will tell you more about that later. Come back to find out who I am presenting with. She is such a superstar in the blogging world!
Have a great week friends.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Hurry and check this out if you use The Open Court Reading Program

Do you have the Winter Blues right now? I am offering a little freebie for all my Open Court buddies. It looks like this. I use this game with my class all the time and they love it. I gave you all the directions. You can hug me later. Yup we are still hammering teaching beginning sounds to a few of my strugglers but the others just enjoy the activity. You can have students do it with a partner or just work on it independently. You are the boss and get to decide!
Open Court is a reading program that has been around for a long time. Our district continues to use it and based on my Facebook fans many of them are also using it. I create many things to scaffold this program for my English language learners and I decided to post a collaborative activity (yes you need to be using this model if you are implementing Common Core). So long story short I posted a super freebie that you will want to grab if you can use it...
How do I get the freebie?
Click on the icon for Kindergarten Crayons and it will take you right to my FB page. Easy, right? Even I can figure this out!
Are you there? Okay now "like" my page at the top. Got it? Awesome. Stay with me here. One more step so don't wimp out on me. See the button on the left side that says Fan Freebie? Hit it and download this 24 page file. Yup leave a comment so I know you got it. Thanks. Now you are my FB friend and you will see other cool stuff along the way.

Monday, February 2, 2015

We Are All Over Those Mean Teens

We have worked on those "mean teens" all week and the kids loved this Sparkle Reader so much. They actually stamped into a ten frame using the back of a new pencil and a red stamp pad. This was so exciting to them and they really did a great job. Stamping can put my teeth on edge if I am really being honest. I am not a big fan of red ink all over your hands, clothes, and mouth... yuck.

The big conversation was about filling the first frame completely and then moving on to the second one for the additional ones. The text in the book supported their learning and they got to trace each number, as well as "rainbow write" it. THEY LOVED THIS ACTIVITY! I think the repetition of this activity and the use of manipulatives to get them ready for this book made a huge difference. They get it. If you want this reader it comes in a set of 4. You can go to my TpT store and it is very well priced. Pick that little number up right here.  They are so proud of these books and I love making readers for math concepts.

I love these frames so much and they are only a dollar each at Ikea. For weeks I have tried to come up with an activity for using the bigillion extra ones I purchased but nothing came to my brain until WHAM... it hit me. I can do write the room activities and move them around the room where ever I want because they stand up on their own. I love that you can use the front and back of the frame too! Because we are learning about weather...yup those little cuties are all dressed in different clothing. Awesome, right?

The kids were in love with this activity and I was in love with their engagement. It was SILENT when they were recording. Scary silent. I love scary silent. My more capable kids worked on this independently and the kids who find this kind of word work challenging did it with a partner. I am making these for math, word work, and sight words. Any other brilliant ideas? Who is on board with this idea?

Have a great start to the month of February and come back to visit soon!