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Friday, February 28, 2014

Five for Friday!!!

It's Friday and I remembered to link up for Five for Friday!  Thank you Doodle Bugs Teaching !

Also, I totally forgot to take pics of student work so thumbnails of the file will have to do!


My second graders were reading the story "All About Robots" from the blue LLI kit.  They moved through it pretty quickly and did really well on their DRA based summaries of the story.  They were all able to get two good facts from the story for each section.  Since we moved through it faster than expected, I needed something for them to do today while I assessed them.  Most were finished with their summaries and interpretation/reflection questions.  I decided to have them create their robot.  They had to tell me what their robot does, where we could find their robot (sea, space, etc. because that was in our story), and most importantly, how does their robot help people.  Then they had to compare and contrast their robot with a type of robot in the story.  It was cute to see what they came up with!  Also very interesting to see who had trouble with an open ended question.  One of my little friends told me he already had robots and didn't need to think of a new one.  I explained to him that that's not an acceptable answer.  I told him he is going to come across a lot of questions that ask him to "Tell a time when you felt the same as..." or "What would you do if..."  Even if he doesn't have anything to say he needs to come up with something to say!  I find all grades that I've worked with over the years really have trouble with this.

Holy AIMS WEB!  I had to paper assess my kids today instead of doing it on the iPads.  We're having group changes again so this was the way that worked best.  I hate having lots of papers sitting with no home yet :(

Big boy alert!  We took my 3 year old to an open house at a local preschool.  We are looking to put him somewhere now and wanted to check it out.  He loved it!  He starts next Tuesday for two days a week.  I'm so excited for him and I really hope this helps deepen his love of learning!  Best part is, they actually had an opening for mornings AND I get to bring him!  So excited!

In my kindergarten group, we've spent the past week on short 'e'.  They LOVE the sentence building book!  The short 'a' book was a hit with my previous group and my short 'e' book did not disappoint my new group either.  Both groups also enjoy the decodable texts and activities I created.  Besides just reading the text, students must read, write, and trace the words, respond to a comprehension question, build words with letter tiles, match words with pics, and their personal favorite, highlight all words with the featured vowel sound.  I had some very happy campers this week!  I better get a move on with my short 'i' decodable texts for next week!  You can find my short 'e' book here and my short 'e' decodable texts and activities here.

As I mentioned earlier this week, I purchased these phonics books to use with my groups.  I have and our department has their Common Core Comprehension books so I thought these would be good.  I really do like them however, their activities are very quick (I think they're meant to be) and would by no means take up an entire block of time. I think the other issue is that my groups are not as "low" as the groups I think the books are meant for.  I make adjustments by either not sticking to the grade level on the book and simply looking for something that will work for what I need and by adding to the worksheet/activity. I sometimes make them take it a step further.  For example, second grade was doing final consonant clusters.  Several of the activities were super easy and just asked them to write the final consonant cluster they heard in the word.  I made them do that AND spell the entire word.  That was great practice because I noticed, for example, that they could identify the /nd/ in the word like the activity required BUT couldn't figure out that the /ow/ they heard needed to be /ou/ and not just /o/.  I also felt that even though the nonsense word assessment I gave my third graders showed that several of them needed magic 'e' help, the weekly lesson/activity in the 3 grade phonics book was too easy.  It looked like something I would give my 1st graders (and just might!).  Again, I just made them take it to the next level.

Happy Friday!  I'm off to work on bundling and posting my consonant digraph books, completing my Bossy R activity packet, and creating my Short 'i' decodable text and activities packet!

Monday, February 24, 2014

A Peek at my Week!

With a full week ahead of us, I actually have some stuff to post about!  I'm seriously hoping this week doesn't contain anymore throwing up or stuffy noses.  I'm so over my babies having that!  Now it's time to link up with Mrs. Laffin's Laughings for her "A Peek at My Week" linky party!  I'm so happy to be joining again this week!

Since we have new groups and I was told that many of them were fluency and decoding, I needed something to help me out!  I don't really have a baseline as to wear to start with everyone.  I especially don't know where to start with the upper grades!  I finally purchased the Gr. 1 and Gr. 2 Common Core comprehension books that I mentioned in a previous post.  One of the reading teachers has  Gr. 3-5 and I love them!  I liked them so much I wanted to see what else that company has to offer.  Here's what I picked up!

I'm so excited to use them!  They're just what I needed!  I love that for each topic, it gives you a 5 day lesson plan/activities.  It seems pretty quick but that's perfect for my groups!

Ugh I wish I could remember where I heard this next awesome thing I will be doing.  I'm pretty sure it was Pinterest.  I just have to see if I still have it pinned!  Anywho, I read about a teacher who used tap lights for phonemic awareness activities.  I will most DEFINITELY be posting about this soon!   I'm so excited!

I have been super slacking off with entering all my kids into my AIMS WEB group.  Ugh. There's no time at work for me and then my babies will NOT let me do that!  MUST...FIND...TIME!

And finally, the healthy eating continues *sigh*.  You have no idea how badly I want a chocolate cake.  Okay maybe you do lol.

Stay tuned for more!  I have a lot more products coming your way this week!  

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Dipththong "Whiners" Posters, Activities, & Worksheets

 I DID IT!  I finally finished my Diphthong "Whiners" Posters, Activities, and Worksheets packet! Yay!  Actually, I'm almost finished with my R-Controlled Vowels "Bossy R" one too!  Wahoo!  My Vowel Digraphs "Talkers" Packet is getting a lot of traffic on Pinterest and seems to be becoming a popular download too.  I'm hoping this packet and the R-Controlled Vowels one will be just as helpful to everyone!

Here we go!

For those of you familiar with my Vowel Digraphs "Talkers" Packet you will know exactly what's in here, just with diphthongs!  For those of you unfamiliar with my previous packet, here's what's included:

*Features AU, OO, OI, OY, & OU Diphthong Cuties graphics created to help students get a visual of what sound each “whiner” makes
*Diphthong “Whiners” mini posters
* Pocket chart sorting activity
*Spin and Read game
* Memory game
*Worksheets (Missing Diphthongs and 3 levels of Fill in the Blank)

My students REALLY enjoy these activities.  I made the posters smaller and they are now hanging under their appropriate spot on our word house.  They frequently refer to it!  It's been a great tool!  I will be posting pics of us using it in class soon!  PLEASE check back frequently for more great products!  My R-Controlled packet should be done this week as well as my digraph books!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Snowed In!

Why hello everyone!  I'm still here!  Truth is, we've been snowed in a lot!  The original plans were that our school would be off Friday (Valentine's Day) and yesterday (Monday) for a four day weekend.  That's our "February break."  Mother Nature decided that wasn't long enough and gave us last Thursday and today off.  Needless to say, I don't have much on the teaching end to report on!  I actually took the time to focus on home projects and my babies rather than work stuff.  It was nice!  Here's what's been going on on the home front.

First, I thought I would be all "awesome mommy" and buy these for my baby.  He wasn't impressed lol.  I think the biggest problem is that they're thicker than other stage 2 baby food he's used too.  I think he has something wrong with his gag reflux as well so that's not helping.  Better not be anything bad! :(

  Next, my baby's new name is "trouble" and the picture explains it all.

Speaking of babies...massively sad moments in my house this week.  I did A LOT of cleaning and finally packed up all the 3-6, 6, and 6-9 month clothing he has outgrown.  It's soooo sad packing up things both of my boys have worn.  Mostly because I know I probably won't see anymore of my own babies wearing them :(.  Packing them away after the first isn't sad because there was the whole "Ooo I can't wait to see my next one in these!"  

Boredom has definitely taken over my house!  Today, my son was so tired of being stuck in the house and I had such a bad headache that I actually went outside and cleaned my car off just to take them to Dunkin Donuts!  OMG huge difference in his behavior venturing out!  Okay so the doughnut helped lol.  Anyways, here's what else we did!  I decided he would love it if we traced him!  I was right!  I taped together three large pieces of paper and made him lay down.  I tried to trace him nicely but he kept squirming and telling me it tickled haha.  Then, I put simple marks to show him where a shirt and pants would be.  Then the rest was pretty much him! I asked him what had to go on the top of the head and what color he had.  Same with eyes and what goes on his face. SO STINKING CUTE!  I have never seen such an adorable face!  Plus, it was the first time he really drew something!  

  I'm not completely done with my consonant digraph books but I will post about the 3 I do have done tomorrow!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

CVC Short 'a' Decodable Stories & Activities

Success!  My CVC Short 'a' Decodable text was a hit!  They loved reading the story and decoding the words.  Everyone read it to themselves, to a partner, and then all together.  This allowed me to spend some extra time with one of my little friends who needed some help reading.

One of my favorite parts is from the Activity Sheet.  The first thing on the sheet asks students to go back to the story and highlight or circle any words that say 'a' like 'BAT'.  This allowed for a great discussion on long vs. short 'a'.  I had to remind them that just because they see the letter 'a' doesn't mean it says the sound they are looking for.

My friend here tried to highlight the word 'a' in the title.  After she did it, she looked at me with a "waitttt that's not right" look.  I like that look haha.  The rest she did great and even knew that 'play' didn't say what she was looking for.

I always appreciate a quick opportunity for my students to practice writing neatly.  They actually sat quietly and worked hard to write neatly!

We didn't have time to do everything.  I was looking forward to it too!  Here's a peek at what we didn't get to.  There is a "Build a Word" sheet and an "Activity Sheet."  We only completed the highlight part of the "Activity Sheet."  There's a comprehension part and a match the word to the picture.

There's also pocket chart versions of each story.  I meant to take a picture of it before I left work buttt I raced out because I forgot I was meeting my mom to pick up the boys instead of getting them from her house!  Oops!  I will post one tomorrow!  I am moving on to Short 'e' next week so get ready from some more great activities!  Also, most of my groups will be working on fluency and decoding...even my upper grades.  I have to get my BIG products done for that ASAP!

Monday, February 10, 2014

A Peek at My Week--Linky Party!

I'm so sad I missed last week!  But here I am again linking up with Mrs. Laffin's Laughings for her "A Peek at My Week" linky party!  I love to see what everyone's up to!

We have a four day week this week.  This weekend is our "Winter Break" where we simply have Friday and Monday off for a long weekend.  I can't complain because we've had so many snow days already!

I'm not even sure what to say for this week!  We are getting our new groups tomorrow.  I don't know anything about them yet so I can't even plan.  Yikes!  That's okay :)  What I do know is that I will miss my kids!  They're getting all shuffled around.

What I DO know, is that I purchased this fantastic Valentine's Day themed packet and will be using it for my Kindergarteners and possible some of it for my First Graders:

I love it because there's a little bit of everything in it with a cute Valentine's twist!  There's beginning, middle, end sounds, word families, sight words, consonant digraphs, etc.  They will be great transition tools for the week!  Click on the pic above to head to United Teaching's TPT store NOW because she's having a sale!

Speaking of transitions, I know I mentioned these last week but we will continue to do them this week as well.  

The thing I am most looking forward to this week is finishing these babies!  I've been inspired to keep creating these books (thank you to those purchasing in TPT btw).  I'm really excited to get these done and organized!  I hope you will enjoy them too!  I'm hoping to have these Consonant Digraph books done and in my TPT store by the end of the week!

Next week my outline of the week will be so much better and more organized!  Enjoy your week and keep checking back!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

My CVCe Long Vowel Books...SO EXCITED!

ON A ROLL!  Wahoo!  So happy I got these done this weekend.  I have so many projects in the works!  I'm reorganizing all of my materials at work.  I was able to group a lot in one large binder.  Well I have so many wonderful resources now that I have to break each binder apart!  Every topic needs it's own binder now.  Big project considering I don't have time to work on it at work and it's too much to lug home!  Anyways, that's why I want these done!  I can add them into my CVCe binder for easy access!  Once I get my binders a bit more organized I will take pics!

There are two options for purchasing these books.  The first is to buy them individually (click on a book to head to my TPT store).

The second way to purchase is to buy the bundle (click on the image below to head to my TPT store).

Sadly, no one has entered any of my giveaways yet.  I will try again though!  I'm not giving up on you!  Anyone who comments today (Sunday, 2/9/14) as to how they would use this in their classroom will be entered to win the bundle for free!  Stay tuned for more products and updates!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Five for Friday!

It's Friday!  That means....Five for Friday!  Thank you Doodle Bugs Teaching !


Sunday was Groundhog Day and I fully intended on Monday being a day of groundhog fun for K-2.  The snow changed my plans and we've been doing a bit here and there (2 snow days and a delay so far, plus we are still alternating every other day between two different groups per grade).  The AWESOME AND FREE Roll and Read can be found at the KinderMyles TPT store.  LOVE IT!  I don't see the Build the Sentence one anymore but please check out Sheila Melton's TPT store because she really has some great stuff!

Soooo the snow needs to stop.  Just saying.  There's two more snowfalls in the forecast.  Blah.  I'm cold and want to be on a beach somewhere!

Since my oldest just turned 3 a few weeks ago, we decided to try him in the 3 year old gymnastics class.  He was in the 18 months-3 years class that allows parents in and is basically a free for all.  I was soooo nervous moving him but the teacher in me knows that he really needs to be with kids his own age where he needs to follow directions, take turns, etc.  He did great!  Hopefully he repeats the awesomeness on Saturday!

Since we seem to never be in school or see our groups a lot (new groups for Monday...yay!) I decided not to do something from LLI or Reading A-Z.  I opted for stories from these guys for 3-5.  I love them!  They are short leveled stories with comprehension questions.  What I LOVE is that there are three levels for each story.  The levels are Guided Reading and DRA based and can be found in the beginning of the book.  Then you find your level by 1, 2, or 3 dots in the bottom corner.  Each grade has different break ups of levels.  I believe they're available for 1st, 2nd, and 6th as well.  Love it!  I can extended the stories too by adding in a summary based on the DRA format for these grades as well.

This is what happens when you are stuck inside the house for numerous days because of the weather, have a son OBSESSED with stuffed animals (particularly dogs), and have a bunch of empty diaper boxes laying around.  We made dog/animal houses.  Three different sizes to be exact haha.  Just did the big one on the right last night.  He was so excited to be able to put the big dogs in a house! He has wayyyy too many stickers so I told him we should decorate the houses with them.  So fun!  At night we stack them in a corner on top of each other and put the animals to bed.  GREAT WAY TO CLEAN UP!

Enjoy your Friday everyone!  I have lots of things in the works for you!