Thursday, November 7, 2013

Our little ones these days are active little friends aren't they???  I know I am always looking for and creating new ways to get them moving while learning.  My new product on TpT is all about walking to learn!  Walk-A-Story gets children up to use cute little footprints to retell stories in different ways.  We begin with First, Next, Then, and Last.  Scenario cards help students retell simple tasks, like making chocolate milk, before using them to retell longer stories.  Next, we move into Beginning, Middle, and End and Somebody, Wanted, But, So.
For math, we use the footprints to practice counting by 5's and 10's to 100.  We practice putting the feet in order in different paths:  circular, zig-zag, race-track, etc.  Then we simply walk and count!
Check it out on my TpT on the link below!


Thursday, October 24, 2013

I gave a teacher training this past Summer for my district and had such a blast sharing my insanity!  I had several teachers asking for a copy of my "Push-A-Sound" activity flip books that I use as part of many of my Guided Reading lessons.  I must confess, the ones I use have been with me for about 18 years, and were constructed of real clipart that you copied out of a book, cut out, and mounted on construction paper!!!  Yes, they are that old, and so am I!!!!  I don't even know that I can get those pictures any longer!  So, last night I focused my insanity into creating new cards, with cute clip art that you can purchase from my TpT store!
This activity helps children segment and blend phonemes, starting with 2 phoneme words.  The listen for only two sounds, the beginning and ending sound.  Students push a small manipulative for each sound in the word up towards the picture.  I use small green and red plastic circles.  I started using these to build on the "go" and "stop" colors, to reinforce left to right progression.  We put the green circle in the fist box and the red circle in the second box.  They have to push the green circle first, starting left, and move right, to the red circle for the last sound...where you stop.  For the 3 and 4 phoneme words, we use two green and one red circle and three green and one red circle, because you keep on going till you get to the end.  
I have had great success with these flip books over the years, and may have to make new ones with the cute clip art I used in this item!  Click on the link below to get to my store.

                Click here to access this product:  Push-A-Sound

Once my children are able to push the sounds, we begin writing the sounds to connect reading to writing.  For some of my struggling students, this is like the "aha" moment, when they see the connection of blending sounds for reading and segmenting sounds for writing!  

Many Blessings!

Busy, Busy, Busy!

Is it me, or is teaching getting more and more demanding?!?!?  I feel like every time I get something accomplished, I have ten more things on my "to do" list!  This week we had report cards due, the TEMI math assessment to grade, conferences to get ready for, and RTI meetings!  AAHHHH!
Yet, I still made time to make a class set of Rekenreks, have you heard of them?

The newest math tool to get students subitizing, understanding number combinations, building addition and subtraction skills...
I used heavy duty card stock (like what you use to frame a picture), pipe cleaners and two colors of beads.  Funny, to me they look like what I created a few years back using two colors of beads and a shoestring!  I think I posted on them here.  Mine had 10 and 10 however, rather than 5 and 5.  Guess I was a little ahead of my time!  So far the kids are enjoying them, and I am learning all the ins and outs of how to use them...higher level questioning etc.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Oh my goodness, this past year is a blur!  We added two new amazing teachers to our kinder team, and this year one more!  Our dual language program is rockin' and rollin', and we are so busy that my blogging took a major hit!  Now we are ready for another new year and I can't wait to see what this kindergarten team can do!  I like to give my teammates a little something each year to let them know how much I appreciate them, and this year I'm excited to give them each some "magic wands"!  I have had one of these for several years and use it let my students know when it's time to switch activities in our center/Daily 3 rotations.  I bought some of these as give-a-ways during my Summer Workshops for our district and they were a huge hit, so I decided I would buy more and give them to my team as well! Hopefully, it will start our year off with a little magic of its own!

When you tap these on the table they make the most beautiful sound!  Your students will love them and immediately stop to see what you need!  You can buy yours at  Liz is wonderful and can help you with anything you need!


Sunday, August 12, 2012

A little prayer for you!

Found this little prayer on another blog on TBA, and loved it!  I'm giving it to my kinder team and wanted to post it here for everyone to see.  May this year be the best yet!  It is a mighty job we do and we need all the help we can get!  Bless you all...

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I just love the inspiration and beginnings each new school year brings!  Our school is adopting a program called No Excuses U...turnaround schools.  This program is about teaching ALL kids to be ready for college if they choose to go!  This is really important when you work in a title 1 school, as so many kids would never imagine this could be a part of their future.  Today, at our training we were talking about how we make excuses for kids from underpriveledged circumstances, under the misconception that we are being compassionate.  Make no mistakes, we are compassionate, but with "making excuses" we lower our expectations of these children.  We cannot do that!  We must believe in them and help them overcome obstacles so that they can realize their dreams!  Many of which they have dared not dream yet!  We must believe in them, so that they will someday...believe in themselves! We must push and teach and do what some think is the IMPOSSIBLE, though it is not.  Below are links to No Excuses U and the video we watched today that brought me to tears...if these two young men can overcome their impossible odds, and help each other...who are we to say that anyone cannot??

No Excuses U

Saturday, June 30, 2012

I can't believe it's been so long since I last posted!  Life is crazy busy, the end of our year had some challenges and I was pretty stressed!  Thankful for my returning team members and the three new girls who are brave enough to head down this Dual Language path with us next year!  We are going to ROCK!
I am spending my Summer writing IPG's (instructional planning guides) for our district and that is keeping quite busy as well.  While doing this, I am creating more items for my TPT store.
Pictionaries are a new thing I am working on!  Pictionaries are literally "picture dictionaries" that I create for the units we teach.  Being a dual language teacher, and a monolingual teacher for many years, I was always trying to find new ways to engage my children more in writing.  Some children take risks easily, while others worry that their writing isn't like ours, and they seem paralyzed to get going.  Through the use of the pictionaries I created this past year, I noticed that both my  native English and native Spanish students were more engaged and writing more, creating stories, and rhymes with less stress!  This gave them the vocabulary they needed and how to spell the words that were central to their writing.  I believe it is a good support tool for emergent writers, just like learning sight vocabulary is good for emergent readers.
I have posted My Farm Pictionary, and Spooky Fun Pictionary on my TPT store!  Check them out...there will be many more to come!