Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Halloween Math and a big Thank You!

My Halloween Math Unit is finally posted on at my Teachers Notebook store and on my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  I used some super cute clip art from KPM doodles and I think they turned out really well!

I want to Thank Claire from Miss Toffee's Class for awarding me the Versatile Blogger Award! I feel so lucky that this is my second nomination for this award!  Now receiving this award comes with conditions and you can see mine here!
Then I learned that  Jennifer at Herding Kats in Kindergarten awarded me the 'I Heart Your Blog' award!

This award also comes with conditions!  

When you are awarded the I Heart Your Blog Award you are asked to do the following things:

1. Give the "I Heart Your Blog "Award to your favorite Top 10 Blogs that have touched your heart and inspired your teaching by listing them on your blog.
2. Contact that person and let them know of their heartfelt award.
3. When you receive the award, copy and paste the graphic on you blog and give a shout out to the person who nominated you.
4. Spread the LOVE by passing the "Heart Your Blog" Award on to your Top 10.

I really have a top 100 blogs that I just love to stalk on a daily basis, but here are some especially awesome kindergarten blogs!

Can Do Kinders

A Place Called Kindergarten

Lory's Page

The Very Busy Kindergarten

Kindergarten Rocks
Creating & Teaching

Thanks to all of you who take the time to read my little blog!


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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Shared Reading or Read Aloud?

I received and awesome question about shared reading and read alouds.  While I definitely do not consider myself an expert, here's my answer!

Read Aloud-to me a read aloud is just that, a time to read aloud.  I try to read aloud several times throughout the day.  I keep a book basket under my chair filled with theme books and other books that I think my class might enjoy.  Sometimes I choose the book and sometime the kids choose the book.  After reading the story the book is placed in the classroom library for students to enjoy during centers, free time or (coming soon) daily five!

Shared Reading - to me is a time when students and the teacher share the book.  I usually use a big book but I also use poems in a pocket chart or on a poster.  Since I now have an awesome smart board I also use books or poems that I project onto the smart board.  I feel that the most important thing is that the print is large enough for students to see.  If there is a book that you really want to use for shared reading that just isn't "big", you can always put the repeated text on sentence strips and put them in your pocket chart.  For example if you are using Pete the Cat your pocket chart can have I love my white shoes, I love my red, shoes, etc. *Also, I make these books available for students to read in the big book center.

My weekly shared reading format is flexible.  I don't always do everything on the same days.  It depends on the, story, the time of year, and where my students are as far as behavior and academics. Anyway, here is my flexible format!

Day 1:  Introduce Book-Identify parts of book, title, author, illustrator.  Discuss picture on the cover.  I usually only do a picture walk if the book is non-fiction.  We do make predictions based on the cover and the title.  Read the book, point to the words with a pointer, make predictions about what might happen next as we turn the pages.  After reading we discuss the book-favorite part, characters, main idea, etc.

Day 2: Question for recall.  What happened at the beginning? middle? end?  Re-read, pointing to the words,  with participation.  After reading we might do a thinking map (bubble map a character, flow map beginning-middle-end),

Day 3: Question for recall.  Choral read with students.  Choose students to come up and find words or letters that we are working on.  I have them cover the words with highlighter tape (I don't like wikki sticks in my big books, I save them for other activities).  Thinking map response to big book (sometimes we do more than one type of map for a book, it just depends on time and the skills we are focusing on.  Some weeks I don't do any thinking map responses to the book).

Day 4: Questions regarding book.  I try to ask more higher level questions rather than just recall.  Why do you think that happened?  What would you have done?  Etc.  Choral read.  On this day I choose students to point to the words on each page while the class choral reads.  It takes a while, but I ask my student of the day to point to the words on the first page, then he chooses a friend to point on the next page and so on through the end of the book.  I ask boys to choose girls and girls to choose boys.  I also ask students not to raise their hand after they have a turn.  MOST of them are very cooperative!  Sometimes we do day four on day three, especially if we are doing day four as a class book day.

Day 4 Create a class book:  Sometimes we use day 4 to create a class book.  I actually prefer to do this but sometimes, I confess, time gets the best of me.  Anyhow, I just move day 3 to 2 and day 4 to 3.  Also, we might not do a thinking map. We start the day by choral reading the book.  Then I introduce the class book.
Class book ideas:
-change the words somehow:  Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Look Who's in Our Room?
Black Witch, Black Witch, Who do use see (use pictures of kids in Halloween Costumes)
-Change the pictures-re-type the text but have students illustrate the pictures (this is what we did for Brown Bear, Brown Bear last week).

Day 5:  Activities vary based on what we have done so far:
Read Class Book, if made.
Re-read book and create a thinking map whole group or in small groups
Read similar book and compare
Art project response to book

Other Ideas:
Mask words and use reading strategies to figure out the words you are reading
Read the sentence without saying the last word, allowing children to fill in when choral reading

Ok...All this typed without my glasses, please excuse any typos!  I'm sure they are there :)  Also, I know that I forgot stuff.  Somebody should start a shared reading linky party.  I would but I don't know how!  Anyhow, I hope this helps somebody!

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Friday, September 23, 2011

Pictures, Freebie and What we've been up too!

So busy!  That's how I feel right now! I'm so glad to be back in my routine, but I long for the days when I can get out of school on time and head to the gym!  Anyway...Here are a few pictures of what we've been up too!

Our shared reading big book for last week was Brown Bear, Brown Bear.  We used interactive writing for the color words and we sponge painted the animals from the story.  For the pictures I blew up clipart that I bought from KPM Doodles.  The kids had a great time sponge painting!  We had enough copies of the sponge painted clipart that we were able to make our own Brown Bear book.  In our version we used my picture for the teacher and a class picture for the children!  They loved reading their book in the library center!

Next week our Big Book will be Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, but our peom will be Some Letters.

You can get your pocket chart and song and poetry poem here!  Enjoy!

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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Math Book Giveaway!

Mrs. King at Queen of the First Grade Jungle is giving away an an awesome math book!  Go check out her awesome blog and enter to win!

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Monday, September 19, 2011

Thank You!

Thank you Chrissy at Read Write Sing Kindergarten for nominating me for this award!  So sweet!  Be sure to check out her awesome blog!

After accepting this honor there are some things you are requested to do.
1.  Thank the person (people) who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog.
2.  Share 7 things about you.
3.  Pass this award along to 15 other blogs that you have discovered.

Seven things you may or may not know about me:

I'm kind of an open book so it's super hard to think of 7 things someone wouldn't know about me, but here goes!

1. I've only taught kindergarten but I'm super close to being certified to teach early childhood special ed.  
2.  I'm super flexible in my classroom, but I'm really terrified of real change-see #1.
3. I get so distracted that I sometimes drive home more than once to make sure I shut the garage door!
4. I love doing super crafty projects that I find on pinterest, but sometimes they look like my students made them!
5. My first college major was in Nutrition, I'm sooooo glad I didn't stick with that!
6. I love to cook, and I'm usually a better at cooking than I am at making projects!
7.  I LOVE TV!  I am so excited for new fall shows!  Watching how I met your mother right now!

Well, I thought that was hard but now I'm supposed to nominate 15 more blogs!!!!  So many choices!  Well, here are just a few that stalk on a regular basis!

Heidi Songs
Mrs. Jump's Class
Mrs. Wills Kindergarten
Kindergarten Crayons
Keeping Up With Kindergarteners
Ladybug Teacher Files
Chalk Talk
The Inspired Apple
Adventures in Kindergarten
Little Literacy Learners
Growing Kinders
Pocket Full of Kinders
Joy of Kindergarten

Thanks for all of the inspiration!

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Monday, September 12, 2011

Love These!

Do you ever make a totally awesome purchase and you just want to shout about it to the world?  Me too!  Well, a couple of weeks ago I bought these fabulous math journal prompts from Dee Dee Wills at Teachers Pay Teachers!  They are awesome and my kiddos are so excited about writing in their math journals!
My friend Sara at school does the most awesome Zero the Hero book.  I want to join in the fun but sometime  arts and crafts are just hard for me!  So I bought this fantastic Zero the Hero unit from Growing Kinders Teachers pay Teachers store.  (Confession-I skipped calendar today because it's the 10th day and I wasn't ready)!  Can't wait to use this new unit tomorrow!

Thanks for stopping by!


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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Brown Bear, Brown Bear Math Choice

Here is the Brown Bear, Brown Bear Roll and color sheet I made to use with my math choices next week!

Brown Bear Roll and Color
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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Thank you Ms. Patterson!

When I first started my blog I figured that at the very least it would be a good storage spot for my ideas.  I am so thankful that I actually have followers.  And now, my very first follower rated me one of her top 10 blogs!  I am overwhelmed with gratitude.  Mrs. Patterson is amazing so if you are reading this please check her out! 

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Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Name Game

Last week Mrs. Lochel at Keeping Up with the Kindergarteners posted about the name game that she does with her kindergarteners (read her post here). I was so inspired that I started the name game the very next day!  Now each day, in addition to cheering the letters for the student of the day's name, we are doing the name game.  Like Mrs. Lochel, we write the students name on a sentence strip. Then we cut the letters apart and place them into the pocket chart.  We cheer "give me a --" as we spell the students name.  Then I model how to draw the student. After that we pass out the papers and all of the students draw a picture of the student of the day. I am so grateful to have learned about this idea!  My students are loving it!  I love that it #1 gets my students up for a break from the rug,  #2 my students are getting lots of practice drawing people, and labeling them and #3 they are loving it!  I don't bind the books, I just put a heavy duty staple in the corner during my lunch break.  Below is a copy of the cover that I made for the book.  Hope you like it!

Name Game Book Cover
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