Monday, October 31, 2011

Pumpkins and More



When I saw the brace map on Chalk Talk's blog last year, I knew I wanted to create it with my students. The kids were thrilled when they had a chance to paint with our volunteer mom.  We used their painted orange papers to make all the pumpkins displayed.  The brace maps and life cycles were created over a period of several days due to time.  I love how this bulletin board is visually pleasing but all "packed" with learning.


Today, in our attempt to have a little fun, we created this Pinterest project during math time. I must say, the kids were so highly focused on the project that there was almost no talking.  It always amazes me when silence arises because they are "into" their learning.


And, now, I can look forward to the hustle and bustle of November.   What are you looking forward to most about this month?   For me, it is Thanksgiving (and a week long break).  It is my favorite holiday; a celebration of food and family.  If you'd like to find out what I'm planning on reading or join my linky party, read the post below.

Happy Teaching and Learning!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

November Book Picks

For the past few months, I have shared what I am planning to read to my students.  I have loved the ability to collaborate with you on your book picks.  As a result, each month, I will host a monthly Book Picks Linky Party where you will have the opportunity to link up and share your favorites, too.

This month is a smorgasbord of literature focusing on nutrition, Veteran's Day, and Thanksgiving. 


Come back soon for a few ideas to go along with some of the stories I will read this month.

Happy Reading!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

What is Working

Today was our 36th day of school.  The kids are growing as learners academically and socially. But sometimes, it can feel like I/we run a marathon; our pace is fast and almost non-stop. There is such rigor in kindergarten and I am thankful each day that I have a full day to teach all the content that students are expected to master. An additional stress this year, is that my school is in Program Improvement Year 2. :(

Despite the challenge, I am pleased with some of the changes that I have made because of you! Blogging has opened my world to a new professional learning community. As a result, I can see my students benefiting from my learning. I have changed my word wall to look more like this. We worked on patterns using Fran's wonderful resource. (I may never staple a book the same way again!) We sing and dance away our sight words using HeidiSongs (click on the side bar for more info.).

Here is a little thank you gift to all the wonderful teachers who are supporting me; sometimes in ways I never imagined.  This game was created to help my students continue to count and master numbers to 10.  I like how as students work on this, they are also beginning to learn about "making a 10."  The kids love it!  To play, place 10 red/yellow counters in a plastic container.  We use these.  The child counts how many red and how many yellow and colors the amount onto the Ten Frame.

Happy Teaching and Learning!
      

Monday, October 24, 2011

Celebrating the days after Halloween

What do you do the day after Halloween? Looking to incorporate art, culture, and other traditions?  Why not teach about dia de los muertos.   To read more go hereThe mask template I used can be found on this site.

Happy Teaching and Learning!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Very Busy Week

This week has been a whirlwind week of learning.  
Here are a few pictures of the week thus far.

Readers Predict


Teddy Bear Day in honor of the letter B.


Magic

It has been a week of discovery.
Here's hoping your week has been as productive as ours!


Happy Teaching and Learning!




Tuesday, October 18, 2011

My blog has been nominated by Circle of Moms as one of the Top 25 Teacher Mom Blogs. I am honored and humbled to be in such good company. So many wonderful teacher bloggers are also nominated. You can vote for your favorite once a day through November 8th.


 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Roll A Sight Word

For the past four years, I have used Daily 5 as part of my literacy system. It is always challenging for kindergartners because five year olds usually do not have a lot of "skills" under their belt yet.
 My Daily 5 Pocket Chart

The pocket chart shows which options are available to my students during Daily 5.  We currently have 2 rounds of Daily 5 which last about 20 minutes.  Students complete Independent Reading first thing in the morning.

One of the options that I use during Word Work is Roll A Sight Word.   

Roll A Sight Word

Who doesn't love dice?

During this activity students can practice their sight words by rolling the dice and writing the sight word based on their roll. I like that I can accommodate this activity based on our learning and/or student need.

Would you like your own copy?  I have left it as a PowerPoint document so that you may change the words to fit the needs of your students.

This download is only intended for classroom or home use. It is not intended to be sold, reproduced or duplicated.  

Enjoy!  
Happy Learning and Teaching!


Monday, October 10, 2011

Celebrating Hispanic Heritage



I am joining TBA in celebrating Hispanic Heritage week!  Today's topic is about sharing your favorite books or sites.  I love to fill my classroom with books which represent children of all cultures.  The books I have selected are my personal favorites; one which represent my students and myself.



This is a two stories about a girl's growth from painted words to spoken words.  Great for older students; especially those who are English language learners.

This is the story of a little boy who must share a food for International Day. 





Every time I read The Circuit, I am reminded of the hardships my mother encountered as a migrant worker.  I have become the woman I am because of my mother. Me Llamo Maria Isabel reminds me to honor every child's name because each one is beautiful and important.    







I hope these books become part of your classroom libraries.  

Happy Teaching and Learning!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Math Work Stations

Here is what our Math Work Stations look like.  
The I Can chart is based on our learnings thus far.  
It will be revised as we continue to grow and learn as mathematicians.

There are 11 Math Work Stations in our room.

Most games involve one of the three topics from our I Can Chart.

On average, our work station time is 15 minutes long.

For now, I am monitoring groups. 
Soon, I plan to meet with students.  



Happy Teaching and Learning!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

My Favorite October Book

I use The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything for shared reading each October.  For those of you who are not familiar with it, it is about a little old lady who is being followed by two shoes, one pair of pants, and "other parts." The book lends itself towards having others join in the reading.   


This book is a great book to teach prediction.  Many times, in kindergarten, this is the first time that children are listening to this story.  Towards the end of the story, the author asks the reader a question.  We pause to make our predictions.

Click here for your copy.
Here are other ways you can use the story.  Last year, my first graders and I recorded ourselves reading the story.  The class had so much fun listening to themselves.  I found a Reader's Theatre that I would use with older students or could adapt with my class this year.  Make Learning Fun has an array of literacy activities.

Do you have a favorite book for October? Please share.
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Happy Teaching and Learning!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Books For October

Happy October!  I love books!  Really, I do.  October brings a whole new set of books to share with my students.

Here are a few favorites.  


My absolute favorite book for October is....
Freebie coming soon!
What is on your must reads list for October?  
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Join me and share your favorites with others. 

Happy Teaching and Learning!