Monday, July 27, 2015

Art and Max

Let me start by saying I looooooovvvvee David Wiesner. His books are phenomenal. Have you read Mr. Wuffles? It's another one of my favorites.

But, I also love Art & Max. I just discovered this book this summer, and I am so excited to use it! It will be perfect for beginning writing workshop!

When I begin writing workshop, after we spend a bit of time just learning the structure and expectations, I like to do an illustration study. I think this really helps my reluctant and emergent writers feel like they have some tools to help them portray their story to others. So typically we'll learn how to look at the shapes in a picture to make them easier to draw, learn about labels, and putting details into the picture. This is where I plan on using Art & Max.

In Art & Max, Max essentially "erases" Art. Max tries to make him again, but realizes he needs to add some more details to make it look like the real Art. It's a great visual for showing kiddos the importance of those little details!

What are some of your favorite texts to use in writer's workshop?  

Thursday, July 23, 2015

At Home Reading

I have always asked students to read at home for their homework. 100 minutes a week, split any way that works for them! But I think I always assumed that all parents knew how to do this. Silly assumptions always get me in trouble!

I'm planning on implementing "fluency folders" next year. Basically sending each chid home with a book that's on their independent level, with some support for parents.

(Click the picture above to get this freebie on TpT!)

I want to be sure that reading at home is beneficial and that parents feel like they can do it and see the amazing thinking of their child!

Any tips for those of you that do something like this?

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Back From the Dead...Hopefully

Well, I think it's safe to say that anyone who used to read this blog has probably given up. And for good reason! 

Last year was crazy. Started grad school. (Why did I ever decided grad school and working at the same time was a good idea? I'm obviously insane.) Had quite a difficult group.

Side note--This is going to be my 4th year teaching. My first class--phenomenal. And since then, it's seemed to go downhill. Was I just wearing rose-colored glasses that first year? Is this normal to think each class is a little worse than the one before?

But a whole year?! Without a single blog post?! Terrible. What kind of a blogger am I? Well, I am deciding now to make a conscious effort to be better this year. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Advice Needed!

Ok fellow bloggers, I am in need of some advice! My grade level will be receiving some money soon and it has to be spent on "instruction." So, my team is starting to look at possible PD events/small conferences that we could spend the money on. 

What's the best PD you have ever participated in? Favorite presenters?

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Apples Galore!

It feels like fall is almost here! Yesterday, it was 100 degrees when I left school. This morning, it's 63! Glorious!

Our class will be celebrating fall by starting one of my favorite units next week--apples! I added a few updates to my apples unit on TpT.
Head over and check it out! It's on sale until Monday!

Monday, September 1, 2014

September Currently

It has been forever since I have done the currently link up! I got to where I would think about it on like the 7th of the month instead of the 1st. I guess I could have joined in that late, but then I would feel like I was even less together and more scatterbrained than I usually see myself. And I like to pretend like I am somewhat together! :)

Monday, August 25, 2014

Spin a Word

I am always looking for easy, fun, no-prep centers for my kiddos. At the beginning of the year, I like to think that I will have centers prepped weeks in advance...but, of course, that never happens. It turns out to be more of a morning-of, oh-crap-I-have-5-minutes-before-the-kids-come-and-I-am-now-super-rushed situation.

One of my go-to centers is Spin a Word.
It is super easy for the kids to pick up on, and almost zero prep for me! I did actually remember to take a picture (miracle!) of my kiddos doing this the other day while we practiced Word Work procedures, but it turned out super blurry. Ugh. 

Right now, this packet includes 12 pairs of word families for the kiddos to practice with, but there's more to come soon! Pick it up now in my TpT store!