Saturday, March 29, 2014

Freebies and Linking Up

Freebies & Linkys
It has been a long few weeks for me at home and at school. So I have a few freebies for you. : ) I am linking up with Five for Friday; TBA's Freebie Friday, Manic Monday & Coast to Coast Kinder's WOW Wednesday.

First, I do not speak French. Our school is in the PYP certification process and our school district funds a part-time French teacher. Kindergarten doesn't get any instruction. However, I decided to try and put together a center with spring words in English & French.  My class was thrilled to get this center added as a Write the Room. I love these frames from Teaching in the Tongass. You may have seen the rainbow ones in my Rainbow Reading.
My disclaimer: I do not speak French so if you see an error in my word choices, please email me. : ) If you are a native speaker and think of other great garden/spring words, feel free to email me.  
 You can get the freebie here

Second, we are studying plants. We are growing them for our Science project. Our class chose the medium as the variable (soil, dirt, sand, empty pot, rocks). Thankfully, the fish tanks from our Science kit are making mini-greenhouses because plants don't grow well in my classroom. The pea plants have even survived over-watering. Bonus: We learned the dirt turns to mud when you add too much water.

Third, we loved learning that we eat roots. My class' favorite root veggies: radishes and carrots. For morning work this week, we added to color the code. We always write sentences on the back. So for these, we wrote word problems. I pick 5 carrots and 3 radishes. How many in all? The kinders can use rebus pictures in the sentences. Then they showed how to solve their problem.

You can get 2 different versions for free from my TPT store here. Both featuring these cuties from Kari Bolt's Gardening set.

Fourth, we have Math meeting after new games and workstations. We don't do a lot of questions every day but sometimes we have long discussions. A change in our schedule has allowed for some parallel teaching and the class requested trying small group games as opposed to just partners. Some questions we reflect on alot include: 
What materials did you chose to use? Would something else have worked better? 
What worked with the game? What didn't work with the game? 
What would you change? Why? 
What strategy or hint did you use that might help a classmate?
Did you preserve?
What problems did you have? How did you try to solve it? Were you able to?
What did you do that helped your partner?

It vary your math meetings, try using question cards. Go to my Facebook page and download this freebie. Click on the April Freebie tab. The "phones" have blank bubbles for you to write your own questions. The picture above is an example. As a freebie, it is a pdf and you are not able to type in it.  Laminate the colored pages for a wipe-on and off response sheets or print the b/w for students to write answers on. Kids and teachers from Educlips & Phones from Ashley Hughes.

Fifth, I am joining in the Spring Cleaning (even if the weather is not Springy here) & having a 15% off sale at TPT. I love the toadstools in Krista's springy sets.

Have a great week!

Freebie Fridays

Monday, March 17, 2014

5 for Marvelous Monday

Here is my Five for Friday and Manic Monday Freebie post all in one. A photo one at that. 

My mom had her birthday on Wednesday. My kids picked out graphics to make her an online comic strip since she was away caring for her mom. This is a picture from the end. The eldest two had fun resizing the pictures. My grandmother passed Friday after a battle with cancer. My eldest daughter and I made her this picture.

School was crazy this week. Our 3rd grade buddies (and my daughter) had state testing. We made three different candy cards during the testing window. Here is the last one - graphics by EduClips colored by my kinders.

 Here is our domino addition worksheet projected on the SmartBoard. They had fun recording this way. Check out my post from Wednesday about Domino Pond Addition. They worked with partners on the Domino Pond mats and recorded the addition sentences on whiteboards. This child also drew the domino. : ) You can pick up the Domino Pond mat and recording sheet here for Free.
This is a center I made for one of my teammates. The cards are from Rainbow Rhymes & Reading. This student was so proud of his cookie sheet that he took it to visit the office. The students had the option to make the words with magnets to match the picture and then find the word OR match the words and then make it with magnets. We keep our cards in that nifty blue snack containers from Dollar Tree (I so need more). 

 I am linking up the freebie with Classroom Freebies Manic Monday.

Classroom freebies

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Wow Wednesday Linky Math

I love to decompose - not the rotting log kind - the number kind. There are so many different activities and ways to represent numbers. As we have worked with different numbers (especially ten), we have explored combinations that create those numbers.
We talk extensively about "and 1 more" and yes we work on ten frames all the time. How many more do we need to get to ten?

Then came the time in the year, our school district said we should start addition. We started by making cowboy hats and gluing addition words on them. We talked about the vocabulary. We made lassos (out of pipe cleaners) to capture the numbers altogether.

And they did a great job.

We used our lassos on counters and dominoes. We drew our dominoes on whiteboards and wrote number sentences to match. We flipped them over and found the sister problems.

Today, we played this Domino Pond game with dominoes, number bonds and number sentences. You can pick up the board and recording sheets for free.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Math on Monday

Everyone has their favorite Math tool. Rekenreks are not mine. All those beads - they're just too crowded. Ten frames, dominoes, divided plates, two-sided counters, dice, numberlines, number bracelets/loops, number bond mats...and on...are things I like.
So what did we use Friday and today... rekenreks. There was no great catastrophe. We talked about top and bottom as the parts. We read them - 2 and 3 is 5 (needed a flashing "and" on them).
We played the "But that's not my way" game. If you've seen the Number Talks videos, you know what I mean.

Our new partner game went like this. Each pair had a rekenrek, whiteboard and wipe-off marker. One partner wrote the expression (ie 2+5) and the other partner solved it on the rekenrek and wrote the answer. Some partners used larger numbers. They did an awesome job and almost everyone wrote the symbols + and = (which was amazing because we just started using them last week). Today, we made rekenrek booklets where we drew the rekenreks and wrote number sentences.

There are no rekenreks in this freebie or my updated Rainbow's End Math Games but lots of other games we find fun (dice anyone?). This freebie is 2 versions of Roll & Cover - just download the preview. I'm linking up with Classroom Freebies Manic Monday.
Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
Scroll down to check out some of the Math Games from my unit. We are so excited about playing these. Have a great week! - Jenn


Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Rainbow Rhymes & Reading Games

Who doesn't love rainbows? Kids get excited about them. They help us organize things by color. I've gotten off tangent on turning some of our recent games into units by....rainbows.
This is the Weather Roll, Read & Keep, I made for our unit in kindergarten and the pocket die. Originally, I was putting this in my literacy workstations with sight word cards. But we need to work on cvc words and end sounds, so I pulled out some older cards with 3-4 letter words. Each reading group played the game but with different words and I did a little assessing. I decided to make some cards (a little smaller than these with cvc words). My groups love using the pocket die.
 I picked up the All Occasion Frames by Teaching in the Tongass during the recent sale. I love them. They are easy to size and work with.

The 2 rainbow patterns were my favorite. I started making word and picture cards. Of course, my brain has to think of all the ways you can use something  so I made sure the words I picked had rhymes. Then I made an entire set with missing end sounds. I asked my family tons of opinion questions. We decided on the white centers so you can trace the words. Here is my daughter's message after trying out sizes for me.

I am super excited by the activities in here. You can use them with any unit. I even made multiple student direction pages.

 There are ton more things you could do with the cards like assign partners by matching rhymes. There is a freebie in the preview.

Do you follow Coast to Coast Kinder?

They are having a weekly linky party on Wednesdays. This week the topic is ELA ideas. I am linking this post up with them.
I want to talk about blending. Especially this time of the year, we love teaching word families like -at and -og. It is all about chunking and rhyming and they are great.

Do you have children who struggle to recode those decodable words? for whom p--it blends into pat or sit? Have you tried making one hand onset and the other rime and slowly repeating and moving the hands closer together until their mouths are forced to say the word (like a fabulous 2 headed monster we grew up with)?

Then try this approach - chunk the beginning. Instead of m-ap, blend ma-p. It gets most of the word into their little mouths. We recently used two-sided counters with a small group. We wrote the ma- on one chip and the -p on the other. We slowly moved them together as the group said the sounds. For another child, we found that if we repeated that beginning chunk quickly in call-respond style and then threw in the end sound, he combined them. It forced him to blend automatically instead of thinking about the word.

Every learner is different and sometimes it is the simple changes that make everything click for them. : )
Have a great week and check out the links at Coast to Coast.

Monday, March 3, 2014

All Rainbows Five for Friday

It is Five for Friday! is Monday. I started this post and then decided I needed more pictures only now we are having a snow day...I added 2 new mini-units today from last week and they are currently in sale (because it took me so long to get them up and we loved them both in class).
We have had a busy week. We started researching weather.
Provocations  to start our Cycles unit (weather & seasons)
Instead of one big introduction, this was done slowly. First, pictures and the central idea went up around the room and on our focus board. Then, I put out different readers in reading group and had them decide what the covers had in common. Finally, the songs. We watched and sang: "You'll sing a song. I'll sing a song." We created our own verses standing in line at bus dismissal thinking of activities we could do in both warm or wintry weather (pre-assessment anyone?).
We have one bulletin board for posting our central idea, lines of inquiry, vocabulary, books, etc... I converted a smaller board into our Inquiry board. I Wonder and I Learned. It is quickly filling up. The students worked with partners to come up with at least one question about weather or seasons (we are still working on the difference between how and why but they did great.). After they drafted their questions, they met with me to revise/edit them. Then they wrote them and drew a picture to hang on our inquiry wall.
Decomposing Ten into Rainbows
This was such a fun activity and craft. First, we played shake and drop. I gave each student a ten frame of raindrops. They colored the drops and cut apart the ten into ten ones.
I gave each student an umbrella page. We played shake and drop with the raindrops on the umbrella. If the raindrops landed face up (blue), we sorted them to the top - face down went below the umbrella. We played stand up-sit down each time to find out whether the number friends dropped above was greater than those below or the same as me. Lots of Math talk, I'd pick someone to "read" their paper 10 is ___ and ___.
After a few rounds of everyone shaking, we became a team to complete the recording sheet. Different students took turns shaking on the projector and the class did "make yours look like mine". We "read" the paper and colored in the ten frames on the recording sheet. We wrote the combination on the clouds. Each time we checked to see if we had made that combination already. We made all 11 combinations and recorded ten for our rainbows.
When discussed the lesson so far and... one of my students who doesn't often chime in raised his hand. In one burst he said, "I really enjoyed this activity." Wow.
The next day, we turned our investigation into the combinations of ten into a rainbow. We used 1 inch strips (because I overcut for the 100th day). We made clouds and on our clouds we wrote ways to represent ten: the numeral, number word, ten frame, ten fingers (and a few drew 10 toes). We reviewed our recording sheet. They made 5 strips by writing the number sentence and drawing drops over the numerals. For the other five, I gave them mini-ten frames to color and write. You could use 2 inch strips and cut the recording sheet apart.

5 Readers
We used our series readers to begin this week and one of my groups requested to have one I made. : ) Gotta love that. We started with the one where they can write if it is hot, cold or warm out. They love to add details and write answers in their readers. My favorite page was when we drew the reefs in. A quick lesson on that habitat. Okay, we liked adding to the baseball page, and...

Click back and see everyone else's 5 For Friday.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Roll A Rhyme Freebie

I've got a few new activities and a post about our week with weather coming up. I've posted our week and rainbow craft here.
I've been spending some quality time with my family but I promise them soon. In the mean time, I'm linking up with Freebie Friday and Manic Monday to share this rhyming freebie.
One of my best sellers is Rhyme or No Rhyme Pocket chart (pictures on books) which I'm using as we celebrate with a certain cat but I wanted something new too. What can I say? It is a rhyming day.
Check out everyone else's freebies.
Freebie Fridays

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday (March 3rd)

March 3rd - Thank you to those of you who commented on the FB link to this and gave feedback on TPT. I'm excited to give this activity to my kinders when we return from....yep...another SNOW day. For now, my own kiddos and I are making red and white stripped hats and doing some coloring of our own.
Enjoy your Monday.