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November 30, 2017

The M O S T Fun Way to Introduce Your Class ELF!

As I'm sitting on the couch watching Christmas movies on the Hallmark channel, I'm thinking about Christmas in the classroom and how much fun we had discovering our elf this year!

Let me just tell you all about it...

We had been practicing our inferencing skills the past week and the bright idea came to me, what would be better than introducing our class elf than through a mystery box inferencing lesson of course!?

First thing I did was find my mystery box and put our elf inside with his letter from the North Pole.

Then I created 4 clues to describe our elf to use for the mystery box activity.

I played this up BIG y'all.
I was explaining the activity and looking at the clues (with this puzzled look on my face) and revealed to them that these were NOT the clues I had made for this activity! Someone must have came in and wrote new clues over the weekend...they flipped! 

So on we went.....each student got a recording sheet and 1 clue. They recorded their clue and then walked around to find and record the 3 remaining clues their peers had.

Once they collected and recorded all 4 clues, they traveled back to their desk to put together the clues and visit their schema. They recorded their inference at the bottom of their paper.

Let me just tell you how excited they were once they read all their clues and "thought" it was an elf!!!!

We shared our inferences with each other and the time had come for me to reveal the mystery!
We rationalized through why they thought it was an elf and why it couldn't be other things they may have thought.

And there he sits, inside our mystery box. 

I can not imagine introducing our class elf any other way than this in the future.
In fact, I was so excited I made it into a download just for you!

Now you can introduce your class elf through the mystery box or just practice inferring.
I've included 5 different sets of clues for the following mystery items:
 elf, candy cane, stocking, ornament and Santa hat

You can find it available now in my Tpt store or by clicking on the product picture above.

November 26, 2017

Christmas with STEM

So there's been quite a few days that have passed since my last post.
This year has been unusually different than the past 6 that I've been in the classroom.
Like I S T I L L don't seem to have it altogether AND it's DECEMBER!

But anyways, since it's the Christmas season, I wanted to share with you a fun activity we did during the last week before Christmas break last year...because we all know it's survival of the fittest!

My kids L O V E activities that show off their creativity and imagination! 
I found a few ideas and came up with a few more that involve STEM activities that are Christmas (or holiday) centered. . 

The product includes directions for 4 STEM activities and the items you will need to put together the activities. 

Challenge #1 and 2:
Solo Cup Christmas Tree
Santa's Parachute 

Challenges #3 and 4:
Gingerbread bridge
Pipe Cleaner Trees

These 4 activities will keep your little engineers engaged during the month of December. 
In fact, I save mine until the very last day of school before the break and they work their little tails off (who would have thought)!

STEM challenges included are:
Build a Christmas Tree out of cups
Make a parachute for Santa
Build a bridge for the Gingerbread Man to cross
Build a Christmas Tree out of Pipe Cleaners

Each activity comes with pictures, directions, station cards and a list of supplies.

Set up is easy. So download this pack, grab your supplies and get started!

Find it in my TpT store HERE or by clicking the picture above!

August 14, 2017

Getting Guided Reading Ready

Going into the new school year I always set one goal for myself. 
Last year, my goal was to thoughtfully plan out, record and track my guided reading lessons.
I know that sounds A W F U L to say that I didn't already do that, but it's true...I didn't. 

I knew what I did worked, I just needed a way to organize it!

Let me just say, they worked beautifully!
I check out books from our fabulous literacy library and go through them to see what I want to work on with my groups. I record what we will do before, during and after reading. On the days we do word work, I can choose what skill we will be reviewing and the activity that corresponds.

I pull out the plans in my binder and have them in front of me for each group.

The lesson plans are editable and you can add your own text. Or if you are simple like me, I just print them out and write on them. 

You can find the pack in my TpT store

It comes with 4 different templates depending on how you structure your groups and what strategies you use. It also includes a letter to parents explaining decoding strategies and their rules.

August 11, 2017

Worry No More...Free First Week Assessments

t's August!
The month when school resumes.
The month when summer is over.
The month when littles come to us and we have NO idea what they know.
We need to know how to meet each and every one of them on their level and get at it quick!
Today I am sharing with you a collection of back to school simple daily assessments for the 1st week.

This packet contains all the assessments you need to figure out what your littles are capable of.

Included are the following:
*I Can...draw a picture of me.
*I Can...write my name.
*I Can...write my alphabet.
*I Can...match uppercase and lowercase letters.
*I Can...hear beginning sounds.
*I Can...write my numbers.
*I Can...can the objects.

My recommendation is to knock out one or two a day that first week, before you even begin to teach anything at all. 

You can grab it HERE in my TpT store or by clicking on the cover below!

Check out my TpT Store for even more freebies I didn't have the chance to share OR just click on the freebies tab at the top of my blog page!

August 8, 2017

Flexible Seating Storage

This year I'm being brave and giving up some control and choice to my kids.
Insert flexible seating into classroom.

One dilemma I was faced with was storage for my students. 
We'd be going from desks to tables, couches, lap desks, etc. with no "place" for their supplies. 

There were drawers I had purchased for guided math last year and I knew they'd be perfect.

Although they can't be removed, students will go to their numbered drawer, pull out their supplies and return them at the end of the day. 

These drawers can be found on Amazon but most recently I found them on Wayfair for a whole lot cheaper! 

August 3, 2017

Join Our Tribe Gift

Are you loving the tribe themes going on currently?
Our school is embracing the theme and our team wanted to incorporate it into our Meet the Teacher.

We decided to make simple and cheap gifts for our students but also inspire them for the year!
We want them to BE BOLD, BE BRAVE and BE BRIGHT tribe members! 

Here's what you will need:

Washi tape
Glow sticks (found on Amazon)

You will also need to head to my TpT store to grab the printable
They are available for Kindergarten-6th grade.

Here are the simple instructions:

It took myself and 3 team mates about 45 minutes to make over 120 of them! 
Imagine how quick it would be to make a class set, not to mention how cute they are! 

July 27, 2017

Stop Spending Money on Treasure Chest! Use these Passes Instead...

Have you ever found yourself asking your friends who aren't teachers to save their Happy Meal toys?
Have you ever found yourself in the dollar spot at Target spending an outrageous amount of money...becuase we all know who quick dollar items add put in your treasure chest?

STOP spending the extra money!
I've created reward passes for you class that will cost you N O money at all! 

These passes are designed to go with any behavior system you already have in place in your classroom.

I have used them with clip charts, treasure boxes and this year I will incorporate them with Class Dojo.

If you already use Class Dojo and want to incorporate them, here is the "system" that I will use to facilitate Dojo points and the passes together. Find the FREEBIE from the post below!

I have stored the passes in several ways:

You can print them "as is" and put them in binder in sleeves.

You can print them and shrink the size if you want smaller passes.

These are already in my TpT store. Find them HERE or by clicking the picture above!
Together, let's save some money!!!