Today I am talking about Money.  We could all use a little more right?  Well in my classroom I have noticed that some of my students grab the concept of coin identification quickly and others do not.  Then after a few short weeks we are expected to teach our students how to add up money and count it.  AHHH it can be a struggle.  One thing I have added to my math centers for practice are these money identification strips that have helped my students at the beginning of our money unit.  You can grab them free here:


   Once we move on from those task cards I add a little fun activity into the center with these Ipad tablet shaped task cards.  These were laminated over the summer and cut out to fit right into my storage containers for math.  My students are to identify the amount of money and circle the coins they would need to make the amount listed.  They have a recording sheet to use so that I can check for understanding.  You can grab them here:
  

Once we moved on from using our Ipads we went onto these locks which were a hit with the kids if they like puzzles.  These keys and locks were laminated and I asked a parent volunteer to help me cut them out.  Win win on a time saver.  These locks were a lot of fun for the kids to place together especially for my tactile learners.  You can grab them here:  

 Next we move onto the newest activity that I plan on adding to the centers for next school year.   These reading passages can be used two different ways.  I can print them out and have my students complete them independently for morning work or add them to my math center.  I plan on adding velcro to the backs of the pieces and to the cards after they have been printed out on cardstock and laminated.  I can't wait to hear my students reading and adding a little math to their day.  We love cross curricular activities in my room.  You can grab them here:  



Featured

I hope you find these examples useful in your classroom.
  












Context Clues are one of my favorite strategies to teach in reading.  Why you might ask?  Because my students become detectives in their reading and look for clues to find out the meaning.  This strategy is especially important because when they take those dreaded standardized tests they need to be able to identify those words they might not know.  Here are 5 ways I teach them to identify unknown words using context clues.  

1.   Make an Inference
     This is HUGE!!!  By now my students have learned how to make an inference. We play a telephone game where I have students act like they are order pizza or making an appointment to a hair stylist without actually saying they are doing that and it allows them to make an inference on what is being said on the phone.  This also applies in our reading words in context.  If the passage says "We were huddled up together under a warm blanket during the snow storm."  My hope is that the students could make an inference that the word huddled meant together based on the clues of snow storm, under a blanket, and warm.   

2.  Look for the Definition in the passage
     Teach those readers to look for the definition right in the sentences around the unknown word.  Sometimes they don't even realize the meaning is right there in the passage.  We often spend time reading a passage and then highlighting the definition to practice this skill.  

3.  Find a synonym:
      This strategy we look for phrases that have the word "or" in them.  For example :  He was joyous , or happy, when he saw his grandmother.  We highlight the words joyous and happy to identify the synonym.  

4.  It provides an example: 
     This strategy makes us really think because we have to decide if the example is giving us clues or leading us to the definition.  An example of this would be "A group of vulnerable newborn puppies, like newborn kittens who need extra support, were found near the highway.  

5.  Find an antonym:  
    For this strategy we look for words that say unlike, opposed to, or different from when reading through passages with unknown words.  

In order for us to remember all of this we do add all of this information into our interactive notebooks (don't you just love those)  Grab it here:

If you are looking for a fun culminating activity to use with your lesson on context clues this activity will not disappoint. 



This was SNOW much fun!!!  Sorry couldn't resist.  :)  Whether or not it is snowing outside it will be in our classroom when we play a little context clue game .  My students absolutely LOVED this game we played to finish up our unit on context clues.  Who doesn't love a snowball fight especially in the classroom?  

SETUP: 

    This game was really easy to set up and can be used over and over again.  I divided the class into two teams and then had one student as my official task card reader. After reading the task cards students take their snowballs and throw them towards the board to see if they get the correct answer.  If they hit the same snowball and it is a tie then they go to take a turn towards snowball challenge board.  Whoever hits the highest number their gets the point.  Play continues until all the task cards are read.  
My students loved this game and I hope yours will too!  If you like what you see you can grab it here.



  YAY!  Summer is here!  I am so ready to lounge around poolside and soak up some sunshine.  How about you ?  I wanted to pop in and share with ya'll some of the end of the year awards that I love to give out to my kiddos at the end of the year.  These turned out beyond adorable and my students loved them. 

Each one of these awards perfectly described my students and they loved the colorful awards they received.  O.k. before you think it will take all of that ink...really it doesn't.  I print them out over the last few parts of the year and I also use the HP printer Envy 4520 a real ink saver.  

Each one of these awards are printed out on cardstock...you could laminate if you wanted.  Grab those classroom volunteers and let them cut them out for you.  I always have one parent or two that are willing to help.  The best things about these awards are they are completely editable and I can use any font I want.  

                        So cute and the kids loved that their award was shown from the stage.  The parents loved receiving them because of the bright colors and it was a memory they could hold onto and treasure. 
O.k. time to hop back into that pool and make plans for next year.  Happy Summer ya'll.  



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   One of my favorite things to discuss with my guided reading groups is figurative language.  Why???  you might ask.  Well, because it can add so much to our reading and writing instruction time.  My students love hearing and pointing out examples of simile, onomatopoeia (love saying this word), alliteration, personification, hyperbole, and idioms.  I love that we can enrich our reading time with more strategies to help our little readers and writers blossom .  

Here is how my lessons go:  

Guided Reading Groups:
    During our guided reading times we begin by introducing each skill individually with many examples to help my readers understand how to detect and find them in their reading.  First, we start off by taking simple notes and adding them to our interactive notebooks we keep for reading and grammar.  Here below we glue in the definition and then I have my students write examples of the skill around the gumball machine.    I have found that I like to use standard spiral notebooks for my interactive notebooks because we can add full pages and notes.  




     During our next meetings we will have one book on hand that we will read and share that illustrates the example of the figurative language we are working on (hyperbole, idiom, alliteration,etc).  As you will find in the pic above I have a piece of literature I use with each skill and we record our findings on the note cards which we add to our notebooks. 
Very guided at this point to assure that my students are learning and understanding the concept.  
Independent Practice
   After we have covered two of the figurative language styles or more whichever you group is comfortable I use these interactive activities to informally assess my students while I am working in our reading groups.  These pages are designed for my students to independently cut apart and glue down their answers on the page.  They are instructed which set to cut out and then they complete the activity independently.   Work is placed in their interactive notebooks and then I can check when we meet for their reading group.  
Here is a sample of our finished product in our notebooks.  :)  


Task Cards
    After informally assessing where my students were I also added these task cards to my reading centers or as tasks for my students to complete while I was working with my reading groups.  Students were told which bags to get out either A,B,C, D,... depending on which ones we had covered at that point and then given a recording sheet to work as partners to identify the correct example of figurative language.  Each task card is labeled with the alphabet and you know as the teacher which letter corresponds with which figurative language.  :) 


Culminating Activity
      Now I don't know about you but I like to have a little fun in my classroom and sometimes a game is what you need to get those kiddos motivated to learn.  As we wrap up all of our learning and we have grasped all the concepts of figurative language I like to play "Pop, I know that!"  A little game I created to challenge my students.  Divide the class into two teams and have the cards placed face up in a row along a set of desks.  Each team sends up a player and then either the teacher or another student reads "Pop, I know that" card and the first player who correctly grabs the Pop I know that card with the correct figurative language word on it gets a point for their team.  It is so much fun and the kids love playing.  





This was such a fun little unit and my students loved the gumball theme with the bright colors and learning all about figurative language.  If you like what you see you can get it here:  



Here is also a list of the books we used during our unit which were great examples for our guided reading meetings.  

Book Sources

By Dr. Seuss

By Peggy Parish
By Dr. Seuss

By Virginia Lee Burton



I hope your students enjoy it as much as mine did. 


Grab those coins and get ready to count some money.  This unit is great for math centers at the beginning of the year or at the end to use as review.  Printed on cardstock and laminated for use over and over again from year to year. 
Money Recognition can be a tough skill for a lot of students.  My hope is that with a little more hands on practice they can easily understand how it works.   

Here is what you will find:
  • 20 Ipads that have students circle the correct coins to make the change listed

  • 20 Ipads that have a toy with a price tag and then students decide how much change they should get back after giving the cashier the money. 



  • Recording sheets that allow my students to record what they have done and see which groups of children I might need to pull to the back table for extra practice.  

Each card is numbered so that students can easily record their answers without any confusion.  A completely independent activity and also a great one to leave for a substitute.  

We love using these in our classroom and small group Daily 3 math time.  I hope you find them useful in your classroom.  You can get them here.  






I wanted to share with ya'll a cute craftivity we used during our Geometry unit on Translations, Reflections, and Rotations.  We had a great time making our seascape pictures that especially helped with my visual learners who need a little more help seeing how the concept of translation, rotation, and reflection worked.  Here is what we did.  

First, we printed out all of our pieces...of course my students had black and white copies to color and make their own.  This was one I created as a sample for my students to see.  Next ,we took all of the pieces and got it all set up on our construction paper.
Then , we glued down the waves and then cut the slit through the dotted line. Just fold the paper gently and make a slit.   After that, we took our Popsicle stick and taped it down to the back of the boat as shown and then glued the sail onto the boat (make sure that you glue both reflection pieces back to back so when it flips the image is seen on both sides)  .  Do not glue the boat down it needs to slide.  ;)   Finally we slid the popsicle stick through the slit so the boat could slide side to side (translation).  


Here is what it looks like so far but we are not done yet.  


 We are going to add the sun last.  Here we will need to use a brad fastener to take the sun and attach it to our paper (Note: do not glue the sun down to the paper...it needs to rotate)  We placed the brad through the sun but do not fasten it tightly leave a little wiggle room to rotate easier.
If you wanted to make the pieces more durable you could always use cardstock.  Another option we could have done is worked as partners to save paper and time and less cardstock if desired to use.  However, we made these with paper and it worked just fine.  

Once we finished up our crafts the next couple of days we practiced the skills we have learned by doing a sort in our math interactive notebooks , a mini flip book , and worked with task cards that were printed on cardstock and laminated .  I added them to my math center rotations as an informal assessment.  


 You can grab it here if you like what you see :  Click on the picture below.
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  Hey Everyone!  I wanted to share with you a little activity that is going on in our math classroom as we wrap up graphs.  I can not tell you how much it makes this reading teachers' heart happy when I can use a picture book to tie in a lesson in math.   I just love going across the curriculum for my activities. 

Anyway here is what we did:

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Sir-Cumference-Graphing-Math-Interactive-Center-3645198
We listened to our story:  I had a copy of the book on hand but you can easily find a read aloud on You Tube.  :) Next, we broke up into small groups and each group had a bag containing these graphs printed on cardstock and the manipulatives to create pictographs on their own.  Each student also had a copy of the mini book which I would collect later for a grade and then add it to their interactive notebooks. 


While they are working on their graphs and reviewing their skills they have learned this gives me the opportunity to work with those students who may still be struggling with different concepts on each of the graphs. 
Once our math center time is completed the students will turn into to me their finished books.  They look like this: 

So cute and a great way to add a grade to my gradebook for math.  This is perfect for small group math centers. 
If you like what you see you can get it here: 
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Sir-Cumference-Graphing-Math-Interactive-Center-3645198

Thanks for stopping by! 



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