Monday, August 12, 2013

Time to Head Back In...

Today I get to head back into school.  We've had trainings almost weekly (Daily 5, CAFE, Lucy Calkins Writing, technology) and I've been in a lot on my own to put my room back together.  Today though I'm heading in to do running records.

Our district tried this successfully last year, so we are at it again.  Most of us HATE how much time testing the kids take, although it's needed in this case to see how students are as readers when we know nothing else about them.  With classes always around 24, it takes the first month of September to get through all the students with our Fountas and Pinnell reading assessment kits.

So to help this problem, kids were able to sign up anytime from 8am - 8pm all this week.  Teachers are paid (nice, huh?!) to come it at assigned shifts and assess the students.  It was so enjoyable last year because you don't have to manage 23 other darlings while trying to read with one.  I was so much better at picking up at reading behaviors and actually have a decent conversation after reading.  The only drawback is that you don't get all your students so you're still a little blind to their reading until you get to know them better.   I'm so looking forward to it even though I'll miss putting my son to bed all week!  :(   This might be an idea to bring to your school!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Back to the Blog

So I promised myself that I would keep a blog for my students and families and a blog professionally for all the other fantastic teachers out there.  I failed... I kept the blog for my students and families and let this blog slide.  I applaud everyone who keeps the professional blogs going with juggling busy lives.  I know I will get the hang of it someday!  I appreciate your posts as I read them.

I also let my TPT store slide.  I kept making things for my classroom but didn't take the time to "polish" them to my standards to post in my store.  Now that summer has come and I'm at home with my son (who thank goodness takes fantastic naps!), I am hoping to keep it updated. 

I am especially focusing on the CCSS for writing because this is an area I completely redid in my classroom this year. 

Thanks to all who visited!  I hope to post more about our year.  If even one teacher gains an idea, I did my job! 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Monday Freebie/Tuesday Freebie Combined! (Freebie # 5 & 6)

Yesterday and today's Freebie got together. I teach in Wisconsin and we have a great resource called the Wisconsin Media Lab. They put together fantastic reading resources among other things.

 One of my FAVORITES is something called Storylords. It was made in the 80's so you need to ignore the costumes, haircuts, etc. but that adds to its charm!

 The episodes are free on YouTube here.

 They also have a free PDF of lessons to go with the videos.

I made a set of posters that I will add to my TPT store tonight for free!

Basically it's about a boy named Norbert (Norby for short) who needs to help different people in a faraway land from the evil Thorzuul and his sidekick Milkbreath.  Norby has to use strategies he learns in reading class!  The kids LOVE it!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Weekend Freebie - Freebie # 4

This is a reference tool that I use for my students who need phonics intervention.  They use it to help them remember their long and short vowels and all the spelling patterns possible with long vowels.   

Click here to get the board.

Friday Freebie (2 days late) aka Freebie # 3

This is how we have our students sort their math flashcards.  We also have given the kids green rubberbands, yellow rubberbands, and red rubberbands to sort their cards when they finish.   This would work great with sight words too.  Please use if you can! 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Brain Break Favorite (Freebie # 2)

Today's freebie is not something I made, but my favorite thing this year that I have found on Pinterest.  Every once in a while, we take brain breaks.  I have used a variety of things but this is my new all-time favorite brain break.  It takes 4 minutes!  My kids were doing story problems in math today for an hour straight.  Before we pushed through one last page, we took a break to do this!  So hilarious to watch 3rd graders dance and it's fun for the teachers too!  :)


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Freebie #1

This is a freebie to use before Thanksgiving!  Have your students write about what they are grateful for!

You can find it here: