Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Groundhog Day and a Reading Strategies Pack

Hi there. I get so wrapped up in what I am doing this time of year that I really have to remember to fit the little groundhog in. Right now, we are in the middle of a Penguin unit, moving from Penguin fiction to non fiction, I can't seem to stop and honour the groundhog and his shadow. So I made a promise to myself that, for at least a part of this week, I would trade in one furry little critter for another. Even if it's just for a day. I posted a Groundhog word search last week, if you missed it, you can click here.  But, what I thought I would have my kids do for Mr. Furry Shadow Seeker is PREDICT.

Just click on the Predict sheet above to download. Just in cause you were wondering, I want Spring to come, like yesterday...

One last thing, we've been working hard on predicting and connecting in my class. Next stop, visualizing and I needed some visualizing of my own to really help get my point across. So, I created this pack to help my kids with their good reader strategies. Here is a peek at one of the posters in the pack.

If you would like a copy, just leave me a comment to tell me how you would use it in your classroom. I'll choose 4 people, randomly.
Thanks for reading!

I'll leave you with my own furry critter, who I was lucky enough to stay home with today (Snow Day) well actually it was an Ice Ice Baby day today. Sometimes Winter is just not that bad.
Cute eh?

Friday, 25 January 2013

Tacky LOVE and a Little Bit of Groundhog

It has been so cold outside lately that I have decided to hibernate a bit. Go to school, come home, walk the dog really quickly around the block. Rinse and repeat. Plus with all the cold in the air, my kids have been dropping like flies(flu bug). Yesterday, by the end of the day I was down to 8. Well, I only have 13 to begin with, but still... Of course, cold weather always makes me think of my favourite Antarctic furry buddies -- penguins!
We started our penguin unit this past week and we began with good old Tacky. Here are our ideas about what makes him unique.
Sorry about the glare, but I traced him using the overhead projector last year and wanted him to be re-usable so I laminated and then I just write on it with a dry erase marker. Your kids can do this, on their own, as well, with this...
This is from my Tacky unit, which we worked on, after reading the story. Here are a few of our storyboards.

They love that Tacky on the iceberg at the beginning of the story, don't they? You can find all these ideas and more here.

Tacky has kept us busy, but I have started to think about Valentine's Day cause I know it's gonna sneak up on me, if I don't. And since my kids LOVE I Have Who Has? so much, I made a Valentine themed one with love hearts and everything. Remember those and how you just had to read every single one before you ate them?

If you'd like a copy, I'll give it to the first 4 people who leave a comment with the word LOVE in it. 

While I've gotcha here, if you're thinking Groundhog, what do I do?! I'm thinking the same thing, here's a word search to get those little minds thinking. Just click on the pic below, hope you can use it.  I'll be back with more Groundhog ideas soon.
Until next time, cuddle up and stay warm.

Saturday, 19 January 2013

A Little Grammar Freebie

If your kids are anything like mine, they can always use some grammar practice. The 2 words I say most often, in the run of my day, are Be Quiet!  capitals and periods! It takes constant reminding. So, I thought I would share with you this Capitalization and Punctuation Activity from my Polar Math and Literacy Centers.

Basically, you can learn a little about seals and, at the same time, fix all the things that are wrong with these sentences. I'm linking up this little grammar freebie with Lori at Teaching With Love and Laughter. Just click on either pic above to download.
If you have a grammar activity or a blog post where you share grammar teaching and assessment, head on over to Lori's blog to link up.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Making Snow Connections

I'm always working on connections. It never stops. This week, we've been reading snow stories and connecting with those in every way that we can. I try to start things off slowly cause I've discovered, over the years, that making a connection to something we've read does not just happen. The foundation has to be laid and it has taken me up until this point in the school year to properly lay that foundation. So now, my kids are finally writing these connections down and I am so happy.  If you are ever searching for a winter time story that every kid in your class will connect to, here it is...

Even the most reluctant connector in your class will connect to this - cause believe me, every kid (at least the ones who have even slightly cold winters) has lost a mitten. Plus, it's a sweet story. Here are some other great winter/snow connect books.
I started this week with just connecting to a picture. My kids drew the picture from the story that reminded them of something in their life, also a picture. They were also encouraged to connect to a character or to something that happened in the story. From there we moved on to more writing about the connection and it went well. You can peek at it below.

If you want to try any of this, you can download the connect sheets I used here

Hope that helps you a bit.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

A Clipart Linky

I just signed up for clipart therapy. I don't want to actually count how many files of graphics I have cause I know it will scare me. So, to feel better, I am linking up with Lindsay at Primary Polka Dots for her therapeutic linky. It's perfect for me cause I am obsessed with clipart. On the bright side, I think there are so many other things to be obsessed with, that clipart feels pretty safe to me. So, on with my obsession...

There you have it. I'd LOVE to know about some of your favorite clip art.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Back to School and a Freezin Fact Family Freebie

I went back to school today, well actually yesterday, but it doesn't really count cause yesterday I was still a free agent. I could come and go as I please, eat whenever I felt like it, go wherever I wanted to go in my school, visit who I wanted to visit. It was kinda like my holiday, only not in jammies. No little ones yet.

But, today....reality hit. My kids came back and I was so happy to see them. We had a great day. We got all of our work done, my desk is still neat and tidy, the class is so organized. I'm wondering how long that will last. I'm guessing about 2 more days and then my desk will be piled underneath so much stuff, my kids will not get it all done in one day and things will get messy again. I'm thinking that's probably the way it is supposed to be, I mean, they are 6 year olds after all.

I am, however, trying my best to keep things like they are now, we'll see...

So, we have started really exploring fact families and getting used to finding and recording all 4 facts. I was short one center for the center activities we are starting, so I made a fact family center to add to what I already had. Here's a peek...

You can click on any of the pics above to download. 
Fingers crossed that I stay ultra organized.  

Thursday, 3 January 2013

I Have Who Has? Frosty Freebie

I'm still on vacation and really liking it. I just keep eating and it's great cause I think of all the times when I'm at school and I have to grab something on the fly you know? Chew it while I'm walking down the hall to go deal with something. But right now, I've got all kinds of time to chew things, so that's what I've been up to, not very productive is it?

OK - that's not all I've been up to. My kids LOVE the game I Have Who Has? Like when I say we're going to play it, they freak. And there is always extra excitement over who gets the 1st card and who gets the last card. So, I wanted to surprise them with a new one and since we are all pretty much experts in Canada at making a snowman, this one is snowman themed. Basically, each card is a build up to the whole snowman. You can use it to practice reading, ordinals, color words, left/right orientation, vocabulary or just plain frosty fun! Here are a few pics, you can click on any of them to download.

If you live in a place where  you can easily make a snowman, then I hope you'll take time to make one, it's soooo fun. If you don't, I am going to make one for you.