Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Reading Fluency and a Freebie! :)

What a week this has been and it's only Wednesday! We have our Halloween party on Friday and my kiddos can't wait! I've been trying to keep our days as normal as possible, but it's hard!

Today, we talked about reading fluently. And I showed them this:

Yes, yogurt and cottage cheese. (I don't know where I got this idea. I wish I could give someone credit, but I honestly can't remember where I saw it.) So we talked about how readers need to sound smooth, like yogurt, and not all choppy like cottage cheese. I showed them how the yogurt looks and slides off of the spoon and how the cottage cheese is very slow to come off of the spoon. Then, I read some text and they had to use their sign language (yes or no) to tell me if I was reading like yogurt! This lesson works perfectly every year!

And now a Halloween freebie! Our word family for the week is the -it family, so we will be making words. I made a Trick or Treat recording sheet. They put the real words under treat and the nonsense words under trick. I made a blank one as well since you may be working on a different word family! Enjoy!


Clipart courtesy of Scrappin' Doodles.

:) Andrea

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Pumpkin Activity

We've been learning about the life cycle of pumpkins this week. My kiddos LOVE the Five Little Pumpkins poem. We've read it and acted it out many times and it's now in their poetry warm-up book. I brought in a pumpkin today to carve, but I thought it would be fun to have that pumpkin roll away and find it. So I told them the story of how I brought it in and then it was gone. I told them how I thought about the 5 little pumpkins and I was worried. They know I love to make up songs, so we sang this together. (Click to see the whole song.)

They were so excited to go find it! I heard, "We should get our magnifying glasses",  "Wow, this is a real adventure!" and "I should bring paper to write down clues!"
So I put up a few clues around the school and we searched for our pumpkin. We went to the gym and they thought we should search in the bag of balls because it could have rolled in there. They were very worried that someone might be making pumpkin pie in the teacher's lounge. They were searching everywhere for seeds. (Great idea for next year!) They would run up to teachers and ask, "Have you seen a rolling pumpkin?" When we finally found it, I heard, "This was the best adventure ever!" :)

If you'd like to see my clues, click below.

Now I have to go roast the pumpkin seeds to bring for a snack tomorrow. TGIF!

:) Andrea

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Ahhh...the weekend

What a week! There's so much to do and never enough time! We've been learning about insects and spiders. If you don't have Deanna Jump's fabulous insect unit, get it! She has an activity where the kids build a bug out of candy. We did this today and I let them choose whether they wanted to make an insect or a spider. The kids LOVED this activity!

We also made shape Pete the Cats. We love Pete! (Thanks, Kindergarten Crayons for the idea!) If you didn't know, Pete the Cat is available in the Scholastic Seesaw October catalog. So many of my kids ordered it and can't wait to take it home!

 I wanted to share our fave sight word game in case you hadn't seen it before.

Sorry I can't get the second pic to face the right way, but you can still see it. They have to catch a fish with their rod. If they know the word on the bottom of the fish, they get to keep it. If not, I tell them the word and they have to "throw it back in the pond" to try again later.  The winner is the person who has the most fish at the end of the game. I usually ask them to read their words at the end of the game either to a partner or the adult in charge of the game. My kiddos beg to play this game! Here is a recording sheet in case you want to have them write the words that they know. Thank you K-3 Resources for the fish clipart!

And finally, this has nothing to do with my classroom, but I just finished a wreath that I saw on Pinterest and wanted to share. I've never made a wreath before, but I love Fall and Halloween. It says "Come in and sit a spell...".

Have a wonderful weekend! I'm going to the Lions game tomorrow and I'm so excited!

:) Andrea

Friday, October 7, 2011

Reading Workshop

Last week, my first graders read for over 15 minutes, so this week it was time to shop for books and read in the reading tent! Thanks to my wonderful friend Jaime from What's the Buzz in First, I was able to put the tent together. I can look at diagrams all day long and just not get it!
Here is a picture of the bags (I found a spot for them. We'll see if it works!). They go get them before their snack so that they are ready to go:

And here is the tent. My tent from last year did not hold up well. I'm hoping this one is better! I like that I can see in so that I can make sure they are reading. It can fit 2, but it's pretty snug.

I made up a song for Reading Workshop because they love to sing, (We are in LOVE with Pete the Cat right now!), and they know when I start singing the song that they need to come to the carpet and sing along. A few of them would sing the song, "Keep Your Head Up" while they were playing, so I decided to make that the tune. During Reading Workshop, we start with our poetry notebook. (We call it the warm-up. I got this idea from another teacher in my district.) I start with nursery rhymes or poems that they know and go from there. Then, they read their just-right books and finally, we "cool down" with a look book, which is usually a magazine.

Have a great weekend!
:) Andrea