Sunday, October 27, 2013

Happy Birthday Freebielicious!


Have you heard? Freebielicious turned ONE this month! This last year has been amazing and we are so happy with our Freebielicious family.  This little blog has twenty-five amazing authors…teachers with hearts of gold! Our only goal is to be a blessing to primary teachers.

Welcome to our party! Everyone is invited. We are SO excited to host a birthday party like no other. Don’t worry, we won’t ask you to buy us a present (we do love chocolate though). Instead, we want to help tech up your classroom with a pretty sweet giveaway. Follow our blog, FB, and pinterest to enter to win. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy. You can win a prize package valued at over $500, which includes an iPad mini! Sweet deal, right?!

Fill out the rafflecopter to enter. You have three chances to win. Follow Freebielicious on Pinterest, Follow Freebielicious on Facebook, and Follow Freebielicious Blog by email. Enter to win by October 30, 2013 at midnight. Winner will be drawn on October 31st, 2013 and announced on Freebielicous. One entry per person and entries will be verified. 

Happy Birthday Freebielicious!!!

Click here to go enter to win!
Good luck!

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Saturday, October 26, 2013

Kids Say The Funniest Things!

My blogging buddy over at Kreative in Kinder, is having a cute link up called, Kids Say the Funniest Things! They certainly do, don't they? Thank goodness, my classroom shares an office with another teacher (my sister!) because we are constantly telling each other the hysterical things these kids say all day long. I like to share them with her right away so I don't forget them! Here is one of their latest funny quips...

Funny, right? Try keeping a straight face after that one! Impossible!

In other news, my students have really been enjoying My Little Grammar Books. They love being able to read their finished little books to whoever is willing to listen! Since I love them too, I decided to run with the idea! I just finished My Little Books...Literacy Edition!

There are 46 books in all and they cover the following skills:
Beginning Sounds
Rhyming Words
CVC Words
Ending Sounds

Here are some images of what the books and the differentiated versions look like:

Since we work on these skills over and over again, I made lots of books! I plan on making a part 2, which will include blends and digraphs, among other skills!

These books are easy to prep (just print and copy double sided) and easy for the children to put together (just cut and staple). You can't ask for anything more! I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

Click here to see this product in my store!
It's on sale for a short time!

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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Whole Lot of Random Info!

We are building our sight word fluency!
My students ask to do this every day. They love to sit and read their weekly sight words over and over again. This is truly helping them remember and recognize the words when they see them elsewhere. I highly recommend having your students practice their sight word fluency.

I made sight word fluency sheets to follow the Journeys reading program. You can find the first grade pack here.

And the kindergarten pack here.

Kindergarten is also enjoying Spin-a-Word...Beginning Sounds Edition. I introduced it during my small groups a few weeks ago and now they can play it during station time.

I think I did a great job capturing the excitement of this game! LOL!

In the above sequence of pictures, the handsome gentleman landed on take a card, and was trying to decide who to steal a card from! What a tough, but fun decision to make! You can check out all my Spin-a-Word games here.

This week, we read the cute book Mice Squeak, We Speakby Tomie dePaola. The children chose their favorite animal from the book and drew a picture of it. Then, they wrote a sentence. They are getting more and more comfortable writing words and sentences, and I am so happy about that!

The last picture I want to show you, is of my listening station. It used to be at a table, but I needed the table for my new Sentence Station. I had this extra cart hanging around (don't all teachers have one or two hundred extra carts hanging around at all times?) I am loving this new set up. It doesn't take up much room and the children are way more comfortable now because they can sit with the cord behind them and enjoy listening to the story without the cord in their way. I highly recommend this set up! You can even keep your book review sheets on the shelf, along with some pencils and crayons.

Oh, one last thing! The LUCKY winner of my Brag Tags Giveaway was chosen the other day, but, she hasn't contacted me yet. If you are Jennie M., please contact me by Friday or I'll have to choose a new winner. Thanks so much! Boost Promotions, the maker of the Brag Tags, is eager to hear from you too! Seriously, these tags are such a HUGE motivator. Coupled with the Wow Jar, I can't begin to tell you how hard my students are working at making sure they are always producing their personal best. And, I feel like I can be really picky about their writing because they really, really want their names in the jar as often as possible. They get a little disappointed when they don't earn a ticket (which is just them writing their name on a piece of scrap paper), but they are always learning from their mistakes. If you didn't read about my Wow Jar, please click on the image below!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Brag Tags Giveaway!

Can you I just tell you how much I LOVE Brag Tags from Boost Promotions?!

I have seen these cute little tags all over blogland and was so excited when the company contacted me and offered me 100 Brag Tags of my very own!

These are the tags I chose. 4 different designs. 25 of each design. And, they are customized with my name! Yay!

I knew right away what I was going to do with them.

A few days after I received my Brag Tags, the WOW Work Jar was created!

Every time my students produce WOW work, they write their name on a little piece of paper and put it in the jar. On Friday, I choose a name from the jar, and that lucky winner wins a Brag Tag. Since they know the more often their name appears in the jar, the better their chances are of winning, they are really trying hard to produce work worth bragging about. It's not easy, though! There is so much to think about as they are writing. When they succeed, they are so happy for themselves! 

These cute little tags are a great motivator and I am excited to tell you that Boost Promotions is allowing me to give away 100 Brag Tags to a very lucky blog follower. The winner will get to choose up to 4 different designs. That is very generous of Boost Promotions! To show your appreciation to this wonderful company, please enter the contest honestly, using the Rafflecopter below. There are many different ways to enter and the more you choose to follow, the better your chances are of winning.

One more thing! If you would like a WOW Work Jar in your classroom, just click the image below to download.

To find out more information about Boost Promotions, please click on the links below...

Good luck to you!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, October 12, 2013

My Little Grammar Books

I love to teach grammar and create fun activities that engage and challenge my students. I don't often find grammar games suitable for kindergartners and first graders at my local teaching store, so I usually make my own.

When I teach grammar, I usually formally introduce the skill on Monday and then my students spend the week practicing the skill at the Grammar Station. I also try and find numerous opportunities to point out proper grammar when we are reading, writing, and speaking.

When I set out to create an activity for my students, I usually try and create it for the entire year. That's why it takes me so.very.long to finish many of my products. Plus, I like to try them out with my students before I put them in my store. That way, they find all my mistakes! LOL! I started making this product over a month ago!

My newest creation is called My Little Grammar Books.

There are 130 books that cover 19 different grammar skills. For each of the 19 different skills, I made several different books, so I can use a book to help introduce the skill during my whole group lesson on Monday, and then I can put one at my Grammar Station for the children to work on individually or cooperatively with their station group. I can use the third book as an assessment, as homework, or as a spiral review later on. 

I feel it is very important to differentiate my students' learning as much as possible, so for each of the 19 skills, I made books with lots of support and books with less support. I even made some with a little support. So, to sum it up, each skill actually has 6-9 books that will help your students become grammar experts!

Here are some pictures I took when my kindergartners completed a Level 1 verb book during a whole group lesson.
(Please note that these books have been updated since the photos were taken.
 Same skills, but different fonts and clip art.)

This book really helped them understand the concept of verbs and they loved reading their books out loud.

Would you like to try a FREE book with your students? 
Well, you can! All you have to do is click here and download the preview and you'll find a complementary noun book!
 I hope you find it useful.

Here's more great news! In case you haven't heard, Teachers Pay Teachers' Facebook page reached 100k likes and they are celebrating by giving all shoppers 10% off of all purchases if you use this code at checkout: FB100K. To help TpT celebrate this incredible milestone, I have put my store on sale! You can purchase My Little Grammar Books at a huge savings!

While you're shopping, you may want to check out Let's Build Words. This has been so much fun for my students!

One more thing! Since this post is mostly about grammar, I saw this and couldn't resist posting it. I hope I don't offend anyone because there is a curse word. I was going to cover it up, but it just didn't have the same impact! 


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Beginning Sounds and Sight Words

My kindergartners have been working hard at recognizing beginning sounds in words. I've been using the following fun and exciting activities to help my children learn this tough concept:

This game is called Spin-a-Word Beginning Sounds Edition. There are games for all the consonants except X. The children spin the spinner and have to find a word that begins with the letter spun. The answers are on the back, making it self checking. To read more about my Spin-a-Word Games, click here.

They really enjoyed making these beginning sounds crowns from the talented Lidia Rib.

She also has CVC Crowns and Thematic Crowns
I have them all! 

My kinders are working on this alphabet book.

It combines beginning sounds and handwriting practice, to best maximize our time. This alphabet book goes with Jack Hartman's song Learning Letter Sounds. Along with this book, my students are also completing other activities from my Learning Letter Sounds pack. This song is a favorite of my students and we can't go a day without singing it! We even have cute hand motions to go with it.

I just created a Go Fish Game based on this song, too! 

Go Fish is always a fan favorite in my classroom! To play this game, students will match the picture with its beginning sound. One side of the cards has just the picture and the other side has the beginning sound. This game also comes with a matching capital letters to lower case letters version.

Along with beginning sounds practice, my kindergartners have also been learning some sight words. They've been enjoying my Kindergarten Journeys Sentence Puzzles. You can read my blog post about the sentence puzzles here. I also created these sight word practice pages, that go along with Journeys.

This Fun With Sight Words activity pack, contains 3 different activities that are each labeled with the lesson numbers to help you stay organized. The activity sheets vary in difficulty so you can easily differentiate your lessons.


Cutting and Gluing

Cutting, Gluing, and Writing

There is also a sentence writing template, as well.

 I hope you enjoyed reading about some of the activities my kindergartners have been doing!

Scholastic Teacher Book Wizard