Thursday, June 6, 2013

Making Words Fun

Probably the biggest job I have for myself this summer is learning all about and preparing materials to use the Daily Five literacy model in my class next year. 

I've had the book for years but never really jumped in with both feet to really give it justice.  While talking about next year, all the fourth grade ELA teachers in my building decided to use the Daily Five next year, and we are all so excited. 

We've all been reading up on the model, checking out upper elementary blog posts about the Daily Five, and sharing ideas we have found with each other.  It's been awesome.  I've been spending a little bit of time this summer mapping out how I'll get my classroom ready for Daily Five this fall. The biggest thing I need to prepare this summer is my word work materials.  I figure if I prepare a choice a week, I should be golden, and not broke, by the time August rolls around. :) 

It's been raining on and off today, so it was the perfect time for me to finish up a file I've been working on to use as a word work choice. 

I think there is a perception out there that making words activities are only for the little ones, but that's not true at all! Big kids love playing with words too! My fourth graders LOVED when I gave them a word, like cooperation, and challenged each table group to make as many words as they could as a team building activity.  Making words easily differentiates itself, making it a great choice for my classroom next year, as I'll have a beautiful mix of ESL, gifted, and students with behavioral needs in my classroom. 

The file itself includes twelve back to school themed word tile sets that your students can use to make new words with.  
 I also included a couple different recording sheet options as well. 

Personally, I am going to stretch this file to make it last ALL month long.  Each week, I am going to introduce/put three new words in the center and take out the three from the week before.  I plan on storing each word in a baggie with the larger word it spells written on it.  Just so my sweeties don't mix up the cards, each word will have different colored backgrounds every week. :) 

I plan on having my students record their work in their word work journal.  This way I can grab a few journals a few and just keep an eye on their work. :) That's the great thing about TpT, each product can be used in so many different ways! 

If you'd like to check out my Back to School Making Words Packet, just click on the pictures or {here} to check it out on TpT!

I've spent enough time behind the computer for awhile, it's time to finish up some odds and ends around the house, and maybe read a little bit of my latest summer read. Goodness, I love summertime!

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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Summer Lovin'

Hey friends! Sorry I haven't posted in well like a month.  Opps! The end of the year is always crazy, and then when you teach the grade where you sweeties leave elementary school, it seems there is an event or field trip every single day the last ten days of school.

This poem below is literally one of the few pictures I took the last few weeks of school. :) Enjoy! :) I will miss the kid that wrote this poem, SO much!

My students' last day was Wednesday but today was my first real day of summer.  I spent Thursday, and part of Friday and Monday moving classrooms, which is never fun.  Glad to get away from the playground noise and a to gain few extra feet, but I hated moving classrooms for the third time in three years. 

Admit it, you are so jealous of those chalkboards! Any great ideas to cover them up?  Paint is out of the question, so I'm thinking about black contact paper but haven't decided yet! 

Basically friends, I'm LOVING this summer.  I've been trying to balance being productive with relaxation and having fun.  I am taking a class for my masters this summer but it starts next week and only goes through the first week in July.  So even though I'll be in school, I will still have lots of summer to enjoy!

I've spent lots of time reading on my iPad mini already this summer.  We went to Pittsburgh to visit family this weekend, so I got to finish this fantastic book! Such a great summer read, click on the image or here to check it out! 

Karen White is one of my favorite authors land I read Falling Home and its sequel, After the Rain this past school year and loved them. So I can't wait to read her newest book, The Time  Between.  What is on your summer reading list? :)

I've also been watching lots of baseball. Go Reds! :)  Nothing screams summer like a Reds game to me.  Even though I love going games, I love watching them at home too.  In fact, we are heading to Great American Ballpark for my birthday this weekend! :)

McDonald's dollar drinks are back.  Which means I've consumed about four large Diet Cokes in as many days. #addicted

I've pledged to be active every day and not get Blogger Butt again this summer.  Blogger Butt is when you spend all your time behind your computer in the summer and your clothes don't fit in the fall.  So far, so good because the pups and I have gone on long walks at our local parks each day.  I don't know who enjoys it more, them or me!

My husband and I have also been busy in our yard.  Our fence is under construction and we've redone the landscape in the front of our house. After years of renting, we've fallen in love with taking care of our yard and doing little weekend projects around the house. 
I love, love, love our front porch.  If my hubs isn't working, we spend a lot of time out there at night. We light our citronella candles and chat while the sun goes down.  It's always the favorite part of my day! 

My grade level is implementing the Daily Five next year, which I am very excited about, so I haven't been all play and no work this break! I've worked on this a little bit last night and today, and I hope to have it ready tomorrow.  

It's my hope to make one for each month! I know my big kids will love them, since they always enjoyed doing making words activities as team builders this year, so it's been a lot of fun making this packet!

Well friends, I'm off to catch up on your blogs now! A few FB fans asked me to share how I organized math workshop, so look for that in the next few days! :)
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