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Monday, September 30, 2013

If These Walls Could Talk... It's a LInky Party!

 I, like most of you all, am obsessed with anchor charts!  I have seen a previous Linky Party that encouraged bloggers to post their all-time favorite anchor charts.  SO much fun, but I think we need a chance to display what's currently hanging on our walls on more of a day-to-day basis throughout the year.  So, without further ado, what would your walls say right now if they could talk, meaning read what's on them!

Here are the anchor charts currently gracing the walls (and err, cabinets) of my classroom!
This is our IDEAS (6+1 Trait) poster hanging on the Writing Wall.  I love how this poster turns out so differently every year depending on my students' interests.  This is a great reference when little writers claim they have nothing to write about.  They also use this poster to spell words.

Another one on the Writing Wall - I refer to this one ALL.YEAR.LONG.

After introducing the concept of setting, we made a quick web of the settings from stories we have read this year together.

Part of our Social Studies lessons on jobs at school and learning the names of staff members - oh so important, but tricky for the kids to memorize!

LOVING the Climb Inside a Poem lessons I blogged about here.   "Just Like Grandpa" is a precious poem included in the big book.  It provided a great introduction to action words.

Little scientists made lots of observations about these 3 liquids before we predicted what would happen when they were all mixed together!  Of course, we recorded our predictions and then the results of our experiment.

My students blew me away with their deep answers to this question!  This lesson also came from Climb Inside a Poem.  I can't resist showing you a few of their individual response pages...




I hope you all will link up with pictures of your classroom walls right now and the charts hanging on them!  I'll host this party at the end of each month!  Please be sure to grab the Linky Party image from above and link back to this page.  :)

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The superkid rubric

I love teaching my Kinder kids about rubrics.  Just hearing them say that word is beautiful.  Okay, okay, maybe I'm being a tad over-dramatic, but I seriously love rubrics!  I think it's incredibly powerful to teach children how to be self-evaluators.  Even at their young age, they know when they do their best and when they don't.  I have a large "SuperKid Rubric" poster in my classroom.
The faces make the rating system super easy for the kids to understand - it really doesn't even need an explanation.  We use the levels to evaluate our own work and behavior.  I can often be heard saying phrases such as "Where is my Level 3 line?  Are we being Level 3 Listeners?  Who is sitting Level 3 on the carpet?"  I don't ever rate the students or their work, I have them do it instead.

At the beginning of the year, I ask the students what they think makes a piece of work Level 3.  We discuss and make a checklist that I hang near where students turn-in completed work.

Last year's checklist:

This year's version:

Do you share my love of rubrics?  Do you help students learn to self-evaluate?  I'd love some comments!  :)

Sunday, September 15, 2013

I Like Animals Emergent reader freebie

What to do when you can't find the perfect book for your "Making Books Station" this week... make your own!  ;-)


What to do when you're feeling generous this lovely Sunday evening... share the book as a FREEBIE on TPT!

My students still need lots of practice with our sight words the and like, and what Kindergartener doesn't love some precious zoo animals!?  I'd love if you rated the product or left me some feedback if you download.  Hope you had a great weekend... here comes Week 4 of the year!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Roll & Tally Freebie

2 weeks down, whew!  I am loving my class, and they are catching onto our routines and procedures so quickly - yahoo!  One of the major routines we have been practicing is our system for math rotations.  For my math block, we start altogether for a 15 minute whole-class math "warm-up."  After that, the students rotate through 3 stations: teacher table, computer, and workshops.  I use a PowerPoint that automatically advances to tell students when to switch and where to go. 

For their workshops, students play differentiated math games.  I will be spending this whole week teaching them loads of these games when they come to their teacher table rotation.  The students get a new game everyday, so they don't get bored, so I need them to learn A LOT of them up front right now.  As their skill levels progress, I will introduce and teach new games here and there throughout the year.

Here's a freebie game that the students love and is very easy to teach and requires only the student handout, dice, and pencils.  Nothing to laminate!  ;)
Click here to download it for free from TPT.  Hope you and your students enjoy!  :)