Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Bio Poems

I do these Bio Poems at the end of kindergarten. I sometimes put the poems at the end of the year slideshow with the kids reading them.  I have seen lots of different variations of this template. You can get the Bio Template at the end of this post. I typed them up and put their kid pix photo on them.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Portfolio Reflections Sheets

The following are some of the sheets I used for student portfolio reflection. The student knows that they need to do their best work because they will be reading their thoughts to their parents on  portfolio day. Below I have some student samples.

reflection sheets

With all of the reflection sheets, we start at large group time listing what we have learned, and then students go off and complete the sheet independently.
make spaces and reread their stories

I learned that good writers make spaces 
in between their word and take care of tools.

Make sentences and spaces  
make good pictures make good words
 I have always struggled to have students reflect on math. I think part of it is that we do so many things in math, and it is constantly changing. 

For this sheet, I encouraged students to draw at least four things that we learned in math and on the bottom pick their favorite. 

I had many different responses for their favorite. I loved reading them! I hope to do more math reflection at the end of units next year.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Writing the Alphabet

Writing the alphabet is an assessment tool I use with my class to see letter writing. My colleague Genie had this sheet from her old school, and I just love it! This year, we did this assessment in the winter and spring.

Students write all of the upper and lower case letters that they know.

 Next year, I plan to have my students do this each month. The booklet below has the sheets labeled for each month. This summer I hope to make a checklist that would record what letters the students know how to write and letters they need to learn.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Self-Portrait Booklets

I have always had students make a self-portrait each month for their portfolio. I always find myself running around trying to find missing self-portraits. For next year,  I decided to make this little booklet that I have stapled together with a page for each month. Having a pre-made booklet will help me keep track of missing work, absent students and paper organization.  You can find the booklet download below. I have a cover and sheets for each month starting in September and ending in June.

Kindergarten Self-Portraits
 One thing I added to the self-portrait picture was lines for writing  sentences. I do not make students write a sentence in the fall,  but I strongly encourage it! I have found that my students sometimes struggle with what to say. I have a lot of I like sentences.

Next Year

 I may have the students brainstorm a list of things about the month or what we have learned to help generate ideas for writing. If you have any suggestions, I would love to hear from you!!

The students love looking at their portraits and noticing how much they have changed. It is an easy way to document growth. This year I had the students make a picture on the front and do the writing on the back. I have a few samples from two students below.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Memory Books in KC

I am going to share with you a memory book my colleague Laura shared with me years ago. I know it's probably too late to do this,  but it is something worth thinking about for another year.

 Step One
Each child picks a special memory from the school year. It's important that students know, once someone says a memory it is already taken. I write the memory on the easel. We pick memories over the course of a few days. We have a lot of discussion of memories from the school year. You could read the book Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox.

Write 21 different memories

Step Two
I let students make their faces on kids pix for the book. We did make faces in the fall, but I thought it would be nice to see how much they have changed! I was able to get the whole class done in one day. I used Kid Pix, you could use Kerpoof too.

Step Three
I saved face as JPEG and imported into iphoto to crop. Once faces were cropped, I made the cover on Pages. I just had to drop and drag. The cover of their books is above with all the faces and names.

Step Four
Now, I come up with different things to go with that memory. Each child will take home a memory book that has  21 different memories made by them!  Sometimes I have the students draw a picture. I may find a photo from the memory.

 Below you see a few examples
 for the Halloween memory I just put a haunted house project we did in October.
 For hat day we drew ourselves.
We made apple trees for apple picking.
In the end all the students have the memory page with their friends face and comment but the next page in the book is created by them!

Here is an example of a few pages 
This is the memory page and the next page has the project.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sight Word Search

I don't know about anyone else,  but I feel so busy!!   This is a choice at Daily 5 time. We use yellow highlighters to color or circle.

Word Search OneWord Search One

Saturday, May 5, 2012

The Alphabet Countdown

A friend of mine was telling me about her friend who teaches first grade and does an Alphabet Countdown for the last twenty-six days of school. 

Her class LOVES it.  The class gets a calendar sent home and each day they do something that represents that letter. I was able to look at examples of her sheet, and it gave me a starting point to build from.

If anyone has any suggestions I would love to hear from you!

Thanks Robin for sharing this idea! When I make the calendar I will post it. I have a feeling some of the kids in my class will have some good ideas too. I would love suggestions for the letters o and n.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Nonfiction lessons this week

We have been talking about the different kinds of nonfiction books we have been reading in class. This week we did a lesson focusing on facts and opinions and wrote a Question and Answer book about our class. 
When reading  nonfiction text, we have been using this chart to figure out what kind of nonfiction writing it is. I do plan on adding a picture of that type of book next to the definition.

Nonfiction Writing
This was a lesson focusing on facts and opinions.  I asked the students if they knew what a fact was and what an opinion was.  One child knew the definition of a fact, and I helped define what an opinion is. I said a few statements and had students talk to their neighbor if they thought my statement was a fact or opinion. 

We shared with the large group by raising one finger for a fact and two fingers for an opinion. 

Later in the day I read the story Gorilla. We then wrote statements that were facts and opinions about Gorillas. They did an excellent job creating opinions.  
The goal of this lesson was that when we are writing nonfiction stories we need to provide facts.

As writers, we need to be careful because facts and opinions are different.
This lesson and the Question and Answer lesson comes from Linda Hoyt's nonfiction book
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