Sunday, November 25, 2012

Small Moments

Small Moments Writing

This year, I decided to start Small Moments now, and I am glad I did!

 I started by reading Roller Coaster by Marla Frazee. What I like about this mentor text is that Marla could have written about all of the things that she did at the amusement park. Instead, Marla wrote a story just about the roller coaster.

Kindergartner kids get that. I think the idea of sticking to one idea and spreading that moment across the pages can be difficult for kindergarten, so this book is the perfect example.
We read lots of books that had the parts you could ZOOM in on too.
We talked about the part in the story when Sophie gets furious.
This was a great example of showing rather than just telling.

When I told the class we would be learning how to write a Small Moment story, it gave  new energy to the workshop time.

Next step we wrote a Class Small Moment Story

Some of Our Small Moment Stories

After reading Roller Coaster, a lot of students wrote stories about being on rides. Roller Coaster is a great example of stretching out your story for a small moment. The illustrations are very detailed for kindergarten. I love that she uses sound words in her writing.

                                       The Bamboo Shoot

 We go to the Bamboo Shoot ride many people were in line.
 up up up
 We tell my Mom to close her eyes to sleep then we tell her to open them.
(A little confusing but she explained how they were teasing their mom on the ride)
 We go back in line The End

Pinkie Pie

Pinkie Pie
 I love Pinkie Pie
 Pinkie Pie has blue eyes
She is the best my little pony because she eats candy.

Going To Mc Donald's
Going to Mc Donalds
 It was our turn.
 I looked in the bag. I saw my favorite animal.
 I pulled it out.
It was a good day

For these Small Moment stories, I had students work on these little books below.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Celebrating Writing

In this simple mini-lesson, I took pieces of student work that I wanted to put in the SPOTLIGHT!!
I photocopied a student sample on an 11X17 piece of paper and wrote on the paper.  Yes, these students are doing amazing things during writing time, and I want to share that!

My goal is to have every child be highlighted during the school year many times!!! I got this wonderful idea from the book What's Next for this Beginning Writer? By Janie Reid &Betty Schultze.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Moose Sight Word Game

How To Play Moose 

Moose is a simple sight word game.
The cards get cut up and put on the table face down.
You can play this game with Popsicle sticks too.

  1.  Each child takes a card and reads it. If they get it right they, get to keep it.
  2. If they get it wrong, it gets put back in the pile.
  3. If a child pulls MOOSE, all of your cards get put back in the pile!
  4. At the end of the game, the child can record some of the cards they pulled.

 I love to use this game during transition times. If you have some kids who finish early, they can easily play this game with a group of friends.

The list of sight words used comes from Linda Hoyt and Teresa Therriault Mastering the Mechanics K-1.
 Students can record the cards they pulled.
Some of the playing cards

click here for download

Sunday, November 11, 2012

ABC order Flow Map

 One of the stations, the students worked on this week, was ABC order. They had to put the first letter of their name in the box and put the letters in ABC order on a Flow Map. 

The students have to go in the direction of the arrows. 

I had students work with a partner because I was also having them pop the letters out from a sheet that was tricky. 

You can get these letters at a scrapbook store. I found them at Marshall's. Another suggestion is to have the students write the letters or stamp the letters. 

You can get the template below.
 The sheet of letters to pull out

 If a name started with a letter at the end of the alphabet, I had them start at A.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Writing, Math and Reading Goals

Goals are so important

I feel like I am always setting goals for myself. 
I think teachers do this all the time.

What am I working on? 
What are my goals for school today? 
How can I teach better? 
How did that lesson go?  
What should I do to reach the struggling student? 
How can I reach the student child who seems to know everything? 

I always want my students to think about creating goals for themselves, and I know this is a difficult task especially in kindergarten. I will be talking about writing goals, and someone will shout out something that has nothing to do with reading or even math.

Each year I ask myself what can I do to bring kindergartners one step closer to making appropriate goals.

To make goal setting easier for kindergarteners, I decided to make sheets that they could just circle the goal they think they are working on.
There is a spot at the bottom for me to write what I think they are working on too. I hope to change these goal sheets as the year goes on.

Writing Goals

Last year I shared with you  Writing Goals board above. I created another sheet to use for the fall belowThese are the writing goals we are working on right now.

Math Goals
This summer I read this book How to Assess While You Teach Math by Dana Islas. I LOVED this book. Dana shared some great math lessons and shared how she gets her students involved in the assessment process. I loved how she had her students make math goal. Dana also sends home the goal sheet so parents can see what their child's goal is in school. 

This book encouraged me to have students set math goals! I strongly recommend this book. It also comes with a video of some of the lessons.

Here are the math goals we are working on. If you look on the sheet above Solving Problems could also be word problems.

Reading Goals 

I do use the CAFE board when doing Daily 5.
Eventually, the kids put their name on a Post-it and stick it under the category they are working on during the reading time. I decided to make a sheet that had specific goals for reading time.

I think this is a good way of making explicit what readers are working on, and it's something they can put in their portfolios for self- reflection.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Thinking Maps Thursday

Today I am going to share with you some Thinking Maps we are working on in kindergarten. 

In math, today I gave the students a Brace Map with the number 5. They had to draw some red leaves and yellow leaves. They had to have five altogether.

Bridge Map

We went back to a Bridge Map to show Phonemic relationships. We worked on this Thinking Map for many days.

 On the white board, I wrote the letters of the alphabet. We came up with fall words (that we are still working on). I read the Dr. Seuss book. 
We went back to our alphabet words and tried to add another word with the same beginning sound. 

 We attempted to make the words connect to fall and make sense.  We are still  working on some letters. I went to the first-grade classroom to see if they could help us.

 The kids outlined with a sharpie and colored in with a crayon or colored pencil. They had to shade the background. 

Math Notebooks 

Circle Map for Ways to Make 5

 Our Favorite October Books

 The students worked together in small groups. They had to record the characters and events that happened in the story. Before sending students off, we took a picture walk of each story.

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