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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Some of my favorites... word work edition

I decided to share some of my literacy center/ word work ideas.  In the beginning of the year we do some of these as literacy centers, then once we introduce Daily 5 these become word work.  It works nice because students understand expectations already and make a smooth transition.

 Playdoh words

 This a playdoh word building center.  This one that I made uses seasonal words but I also have one with all the word wall words we teach.  All you do it take your cookie cutter that you use and dip them in paint.  I used sentence strips but you could just use cardstock/ construction paper. Students use playdoh and cookie cutters to make the words and put them on top of the word strip. 

Clip, color, and write

This center is featured in all of my Journeys word work units  on TPT.  I make letter clothespins. I put uppercase on one side and lowercase on the other.  For students who need word cards, I let them clip to the word cards.  Students who are more advanced you can just give them a ruler or paint stick to clip their word on.  Then they color the word in the middle and write it in the last box.

Hammering letters

I just got this foam letter mat at Wal-mart or the dollar store. I can't remember now. I hot glued the pieces together.  Students take the letters out and hammer them in one at a time.  They LOVE it!!  It's a favorite and gets used everyday.

Bean words

I used little glasses.  They were actually tiny plastic shot glasses I bought at Dollar Tree. :) I made labels of all the words on the outside of the cup.  Then I wrote the letters on beans and students pour out the letters from the cups and build the word.  I keep the beans in the cup that they need to make the word to make it simpler and easier but you could just put a bunch of beans in a container with letters on them and have students find the letters to spell the words.  We often play in it small groups and use it as a race to see who can spell their word first.  I have them turn their cup over when they are done.  They can only win if they can read the word!! It's a fun way to practice sight words.

Magnetic words

Aren't these so cute!!  I love them! They are tiny magnets that I found once at Dollar General.  I not sure if you can find them anymore but any magnets would work.  Students build them in an Altoids container.  I have a recording sheet that students then have to color the word to match their magnets.  Again, these pages are in my Journeys Word Work Units on TPT.

Linking words

 I used letter cards and learning links.  I used the learning links from a teacher supply catalog.  I then just laminated my letter cards and put hole punches on the side of them so students can link them together.  I color code each of my units in our reading series so that I just put the words that they been introduced to.  I put all the words from that unit on a card so they can refer to it when they are building their words. It's another favorite of my students! 

Here are some of our favorite videos that we are singing and dancing to right now!!!

Hope you enjoy! Have a great day!

Monday, October 22, 2012

People that We love!

We have been working hard at writing.  We use the Lucy Calkins Units of Study.  Right now we are working on really stretching out our words and trying to write sentences about things that happen to us.  However, I have had some kiddos asking how do you spell......sisters and brothers and cousins names..and I have no idea how to spell them!   Since everyone spells names differently I decided to come up with a little note to send home and have parents write down names that kids can use during writing. 
 This list will go in their writing folders! :) 
Hope you enjoy! 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Cut-up pumpkin book

My kids love cut up sentences.  Cut up sentences can teach direction of print, sight words, punctuation, and sentence formation.  With the holiday approaching, I created this cut up sentence book.  You could use it as a book or just a page or two.  We are going to do a page a day right after recess.  The first day I will use my doc camera to help them. Hopefully after a day or two they will be able to complete it independently. To complete this book just have the kids cut along bottom line of the page and cut the words to make the sentence.  Then color the pumpkin to match the words.  Hope you enjoy it!  Happy cutting!! 
Let me know if the link doesn't work.  I'm still learning how to link things!  Thanks! Tara West from

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Halloween Counting FREEBIE!!!

What do the kids love most about Halloween??
The CANDY... of course. 

 Here is a counting game to enjoy as Halloween approaches!!  

 Click on the picture to go to my TPT store to get your FREEBIE!!! 

Here is my latest creation!  If you love it and download it, please follow me!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Let's Learn our Names!

We have been working hard to learn our names! I have a helper of the day.  So we cycle through everyone during the month. 
  • The first time we did King and Queen. Each person was the king or queen of the day.  They got to wear a crown and cape.  The crown was a paper one that they took home at the end of the day. We made a web of all their favorite things.  We practiced asking and answering questions.  Then everyone made a page for their book.  So fun and cute. I took pictures of them all in the cape and crown for the cover.  As we did this  we added their name to the word wall.

  • The second time through we did a name chart.  We added names to this according to their first letter of their name. I did the first letter and different color than the rest so that they could really see their beginning letter. I put a box around all the ones that began with the same letter. Picture coming soon.

  • The third time through did this graph. I cut 3 inch strips of cardstock.  I made this chart.  Everyday I had the helper come up to the front of the class and I wrote their name on a strip of their choice.  Then I cut it up.  Letter by letter.  They would say "Oh No, It's broken" Then the helper would pick up the pieces and we glued them back together on the chart.  I would then pick some names on the chart and we would compare ....Whose name had fewer and more letters than theirs. It really got them talking about their names more and the letters in them.
Next time through we will be making "My book of Friends"   The kids will actually cut up each name and glue it together to make a book of friends. Picture coming soon!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Halloween Switch-a-Roo

This is a fun game to incorporate learning letters and having fun.  It's like the old-fashioned game "Fruit Basket". To prepare for this game just print and laminate the cards. The kids sit in a circle in chairs.  Each student gets a letter card. One person stands in the middle and calls out a character on the cards.  The two kids with that character on the cards stand up and switch spots.  The person in the middle tries to take one of the spots before they do.  Usually the person in the middle gets one of the spots and the person left without a chair stays standing.  The kids call out their letter after they sit down. The person in the middle gives their card to the one that took their spot that was in the middle.  Then just start over.  The middle person calls out a new Halloween friend. Fun,fun, fun!!Here it is. Just click the picture to go to my Teachers Pay Teachers.  It's on Sale for only $1.00 till Monday!  

Aren't they sooooo CUTE!!!  You could always just make them into an alphabet book or just use them to put them in ABC order! 
SO  fun! 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Character Songs

Have fun teaching has a Character Song CD I will be able to use in my classroom with my Kindergarteners and for the whole school during community time.  I am the PBiS team leader plan our weekly community time.  PBiS is Postive Behavior Intervention Strategies.  Our motto at Washington is "Focus on the positive and deal with the negative" We strive to focus on that 4:1 ratio of good behavior. 
During this weekly community time I will be able to teach the whole school songs about bullying, caring, respect, patience, fairness, and being truthful.  These are the character traits that we focus on so adding this music will give us a pep to community time.  The kids will love these character songs!  I'm so excited to be able to share this with my Kindergarteners and the school.

Thanks Have Fun Teaching!  I use your videos everyday in my classroom and will love to add this CD!!! 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

NuMbErS, NuMbErS, NuMbErS!!!

Number Sense is such an important part of Kindergarten. My kiddos do not have prior learning experiences and do not come to Kindergarten knowing their numbers.  We work hard just learning to count and recognize our numbers. 
This year we did a NUMBER a day!!  Much like we always do a letter a day at the beginning of the year.  We did number books and Dr. Jean's Numeral song everyday.  We practiced writing our numbers on marker boards, in shaving cream, and with playdoh. 

We day we played a counting game.  We just stood in a circle and each person said a number.  We counted to the number of the day.  The last person to say the number of the day goes to their table and works on their number book. Simple counting game.  We just added a number everyday.  It really helped my non-English speaking student hear everyone count everyday. They thought it was so fun and always asked to do the counting game.

Our Number Chart!!
We always did a number chart.  Of course, I made borders using the number of the day.  I drew the number, number word, a shape if there is one with the sides of that number, dice, 10 frame and objects that come in that number. Of course, 2 was easy, 2 hands, 2 feet, 2 eyes. It was so cute they would count every time I drew the border around the edge.  Remember...the brain likes borders!!  I use them all the time! 
Math stations! 
Number Shake 
This station I used an old jewerly box and wrote numbers 1-10 on dot stickers and stuck them to the bottom.  Then put a small button or eraser in the box.  GIVE IT A GOOD SHAKE!   Then open it and write the number closest to the button on the marker board. Yep, it gets a little loud but that what Kindergarten is all about!! 
This another simple center you can make with stuff you probably already have!  I just put labels 2-10 on red solo cups.  :) Then get a deck of cards or two.  Take out the face cards.  Let the kids sort away. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Halloween Freebie!

This is the number puzzles.  You cut these up and students put them back together on the number mats.  Great at building number sense.

Monday, October 1, 2012

ABC Horses!

Alphabet Fun!!
I created this fun way to practice matching upper and lowercase letters. I also added beginning sound pictures for those kids who need to be challenged.  It's actually two literacy centers in one. 
Just print the horses and saddles. You can print them on cardstock and laminate for durability.

All you need is 52 clothespins. A cheap and fun center kids can enjoy all year!
You can find these at my TPT store.

Happy Fall!!

Well, its beginning to feel like fall around here. 
The wind is blowing a lot today a today!  I am on my 3 week break and enjoying time at home!! 
I love getting ready for Halloween! 

As a FREE FALL Gift to you I create Math number puzzles 1-10 and 11-20 counting cards!

As Halloween approaches I also created....
I created a Halloween Math and Literacy Center pack. It has my new favorite, What Will I see on Halloween night?  It's a very cute emergent reader with kids dressed up in Halloween costumes.  I also made a student edition!  The students can write in the word "see" on every page. 
I also created "I see spider counting book.  Student count the number of spiders that belong on each page from the 10's frame. Then the write in that correct number.  I added spiders that they can cut out and add to each page.  If you would rather you can just have them draw their own spiders. 

I also created a number counting cards. Students count these cards and then write the correct number next to the same picture on the recording sheet.  This is for numbers 0-10. You could also make two sets of these and play memory.  Who doesn' love to play memory?
And my favorite Candy Corn Numbers. These are for numbers 1-12. 
 A fun way to work on number recognition!

This packet also has my Halloween read the room labels with recording sheet. Similar to my Fall words read the room. Click here to find my store.