Monday, May 7, 2018

Teacher Appreciation $25 TpT Gift Card GIVEAWAY!

Enter to win one of FOUR $25 TpT Gift Cards! 

Giveaway ends 5/9/18 at 12 am MST
Four Lucky Winners will be notified by Wednesday morning, May 9 by email with a $25 TpT Gift Card!
If you missed this giveaway, there will be others. Follow my blog (on the right add your email, follow on Bloglovin', or click under "Followers") so you know about future giveaways!
Easy to enter. See below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, April 8, 2018

The Secret? REAL Reading

By this time in 1st grade, we want our students to be reading independently with fluency and comprehension.  They should be able to select a book at their level and read. Really read. 

And the thing is, our students want to read more! 

Many of us stop their excitement of reading independently by requiring too many paper-pencil, coloring, sorting, and other activities that may work on isolated reading skills. But when these activities take more than 50% of their reading time, they are not getting enough REAL Reading.

I'm not opposed to these activities. Heck, I sell and use these activities with my own students during our May Do activity time. As the year progresses, however, I am mindful of how much of these activities I use, and I begin to provide more REAL Reading materials for them and monitor the time they are in each activity.

If we want our students to be reading independently with fluency and comprehension by the end of 1st grade, we need to remember the following:

By mid-year, 1st graders should be reading at least 50% of the time during their reading block. 

By the end of the year, they should be engaged in REAL Reading activities up to 75% of the time.

What is REAL Reading?

REAL Reading is reading text. It's as simple as that. It's not paper-pencil, it's not hands-on, it's not discussion during small group. It's REAL Reading. 
  • Independent Reading (when students are reading at a fluent pace; usually around 50 wpm or more in text at their level)
  • Partner Reading (at times when students must practice fluency, comprehension, accuracy; it is important to give clear expectations for this activity)
  • Guided Reading (teacher voice should be OFF the majority of the time while students are reading so they are doing the reading work, not echoing the teacher)
  • Whisper Reading (great for pre-reading during guided reading time; teacher monitors for accuracy and decoding) see The Wonders of Whisper Reading
  • Reading for Information
  • Readers Theater 
  • Reading Passages
  • Decodable Reading
  • Choral Reading
  • Phrase Reading see Fluency Phrases to Improve Reading Fluency
Research shows that the more students really read, the more they progress. Seems sort of common sense, but in order to get to that 50-75% of the time in REAL Reading, it takes mindful planning!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, February 4, 2018

20 Black Americans Who Changed Our Nation {FREEBIE}

February is a busy month filled with Valentines, groundhogs, Tooth Fairies and presidents. And although it is the shortest month of the year, we know the importance of finding time to teach our students about great black Americans who changed our nation.

For this WEEK ONLY our Black History Portrait, Biography Posters and Trading Cards product is 50% off through Friday, February 9, 2018. 

(Download a full set of FREE Trading Cards from the product at the end of this post. You will love them!)

Although this product is for grades 2-4, I share the information from these posters and trading cards with my first graders. We discuss the impact these historical figures have had on our nation. 
 Grades 2-4 of course can go into greater depth with instruction, discussion and research. 


Follow my blog on the right for more wonderful offers like this only available here. Leave your thoughts below. I love to hear from you!
Download a full set of FREE Black History Trading Cards HERE.
Thanks for stopping by! ♥

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Sunday, January 21, 2018

Reader of the Week! FREEBIE!

We're halfway through the year and that means everyone has had a chance to be Star of the Week. We love to start the year off with this getting to know you Star of the Week activity first and THEN 2nd semester lead into Reader of the Week. That way students have had a chance to shine as the "Star" and are ready to shine as the "Reader of the Week." 

Now if you're not familiar with my Star of the Week procedures, I like to make it a big deal. I also like to have them do all the jobs for the week so that way I'm not changing out jobs all the time. Brilliant, right? They love it. They are line leader, calendar leader, clip chart changer, go-fer, and whatever else I need.  See my Star of the Week blog post HERE for more information and see the Star of the Week product HERE.

So second semester I just continue with the routine of the jobs but change it to Reader of the Week (did I mention this product is FREE?). Students select a favorite book at their reading level and for a week ahead of time, practice their fluency and holding it up for the class to see. Directions on how I run the program are included, but they can certainly be modified to suit your classroom's needs.

The week before, I send a letter home explaining the program and the expectations. (Bonus! The letter is also editable.) 
If you teach 1st grade, you know how easy (and how important) it is to make them feel special. I've also included a fun colorful Reader of the Week crown and an ink-saving black and white version that students can color. These can be worn on the day they read to the class. How fun and easy peasy is that?


FREE Reader of the Week

Star of the Week

Thanks for stopping by! I would love to hear your thoughts!

Monday, December 4, 2017

FREE Holiday Art Fingerprint Activity!

This holiday activity turned out more adorable than I thought it would! I'm so excited to share these with parents! And it's free for you! 

All you need are some washable tempera paints in any colors (I chose green and red) and some markers.

Students color the stars with markers or crayons and write their name on the line. Then dip fingers lightly in paint and make the Christmas lights colorful!



Give as a holiday gift to parents. They look great framed too!
Visit my store and get it FREE
I would love for you to leave feedback on the product page.
Thanks for visiting, and

Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Santa Claus Puppet Book


Our students LOVE making these adorable puppet books and reading them over and over, using the puppet to tell the story!
Plus MORE to come soon!
Check out the Santa Puppet Book in action in the video below:


The book is super easy and fun to make!
Easy to follow directions for printing and assembly are included.

Use the Santa Puppet to help tell the cute story about Santa Claus delivering a present. 








Teach positional / directional words, and following directions. 
Santa jumps into his sleigh, through the clouds, over the house top, down the chimney, and under the Christmas tree to deliver a present. 
Store the puppet in the library pocket that is glued to the back of the book cover (or use a paper clip). Watch your students read it over and over again!

OR...
Get all of the above plus much more in a BUNDLE and Save!:

Merry Christmas!

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Sunday, November 26, 2017

Math Picture Puzzles ~ FREEBIE Included!

Our students LOVE these math puzzles for centers, interventions, guided math and even whole group! They put one puzzle together and move on to the next. 

Print on heavy paper, laminate and cut apart. Easy Peasy!
These long pencil baskets are a perfect size for these puzzles at centers! Here is an Amazon link, but I bought 3 for less than $1 at WalMart.
You won't get puzzle pieces mixed up with other puzzles with a picture of the puzzle in the upper right corner of each puzzle piece. Organization and clean up is a breeze!
The BUNDLE includes Subitizing, Addition and Subtraction as well as Missing Number skills. But they can also be purchased separately:
My ABSOLUTE FAVORITE part of these packs is the DIY Puzzle. Students get to create their own picture on one side and their own math problems on the other. They cut them apart and trade with a friend. I select some of their puzzles and they love it when theirs becomes part of a center! They soon learn the importance of accuracy with their math problems and spending time making a quality picture that fills the whole page.
 These black and white versions can be used with the DIY puzzles or instead of the color versions for the regular puzzles to save on ink. Print on colored heavy duty paper or have a student color them!
 Get the BUNDLE or check out the links below each picture:
Subitizing Math Picture Puzzle Centers for K-2

Addition and Subtraction Math Picture Puzzle Centers for K-2

Missing Number Math Picture Puzzle Centers for K-2
Get your FREE sample HERE.
Let me know what you think!
♥ Thanks for stopping by! ♥
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