Monday, September 16, 2013

Ice Cream Math

Today I'd like to share how I approach fluency with addition and subtraction facts in my classroom.  I'll admit, I'm not a huge proponent of timed fact drills, but they are required at my school as part of our SIP.  And ... they do serve their purpose.  As much as the majority of our math block is spend in hands-on conceptual learning, the ultimate goal is for automaticity with basic facts.  Soooo ... to make it more fun, I created Ice Cream Math!!

My Ice Cream Math Timed Addition and Subtraction Fact Drills is one of my best selling products on TpT.  It includes a series of sequential 1 minute addition and subtraction quizzes.  Students can progress through the levels at their own pace.  I've had a lot of questions about how I stay organized with this ... Obviously, having students on different levels is a little more time consuming that giving them all the same test.  But this is how I approach it and it works for me!

We have a large display for Ice Cream Math in our room.  Each student gets their own ice cream cone (I got these die cuts from Carson Dellosa).  The kids LOVE earning sprinkles for their cones! I'm a little on the OCD side (as are many teachers!) so my "sprinkles" are circle shaped labels that actually say what quiz they were earned for.  These are included in the pack - I printed them on full sheet labels and used a hole punch to cut them out.  Really though, even for me, this was *probably* unneccesary - I found cute ice cream stickers at a teacher supply store and these work great too! (I give them these "special" stickers when they pass special skill-based quizzes like doubles, sums of ten, etc.)

I keep all of the quizzes and practice sheets included in the pack in a binder.  I have sets of each level copied and ready to go at all times.  I store them in these in fun sterelite plastic drawers I decorated and labeled (excuse the poor quality iPhone images!)

 So the tricky part is giving each child the right quiz, and not spending tons of time every day labeling quizzes.  This is what I do and it takes me about 5 minutes to get the quizzes prepped and ready.  In my assessment binder I have a sheet that looks like this (also included in the pack):

  All students start on Level 1.  After they pass a quiz, I write their name in the next box.  When they pass that level, I cross their name off and write it in the next box.  When I'm prepping quizzes, I'll grab my stack of Level 2 quizzes, quickly label quizzes with student numbers for all the kids in that box.  I'll put the Level 2 quizzes up, grab a stack of Level 3 quizzes and repeat.  I realize it's not pretty, but it works! I'll re-write the names each quarter so it doesn't get *too* messy.  I also have a check-list (included in the pack) for all the special, skilled-based quizzes so I can check when a child passes their doubles quiz, +1 quiz, etc.  I use these quizzes when we are working on specific strategies.

Okay, I hope that wasn't too confusing!  Of course, even if you don't have the time to let kids work through the levels at their own pace, the materials in this pack would still be a great resource for timed fact tests.  Simply move the whole class up to the next level when you think the majority are ready!  Click below to see this product in my TpT store!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Lloyd the Droid

Unlike many of you LUCKY teachers out there, we still have a full two weeks of school left.  The weather has been scorching hot in Florida and my littles are definitely getting restless!  We are covering our last story in the reading series this week, and I knew I would need some tricks to keep them interested and engaged.  We are covering the oi/oy phonics pattern so .... May I introduce you to Lloyd the Droid!  The kids (especially the boys) were immediately captured the minute they heard the word "robot".

I started by reading the kids the story I wrote about Lloyd, a boy droid who has a very active imagination.  I had the kids listen for oi/oy words, share with their partners, and then we wrote them on the board and circled spelling patterns.  The next day I shared a big book/projectable version of Lloyd's story with colors and pictures.  The kids got their own interactive copies of the book to fill out and color.
Below are some additional centers and small group activities I created to go along with Lloyd's stories:

Secret Speller center and word sorts

Sound segmenting, Roll and Read silly sentences, and real/nonsense word building

The kids were so excited about "droids" that I decided to keep the robot fun going all week.  We read several fiction and nonfiction books about robots.  Our favorite was "Boy + Bot" by Ame Dyckman:

We've been learning how to retell and summarize, so after reading this story the kids created their own "Retelling Robots"!

All of these activities and MANY more are available in my 115 oi/oy resource pack "Meet Lloyd the Droid"!

10.days.left. !!!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Fabulous Finds and a GIVEAWAY!

I always love when bloggers share what they purchased after a big TpT sale.  My husband doesn't.  Because then I go back and spend even more money.  But that's okay because there are just so many AMAZING products out there, and I really NEED them.  So anyway, I thought I'd share my fabulous finds with you from last week's awesome Teacher Appreciation sale!

This one is just *amazing*.  I use Fry's 100, 200, and 300 word lists in my classroom and this a SUPER resource.  My littles have all (thank heavens) mastered their 100 Words this year, but I can't wait to use this next Fall!
This was a super find.  I remember learning all the syllable rules in college, but can honestly say I haven't spent much time *explicitly* teaching them to my students.  The Common Core puts more of a focus on syllable rules, so the activities in this pack will be super helpful!

Rachelle's Rockin' Math Review was perfect for our May math tubs!  My classroom is rock star themed, so this was a great way to end the year!

Sandra's graphs are so cute and well organzied!  I can't wait to use these on a regular basis next year!

With the end of the year right around the corner, I thought this would be the perfect time to throw a little giveaway!  I mean, the end of the year is a celebration people!  This giveaway is a bundled pack with THREE fabulous prizes!  Winners will receive ...
 My Eric Carle Inspired Summer Thematic Unit - Over 70 pages of reading response activities, games, literacy and math centers!

My new First Grade Summer Review - this is an 8 week program to help parents work with their students over the summer.  It covers (almost) ALL of the First Grade Common Core standards, and is organized with weekly overviews and checklists to help keep parents on track!

My sweet friend Kristen has also generously agreed to include her End of the Year Memory Book in this prize pack! (Visit Kristen at her blog, Primary Pals, or her TpT Store!)  Kristen's Memory Book includes pages for grades K-5!

Okay, ready to enter!  There are many options to enter below ... the more you complete the better your chances are of winning!  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, May 6, 2013

Fantastic Fairy Tales

We just finished up our 3 week fairy tale unit and I'm so excited to share what we've been up to.  This unit is *probably* my favorite of the year, and this year was the best yet!  We kicked off the unit by decorating the room with this cute little bulletin display:
You can click on the picture above to download the castle template I used.  I just printed on gray construction paper, and gave the kids scrapbook paper to make the flags :)

The first week we read several different versions of "The Three Little Pigs".  After reading the traditional version, I told the kids that they were going to get to be reporters, and get the scoop on the crime!  I gave each child a specific role to report on (what happened, where it happened, why is happened, what the wolf looked like, and a photographer to take "pictures" of the crime scene).  They got into groups with other children sharing their same role to share ideas and work on their report.  Each child then contributed one section to a group newspaper:

The next day we read "The True Story of the Three Little Pigs".  I told the little ones that any good reporter gets BOTH sides of the story, and that they would need to interview the wolf!  We did some "mock interviews" where the kids pretended to answer questions from the Wolf's perspective, and then they worked on answering these questions at their seats:  
Click on the picture to download the worksheet!

Next comes my favorite part of the unit!  Using the Toontastic app on the school iPads (that my fabulous principal was able to score for us this year), the kids were able to animate the interview!  We uploaded the videos to "ToonTube" to share with our families.  Click below to see one of their cute videos!:

We incorporated some of our fairy tale fun into out Literacy Centers too!  Below are a few of the activities from my Fantastic Fairy Tales (Differentiated Literacy Centers) pack:

 Magic Mirror Words: The kiddos LOVED this one! I told them an evil queen had put a curse on these words and now they were backwards!  To read them they had to use the magic mirror.  One little sweetie's comment was, "Mrs. Hagaman, I could get used to this center!)

Mad Hatter's Wacky Words: this one is a fun CVCe nonsense word game that is played like Go Fish.

Knight & Night: a write the room homonym activity!

Our last big project was our Fairy Tale lapbooks.  We worked on these throughout the unit as we read and learned about different fairy tales.  We started by created a class anchor chart defining the genre, and then the kids made their own mini anchor charts on the front of their lapbooks:

The inside of our lapbooks included some cute math connections, like this fun graphing activity "Who is the Most Wicked of them All?"

We are putting the finishing touches on our lapbooks, but it should be available to purchase in my TpT store by the end of the week!

I *think* that's just about it!  I hope you are all getting ready for a "Happy Ever After" to the 2012-2013 school year!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Summer Review

Hi everyone!  So last week my principal sent out an email asking all teachings to please submit the summer reading list and "summer work" to the office, to be distributed in the Q4 report cards.  Now ... I KNOW made a summer reading/work list last year (and the year before that) but somehow it was nowhere to be found.  I swear, I think I've finally got an organization system down that's going to stick but sometimes I feel like I'm drowning in my own resources (and I'm only 3 years in, yikes!)

Anyway, I put together a little summer reading list and list of helpful suggestions for parents to work with their kids over the summer.  Click below if it's something you think you could use!

So that happened.  And I've already had several parents email me wanting to know if I could give them ideas/resources for reviewing with their student over summer (sheesh already?  not that I'm complaining about involved parents .. but can we say over-acheiver? hehe) And then there's my little sweetie who has come SO FAR this year, and the idea of her backtracking over summer totally depresses me.  So all of that put together inspired my latest resource pack: A Common Core aligned First Grade Summer Review!

I designed this pack as an 8-week program for parents.  Each week has a weekly overview with a checklist, and explanation of the skills being reviewed that week.  My hope is that this will make it manageable and keep parents on track.

Each week has 7 review pages in the following categories: Phonics, Read for Meaning, Language and Conventions, Writing, Math, Math Facts, and Weekly Skill Check (mixed skill review).  Every activity in this pack is aligned to a specific CC standard.  Although it's not designed to cover any standard in depth, it does at least touch on (almost) ALL of the core First Grade standards!

I'm super excited to offer this resource to my own students and their families this year.  Hopefully some others will get some use out of it also.  Regardless, we are in  major count down mode people!  Summer is almost here .. eeee!!

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Mother's Day Ladybug Pots

Looking for a cute Mother's Day gift?  I've been doing these ladybug flower pots since my first year teaching, and they always turn out adorable.  They are simple to make and the supplies aren't too expensive.  I've always gotten my terracotta pots from Home Depot ... they have several sizes available.  The first year I got larger pots, but last year I was pinched for cash and got their mini pots for less than a dollar a piece ... still turned out super cute!

The kids paint the pots red and a few days later go back and add the black spots.  I use a hot glue gun to glue on google eyes and a twisted black pipe cleaner for an antenna.  When the pots are finished we plant a small potted flower.  (I apologize for the picture above ... it was the only one I had from last year; this little sweetie was out sick for a whole WEEK and her flower died :(  So we improvised with Hershey's Kisses!)  I wrote a cute little poem to match that I cut out and tape to a toothpick.  I stick the toothpick into the soil ... looks super cute!

You can download the above poem and some other fun Mother's Day Printables for FREE in my TpT store.  Click on any of the pictures below to download!

 Have a great week!

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday