Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Read Across America Activities for the Primary Classroom

Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
Many primary classrooms love celebrating Read Across America week. Although our class celebrates Literacy each and every day, we like to get extra wild and wacky during Reading Week each year. Here are a few of our favorite activities to celebrate literacy and Read Across America in the primary classroom.
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
Got Books? 
From Costco to Target. Garage sales to dumpster diving (True story, not proud.)...We've got a ridiculous amount of Dr. S books for Read Across America Week! Before we gathered our collection, we gutted the local library shelves and borrowed all the Dr. S books they'd allow. We leave them out and available all week long. 

Students use these books in our literacy centers to rhyme, read and review.
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
It seems only fitting that we would focus on reading vocabulary words during Read Across America week. We keep 16 reading words in our class pocket chart all week long.Read Across America activities for the primary classroomWe are firm believers in providing rich vocabulary activities for our students consistently throughout the year. One of the best ways kids learn is through play! So, what better way to practice our reading week vocabulary than with a friendly game of Reading Bingo? It's such a great opportunity for us to review reading concepts and foster vocabulary development through play. We make the kids yell, "READ-O" if they get a Bingo...They love it! 
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom

Reading fluency is at the top of our to do list at this time of year. Out are the robot voices...In are the fluent readers! One of our favorite ways to get students practicing their reading fluency is...By reading! That sounds so easy...It is! We use Fluency Building Bookmarks weekly in our classroom, so creating a special bookmark for Read Across America week was a no brainer. Our kids eat these up! They roam and read around the room for a set period of time. Each time they listen to a reader, they give a compliment and sign their initials or name on a line. When their bookmark is filled up, we give them a pat on their back and tell them to grab another one...And they do! 
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
We always teach our kids that great readers also make great writers. Reading week writing activities include creating a class book to add to our Sharing Pages collection. Our class loves these writing prompts and we love letting them practice their writing, reading and public speaking skills as often as we can.
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
We've created everything you need for a successful Reading Week in your classroom! These print and go activities keep us going for one day or one week anytime we want to celebrate reading in our classroom.
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
One of our absolute favorite Dr. S. stories is Ten Apples Up on Top. Really for only one reason...This Ten Apples Up on Top Sing Along we found on YouTube a few years back. You will be belting it out by Friday...Trust us. :)
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
So of course, we can't just sing to sing in classrooms anymore, so we created this excuse activity to go along with Ten Apples Up on Top. It was actually Wacky Wednesday at school that day too, hence the mustaches...Call it a Dr. S story fusion activity. :) 

Here's What We Do:
-Cut white construction paper for the tall hat. Cut a bottom white brim too.
-Cut 4 red strips per student to glue to the hat, spacing them apart to make red and white stripes. 
-Draw a self portrait (mustaches optional) of your face and cut it out. 
-Glue face and top hat to one another.
-Cut out 10 apples. 

Some Ideas for the Ten Apples Up on Top:
-Students can write spelling, high frequency, or phonics words on each apple, then glue them in alphabetical order to the hat. 
-Students can write and solve addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division problems on each apple, then glue them in number order by their answers.
-Or, come up with your own creative idea! If you do, be sure to post a photo of your class projects and tag us on Facebook or Instagram (@fluttering1st). We'd love to see your ten apples up on top! 
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
Most of the pieces are cut and create with construction paper, but here's our template for the ten apples if you'd like to make it with your class. We copy them on green and yellow and let our students pick. Just click to download below. 
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
Dr. Seuss dress up days can be so much fun! At home, we go head to toe for our Things...At school we make hats. :) 
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
We just printed this Thing 1 and Thing 2 sign we created on our computer (There are a lot out there if you Google.), cut red construction paper for the headband and turquoise blue strips for the hair.
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
We teach them how to curl the strips around their pencils and attach them to the Thing 1 or Thing 2 headband.
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
We've collected a few other goodies (Thanks Target!) along the way that we love sharing with our class during Read Across America week. 
Read Across America activities for the primary classroom
How do you celebrate reading with your class?

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Sub Plans Made Easy

Any teacher in every classroom from all schools knows one thing...Sub plans suck can be a challenge! Whether you need a sub for one week, one day, or even one hour, planning for a substitute teacher can take hours upon hours. For years we've wished we could just take a sub day and walk away!
Sub plans made easy. Tips and tricks for taking a sub day and walking away!
After years of convincing ourselves we weren't as sick as we felt and heading on in, or traipsing into class in the wee hours of the morning when it was still dark because being sick was in for the win, we got smart. We created a sub tub that would live in our classroom permanently and anyone at anytime could pick it up and teach our class. Creating our sub tub was the best thing we could've done. Hands down!
How to make a sub tub for the classroom
With enough activities to last them a week, a day or even an hour our Sub Tub activities give us the power...to take a sub day and walk away!
Sub plans made easy. Tips and tricks for taking a sub day and walking away!
To be perfectly honest, we want our classroom to run as smoothly as possible in our time away because we all know if it doesn't we will be the ones to pay! So putting together a sub tub with everything our substitute teachers need to run our classroom was a top priority. Our sub tub has hanging files inside of it with labels that list the times of day each activity takes place. Here's a peek at what we keep inside our class sub tub.
Sub plans made easy. Tips and tricks for taking a sub day and walking away!
In our Teacher Talk file, we have everything the substitute teacher could need for running our classroom while we're away. From our class rules to daily student schedules (such as speech, intervention, etc) and tips and tricks from us. We typed this up and just update it and keep it permanently in our our Sub Tub Teacher Talk folder all year.
Sub plans made easy. Tips and tricks for taking a sub day and walking away!We always keep a stash of sticky student name tags printed on address labels in our Sub Tub. We use these for everything in our classroom, so printing a few extra sets for subs was no problem. Some subs appreciate the name tags while others are great with learning names on the fly. Either way the name tags are there if they need them to get by.
Classroom management. Sticker Boards for the classroom.Sticker Boards for the Classroom is our go to classroom management with substitute teachers. Each of our students keeps a sticker board in their desks all year long. They earn stickers for all sorts of positive behaviors and sub days are no exception. We encourage our subs to throw stickers around like candy. Whatever works!
Of course if you don't use Sticker Boards (Even though you totally should!), leaving a stash of stickers in your Sub Tub works great too!
Super Sub Slips. Great for substitute teacher days!
Super Sub Day Slips are all the rage on Sub Days! We want our students to be on their best behavior, so printing out these slips and sticking them in our sub plans are a great incentive for all. If any of our students earn a Super Sub Day Slip, we follow up with them on our return and thank them for being respectful and responsible. We find the follow up goes a long way to continued smart choices and positive behavior in our classroom. Plus, it takes like 5 seconds to say, "Hey, thanks!", but the impact can last a lifetime.  
You can grab these Super Sub Slips for free.
Substitute teacher plans and class management
Every school day starts the same with our daily seat work activity. Our seat work activity on sub days is always Listen Up. These activities set the stage for success and promote consistent class expectations out the gates. We expect our students to listen to the substitute teacher and we want our substitute teacher to see they are capable of listening to them.
Listening activities for the classroom. Teach auditory skills daily and set classroom expectations early!
The rest of our day is broken into time periods that coordinate with our class schedule. For those times, we love leaving one of our Booktivities

Literally, we leave a book and activities for the taking and walk away. It's so easy!
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
Our favorite class sub tub activities to leave are our Miss Nelson is Missing Sub Tub Booktivities. It's the perfect book for those days away and the kids love working through our language arts and math activities that coordinate with the story! 
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
We've just completely revamped our Miss Nelson is Missing Sub Tub Booktities. Now with over 120 pages, including color and black and white print options, lesson plan cards for easy implementation and tons of activities to keep your class busy during your days away!
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
No lesson plans to write, just leave copies of the activities and the lesson plan cards for easy implementation. The sub can read and do...It's that simple! These are also great for parent volunteers during centers too. 
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
Each of the activities included in our Miss Nelson Sub Tub Booktivities are now available in color or easy print and go black and white options. 
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
Activities are differentiated with options to extend as time allows.
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
Students can work whole group with the teacher guiding discussion (From the class pocket chart works great!), the class can work in table teams to complete activities, or students can work on their own at their seats or on the floor.
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
With tons of activities to choose from for multi-level learners, there are plenty of choices for our substitute teacher and we leave confident knowing our students will love learning while we are away.
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
We recently added several math activities to balance out our Miss Nelson is Missing Sub Tub Activities. Class Tally Time is our favorite because it allows our students to get up and collaborate! But if your sub prefers, there are also number grid and number story activities to choose from. 
Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
If there are sequels to our Book of the Day, we love leaving them in our Sub Tub as time allows. The kids get a kick out of continuing the story. 

Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing. Miss Nelson is Missing Sub Tub Booktivities-Sentence Scramble Activities
-"Studying the Story" Retelling Activities
-Syllable Sorting Activities
-Word Detectives Activities (Nouns, verbs, adjectives)
-Word Building Activities
-Written Response Printables
-Class Tally Time Math Activity
-Who’s Missing Hundreds Grid Activities
-Miss Nelson Math
-Miss Nelson Number Stories 

Sub plans made easy with Miss Nelson is Missing.
If you already own our Miss Nelson is Missing Sub Tub Booktivities, be sure to update your download on TpT. 

You can grab our Miss Nelson is Missing Sub Tub Booktivities and the rest of our resources for a few more hours during the Love TpT Sale! Use Code LOVETpT at checkout to save 28% off all our resources.
Love TpT Sale
Fluttering Through First Grade Shop

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Valentine's Day in the Classroom

No pun intended, but we love celebrating Valentine's Day in our classroom. Here are a few of our favorite ways to celebrate Love Day with the Littles...
Valentine's Day in the classroom
Valentine's Day classroom party ideas
We throw a Red Party every Valentine's Day in our classroom. From red foods to wearing red, we embrace the color of love all day long. As you can see, we try to keep it somewhat healthy with bagels, strawberry cream cheese, and red fruits. The kids are so excited and don't even notice the donuts are missing.
Valentine's Day classroom party ideas
We sneak in a little reading and writing by creating Friendship Bingo mats using our class names and other Valentine's Day vocabulary.  
We give them conversation hearts as markers. They love being the "callers" when we play this Valentine's Day game! It's also a great activity to work on during February centers. A classroom volunteer or the kids themselves (as they become more independent) can be the Friendship Bingo callers.
You can download our Red Party and Friendship Bingo templates {here}.
 
Our class loves making bookmarks. These are nothing fancy, but given a simple piece of red posterboard, foam stickers, yarn, and...wait for it...MARKERS, they love crafting these to declare their love for reading!
 
Hot Spot Relay races are a fun challenge that gets them outside, moving and practicing teamwork too. We simply cut 2 large construction paper hearts out for each team (cut a few extras in case there is an accidental rip). Split the class in half and send them walking their way on the hot spots. The goal is to move each heart as you step, not stepping on the ground (AKA "hot lava") below. It's tricky, but they get the hang of it. For younger kids, don't have them take as many steps. Once they reach the end, they pick up their hot spots and run back to the start to tag the next person.
Back in class, we race to stack 10 conversation hearts. You can adjust the number depending upon the age of the kids.
 
Of all the activities we do on Valentine's Day, our favorite is giving our students an opportunity to spread kindness. We spread some love around our school by creating and posting kindness messages throughout the halls.
Kindness activities for the classroom
We also spend a lot of time teaching and giving compliments. It is one of our most powerful lessons all year and carries us through the months beyond Valentine's Day. Here's our original post about using Compli-mats in the classroom. We've updated our templates and added several more for use beyond Valentine's Day.  
Compli-Mats for building empathy and kindness in the classroom
 You can download our Compli-mats activity for free in our TpT Shop.
Are you ready to celebrate Valentine's Day in your classroom? What's your favorite way to spend Love Day? 
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