Monday, September 28, 2015

SPARKLE! Spelling Ideas for Your Classroom

Spelling can be a boring subject to teach {and learn!} when using a spelling program and workbook.

We play Sparkle to practise weekly word lists in an effort to keep spelling words fun, engaging, and educational:
'Sparkle' spelling game- a fun way to practice spelling list words!

Students stand in a circle. I say the word to spell. One student says the first letter of the word, and we continue to go around the circle spelling the word, one letter at a time per person. 

When the word is finished, the next person in the circle says "Sparkle!" and the next person has to sit down.  Students who say the incorrect letter (either because they don't know how to spell the word or because they weren't paying attention) also have to sit down. Play continues until we are through the word list or when there is one player left standing.

I love how this game does not highlight those students who cannot spell the words correctly- there is always one person who will be 'out' after each word is spelled. In this way it is fairly random who ends up 'winning', because it is just a lucky break when they are not next to the person who has said Sparkle. :)

My students LOVE this 'game'.

Find more free and fun Spelling activities your students will LOVE {here}
Tons of engaging activity ideas to practice spelling words!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

What's in My Fall Writing Center?

Work on Writing is a favorite part of our Daily 5 rotation. I think it's because there is something for everyone! 
Fall themed writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
Students have freedom to choose what they'd like to write. They are given LOTS of choice. There's something for everyone, from reluctant writers to those who love to write.
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
Students can use a variety of fun tools. 
{pencils, pens, highlighters, markers, pencil crayons/colored pencils, a date stamp, staplers, tape, hole punch}
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
And there is so much allowance for differentiation that any student at any writing ability level will feel successful and inspired to create!
Here is what's in my autumn writing center:
lists
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade

Fall themed writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
These are great for hesitant writers, students who are want to spell words correctly, and for those who need practice with copying words. They are also a wonderful tool to help with expanding thematic vocabulary, since students can "read" what it says because of the picture cues.
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade

find it {here}

write the room
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
This is another great option for students who don't know what to write about, or for those who need to get up and move as they work. Students take a paper and write down words, phrases, sentences, numbers, or other print they see around the classroom.

sticker stories
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
Students take stickers from the sticker bin and use them as part of their story's illustration, then write about the things on their stickers in their stories. The stickers may be characters or used as part of the setting.
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
They add details to the stickers to make illustrations for their stories.
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade

story bubbles
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade

Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
I purchased these 'Story Bubbles' from Tara at 4th Grade Frolics {here}. They are random characters that I've linked together with a binder clip. Students write stories using all the characters in the pack. They are fun story writing prompts!

journal prompts
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
This set of prompts is about the students themselves. There are lots of story or journal prompts that have students writing about their thoughts or opinions. It is from my Journal Prompts for Primary Students pack.

Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
labelling pages
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
Labelling pages provides students with practice matching pictures to words in the Word Bank. There are lots of thematic, seasonal choices found in the Let's Label! pack.

Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade

thematic writing pages & thematic word wall words
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
I have the autumn writing paper stationery {with both primary and plain lines} and thematic word wall cards available in the writing center. Students can use the word wall cards for reference in spelling word they may need, or use them for idea inspiration.
Find the Back to School Word Wall cards {here}, the Autumn Word Wall cards {here} and the Thematic Writing Pages {here}

word wall
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
Another important component of the writing center is a Word Wall. This is where students can find out how to spell a common word that does not follow regular spelling conventions. It's a big, visual, accessible dictionary. This set is from Teaching in the Tongass.

opinion writing, narrative writing, writing to inform
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
I just love these sets from Lyndsey! There are tons of writing papers and prompts for students to share opinions, write to inform, or create narratives. Find them {here}

lined & unlined paper {to write "books"}
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
cards & envelopes
I have a collection of blank cards and envelopes that students may use to write notes to friends, family members, people who are sick, etc. 
This week I had a student say that one reason writer's write is to be kind to other people.
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade
Every Day is a Story
Writing center ideas and activities for Daily 5 work on writing for First Grade and Second Grade

Monday, September 14, 2015

Math About Me

Math About Me- a craftivity that is All About Me in a math theme!
Math About Us!
Math About Me- a craftivity that is All About Me in a math theme!
We made these 'Math About Me' craftivities to connect numbers to personal experiences.
Math About Me- a craftivity that is All About Me in a math theme!
It was fun to compare answers, too!
Math About Me- a craftivity that is All About Me in a math theme!
 This is a free resource {here} from Amanda at First Grade Garden- love it! 
Math About Me- a craftivity that is All About Me in a math theme!

Math About Me- a craftivity that is All About Me in a math theme!

Math About Me- a craftivity that is All About Me in a math theme!

Math About Me- a craftivity that is All About Me in a math theme!
 We also did some 'Selfies', where we shared a little bit about ourselves!
Selfies: All About Me craftivity
 Some of their responses were precious.
Selfies: All About Me craftivity

Selfies: All About Me craftivity

Selfies: All About Me craftivity
 I would love to be able to do a double flip in the air too!
Selfies: All About Me craftivity

Selfies: All About Me craftivity
:)
Selfies: All About Me craftivity

Selfies: All About Me craftivity
You can find the 'Selfies' {here}
Selfies: All About Me craftivity

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Secret Code Spelling and More Daily 5 Stations!


Whew, we have finished day 2 of school and boy have we been busy!

Here is what our Daily 5 rotation looks like for Week 1:

WORD WORK
Daily 5 Word Work: Secret Code Spelling
 Students write the spelling focus words, then look at their 'cell phones' to see what numbers they'd need to press to spell the words.
Daily 5 Word Work: Secret Code Spelling

WORK ON WRITING
Daily 5 Work on Writing Center
So many choices! Write the room, making lists, labelling pages, making books, writing stories, writing letters to someone, using story starters, sticker stories...

READ TO SELF
Daily 5 Read to Self
We spent some time talking about 'good fit' books, and filled our book holders with some of our selections.

READ WITH A PARTNER
Daily 5 Read with a Partner
Students are working their way through fluency strips, taking turns reading the phrases to their partners as their partners check their work :)

LISTEN TO READING

Daily 5 Listen to Reading
Each group chooses a book that is scanned onto the iPad screen via a QR code. When the story is done, students pick one page from a number of reading response page choices to show their evidence of comprehension.
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