Friday, July 6, 2012

KinderGals Meet Up & I Teach K !!!

I was so excited to meet up with Kim and Megan from KinderGals this Tuesday!!! They are TOO sweet and lots of fun!!! Make sure to check out their awesome blog {here}! I'm so glad we'll be able to hang out again in Vegas because Tuesday just wasn't enough time together!!
Here I come!!!

I'm flying out to Vegas on Sunday afternoon with my fabulous blogging friend, Hope King! Woooohoooo!!!

I can't tell you how ready I am to meet up with my favorite blogging friends and attend 2 days of amazing workshops at the I Teach K conference! And play on a slot machine and experience a Vegas show for the first time!!! I know this trip will be the highlight of my summer!! This teacher is about to get recharged  & inspired for a new school year!! YEAH!!!

Here's a list of the sessions I'm attending at I Teach K...
Transition Songs- All Day Long 
Literacy a'la Carte
Amazing Manipulatives
Dollar Store Diva
Adjusting Your Instruction to Reach At-Risk Kindergarteners
ADD & ADHD-Identification and Interventions 
Reading & Math & Science, Oh My!!
 If you're going to be in Vegas on Tuesday the 10th, I'd LOVE to meet you at the Vegas Teacher/Blogger Meet-Up! For more info{date/time/location}, click HERE!!! It's going to be a blast!! 

Happy Friday!!!!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Daily 5- Chapter 3

Chapter 3 is all about establishing key materials, routines, and concepts to support the Daily 5 model. It was stated in the book that you should introduce these the first few days of school.  That's wonderful for a lot of us who are gearing up to get this going as soon as we go back to school! 

key materials, routines, and/or concepts....

Gathering kids in front for instruction, releasing them to practice, and then bringing them back to share their thinking represents the steady flow that is at the heart of effective teaching and learning. (p. 31) —Stephanie Harvey and Anne Goudvis, Strategies That Work: Teaching Comprehension to Enhance Understanding 

A gathering place is a large place for the entire class to sit on the floor. This space should inspire success in our students. You will need a chart, anchor charts created by the class, and other materials. By bringing the whole class together to the "gathering place" {love that name} many distractions will be eliminated due to the set up and children will be able to easily interact with one another.

The Daily 5 makes the transitions to the gathering place seem so simple. The change from a work session to meeting at the gathering place is a signal that the activity is changing. They call these Brain and Body breaks.   

Over the years, I have tried every type of "good fit" book chart, song, etc. I am still not sold on any one of them. It's hard for a first grader to find a book that is just right for them. Usually they look at the cover and fall in love. Or see a 5th grader get a HUGE chapter book and want to follow along.

After reading the "good fit books" section, I realized that I have a few areas where I need to improve. I think the #1 thing I will start doing is discussing the importance of finding good fit books on a daily basis. I will also start using the acronym I PICK! You can click on the chart below to download.   
I loved figure 3-3 of the shoe lesson. So cute and something that really makes the concept of good fit books come alive!! Can't wait to teach that the first week of school!

  "If something is important, it is written down, and learning becomes anchored to these charts. This visible learning makes up the tapestry of the year and the decorations of the classroom."  
Boushey, Gail; Moser, Joan (2006-01-01). The Daily Five (p. 36). Stenhouse Publishers.

I love this! I've always made anchor charts, but would get overwhelmed because they take up so much space in the classroom. The Daily 5 has helped me understand that space is very special because it symbolizes what we have learned in our classroom. What's my classroom theme? Anchor charts!!! HA!! HA!

Also, check out Figure 3-8 Ten Steps to Improve Muscle Memory...very interesting!!! I'm going to make a copy of it and post it as a reminder in my classroom. And let go of how crazy a 3 minute independent work session sounds!!! Building stamina for the first time can feel a bit awkward. 

This chapter was packet full of goodies!!! Please join our book study and link your chapter 3 blog post below. 
Have a great week!!!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Daily 5- Chapter 2

The Daily 5 is SOOOOO rockin' my world this summer! I really think using it this upcoming year is going to be one of the best educational decisions I've made in a long time. YAY! 

This chapter helped me understand the core foundations of the Daily 5 model- trusting students, providing choice, nurturing community, creating a sense of urgency, building stamina, & staying out of students’ way once routines are established.

Here are my rambling thoughts...

Trusting Students- I have always wanted my students to trust me, but have I given them opportunities for me to trust them with their learning? Love this quote by William Bridges...“Without trust in the teacher, the step toward independence and the mastery of a new skill is less likely to happen. At that moment, with fear balanced against hope, it is trust that makes the difference”. 

Providing Choice- This is what I am going to have to spend most of my time wrapping my head around. {Why do I want to make it so complicated??} I love giving my students choices. "The Sisters" really made it clear to me WHY my kiddos LOVE picking out their listening station story, the game they want to play at the computer, their reading response sheet, etc.  
 Purpose + Choice = Motivation.
Makes sense to me...seriously, I'm way more engaged in an activity that I want to do. But what if "Social Susie" goes to read to someone every day? How do you make sure they get a balanced Daily 5 experience? 
I love the questions that students working with Daily 5 should ask themselves:
 1.What are my goals in reading and writing? 
2.What will I do first? 
3.Whom will I work with? 
4.What will I accomplish? 
5.What was I working on yesterday that I want to continue today?

I'm going to make a few weekly goal sheets for my students with these important questions! I'll *hopefully* have them ready and posted tomorrow!

Nurturing Community- I love how the Daily 5 encourages all students to take responsibility of their role in the classroom! This totally goes with the Positive Discipline behavior model at my school! On it!

 Creating a Sense of Urgency- I think taking the time to explain to your sweeties the importance of anything you do in the classroom is a must!! Sometimes I feel rushed just to teach, teach, teach the standard and forget to take a moment to explain why I am teaching the standard! This is a HUGE goal of mine. I want my students to know the reason for why we do everything we do in first grade! I can see that being a big hit...hahaha!!

Building Stamina- I know sometimes I just expected stamina & didn't work on actually building it from day one. I mean, I knew the first couple of weeks of literacy time would be rough, but I always held on to believing that most of the class would get the hang of it. I can see how this time was probably pretty painful for some of my poor babies. Ugh! I plan on really spending time slowly building stamina ...minute by minute! One question though- how long does it take to build Daily 5 stamina??

 Staying Out of Students’ Way Once Routines Are Established- Hello, my name is Anna and I can be a helicopter teacher!! In my defense though, I'm a very nice helicopter teacher that just likes to praise and encourage others! Now, I am realizing why sometimes *a few* students could not handle their behavior when I wasn't walking around being a cheerleader. Oooooo there is so much to learn!!!

I hope you enjoyed this chapter as much as I did!! Make sure to link up with Cheryl over at her blog {here}! Also, make sure to check back here in a day or two for the Daily 5 weekly goal sheet I'm working on!!! 

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Beat the Heat !!!

Wouldn't it be cool if you could enter a contest and pick your prize? 
You can!
You can gear up for next year with 18 products from some of your favorite sellers.
How cute is that graphic from Lindsey?
Hop on over to Blog Hoppin' to enter.
Be warned... this is a quick giveaway!
It will all be over on Monday night at midnight!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Common Core and More Kindergarten and First Grade Content Word Wall!!

Happy Friday!!!
 I'm SO excited that I just finished my Common Core & More Kindergarten Word Wall packet!!  You can check out the little sneak peek below.

 I've also created a first grade version!!

Both word walls are discounted right now for a short period of time. Click the previews to get your copy!! If you teach 2nd or 3rd grade, I'll have a word wall posted in my store soon!! 
Have a GREAT weekend, sweet friends!!!

Monday, June 18, 2012

What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.

What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.

In just under a month, I'll be in sunny Las Vegas with some of my FAVORITE teacher/bloggers!  I will be attending some fabulous presentations at I Teach K.  Then, on one night {July 10th}, we are having a meet-up for teacher/bloggers:
Would you like to go?  Please RSVP to our meet-up {here}.

TeachersPayTeachers {Paul}
*Gift Certificates

Deedee Wills
*$25 gift certificate to

Melonheadz Illustrating
*Gift Certificates

Blue Bird Gift Company
*{2} $25 gift certificates

Livy Lou Designs
*magnet board

Doodle Bugs Paper
*{3} $20 gift certificates

Erica Bohrer :)
*autographed book
*$50 gift card
*{50} $10 off coupons for teacher planners

Custom Vinyl By Design
Acrylic Tumbler - teacher themed

Kute Klipboards by Amy
teacher clipboard

In A Pikle
*1 Sweet Pikle

Steve Harpster
*1 of each of his books

Tricia Fogg {Scentsy}
*Scentsy Warmers

Shari Sloane

Katie and Company (Julie Torkelson)
*felt set

Quite a Pear (Jessica Falkenhagen)
*Gift Certificate

Thirty-One (Janet Dickens)

*All in One Organizer 

Ready or not?!?! Here we come VEGAS!!!

Daily 5- Chapter 1

I'm so excited to start sharing our Daily 5 ideas, reflections, and experiences today!! YAY!

Y'all....chapter one gave me HOPE. Hope that maybe I won't work harder than the kids & come home exhausted every day next year. Seriously, I know now why my literacy block hasn't been my favorite part of the day. For the longest time, I blamed the exhaustion I was feeling on the number of kids in my classroom, lack of help, resources, time, blah, blah, blah, blah....Ummmm, confession... I think it was actually ME trying to control everything! I was spending SO much of my precious time trying to manage my students, hold them accountable, check their work, & have 4 guided reading wonder I was going bonkers! 

This upcoming school year, my goal is to have a simple yet effective literacy time that will support all of  my readers and writers' needs as they choose and complete these five tasks....
-read to yourself
-read to someone
-work on writing
-listen to reading
-word work/spelling

I already incorporate many of those skills in my classroom.... BUT the big difference this year will be that I am going to *try* my best to let these tasks be student driven. I can visualize it....ahhhhh....can you???

Make sure to link up with Lory to read all of the other Daily 5 book study posts!!