When my students enjoy a particular phonics center, I want to keep using it even when we move on to a different phonics focus! This way I know students will be happily engaged, and I won’t have to spend time explaining a new activity every week. Below are some of the phonics centers I use through the entire year for centers, morning work, small group lessons and even take home work. I hope it inspires you with some new ideas! [Read More…]
How do you manage the rest of the class while you’re doing small group lessons? There are many ways to organize this situation, and I’ve tried them all! The most important part for my students is to make sure the centers are both engaging and easy to manage (so I don’t have to stop and explain directions over and over!)
When I find a task my students enjoy, I like to make different versions of that task for all of [Read More…]
Over the last few years I’ve spent more and more time during my reading block on small groups. This means I need to make sure the rest of the class is engaged and learning independently. My solution has been to fill up my literacy and writing centers with simple, effective and fun tasks that my students can complete independently.
SAME TASK, DIFFERENT SKILLS
One of the things that make planning easy for me is to create a task my students enjoy, and [Read More…]
It can be tricky to support your emergent writers who are tackling spelling. Early writers may have a delicate confidence when it comes to spelling, and they often don’t realize that guessing and making mistakes is an important part of learning.
It’s our job as teachers to explain that they are not expected to know how to spell every word! Always take time to let your students know that you’re looking for the effort and the attempt. Our mantra is “Make [Read More…]
I recently updated my classroom phonics posters to match my classroom decor. There was nothing wrong with them – I just wanted an update to match my new themes.
That got me thinking about ways I could use them to teach about phonics.
Here are some ideas I came up with in my classroom:
BE THE TEACHER CENTER
My students LOVE to be the teacher! One of my most popular centers is also the easiest to prep for. Students get a fancy hand pointer [Read More…]
As teachers and parents of beginning writers we want to encourage our students to see themselves as authors. This can be so challenging when working with emergent writers. Students can be overwhelmed by a blank page. The idea of “sounding out” all those hard words can prevent them from enjoying the creative process and instead fill them with anxiety! This is NOT how we want students to feel during writing time!
SUPPORTING NEW WRITERS
Here are some examples of how I support [Read More…]
Here’s an easy way to make math time more fun!
Integrate math, art and writing to practice ANY math skill through the whole year!
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Here’s how it works:
Choose a math skill to practice. (ie: Addition Doubles)
Use the built-in spinner to choose a number to double. (ie: Spin a 2)
Write the equation in one of the spaces provided. Find the answer. (ie: 2+2=4)
Use the answer (4) to choose which doodle design to use on the Doodle Chart.
Use that design to [Read More…]
Phonics centers are the core of my teaching when it comes to emergent readers. As an early literacy teacher for over 25 years, I’ve learned a thing or two about how children successfully acquire and practice reading skills. In Kindergarten, our focus is letter sounds. That is the foundation of decoding letters as symbols for sounds we hear in language.
Once students can tell you which letter makes which sound, we are ready to move on to isolating those sounds. The [Read More…]
How do you teach letter sounds?
Teaching letter sounds can be tricky, and takes a LOT of daily practice. I try to use as many different approaches as possible so that I am addressing the many different learning styles in my classroom. I use songs, videos, books, small group intervention, and whole group lessons.
Here are some ideas for you to try!
LETTER SOUNDS: VIDEOS
Below are some videos that my students enjoy.
Click on any picture to watch the video with your class!
Jack Hartmann [Read More…]
This post is all about teaching reading, and it also contains a FREE alphabet printing activity for you to download!
You may have seen my recent post about my HUGE teaching dilemma last year: a new teaching partner who had no experience with teaching primary math! How could I make sure that my new partner stayed on track without spending HOURS talking about math lessons, planning, intervention and reporting?
My solution? I had the idea to make a whole year of paperless daily [Read More…]