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…]
Do you use social skills stories in your classroom? One of my favorite things about teaching is sharing books and stories with my students. Even better if students can learn about important topics while they enjoy the stories and characters!
Bunny And Bear Social Skills Stories
This post focuses on our series of books called Bunny and Bear. Bunny and Bear books are social stories which teach essential social skills to young children. My own students immediately fell in love with [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…]
Segmenting and blending sounds can be tricky when students are first learning to read. Reinforcing these skills, particularly with hands-on manipulation of letters, can be a great help for reading development.
Segmenting (separating sounds like /d/ /o/ /g/) and blending (combining sounds like /dog/) are core skills for phonological awareness, and necessary for learning to read.
Assessing Spelling Readiness
Are your students ready to blend and segment sounds? There is a general progression for most students: 1) identifying alliteration and rhyming words [Read More…]
I’m always looking for new ways to integrate social skills into my teaching.
Poetry is a fun new way to teach social skills!
This year, we decided to integrate social skills in our teaching with our Poem of the Week! Each week we focus on a different social skill and use it to read, write, discuss, sort, and so much more!
Here are some of our poetry topics:
For Carpet Time:
Hands In My Lap, I Can Raise My Hand, Meet At The Carpet, Ready 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…]
I had a BIG teaching dilemma last year.
My teaching partner was new to first grade and didn’t know ANYTHING about teaching math at this level. I needed to keep my math lessons organized through the school year, and I was worried our math lessons would fall behind or not be as effective when I wasn’t there.
So the question was…. How could I make sure that my new partner stayed on track without spending HOURS on the phone talking about math lessons, [Read More…]