Saturday, 27 April 2013

Early Reading Help and Activities

Our Home Readers have been sent out a little while ago and I wanted to give my Mums & Dads some ideas to help with Home Reading so if your child is simple reading their books with the eyes closed as they tedious turn the pages (in other words you know they've simply memorized it) then here are some ideas to help. 
But first, some background information.
Repetitive Text / Picture Cues / Sight Words
The books children begin reading with have very repetitive texts. This helps with identifying smaller sight words, helps develop prediction skills and encourages good reading self esteem. Simple repetitive texts means young readers can predict the test by using the pictures as clues. (Picture Cues - don't hide them - if they are using them, they are understanding that reading has to "make sense".) Only one or two words will change. This allows an opportunity for building a strong foundation with words, especially sight words - words they recognize by sight.
There are some reading behaviours I do want to see in my young readers and some we are better off not encouraging. Personally, I believe little readers benefit from using a pointer when reading. I appreciate and understand that some educators don't appreciate these items, but I feel they help focus children's eyes on individual words and they help with tracking (the ability for the eyes to follow along the lines and move with left to right progression). These pointers can take the form of special little character pointers like the ones on my Brisbane colleague, Casey's blog page.    
Or they can simply use their finger. I ask children to have their pointing finger ready before we begin reading each page.

It's important to allow the time it takes for your child to read their book and then some, for follow up activities. It isn't necessary to do activities every time, but it will help your child to gain a better understanding and gain greater confidence.
If I can stress only one thing in this ramble, it is the power of suggestion to your child that they ARE a reader!! The power of this statement cannot be underestimated. Seriously, if your child BELIEVES they are a reader, then they soon WILL be!! :)
Okay, so here's some ideas to do with those little first repetitive readers.
The text says : "My bus is little. My truck is little. My car is little."
Write the text and cut the words out. Your child can then use these to re-make the sentences in the story by matching each word with the words in the book.

 Mix up the words, read, and see if it makes any sense.

These words can be duplicated (printed twice) and children can play a matching game.

Choose one word at a time and see if your child can find it on another page.

Choose one word and count how many times that word is in the story. List the word and the number of times it appears in the story.

Delete a word and have them find that word and place it in the correct position.

Ask your child to find a particular word. Can they use that word in a 'new' sentence?

Look at the beginning letter of a particular word and find other words beginning with that same letter.
 eg  "My / me / mum"    OR   "This / Things / These"

- recognize familiar words.
- understand that reading has to 'make sense'.
- appreciate that pictures help predict a story.
- comprehend that words can be decoded using   
  beginning/middle/final sounds.
- realize reading is FUN!!

Saturday, 20 April 2013

A New, Fun Game for the classroom.

I have created a great little game, almost by accident, in which children learn and consolidate concepts, socialize and learn acceptance and have fun at the same time.
I am hoping no-one has major objections to us 'robbing' each other as the children absolutely love it!!  I do suggest that we are 'borrowing' from each other but they continue to insist that 'stealing cards' is much more fun! They even ask for the 'robbers' to steal their own cards from them.... :)  We played with large cards and a large die the first time, but a smaller set in later games. The sets in the downloads are small sets.

You need to begin with a set of concept cards. These can be anything you wish to consolidate with your class. I shall discuss "Alphabet Cards" here, as they are my freebie offering to you, but I have sets available in my Store which cover Shapes / Colours / Numerals / Rainbow Facts / Doubles Facts and more.
Click on the item above to find the cards in store.
You will need a die or dice, a set of cards and the instructions are in the download.
For your copy of the "Ridiculous Robbers" - Alphabet Game






Saturday, 13 April 2013

Educational Powerpoints - the next best thing!

Okay - so I should be doing the washing and I should be pushing the mop over the floor and I should be washing the dog ... but I'm a teacher ... and I'm a TpT Teacher ... and with that label comes a silent, but deadly addiction!!
SO, I've been making Powerpoints and worksheets for my classroom, instead. My latest creation is one which covers the topics of EMPTY, 1/2 FULL & FULL.
It's an interactive Powerpoint allowing your students to fill the jar and then empty the jar. It also give them the chance to make one 1/2 full and predict which jar the marbles will go to. 
I have made 5 cut and paste worksheets to match the concept and allow for greater understanding. Some could also be used to evaluate the student's knowledge of the concepts.
To get your copy of this fun and educational Powerpoint,
If you check them out, let me know what you think. I'd love to hear from you.

Friday, 12 April 2013

OMG! I'm so excited!

I've finally managed to poke my sister hard enough to have her create and upload her first TpT products and with that feat, came the inspiration to make my own animated, working Powerpoint to go with one of my products.
Her little masterpiece is designed for the students in your class to tap their name and icon upon arrival, and they skip happily into class. Very cute and a great way to notice which students are absent for the day ...providing they all 'tap in'.    :)  She has included instructions for how to add the names of the children in your class - too easy!!  She has it for a special introductory price of just $1.  BARGAIN!!   
She's also got a fantastic set of alphabet powerpoints for use with the introduction of each new letter. These are in Queensland font and a bat & ball font.

...and mine goes with my "Bears in a Cave" Pack which is on a previous blog.

It is just too cute for words (Yep, Modesty has left the building!) First, you begin with the number of bears you wish the children to partition. Scroll to the page with this number in the "We started with ..." box. Then quickly tap the little bear bellies or feet and they will scoot off into cave. Now, I would, initially, allow the students to watch ... and the clever guys will count ... but after every-one has seen how it works, I would ask them to hide their beady little bloodshot eyes while the bears disappear so they CAN'T count 'em anymore and they have to rely on their knowledge and understanding of number. Once given the time and opportunity to work out and write down the answer, click on the cave and it will disappear leaving the little bears to be counted. You will quickly see those  in your class who haven't grasped the concept of number value. 
I'd love for you to check them out.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Bundy Flood Super Pack Fundraiser for East State School


This is a super pack designed to raise funds for Bundaberg East State School since they were inundated with flood waters back in January, 2013. The town of Bundaberg experienced the worst flood in its history and is still working hard to re-build and recover. Many TpT teachers have donated not only to this pack, but to a set of files and resources which have been donated to the library of East State School. Some donated to both. Thank you to all donators!!
(Please see the bottom of my blog page for a list of all contributors)
The pack has been compiled by Mel From the Pond and it is for sale in my TpT Store. 
An amazing 22 teacher authors have donated products to this pack. Thanks go to each of you!! It is a must have Bargain!! Especially for K-2 teachers. It contains over 550 pages, covering a wonderful range of topics.
It will be available for a short time, only!! so get in quick!!
It is valued at over $75 and is on Sale for the 
bargain price of just $15.
To purchase this pack and help the Teachers and children of Bundy East School, please click on the Super Pack Link below
 and visit my TpT Store.

The following Teacher Authors have contributed:
Donna Coleman  - One Breath Boxes – Fry
Alissa Manning-Telisak - Summer ABC Order
Linda Nelson - Animal Riddles
Laureen from Teach with Laughter - Sour Lemons
Lindsey from Lovin' Kindergarten - 5 and 10 Frame Station Games     
Cindy T  - Gumball Odd Even
Tainia Poultney – Build to 10 and 20 butterfly           
Tami Steele  - Months and Seasons Write the Room
Cyndie Dunn - World Sliders Racing Theme
Cynthia Vautrot - Fun Games for All Subjects                    
Wendy Kayne - How’s the Weather Bundle                    
Shanyn Newell - Introduction to Multiplication       
Stefanie L Galvin - A-Z Silly Sentence Sort                            
Merinda Powell - Surfs Up I have Who Has Letters           
Jennifer Dowell - Antonyms Unit                                        
Jess T - Math Centers                                           
Martha Moore - Decompose Numbers                             
Amy Grout - Place Value Pirates                                  
Michelle McVay - Vocab Building Skills                               
Jody Ward - Tooth Fairy Letter & Envelope                                  
Mel From the Pond - Addition Match                                       
Ann Shep Hippity Hop Teacher Spot - Stormie Sun Safety Interactive Reader  
 To Visit Mel's Pond ...CLICK HERE
Further Donations have been received from...
When the sellers of the site heard about the devastation from the Bundaberg & District Floods, they wanted to help the teachers who had lost resources. The following teachers have donated resources in the hope that these donations will help those affected by the floods.
Adrienne Pepe               Cyndie Dunn           Helen Edwards
                Mary Carr                   Teresa Hoover          Michaela Peterson
             Donna Coleman             Darlene Curran            Cynthia Vautrot
             Lesley Boatright            Jennifer Dowell           Lindsey Levis                
              Pamela Kranz               Kathy Heath               Tami Steele
           Arlene Manemann        Jess T (Sth Aust.)              Amy Grout
              Jenn Holley                 Retta London              Rachel Nice  
           Michaela Peterson         Helen Edwards          Martha Moore        

Friday, 5 April 2013

Ordinal Numbers - First to Twentieth

I know 'Holidays' are meant for relaxing and re-energizing but I can't seem to help myself with a few new things for my classroom.   To help with the understanding of "Ordinal Numbers", I have a set of socks for use in a wall display. I used to have a set I made years ago, but have updated to a digital set. They are both coloured and Black & White.

There is a set of matching cards designed to use for matching games - Old Maid & Fish style card games.
And then there's the worksheets... Fill in the blanks / Match the pairs / Cut & Paste activities / Following Directions.  If you'd like to get your own copy, they are available HERE at my TpT Store.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Emergent & Partitioning of Numbers

This is a set of worksheets which are available in my TpT Store. It is designed to establish an understanding of Numbers and their Value. The idea can be used with any object but the aim is for children to see "the value" a number holds. 
Since most children understand the values of the numbers 1-4, I have included worksheets from 5-10. This is a sample of number 7. It has been designed to be used in conjunction with the ''hands-on materials " so the children can see what is happening to the number. I don't allow them to actually count the bears that are going into the cave. I simply sweep up a handful and quickly place them under the cave before any-one has time to 'count' them. Children can then draw the teddies or place a numeral in the cave. They must check their answers to get an understanding of what is happening to the number. The following sheet introduces the 'addition sign'. This is a great way to explore both concepts with young children. You will notice that the amounts have remained the same as this is an introduction and it is important to keep it simple, at first.
Also in the pack, are worksheets using various numbers to test out their knowledge.
This is a cut and paste ... my personal favourite!!

 If you think you could use these resources, please take a look at my TpT Store. They are available HERE.