Sunday, December 1, 2013

Guided Reading Anecdotal Records Notebook & Freebie


How do you keep your guided reading anecdotal records organized?  I like to have lots of pieces of information when I am planning my lessons for my small group reading.  But it was so hard keeping up with it all!  I had word lists over here and letters and sounds mastered in this other notebook and how students did on their running records in a completely different notebook.  

I am always tweaking how I do things to streamline it a bit more.  I finally have my anecdotal notebook like I want it.  Everything is right there- all the pieces of information that I need in one place.



I like to keep records on a lot of different pieces of information so I can more effectively and efficiently plan my lessons to fit each group and each student.  
I keep info on the book level, percent of accuracy, self-correction ratio, which cues they are using, and how their fluency and comprehension is progressing.  I also jot down notes about things I am noticing about their learning.  


As you can see from this picture, I also like to collect information on the students' phonemic awareness or phonics and the reading behaviors for the reading stage they are in.  


I also like to do little check ins on students as I listen to them read.  After I listen to them, I can show them the letters or words we are working on that week and do a quick check on them to see if they are mastering them.  If so, I just check it off my list.

These are great ways to see how each student is progressing and gives you a lot of important information for parents.  You get to know each child and their reading quite well.  Having an anecdotal notebook helps you plan more effectively for your small groups too.

If this notebook might help you stay organized and plan more effective lessons, just click on any picture above or click here to be taken to my store to see it.  

Here is a holiday freebie for you!  Hopefully it will help your students learn to use evidence from the text to prove their answers.  Click on the picture to be able to grab it!



I hope you all had a wonderful celebration of Thanksgiving with your family and friends this past week.  Be sure to come visit me at my blog!






Thursday, October 24, 2013

Addressing CCSS Standards with "Notice and Note" signposts

Here's a post I just wrote about using Notice and Note: Strategies for Close Reading by Kylene Beers and Robert Probst in Reading Workshop.  The reading strategies are, of course, aligned with all the CCSS standards for 6th. grade reading:

Key Ideas and Details
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.1 Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.2 Determine a theme or central idea of a text and how it is conveyed through particular details; provide a summary of the text distinct from personal opinions or judgments.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.3 Describe how a particular story’s or drama’s plot unfolds in a series of episodes as well as how the characters respond or change as the plot moves toward a resolution.

Craft and Structure

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.5 Analyze how a particular sentence, chapter, scene, or stanza fits into the overall structure of a text and contributes to the development of the theme, setting, or plot.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.6 Explain how an author develops the point of view of the narrator or speaker in a text.
http://tmsteach.blogspot.com/2013/10/notice-and-note-working-with-signposts.html

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Easy To Use Reader's Notebooks

Using an interactive reader's notebook that is easy to use

Do you and your students love using Reader's Notebooks?  I love having my students use these great tools during word work, guided reading, goal setting, etc.... 

I used to use spiral notebooks, but I was never really happy with them.  Wires would come out, we didn't always need the lines, not an easy way to separate the sections, and adding pages never worked well.

I really like using Reader's Notebooks with my classes!  But I don't have much time with each group so the interactive notebooks that require a lot of coloring, cutting and gluing by the students weren't a good choice for us.  I like the way the activities look, but my students just don't have to complete a lot of them.  

In the Reader's Notebook that we are using now, there is very little cutting and gluing required.  Take a look at it!

Using an interactive reader's notebook that is easy to use

There are 4 sections:  Word Work, Comprehension: My Thoughts About What I Read, Vocabulary, and My Reading Progress.

Using an interactive reader's notebook that is easy to use

Each section has pages to insert into a 3-ring binder to aide students as they learn.  There are lots of different pages to help students with their reading.

Using an interactive reader's notebook that is easy to use

In the last section, My Reading Progress, there are lots of graphs and tables for students to monitor their progress and the books they read.  And very little gluing is involved!  That is what helps me out so much with time management.  

If this is the kind of Reader's Notebook that would work for you, you can read more about the contents by clicking here or by clicking on any of the pictures above.  

I hope your school year has gotten off to a wonderful start and lots of learning is happening!  Thanks for visiting with me today!  Stop by my blog sometime- I just got a blog make-over and it looks wonderful!  I would love for you to see it!!!




Monday, August 12, 2013

Common Core Math Spiral

One thing that's specific to the Common Core standards, and might be new to you and your state, is that the Common Core have very few standards at each grade level.  Instead, each standard is expected to be taught in depth so students have a full understanding of what each standard means.  Rather than just memorizing formulas and implementing them, students need to truly understand the standards and the skills they represent.  That is also why the Standards for Mathematical Practice are a crucial part of the standards.  Students need to be able to read a problem and figure out which skill they need to perform to find the answer.  They need that strong understanding in order to achieve that task.

I've created daily math warm ups of the Common Core standards.  The reason behind them is to give students daily practice with a variety of standards, in a variety of formats, to really help ensure mastery.  Also, by having students attempt standards they haven't taught yet, it helps them build their problem solving skills.  For example, third grade begins simple multiplication facts right from the start.  Most second grade classrooms begin teaching arrays and the basics of multiplication.  They hit the ground running in third, and this helps teachers see which students have already moved over into standard multiplication form.

I had originally only created 40 pages, but there was such a demand from teachers wanting enough for a full year's practice, that I made 4 sets.  You can buy any one of the 4 sets, or you can get the bundle on a discount.  Also, I have 4 free pages in the preview file of any set so you can check them out.


 This page practices adding and subtracting, as well as number sense with place value and expanded form, and finally comparing numbers.  

 This page also practices adding and subtracting numbers but this time it is with much larger numbers and requires borrowing and carrying.  It also practices numbers in word form, reading graphs, and dividing a shape into fractions.

This page practices place value understanding using base ten blocks figures.  It also introduces drawing and understanding arrays, understanding properties of shapes, measurement to inches and centimeters, and practicing adding coins.

The third grade set is very similar.

 This page practices adding large numbers, multiplication, rounding to the hundreds place, telling time, and patterns in numbers.

 This page practices estimating weights, subtracting large numbers, fractions on a number line, interpreting graphs, and multiplication fact families.

This page practices introducing algebra, area and perimeter, identifying and completing rules, and shapes.

Don't forget that there are 4 free pages in the preview file for you to download and use with your students.  For the beginning of the year, I'd recommend using the pages with the year below to be a great review before you really start teaching this year's standards.


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Sunday, July 28, 2013

Phonemic Awareness, Data Organization & A Freebie

the importance of teaching phonemic awareness


We all know teaching letters and phonemic awareness is important, right?  But how to go about it and having the right materials to do it is sometimes hard.  Especially with phonemic awareness.  And what about keeping all that data organized?

I am the RtI coordinator for my school and data on these topics is important to me.  I assess all our kinder kids on letter & sound identification and phonemic awareness.  I needed a way to keep all this data organized. Both by class and by student.  

This is what I use to accomplish that organization and assessment.  It keeps me sane and from pulling out my hair wondering where everything is because it is all bound together neatly.


keep all your data assessment organized

beginning, middle, and end of the year assessment binder

This is a small sample of what is in this pack.  There are two covers.  The bottom one shows this all spiral bound so it is easier to flip through.  I also bound the letter cards so they would correspond to the order that I test on that is in the binder.  And I included beginning math skills like recognizing numbers, shapes, colors, etc.  You can bind those cards too.  It is all in there!  It seriously has made things easier for me!

What is not included are the phonemic awareness activities and assessments.  I included spaces for the assessment data of phonemic awareness.  Now I have all the activities created and I included the assessments for you to make it easier for you.  Who likes trying to track down assessments anyway?  

Counting Syllables:
counting syllables activities and assessments


Identify and Supply Rhymes:
rhyming activities and assessments

Blend and Segment Phonemes:
Blending and Segmenting Phoneme activities and assessments

Isolate Phonemes and Identify Common Phonemes:
Isolate Phonemes and Identify Common Phonemes Activities and Assessments

Delete and Manipulate Phonemes:

Delete and Manipulate Phonemes Activities and Assessments



All of these packs were created to pair with the binder.  There are spaces to record the scores for these activities/assessments.  They will make teaching and assessing specific phonemic awareness skills so much easier!

This FREEBIE also goes with the Kindergarten Assessment Binder.  It is a Concepts of Print assessment and there is a spot on the graphs in the binder for student scores just like for the other assessments.  I thought it might help some of you out.  Just click the picture to grab it!




If you want to see any of them, just click the pictures to be taken to my store.  Or click here for my store in general.

I hope this binder, activities, and assessments makes your life so much easier this school year!  Thanks for visiting with me today!!


These items are now bundled per customer request!





Sunday, July 14, 2013

Now I Know My ABCs! Freebie too!


T, U, V, W, X, Y, and Z...Now I know my ABCs!  Are you singing along with me??  

Pretty soon it will be time for these sweet little scrubbed faces to be coming in our rooms ready for everything we have for them.  One thing I needed to have more of to be ready for these little guys is ABC activities.  

Some come in not knowing any of their letters, so they may need some differentiation like picture clues to help them match capitals to lower case letters.

matching capitals and lower case letters

Some little kinders will come in with a working knowledge of some of the letters and won't need the matching clues.  So both of these are included as activities so you can differentiate for students.

creating an abc book

To further help students make connections between letters and words that begin with those letters, they can create an alphabet book.  It is important that they get to choose the words that are meaningful to them to include.  They draw the picture and write the letters.              

path of movement tracing cards

Students really need to learn to form their letters correctly by following the path of movement.  This will help students that easily confuse letters like b and d.  If they learn to write them correctly it will make it easier for them not to get them confused as they are written differently.

I Have Who Has matching capitals to lower case letters

Since the goal of these activities is for students to learn to match capitals to their lower case letters, a fun way to practice this is with I Have Who Has game.  

matching lower case letters to upper case letters


My little ones are going to be having a good time with these activities and not even realize the amount of learning they are doing!  I can't wait for them to get off to a great start!

Click the pictures if you want to check these out.  

And for when you have students reading some short words, you could also play this I Have Who Has game with easy sight words.  Just click the picture to grab this freebie!!

beginning sight words


Thank you for visiting with me today!



Monday, May 20, 2013

End of the Year Chaos Control- A Reading Camp-In Freebie!


This is the time of year that I can NOT stay organized!  We have so many papers and deadlines flying at us that I am just holding on for dear life!  Anyone else feel this way? Must.Keep.Swimming!

Most years I do our big pirate unit, but with being so pregnant and packing up to take leave next year, I just couldn't do it! I wanted to be more simple this year.  Behavior wise, I also think it was the best possible decision.  It makes me sad- the kids really love it and look forward to it!



Our last day of school is Thursday.  Both Wednesday AND Thursday are early release days so the children are, um, quite excited!  We were just told  on Friday that we needed a second DRA of the opposite genre for students to have passed that level (for example a fiction and a nonfiction).  This was news to many of us so we scrambled today to find independent activities for the students while we tested.  Add that to the fact my co-teacher was pulled out of the classroom and it was adding up to be quite a day!!

BUT we prepared and it actually was a pretty good day. I wish I had taken pictures, but I am waddling around so much hoping to see my feet at the end of the day and my camera was a WHOLE 5 feet away.  Sigh.  Tomorrow.  Pictures.  I promise!

We declared today Reading Camp In.  Yes, camping in- not out.  Out is very hot and I do not like hot lately!

Kids brought in pillows and beach towels.  They could either lie ON the towel or cover up with the towel.  Kids spread out throughout the classroom and got cozy with the towel, pillow and book box.  They LOVED this!

Then after the read a story in their book boxes they created a reading s'more.  This was a quick craft I made that reflected the standards for this nine week period.  Students had to identify a fiction book first, then record the character, setting, problem and solution.  Then they had to identify a major event or challenge and how the character responded.

Click here to hop on over and get your s'more freebie!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Recounting Fables FREEBIE!


Part of the second grade Common Core standards is recounting fables and fairy tales.  We have actually have already done a bunch of work with fairy tales and were ready to move on to fables.  I created this anchor chart to share with them.


Do you like my picture cheats?  I was too tired to draw so I just Googled some images...shhh  ;).

We watched this short video on United Streaming about Aesop.  The part about Aesop was very short  (1 minute) and was the perfect length for adding information to the anchor chart above!

The next day we watched  The Tortoise and The Hare from the video above and I modeled how to write a recount on the Promethean board about the Tortoise and the Hare.  We did skip the section on point of view because I hadn't taught that yet and wanted to go into more detail.

To get a free copy of this file click here.

I will go into more detail about teaching point of view later in the week- I need to take some pictures! :)