Thursday, June 2, 2016

Summertime! What are YOU Reading?

It was an interesting/stressful/crazy May for me, and I am so thankful that it's summertime! The Bible says that God will always create beauty from ashes, that all things will work together for our good, and that's exactly what happened for me.  I am moving to another school in my system and I am so thankful and excited!  I can't wait to get to know new teachers, new kiddos, and new parents.

What are you reading this summer?  I find myself reading professional books for fun (crazy right?) so I couldn't help but order a few for my summer reading list.  I am soaking up every single ounce I can about multisensory instruction. Currently, I am reading A Teacher's Guide to Multisensory Learning- Improving Literacy by Engaging the Senses by Lawrence Baines.  I read a quote from this book during a training that I attended and knew that I just had to read it!  The book discusses what multisensory instruction is and what it looks like, then dives deeper into the senses.  It even provides sample lesson plans.  My teacher and blogger friend, Multi-Sensory Mama, is borrowing this gem of a book next!

Here's a link to Amazon if you want to check out the book for yourself!
Amazon- Book Link

Next week I am co-presenting professional development for our county with one of my mentors about how to use Multisensory Strategies in the General Education Classroom. We are training grades k-1, 2-3, and 4-5.  Professional development is a passion of mine-- I love to plan it, teach it, and learn from it. After that, Multi-Sensory Mama and I are headed to the beach!!!  I know we are supposed to be "taking a break," but lets be honest, passionate teachers love brainstorming new ideas and talking about school stuff all the time!

The meme says it all....we've been planning for next year for weeks now!

On a personal note, I spent many mannyyyyyy hours yesterday designing my wedding invitation! I'm no graphic designer, but my TPT creating is starting to come in handy! We officially have a venue, menu, date, hashtag and loads of ideas.  I know it'll be gorgeous!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Syllables, Goals, and Parade of Readers

Things are busy at MCES!!

Parade of Readers is winding down.  Our ending celebration is THIS Friday!  I am so proud of all the kiddos.  Almost everyone has met the 31 book goal, and our top reader has read over 500 books!  To keep the kids motivated, we have "Reading is Fun Friday" each week during the challenge.  During this time, the kids receive a prize that they can use.  Last week we "Surfed the Reading Wave."  The kids brought in beach towels and hats.  Their prize, sunglasses, came in handy as we headed outside to read in the sunshine!  I also gave them a special treat, popsicles!

I've also been busy with second grade!  I've read a lot of research on goal setting, and the importance of students being leaders of their own learning.  I decided that it was very important to meet with each second graders individually and graph and set goals for DIBELS words per minute.  After the kiddos graphed their progress and chose a WPM goal, we created a goal statement and wrote three things they could do to reach that goal.  Doing this gave me the opportunity to show the kids how far they have come!  Our last DIBELS benchmark is the final week of April- I'm hoping goal setting and graphing progress throughout the year will pay off!  I used parts of a Data Notebook from First Grade and Flip Flops on TPT!  It really has EVERYTHING you could ever want to use.  I look forward to trying more parts of it out next year!  Here is the link to her store: First Grade and Flip Flops

Also in second grade, we are rocking and rolling on our Syllable Type Interactive Notebook!  We are almost finished with the Tiger Pattern.  It is going SO WELL.  I'm proud of the kids and how much they are learning. The next set, vowel-consonant-e and the camel pattern are up on my TPT store.  I'm working on vowel-r and the ostrich pattern, next.  I really wish I could shout from the rooftops to ALL the teachers out there (especially second grade) about how IMPORTANT teaching syllable types really is!  Kids can clap the syllables, they can tell you how many there are in a word, but they CAN'T tell you where to divide the word or how to read the unfamiliar word without this type of instruction.

Interested in trying out the Syllable Type Interactive Notebook?  Here's a freebie! This sample explains what syllables are, the six types, and closed syllables!  Head on over to my store to download a copy!
Follow the link to my store!
Free Sample- Syllable Type Interactive Notebook

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Parade of Readers and Syllables!

Long time, no blog...because of Parade of Readers!!!

Parade of Readers is a 5 week, 31 book challenge that our first graders participate in.  Its a REALLY big deal.  The kickoff included our first graders, the high school band and cheerleaders, and costumed characters from the community.  The kickoff was last Friday.  My mom and I spent hundreds of hours preparing the decorations and all of the behind the scenes stuff.  The theme is "Oh The Places You'll Go With Reading" so we are decked out in Dr. Seuss!  Here are a few pictures!

Hallway Decorations:

The first grade teachers and I in our cute Reading Rocks shirts! 

Now that we've kicked things off, the kids are reading like crazy!  Each time they read a book, they fill out a paper link to form chains so that they can have a visual reminder of how much they've read! We also have volunteers coming to listen to our kiddos read twice a week and a special guest reader each Friday.  Also, the kids receive prizes for working hard to meet their challenge goal.  We decided to have "Reading is Fun Friday" each week and plan our prizes around a fun reading activity.  Tomorrow is Fox in Socks, crazy socks day.  Don't tell the kiddos, but they are getting another new Dr. Seuss book for their prize.  They will also kick off their shoes and read a good book for their fun time.  

Now you see why I've been SO BUSY!
I'm adding to my Syllable Type Interactive Notebook a little bit at a time.  On Monday, we finished up Rabbit Patterns.  I love how cute the "Rabbit Basket" turned out! The kids had to analyze each word to determine if it fit the Rabbit Pattern.  If so, they glued the word in the rabbit basket.  If not, they had to glue the word outside the basket.  After this lesson, I felt like we were finally ready to move on to our next syllable type!

Today we started discussing open syllables. In keeping with the door theme, I used an open door to explain open syllables.  After we talked about their characteristics, we analyzed each syllable and glued them inside the open door.  The kids picked up on the fact that when we studied closed syllables, we glued them underneath the door.  I was pretty proud! :) As soon as I have open syllables and the tiger division pattern all complete, I'll add the next section to my TPT store! :)  I'm thinking that I will add it for free, so you can try it out and see what you think! 

Here's a link to my TPT store:

Hope you have a great rest of the week! 

Monday, February 8, 2016

Achhhhooo- It's been that kinda weekend!

Hey Everyone!

Sorry about the delay in posting.  I've been under the weather.  Wednesday night I felt something coming on, and by Friday afternoon I was taking a 1/2 day to head to the doctor.  I can't seem to kick the sniffles and I'm on box 3 of tissues!!!!

Last week we added to our Syllable Type Interactive Notebook.  I noticed that the kids needed an extra dose of closed syllables.  I added a new page where the kids sort syllables into either "closed syllable" or "not a closed syllable."  If you bought the closed syllable section, be sure to redownload the pack so that you can have the new addition.  I plan on adding it tonight.

Today I headed back to second grade to do the next page, two closed syllables together to make multisyllabic words.  I want the kiddos to start to understand that two syllables can come together to make a mutisyllabic word.  The next time I teach them (Wednesday), we will start talking about the Rabbit pattern.  Orton Gillingham uses animals to teach kids how the division patterns.  There are 6. Each animal name fits the pattern it represents.  If the word fits the rabbit pattern, it will have to consonants in between two vowels-- VC/CV.  I tell the kids that we are dividing the word between the consonants, which are the "rabbit's ears."  They catch on quicker that you realize!  I am adding more to the rabbit pattern section of the interactive notebook, and it will be free to redownload if you bought the Closed Syllable Interactive Notebook.  If you are interested in resources to teach the 6 division patterns, I have a set for each pattern (rabbit, tiger, camel, ostrich, turtle, and lion) and also bundled together.  

Here are pictures from today:

In other news, it is almost time for Parade of Readers.  This is a 5 week challenge for our first graders.  It originally began when a teacher from a neighboring city school developed an incentive based program to get their first graders to read and has since spread to other city schools and schools in the county (like us!).  The kids LOVE it.  Last year was my first year to plan it, and let me tell you, its a lot of work.  This year its been much easier to get everything together.  The kick off is February 26th and it runs through April 8th.  The theme is "Oh the Places You'll Go With Reading" and we will be Dr. Seussing it OUT. Here is a sneak peek of the decor- can you tell what it is??  My mom has been helping me, and I know the kiddos are going to LOVE it!!!!

Monday, February 1, 2016

Monday, Monday

Why do the weekends seem to FLYYYY by???  Today was definitely a Monday!!

Mondays and Wednesday, I teach second graders about syllable types and division patterns and I am working my way through my new Syllable Type Interactive Notebook.  I wanted to show you all how cute the closed syllable door page of the Syllable Type Interactive Notebook turned out!  The kids thought it was SO COOL that the door opened and closed!  We first discussed what closed syllables were.  Then we cut out and coded each of the closed syllable examples and glued them underneath the "door."  We often say that in a closed syllable, the consonant "shuts the door" on the vowel, making it short.  It closes the vowel in.

In another second grade class, I taught a small group lesson using my Camel Syllable Division Pattern pack. We were on the last part of the pack....dictation.  It is amazing how much you can learn about a student from dictation words and sentences.  I use a dictation routine that I learned from teaching SPIRE. SPIRE is a Tier 2/Tier 3 intervention program that follows a 10 step routine.  Our school has experienced huge gains using this program, and I really believe in its methods and routines.  Anyway, I discovered today that these second graders are still confusing e and i!  In both of the words "went" and "closet," multiple students wrote "wint" or "whint" and "closit."  Now, we are from Alabama, and sometimes our accents affect the way we hear or pronounce words, but regardless I need to pull those kiddos back in a Tier 2 small group to practice e and i!  I think that dictation is an imperative part of a small group routine that often is left out.  Try it friends, its worth every minute!

I'm adding to my Syllable Notebook each day.  I decided that the kiddos needed an extra dose of closed syllables before moving on to the rabbit pattern.  I also am working on the rabbit pattern lessons.  Its a work in progress!!  I plan to include all of these goodies in the pack that is already on TPT, so if you downloaded it, be sure to get the updated version by the end of the week.

Hope you all had a great day!  Thanks for reading! :)

Here are pictures of the "closed" syllables!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Interactive Notebook Dayyyyy 2!

It's hump day-- and a crazy busy day at school!  I modeled a NMSI (National Math and Science Initiative) reading small group lesson on point of view this morning, followed by a writing lesson, day 2 in the syllable interactive notebook, and taught an hour of intervention.  Somewhere in there I met with a pre-k teacher and helped a 1st grade teacher redistribute her Daily 5 groups. WHEW!  I'm tired just thinking about it!  Busy days like today make me love my job even more.  :)

Day 2 in the syllable interactive notebook went so well!  They are turning out great!!!  Today we sorted a cards into "syllable" or "not a syllable" pockets.  I wanted the kids to understand that syllables must have a vowel sound, which means they MUST have a vowel.  We went through each word, underlined the vowel (if there was one), talked about why it was a syllable, and then placed it in the syllable pocket.  We also discussed the cards that were not syllables and why they couldn't be syllables.

Next, we talked about lesson 2.  I wanted kids to have an overview of the 6 syllable types.  We made our flipbook and then discussed examples for each type.  It was amazing how fast they caught on!  We underlined the vowel in each syllable.  They noticed really quickly that vowel-consonant-e and vowel team syllables had 2 vowels in them and that when we underlined the vowels in vowel r, we also underlined the r.

Here are some pictures from today!  The kids are really enjoying making them. Now I need to hurry up and create the next part to use!

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Syllable Interactive Notebook- Day 1

Happy Monday!

School was so busy today!  We were out last Monday to celebrate Dr. King's birthday, Wednesday morning due to winter weather AND Friday afternoon due to winter weather.  After missing 2 days of instruction last week, we were all ready to hit the ground running!

I couldn't wait to get to school today because I was so excited to start my Syllable Interactive Notebook with second grade! I've spent a lot of time this year teaching our teachers and students about syllable types and syllable division patterns.  It really is a passion of mine.  During my first year of teaching third grade, my special ed teacher suggested that I teach the 6 syllable types to my students.  Honestly, I'd never heard of the syllable types.  Of course I knew what a syllable was, but I didn't know there were 6!  I learned a lot that year from the special ed teacher and also as I planned lessons to go with the syllable types.  My love for teaching them grew and I became more and more confident.  My kids' DIBELS scores skyrocketed.  It all made sense- the students at my school were taught how to read but were never taught how to tackle a multisyllabic word beyond a compound word.  The basals didn't have it, we didn't have the resources, and the teachers didn't know about them either.  Fast forward two years later...I was asked to go to first year Orton Gillingham Classroom Educator Training.  Once again, they discussed syllable types and division patterns, and I kept thinking "why doesn't EVERYONE know about this?"

Now as a reading coach, I encounter teachers everyday who have never heard of the syllable types.  It is my hope that I can create resources to assist teachers so that they can share their knowledge!  Syllable types are the key that can crack the code!

Here are some pictures of the second grade class putting their notebooks together!  We made our covers and talked about syllables in general.   On Wednesday, we will do a sort and learn an overview of the 6 syllable types.

If you're interested, I am posting parts of the interactive notebook as I create it/teach it in my TPT store.  I plan to use it in 1st and 2nd grade, but I wish I had it when I taught 3rd!

Have a great night! :)