Monday, October 27, 2014

Trick and Treat Blog Hop!

Hey there friends :) Fall is upon us and that means it's time for some Teaching Trick & Treating!

That's right - I have teamed up with my Freebielicious friends again to share some 
teaching tricks and special free treats for you!  
Today I wanted to share a "trick" that I've really just started using this year- no clue why not before, but I LOVE it!  In math my students have a math partner they've been with since the start of the year.  I've always used math partners during math for carpet talks and games, but I never had the same partners work together on their independent practice sheet.

This year though I've started having the partners work on their independent paper together and it has worked wonders!  Before I started this I felt like I was quickly circulating around the room...helping those that were struggling, getting the fast finishers started, redirecting behaviors, etc, etc!  

However, now the kids work with their math partners which wipes out most if not all my previously stated woes.  1) Their math partner is around the same level if not slightly higher...between the two they can usually always work through a "stumped moment."  2) When the partners finish their sheet they place it into the cubby and grab the assigned math center and get started on that without me waiting for two students to finish in order to make a pair for a math center.  3)  I have taught the students how to hold one accountable during this independent work time and they honestly strive to work hard for each other...of course there are those exceptional times where there is a behavior issue, but for the most part the behaviors are eliminated.

See snap shots of the partners in action below!  Notice...just with a couple of shots you see both students fully engaged on the see them pointing and touching to what they are discussing.

How do you start this in your classroom?  The first relationship you will need to establish is a solid carpet partnership.  This is the students turning and talking and using math talk to answer your math questions.  After students were comfortable with this we moved to partners working together on the independent sheets!  I have my students paired with like levels; low with a low medium and high with a high medium.

We also established several expectations for this partner work.  I hand the paper to one student and the other partner knows that means they are to get the pencil.  Whoever gets the pencils goes first.  Before they can write the correct answer they must have their partner agree with their verbal answer.  If the partner agrees they will then write the answer and pass the pencil to their partner.

This partnership for independent work {during math} has allowed students to express themselves and defend their answers.  I feel the students can use "math talk" more effectively as well as a result.  Also, I now only need HALF of the paper I once needed!

Now it's time for your treat!  I have had several teachers express their satisfaction with my new KinderPhonics I wanted to offer a way for you to preview both units!  Click below to view a sampler of each unit!

Thanks so much for stopping by to read my trick and grab my treat. Hop along to the next Freebielicious friend to see what their Trick & Treat is!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Recap of Week 10 and Peek at my Week 11!

HEEEEEY!!! I feel like I am mad-dashing before the close of the weekend!  Last week was parent-teacher conferences.  I always have a couple of hours in between the early afternoon and the late conferences, but somehow I never get everything I wanted done!  My husband and I did a fast getaway to Las Vegas for the weekend...all I did the whole time was sit by the pool! HA!  We went to a couple of shows and ate lots of yummy food, but we took a cab everywhere we walking for me, after all I was relaxing! :) 

The plans I am sharing below come from the plans directly below!  You can click to download!

This past week we combined a touch of nonfiction and fiction with our close reads!

I really loved both of our essential questions for this week as well!

Our cumulative activity for our close reads were these adorable writing/craftivities!  

Bats are very scary.

Bats can see good.

This adorable craft is a freebie from A Cupcake For the Teacher!  You can click below to download the freebie from her! 

If you would like to download the freebie writing paper I used for our stories you can do so by clicking below!

Because of our "short" week we only discussed one letter this week: Cc!  I still just love the drawings the kiddos come up with! We are cruising through the KinderPhonics units! :)

 During guided reading this week we also practiced hearing each sound within CVC words.  These sounds boxes can be found HERE.

 Here is what else we've been up to in guided reading this week!

1: Letter Id Interactive Notebook
2. Phoneme Segmentation Sound Boxes
3. Step by Step Weekly books- this one is all about the five sense!
4. Stretching sounds with slinkys!

In math this week we worked on breaking down the number 5!  Here are some fun hands one number sense activities we did!  You can easily recreate these activities for your students!  They require a small amount of "stuff,"  but offer a big punch for understanding!  On the first day I showed the students my 5 yellow/red counters.  We talked about how there would always be 5 even if some were turned to the other color.  I then led the students in a math talk using the counters.  I turned three to yellow and 2 to red.  We used math talk, "3 and 2 make 5."  For those that could easily say 3 yellow 2 red, but struggled to put it together ...I had them use their fingers.  We put up the first set so three fingers.  Then I had them look at the fingers that were in bed {down}.  They said two.  So then I had them again rephrase the parts the saw...3 {put up three fingers} and 2 {put up two fingers} make 5.

I then had the kids break out in groups to work with their partners on this activity.  As I circulated the classroom I checked in with students to make sure they were using math talk to discuss the two parts they saw.  I then gave each students their own set of five counters and a blank sheet of paper.  They make new combinations of five and showed them on their paper!

On the next day we continued to work on breaking down the number five.  For this activity I wanted the students to have the five frame as a way to "see" the parts.  I started by using five frame flashes {show a five frame for a couple of seconds} as the students turned to their partners they would discuss the parts they saw...focusing on the parts that were "filled" and "not-filled."  We then took it to filling in our five frames.  The students rolled a dot cube {without a 6 on the cube} and filled the five frame.  One student "did the work" they rolled and filled the frame, the next partner would do the math talk, " 4 and 1 make 5."  The students would then switch roles.

On the last day we worked on breaking down the number five in more of a number bond look.  Each pair had two 5 sticks.  The blue five stick would stay on the mat, the red stick the students would take turns breaking it apart and using a math talk to discus the two parts they saw! 

 That is all I have for this week!  You can download my plans for next/this week directly below!  We will be going on a farm field trip on Halloween so I can't wait to share that with you! :) 

I am also having a spooky sale and spook-tacular 7 days of treats over on my Facebook!  My entire store is 20% off through Monday at 11EST! :)

I am linking up with Dee Dee for this peek at my week!  

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Number Sense MEGA Post

Hey there and thanks so much for stopping in!  Today's post is all about.....number sense!  Number sense isn't identifying all of the numbers 0-20 or counting to 100!  Number sense is something far more "deep."  When a student has a solid number sense they are rich in mathematical practices...they see 16 as ten and six.  When you ask them about 8 they can break it down to five and three or say add two more and you have ten.

Number sense cannot be taught.  Yet, number sense comes through practice with numbers not only hands-on, but talking about numbers and math in general. We are realizing that math is way more than memorizing facts, but truly understanding what those symbols and operations mean.

In a number sense rich classroom you will hear the teacher asking students to answer questions like these;

What do you notice? 
What do you think? Why? 
What might come next? 
What do you predict will happen? 
How did you figure it out? 
Does anyone have a different answer? 
Does anyone have a different way to solve this problem? 
Can you convince us?

How can you improve number sense in your classroom?

-Link numbers to their own personal lives.  We have 5 chairs at this table and 6 friends.  Will every child get a chair?  Show the one to one correspondence of one friend per chair.  No, there are more friends than there are chairs.

- Ask students to think BEFORE calling for answers. When you ask students to think first you will allow them time to process what is being asked.  Some students require more wait time.  If you immediately call on students those fast processors might know the answer but it eliminates the thought process for the others.

- Have the class weigh in. When discussing a problem for example a word problem.  Call on many different students of varying levels.  Have them explain how they think the problem should be solved, their answers, and how they got that answer.  Teach classroom respect for all...I agree with ____.  I respectfully disagree because ____.

- Teach perseverance in mathematics.  We have all failed at something at some point in our lives.  However, for kids they see this failure as they will  never be successful.  As adults we if know that if get it wrong today..doesn't mean we will get it wrong the next time...we have had the experience to persevere and not give up.  We must instill this is our students.  Show them that you make mistakes during math too.  Allow them to help you through your hiccup.  They will see you persevere and know that they can as well.

- Teach a love for math and number. I always call my students mathematicians during math.  This makes them feel as though their job at exact moment is to do math.  When we take the time to think of fun and engaging ways to explore concepts during math we are opening the door for math to become more than numbers on a paper...but more of an adventure an pirate in search of his treasure.

- - - - - - - - - -
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
Honestly...not lying...totally the truth here...I now LOVE math time.  It really feels like we "play" for the whole hour and just have a darn good time!  We talk, we discuss, we reason, we talk shop with our longtime math partners, get up and move as we do math, have a time to just sit and listen to our teacher, and breakaway with our partners for independent practice.  After that we really have fun with our math partners doing math tubs!

Now truthful again...math might be even sweeter that it takes us up right to the end of the day...but that is just the ice cream with this sundae ;)

Make "Math" Visible Around Your Classroom

Really.  I think my students know that I have a respect for math time and have high expectations for them during math.  I always feel that it's important that kids see "math."  I have all of my math manipulatives easily visible and accessible in my classroom.
This shelf is over by my teacher table!

The numbered tubs are our math tubs for centers and the bottom buckets are math manipulatives!

               The below picture is from my sister's room!  Adorable and organization to the max!  

These snapshots are of my math cabinet!  I have tried to keep it organized, but we all have that area we are glad there are doors to hide the "stuff!" :)

Make Numbers Visable
Like I mentioned above I think it's vital that we show our love for math through our classrooms!  Kids should easily be able to find numbers around the room!

Our organic number line!

If you haven't done it yet...have your students show you anywhere in the classroom they can find numbers!  They usually come up with more places than I would have thought of.

Take Time To Explore

I also am very adamant about giving my kids plenty of time to simply explore math.  This is one of those places that some don't understand...not talking teachers here ;)  A lot of people do not understand that kids ALSO learn through play and conversation.  I am always amazed how the kids will naturally talk "math" or play "math" games completely on their own during exploration.  You can see in the photo below a snap shot where the kiddos had lined up the bears on their own and were talking about who had more.  This is  a perfect example of how kids will naturally take on learning and teaching even through PLAY ...yes you read that correctly, p.l.a.y.

Make it Fun!
Wow, I better settle and fun in the same post! ;) Really, I am bad about always trying to make cute and pretty, but you really don't have to have all that for your students to be successful.  You can easily transform my ideas into something similar and simple!
Fine motor and math!

Put wheels on it and you will have engagement!

Make it theme related on occasion to draw in their attention. 

Just Add Dice

I'm positive that next to the words number sense there must be a picture of dice.  Add dice and there will be number sense to be had!

Number Sense Routines

Make it a routine!  Do the same math activity multiple times...where it becomes a staple in your math block!  In the pictures below is a routine called dot card match-ups!  Simple...yet SO effective for building number sense. I have a full, HUGE number sense routines post with lots of ideas HERE.

Show Numbers in More Than One Way

I always love the days where we learn a new number and talk about the ways we can represent it.  Now, don't get me wrong the first time they have all kinds of suggestions...4 cats, 4 dogs, 4 we work through all that and come up with a product like this one...

                                                            Number Sense Trackers
 Now not that I am promoting that you track more data, but if you are looking for a way to these trackers can be beneficial when thinking about where to lead your future lessons! You can download the freebie trackers by clicking below!



Number Sense Lessons

If you are needing some ideas on getting number sense into your daily math block I just released this new packet!  KinderMath: Number sense! This packet contains 20 number

sense lesson which can be introduced whole group then led to students actively engaging for the activity .  You will also feel comfortable placing these lesson into a math center after you
 have practiced them in a whole group setting a few times.  In this packet you will also
receive 5 additional number sense routines.  These routines are a great opener to your math lesson.
 They require little to no prep and most get the students activity engaging.

Inside the Packet:

-20 lesson plans with standards listed, materials list, optional data points, 
- 5 whole group number sense routines with standards listed, materials list {if any}, possible data points, and whole group instruction.- 20 independent practice sheets
The packet is on sale through the start of the week! Click below if you'd like to check it out!

And I leave you with.....

:)  Have a sweet week!