Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Donors Choose

Want to help a school in need? Thinking about giving a gift that will make a huge impact this holiday season? How about helping our school?

North Salem Elementary is now on Donorschoose.org. It is a great website where people in the community can reach out and help schools in need. We are currently working on building a book room with sets of books (6 of the same book) for small group instruction. We are only asking for a little, but the impact will be huge! In addition, Build-A-Bear Workshop has given us a match offer. That means, for every $1 you give to our project, Build-A-Bear will match it!

Please Donate Today!

Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Leibster Award!

So guess what? I've been nominated for the "Leibster Award" by Judy over at "It's Raining Resources." What is a Leibster Award you ask? It's a really neat award they give out to blogger newbies. I am so honored to receive the award and excited that people out there read my blog because I had originally made it to share resources with my co-workers. It definitely made my day when I read the e-mail. :)

So let's get down to the rules!

1. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
2. Answer the questions that the nominator set for you.
3. Create 11 questions for the people you nominate.
4. Choose 11 other blogs with fewer than 200 followers to nominate and link them in your post.
5. You cannot “tag back” the other blog, but leave a comment on this post with the URL of your Liebster post so I can learn more about you & see whom you nominate.

11 Random Things About Me

1. My two front teeth are false when knocking them out in 4th grade.
2. I can touch my tongue to my nose.
3. I love peanut butter and could just eat it by itself with only a spoon!
4. This is my third year teaching.
5. My sister and I are both teachers so we always share ideas.
6. I can't function unless my classroom is organized.
7. 7 is my lucky number.
8.I still believe in chivalry.
9. I love seeing that "ahah!" moment on my student's faces.
10. I think our school has such a nice population of students!
11. I believe there is good in everyone.

Questions from It's Raining Resources

1. What is your favorite holiday tradition? Listening to Mike play Christmas music on the piano.
2. How do you get to school each day? I drive in my little VW jetta.
3. What is a management tip/strategy that never fails for you? Whole Brain Teaching strategies. They work well for attention grabbers, modeling skills, and cooperative learning!
4. How many countries have you been to? 5 (US, Canada, England, Scotland, and France)
5. What is the best book you've ever read? Any Chris Van Allsburg book. Love that author!
6. Why do you teach? To help children succeed!
7. Red licorice or black? Red!
8. What do you do to pass time on long car trips? Over Thanksgiving on my road trip home, my boyfriend and I had dance parties in the car while we were stuck in traffic. It definitely made it fun!
9. What are your thoughts on homework? Homework should only be sent home if it is a skill they already know and should be started in school.
10. Staying home or visiting others for the holidays? Visiting Mike's family for Christmas.
11. What is your favorite dessert? Anything with chocolate and PB!

Blogs I've nominated for the Leibster Award

Tales from a Third Grade Splashroom
The Hip Teacher
Sweet Life of Second Grade
I Live to Learn, I Love to Grow
Kindergarten and Mooneyisms
Free on TPT 2nd Grade
T is for Teaching
4th Grade Haps and Hacks
Permanently Primary
Mrs. Kelly's Klass
Orange Polka Dots

Questions for you!

1. In what part of the country do you teach?
2. Why do you blog?
3. Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas?
4. What strategies do you employ for difficult students?
5. Favorite blogger to follow?
6. Best blogging tip?
7. Best Read Aloud?
8. Does your school have a book room? If so, how often do you use it?
9. Where do you go online to find additional resources?
10. Do you give presents to you class for Christmas? If so, what?
11. How is your classroom library organized? Genres or levels?

Again, I am so grateful for this award and happy to have more followers!

Happy Reading!

Guess the Reader

One awesome thing about our school is all of the bulletin board space in the hallways to display student work. This month, our Intervention Specialist and myself worked on an interactive bulletin board for the entire school. We took pictures of most of our teachers with their favorite book, but we took the picture with the book over their face. That way students would have to guess what book belongs to which teacher!

There was a huge buzz outside my room the morning that we put the BB up. The students were so engaged in the BB and couldn't wait to submit their guesses. Even better is that it got them talking about their teachers and books in a positive way. I would even see students get their friends to come down and make guesses. All the teachers were so great about getting involved, too! Every time they walked by with their classes I would hear, "I wonder which one is me?"

Check out the pictures below:

What can you do to get your students talking about books in a positive and fun way?

Happy Reading!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Sight Word Games

Sight words are very important to teach beginning readers. Often times sight words do not follow phonics rules so they can be daunting to readers at first. We need to teach our students that there are exceptions to the phonics rules so that they don't become frustrated if they can't decode the word.

Sight words are also important to learn because when students can recognize them instantly and effortlessly, they are able to read with a better fluency rate. Therefore, they will have more cognitive capacity to comprehend the text.

Below are sight word card cames for Preprimer, Primer, First Grade, and Second Grade. Normally, Dolch words are broken up into Preprimer, Primer, First Grade, Second Grade, and Third grade, however; our school condensed them into four lists so we would align more with the curriculum.

Click below to download the games:

Preprimer Angry Birds

Primer Uno

First Grade Popcorn

Second Grade Buzzz

Happy Reading!