Saturday, September 29, 2012

Word Work Centers: Part 3

Okay... last word work center post for you!  Here are the last 4 centers that I use in my classroom during the daily five.

In this center, the kids stamp words from the word wall or their dictionary using these cute little stamps I got from the dollar section at Target.  You can tell that these stamp pads are well worn-- this is a popular center for my firsties!

The next center is sight word bingo.  This comes from my word work centers pack {which is also available in Spanish}.  Students take turns picking a word from the bag, and both students cover the word with a bean.  The first student to make a row vertically or horizontally wins.  BINGO!!

This is similar to a center I mentioned in a previous post.  The students use vocabulary cards and make the words with magnets.  I like the big ones, but I know that you can usually get small ones for $1 at the dollar tree or sometimes in the dollar section at Target.  I have a magnetic wall in my classroom, but these letters can also be used on the side of a desk or on a cookie sheet.

And last but not least-- make a word memory game.  The students turn over the cards and take turns picking two cards to see if they make a word.  I tried *super* hard to not allow for combinations that make inappropriate words... ha.  If the two cards make a word, they write the word in their center journals and keep the cards.  At the end of the game, the student with the most cards wins!  This game also comes from my word work center pack, which I will be giving away in my VERY next post.  Stay tuned for your chance to win :)

Thanks for reading my series of posts on word work, I hope that you found them helpful!
Thursday, September 27, 2012

Work Work Centers: Part 2

I finally remembered to take pictures of my other word work centers!  The day is a whirlwind so it is a miracle that my head is even on straight :)

This is an alphabetizing center that I created.  There are four baggies of words to choose from, and the students are to alphabetize the words on the owls according the the first letter on the tree branch.  This is such an important skill in first grade, so I decided to make it a center so that they have more practice with it.  The answers are on the back so that they can self check.   This comes from my Word Work Center pack, available in English and Spanish, at the TpT store {stay tuned for a giveaway at the end of my word work posts}.
p.s.-- sorry about the terrible glare... my photography skills are lacking :/

This is a cute idea I got from a blog or pinterest at the beginning of last year, and I cannot for the life of me remember where I saw it to link back to.  All you need is empty bottles, stuff to put inside of them, and sight words.  TA-DA!!  You have a word work center, and it can be easily done in English, Spanish, or both.  The kids find the words, read them, and write them in their center journals.  If you wanted to extend it even more, they could use the words in sentences.

This is another idea from my word work center pack.  I could find lots of great ideas in English but few in Spanish, so I had to get to work!  The game is called spin and spell.  The kids play in partners and take turns spinning the spinner.  They must say or write a word with that pattern, and if they can think of one they get a point.  If not, they don't get a point and it is their partner's turn.  The game continues until time is up, and the person with the most points wins.  Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy! {as my kids say... ha}

And the last center for today is Secret Code Spelling.  I got this from a blog or pinterest as well, but here is a link to a free one on the TpT store that is very similar.  This can be used in either Spanish or English too, and the kids get way into it.  I have them pick a word from the word wall or their dictionary, and they have to write it in their center journal using the secret code.  They they swap with their partner to see if the partner can figure out the word.  So fun!

And that's all for now!  Be on the lookout for part 3 coming soon & a giveaway of my word work center pack.  Who doesn't love free stuff??
Monday, September 24, 2012

Word Work Centers: Part 1

Yesterday I showed you my word work center bookcase with all 12 word work centers.  Today I am spotlighting 4 of the word work centers we use & hope that you can take these ideas back to your own classroom!

This center is boggle boards, which the kiddos LOVE.  I change the rules for my firsties and tell them that they can use any letters from the board to make words.  The letters don't have to be touching each other and they can reuse a letter in a word, even if it only shows up once on the board.  {This can be modified for older grades}  This word work center is awesome because it works for both English & Spanish.  YESSSSS.  The students write the words that they find in their Daily Five journals.  Today, I taught this center and I reminded my kids that they can look on the word wall, all over the room, and in their dictionary to find words and see if they can make them on their boggle boards.  I can't remember where the boggle boards pictured came from, but here is a link to some free ones on the TpT store.

The next center is a making words center with paint sample cards.  {Yes, I got these for free at Walmart}  Again, this center is great because I can easily make an English and Spanish version.  The kids move the card up and down to make words, and keep track of them in their Daily Five Journals.  I took a picture of two of my Spanish examples and one English sample.

Moving right along to my next word work center.  For this one, I have a set of vocabulary cards with the word and the picture.  {In the picture they are in Spanish, but this works for English just the same}  The students use the letter tiles to make the word and then write the word accompanied by a picture in their Daily Five journals.  Super easy!  Sorry about the awful glare...

The last center idea came from my Word Work pack on my TpT store {available in English and Spanish}, which I will be giving away at the end of this series of posts!  It is called Rainbow Roll A Word.  The students pick a word from the word wall, anywhere in the room, or their dictionary.  They roll the dice to find out what color marker to write each letter with.  You should have heard the Oooohs and Aaaaahs over this center today.  They are stoked, and it is super easy to put together!

If you have questions about any of the centers, please comment & I'll answer them ASAP.  More word work center ideas to come in the next few days!  Oh, and be on the lookout for a giveaway :)
Sunday, September 23, 2012

Word Work Center Ideas: Intro

This week, I will be teaching my kids how to use the Word Work centers in my classroom, so I thought it would be a perfect time to introduce them to the blog world too :).  Here is a picture of my word work area:

There are 12 word work activities for my students to choose from during the Daily Five.  Most of them are done with partners, and we spend 20 minutes per day in each center.  {We only do three centers per day, and the students pick a Daily Five Bookmark to determine which centers they will do that day}.  The green containers came from the Dollar Store & Hobby Lobby, and the bookshelf was only $15 at Walmart.  More info to come soon on the details of each activity!
Saturday, September 22, 2012

Math Problem Solving {Freebie}

We have a huge emphasis on our campus this year on math problem solving.  I spend a lot of time during the fall semester teaching my firsties how to solve math problems so that I can "set them free" to do it on their own in the spring.  I have found that teaching them a fairly simple process works well, although I have always done it verbally with them.  My group this year really needs visuals, so I decided to create a paper version so that they can refer to it while we are solving problems.  You can download it in English or Spanish through google docs!  I was thinking that I will cut out and laminate the steps, and then put them on a ribbon.  I will use a clothespin to show which step we are doing when we are solving problems whole group.  Another teacher friend of mine laminates all the steps together with a small space in between, and then folds them up and unrolls each step as the class completes it.  Also a very cute idea.  How do you do math problem solving in your classroom?

P.S.-- If you downloaded my free Johnny Appleseed unit in English or Spanish, thank you so much.  I am ecstatic that it has been downloaded over 2000 times!! Makes my week :)
Classroom Freebies Manic Monday
Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Advice Please!

I got an email from my district today telling us that if we create a project on donor's choose, we will immediately get $100 donated toward our product.  A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!  I definitely want to jump on this opportunity, but need some advice about what project to create.

I have some students this year that could really use some additional resources to help them with reading in Spanish {both at home and at school}.  So my question for you is:  Do you know of any great resources that would help struggling first grade readers in Spanish?  I would love any suggestions--  Ready, Set, Suggest!!
Saturday, September 15, 2012

Daily Five Freebie {In Spanish}

Do you use the Daily Five in your classroom?  I LOVE it!!  I always start out the year with the I-PICK lesson about the importance of choosing a just right book.  In the book "The Daily Five", Gail Boushey and Jean Moser suggest using shoes to teach this lesson.  Just as you must choose the right style and size of shoe for your foot, you also must choose a book that is on your level and that you are interested in.  I love to bring in my husband's shoes {size 13, I might add} and trip all over the classroom to bring home the point.  I also show a flip flop and ask if I should wear it to work, a dress shoe and ask if I should go running in it, etc.  The kids get so into the lesson.

I have found, though, that the I-PICK acronym doesn't make much sense to the Spanish speakers.  I decided to brainstorm & came up with the acronym PIES.  It goes great with the lesson that I teach about shoes, and translates well into Spanish.  Click here to grab your very own copy in Spanish.  I love finding new Daily Five freebies in Spanish!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Johnny Appleseed Day

Did you know that September 26th is Johnny Appleseed Day?  We are looking forward to celebrating it in first grade by tying it in with our language arts curriculum.  We will focus on the book "Johnny Appleseed:  A Tall Tale" by Steven Kellog and will do several activities related to character traits and verbs.  I created a mini unit that we will be using with our students, and I would love for you to check it out in English or Spanish!  Oh, and BTW... its free :)  Do you have plans to celebrate Johnny Appleseed Day?
Sunday, September 9, 2012

Whooo's looking for a sale?

Monday, September 3, 2012

Math Center Miracles

Organization is miraculous!  I finally feel like I have found a system to organize my math centers that really works for me in my classroom.  I use 16 bags based on the color coded acronym M.A.T.H.  This system allows me to do guided math groups while my students are engaged in centers, and is really not difficult to keep up with.  I leave many of the activities in the bags all year long, and switch some out every now and then based on the unit we are doing.  The kids LOVE math centers, and I do too.  I give them a choice of centers, but keep them accountable to do a different center each day  {I learned this the hard way after some students did the same center }  I could go on and on, but in the interest of time, you can check it out for yourself here.  I have this pack available in both English & Spanish on my TpT store.  How have math centers been going for you?

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Who doesn't love magazines?

This first week has been a whirlwind. In first grade, we start out in math by teaching the students that numbers are all around them. One activity the students do during the first week is to find numbers in magazines, cut out the pictures, and glue them in their math journals. For some reason, the kids LOVE getting to use magazines and my kids this year were especially into this activity. Here is one of the finished products:

I hope that your week with your kiddos went well!