Sunday, March 29, 2015

Adding to the Math Journals

First I need to apologize for not posting the past two weeks.  We had the virus that never ends passed from family member to family member.  When I got it, I thought I might die.  My husband Wayne (who didn't get it, so we all kind of hate him right now) would poke his head in and ask if I needed anything, I would beg him to shoot me.  He wouldn't, so here I am!  This stupid bug has a death grip on my ears right now, so I will be going BACK to the doctor again to hopefully get some antibiotics for an ear infection.  Then maybe I will feel human again and be able to stay on course with this blog!

If you have been following me from the beginning, (and I thank you!), you know I started with some math journals that were so helpful with my first graders.  I have these free fantastic covers you might want to check out if you missed them, and then instructional anchor charts to help build math skills as well as independence.  I mentioned I wanted to go further with each of these charts and how I would use them in my classroom and attach a math center game to go with them.  So I am starting a new series on adding to the Math Journals.  (If you would like to see the twenty or so free math anchor charts, click here).

I am starting with Friends of 10.  For a refresher, I will show it below.  This anchor chart will be included in the free game pack I will describe in a moment.

I would use this anchor chart to show the connections of numbers whose sums are 10.  Have the children take turns picking one color from the rainbow and discover how adding those two matching numbers will always result in ten.  Use manipulatives if necessary.  Then show them if they flip the numbers, the sum will still remain ten.  Let them pick their favorite color and write the sums to prove they add to ten.  This is a very important skill, so you need a lot of repetition with this. 

I have a fun game for the kids to play and reinforce learning which numbers make ten. Use the anchor chart to be certain they have a reference they get into the habit of using.  Once you have played a few of these games with the anchor chart always as a reference, put this anchor chart into their math journals.  The students will be so used to referring to it, you will be amazed at their independence to refer to it on their own once it is in their journal.

For this game of two players, cut out the addition flashcards, mix them up and place them face down.  Make sure each student has an answer sheet.  The first student picks a card and decides if it is a “Friend of 10”.  If the sum is 10, they write the problem with the answer in the column under the rainbow.  If it is any other sum than 10, they write the problem with the answer under the crying boy.  The first one that completes the rainbow column wins!

I suggest you print this on cardstock and laminate for durability.  The answer sheets can be written with a wipe off or dry erase marker again and again.  I would put the cards in a recloseable baggie and slide the anchor chart with the answer sheets inside a file folder for storage.
Think about making several copies.  This would be a fun game to send home for students to play with their parents or siblings instead of a simple worksheet for homework practice.

This center (other than the anchor chart), has both a color and black and white version.

Onto my next Freebie Monday!  I have collaborated with some fantastic teachers at Teachers Pay Teachers store and I am proud to introduce this week's Freebie!

Brittany Washburn has a wide variety of products in her store, and many involve technology.  She has given us a fantastic set of "I Can" statements that are for K, 1st, and 2nd.  This is a sampler that can be downloaded for free at her store, then you might want to stay around and shop for more things for your class.  Enjoy!  Click on the picture below to go to her store for the free download!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

A Day At the Farm

I wanted to give a review of a product I was able to test with a preschooler this week.  Kathryn at Teaching Talking has one of the nicest websites I've been to.  She let me pick which Interactive Vocabulary packet I wanted to try, and I went with On The Farm.  Best. Decision. Ever.

This packet of 5 interactive activities will help you to reinforce theme based vocabulary for PreK & Kindergarten students.
★ Activity 1 – A fun craftivity and foldable
★ Activity 2 – Foldable Mini Books
★ Activity 3 – Write the Room
★ Activity 4 – Counting Syllables
★ Activity 5 – Interactive vocabulary scene (use for barrier games, following directions etc.)
The first 4 activities focus on 8 key vocabulary terms. The 5th activity allows extension work for more able students.
♥ All activities are available in color and blacklines.

I work one on one with a hearing impaired preschool student, and this packet has given me many days worth of engaging learning to do with this child.  It is colorful and has lots of different things for the students to manipulate.  I will admit that I would probably do all of the cutting if I had an entire class of students, but the foldable book is precious and my little cutie wanted to read it to me again and again.  I plan to use the Interactive Vocabulary Scene with her next week with a focus on positional words.  That is another great thing about this product.  It really lends itself to differentiated learning.  I have been impressed with this set and plan to go back for more. 

If you would like more information about this product, simply click on the picture above and it will send you the Teaching Talking website!


Sunday, March 8, 2015

I Need an Intervention!

Somebody help me.  I just did a Makeover on my Makeover for this blog.  Seriously, last Monday I was so excited about this improvement...

And it was a big improvement.  But I'm like an addict now, so I worked for hours (I'm NOT going to say how many) on my new header.  I. Can't. Stop. But enough of my first world problems.  I am ready to share this Monday's Freebie.  In honor of St. Patrick's Day (Honestly, do you know the history behind it?  It's pretty amazing.), I am saving America's classroom children from the pain and humiliation of pinching.
These "No Pinching" bracelets can simply be taped around the wrists of the students that forgot to wear green.  Now there should be no tears and bruises from that tradition.  You are very welcome.  Simply click on the picture above to get your free download.  There is also a black and white page if you need it, just color it in.
For some of the older students, they may appreciate some funny St. Paddy's Day jokes.  I cannot write or tell a joke to save my life, so these are not from me.  They are from the Happy Home Fairy and she has so many creative Saint Patrick's Day ideas, you need to check out her blog!  For now, enjoy the joke page.
Continuing the Saint Patrick's Day theme, I am also sharing a Freebie from a colleague at Teachers Pay Teachers.  Sandra Naufal  has a cute Saint Patrick's Day card freebie, available in both color and black and white.  Click below for a direct link to this free item!

Sunday, March 1, 2015


I spent about 4 hours yesterday trying to customize a header for this blog, and I am really pleased with how well it turned. out.  What do you think?  Leave a comment below with your email address through Monday, March 2 only, and I will send you one item of your choice from my TPT store for FREE!  How's that for a Monday freebie!

Why am I giving so much away?  My twin daughters turned 19 today and I wanted to do something in their honor.  They are AMAZING, and I'm not just saying it because I'm their mom.  At the very impressionable age of 14 they had to deal with their dad overseas fighting in a war, their mom fighting a debilitating cancer, and a widowed older grandmother moving in while recovering from serious heart surgery.  With all of that on their shoulders, there were two options.  Give up and rebel, or grow up an excel.  They chose the latter and are two of the most compassionate, funny, mature 19 year olds I know.

I normally don't post their pictures, but I have to brag.  On top of everything, they are gorgeous!

This is Megan.  My firstborn.  She is hysterical and loves to laugh.  Her compassion runs deep and she works so hard to make everyone around her happy.  I could go on and on, but I will save it for a different time.

And my Katie.  Excuse me, Kathleen.  She arrived one minute after her sister.  I gotta tell you, this one is going places.  She is creative and spunky with a tender heart all rolled into one.

So in honor of their giving hearts, I am giving away one free item of your choice if you leave a comment about how my new blog looks. Click here or on my Teachers Pay Teachers widget in the upper right column and look at my products to decide.  While you are there and if you like what you see, click on the green "Follow Me" star above and you will be notified of new products, sales, giveaways and more.  Then come back and leave a comment with your email and the item of your choice and I will happily send it to you! 

Now for the second part of my Monday Freebies.  I LOVE to work with the other teachers at TPT and get quality freebies to share with you.  Kamp Kindergarten has many cute products in her store.  The freebie we are showcasing involves Spelling the Room with CVC words.  This resource contains one activity with 10 cards and a recording page.  Click on the picture below to grab this one!