Friday, February 5, 2016

Skip Counting Freebie!

Hi, Teaching Friends!

Here's a brand new little freebie for those of you teaching your students skip counting at this time of year, or for others who might just need a bit of review - never hurts, right? ;) Just click on the picture to download yours!

 You can find another Valentines Day math freebie at my latest post on Teaching Blog Roundup.

Happy Teaching!

Monday, February 1, 2016

Save Teaching Time with Stacking ... Plus a Valentines Day Math Freebie!

Hi, Teaching Friends!

Welcome to the February I Teach First Linky, filled with classroom ideas to keep the fun in teaching and learning for you and your little learners.

Okay, let's just be honest about this. Teaching has always been a fast-paced juggling act. But now, there are now more subjects to be taught, more standards to be addressed, more assessments to be given, more mountains to climb, and basically more of everything in a teacher's day ... except for time!

When I'm planning activities for my homeschooled grandchildren or designing classroom resources, that's something I always try to keep in mind. I think of it as "stacking"... addressing multiple objectives and even multiple subject areas with the same teaching materials.

Solving word problems about your science topic is the perfect example of this. You're touching on objectives in math, but also science and reading. If you can have your students create their own word problems, you can add writing objectives to your DONE list!

Here are a few ideas for stacking math and literacy.

From First Grade W.O.W., this is a great example of stacking. After reading Virginia Kroll's Equal Shmequal, she engaged her students in this hands-on visual activity to introduce a unit on symmetry and fractions.
Literacy, math, and art, too!

I love this idea from Learning at the Primary Pond. What a great way to combine math and literacy!

Here's one of my own free resources, a guided reading book about place value.  {{This is not the freeebie in the title of this post. Read on! }}

Here's an idea's great for stacking science and literacy. It's from The Science Penguin. Ari's post is about supporting ELLs in your science teaching, but this particular idea would be wonderful to use with all young literacy learners, to model in shared writing, post as an anchor chart, and then carry over into science notebooks.

Sometimes the stacking is all within the same subject area. Hundred chart games and activities are a good example of this. While your students are reading numbers to 100 (or 120!), they might also be adding or subtracting the dots from a roll of two dice, counting on or back from a given number, adding ten to a number, or various other skills. If you take a careful look, you'll likely discover that you're already doing some stacking!

This brand new just-for-you freebie will help your students practice stacked math objectives for addition, subtraction, and odd and even numbers. It includes sorting mats for addition and subtraction, two pages for recording number models from dominos, and an extension activity for an extra challenge.  There are also printed dominos, in case you'd like to add some pink to your February math!  I hope this resource will help save you some time in your math teaching and help secure your students control of these math skills. Download and enjoy!

Stacking objectives will save you crucial time, in planning, prepping, and teaching. Stacked standards also make it easier for your students to build connections, whether they do it on their own or with your guidance, and of course building connections helps cement and extend learning. Consider adding questions like these to your building connections list.

*  "What else have we learned that's like this?" 
*  "How can this help you when you... ?" 
*  "Does this make you think of something else you know?"
*  " How did knowing _____________ help you understand ____________?"

What other questions for stacked objectives would you add to this list?

If you're looking for more ideas for your February teaching (talk about a month with a time squeeze for teaching! So many events and celebrations!!), be sure to visit the February Fun for Firsties Linky on this blog. It's filled with over 200 activities both free and paid for everything from Valentines Day to Groundhog Day to Heart Month, Presidents Day, etc, etc, etc!

Don't miss out on these great posts that are also part of the I Teach First February Linky!!

Happy Teaching!

Friday, January 29, 2016

Are You Ready for Some Football? (Blends Football Freebie!)

Hi, Teaching Friends!

If you might be thinking about adding some football fun to your plans for next week, here's a free game for your small group or center activities.

The printable consists of 81 cards, each having a short vowel word that begins with a consonant blend. Players take turns turning over a card and reading the word. If correct, they add the number on that card's football jersey to their total.  The object of the game is to reach a total of 20, but of course you could adjust that higher or lower according to the size of your group or the amount of time you have to play.

I love a game that addresses objectives in multiple areas, and of course this game targets both literacy and math standards. It's also an opportunity to squeeze in some extra practice with tally marks, which makes the game accessible for even your younger students.

Download this freebie at my TpT store!

Happy Teaching!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Missing Addends Riddle Cards - Monkey Madness!

Hi, Teaching Friends!

If you're teaching missing addends ... if you've EVER taught missing addends... you know it can be quite challenging! Whether you teach missing addends with manipulatives or with number lines, as counting on to the total or subtracting - wait, you do all of these, right??  Well, you also know that most students just can't get enough practice on this skill!

Riddles to the rescue! Riddles are high interest, motivating, and the format of these riddle task cards beats a worksheet hands down!

When your students finish this set of 24 task cards, they'll have completed 72 number models for missing addends! And they won't even realize it, because these elimination riddles are fun!

How can you use these riddles in your classroom? Here are a few ideas!

* Use in a math center for individual or partner work
* Use with your document camera for whole class review or to 
focus attention at the beginning of a
   math lesson
* Use as a skills review rotation, individually or with partners, with students moving to stations 
   around the classroom to solve the clues - think "Scoot!"
* Use for morning “bell ringers”
* Use as exit tickets
* Use as challenge work or for early finishers

You might even have your students use them as models for creating their own riddle task cards! Writing, math, logic... I just love it when a few standards pile up on top of each other in one lesson!

If you find that you enjoy using these riddles, here are a few more (okay, a bunch more!) that you might like!

You can find these and more in the Riddles category at my store. Plus, these are fun to make, so you can be sure that more are on the way! If you have suggestions of sets you'd like to see, I'd love it if you'd leave a comment! Thanks!

Happy Teaching!

Sunday, January 17, 2016

February Fun for Firsties and More!

Hi, Teaching Friends!

Busy (or should I say busier?) days are on the horizon - here comes February!

To help as you plan for the fun-but-crazy month ahead, some of my teacher-author friends have gathered a selection of the resources you'll need to make your planning easier for Groundhog Day, Valentines Day, Chinese New Year, the 100th Day, Black History Month, Presidents Day, etc, etc., etc... !

You'll find resources here for all of the primary grades, with both freebies and paid items. If you're a teacher author, please feel welcome to link yours. I just ask that you indicate paid items with a $ after the title.

Happy Teaching!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Martin Luther King - Heavy Concepts for Little Learners!

Hello, Teaching Friends!

As Martin Luther King, Jr. Day approaches, I know that many of you use the book Martin's Big Words by Doreen Rappaport. If you haven't seen it, I think you'll find it to be an outstanding resource for what is certainly a very concept-heavy event.

This infographic, graciously supplied to me by Dayton Toyota in South Brunswick, NJ, will be a helpful supplement to your reading of the book, or a great kick-off point for lessons and discussions. Each quote taken separately would also be a wonderful topic for your morning meeting or community circle this month!

Happy Teaching!

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