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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

I LoveTeaching Writing

OK I never thought I would ever utter or write those words! Teaching writing has never been something that I have ever loved - disliked OK loathed probably would be a better way to describe my feelings about teaching writing to kindergartners until now. So what has changed??? I discovered the blogging world and some wonderful kindergarten teachers! I am in love love love with the writing units from Deedee Wills and Deanna Jump!  Did I mention I love them!  My kinders are doing sooooooo well with their writing.  It has taken some time to get up and running and some tweaking in my schedule but I think we are finally on the right track. They are sooooo excited to finish our first writing unit and have our first publishing party tomorrow.  What is even better is that they are super excited to start our next unit! Here are some examples of what they have been doing during this first unit.
 This one says "I see a house on fire.  My cousin was in there."  Can I tell you this freaked me out a little!! But when I asked about it he laughed and said "I just made it up!" But don't you love the fire and smoke coming out of the windows and the big black hair!
 This one says "I see the sun go up." Don't you love the arrow pointing up from the sun and the arrow going down from the moon!
This one says "I like to play on the swings down and up." We were talking about making detailed settings, I love the big flower!
 This one was made on the day I finally had to say no more drawing rainbows and writing I see a rainbow.  So this little guy figured out a way around it!  He wrote "I have a rainbow tent."!
This one started by saying "I saw a castle." When I asked her if she could tell me more she wrote "A dragon lives there." I just love the dragon sticking out of the side of the castle!

Hope you enjoyed a peek into our writing unit!  I will try and get some pictures of our publishing party tomorrow.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Common Core Math Freebie!

I know it has been awhile since I blogged anything, I feel like I have been running a race to keep up lately!! But a rainy Saturday here is a great excuse to get caught up on some blogging!

So I will admit I am feeling a little (OK a lot) overwhelmed with the Common Core transition but I am lucky to have a great team that works together to make things easier!  Our district is starting with math, so we are working on developing math activities and curriculum that is aligned to the Common Core.   I am loving all of the new activities we are finding and trying out....but not having a text book makes me a little nervous. Not that I have ever found a text book that I thought was perfect.  What we really need now are good assessments to go along with our activities so I can make sure all my kiddos are "getting it".  I love good data!

We are focusing on numbers 0-10 right now so I thought I would share one of the activities I made for my math centers this week. The students will get 10 two color counters (the ones that are red on one side and yellow on the other).  They will place all 10 in a cup and then shake and spill them onto their table.  They will then fill in the 10 frame with the number of counters that were red and yellow.  They will record their numbers in the boxes underneath.  If you would like a copy of the sheet I am going to use click on the picture below to grab it for free!  Hope you like it!  If you have any great assessments that you use or if you like the freebie I'd love for you to comment!