Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Give the Gift of Sight Words

I'm back! And I have a fun freebie for you just in time for those last minute Christmas plans. With my 1st and 2nd grade AIS reading students, I will be doing a little project for them to take home for the holiday break.

This is what we did for Thanksgiving:

Our school district has 150 sight words for grades K-2. This project belongs to a 2nd grader, so he has 3 colors--one for each grade.

Unfortunately, I only remembered to get one photo; I don't have any of the 1st graders' work, but they only had orange (1st grade) and yellow feathers (kdg) of course. Each student also took home a baggie with their words to practice in hopes they would actually do so over break.

And now, for the main attraction...

Drumroll please!


 
Sight Word gifts all wrapped up beneath the tree, or in Santa's sleigh, or next to Santa! The choices!

We'll be doing gifts under the tree.

All you have to do is write your sight words on the gifts. 
I did each grade level's words on a different shaped gift and copied them on different colors, like I did with the feathers for the turkey. 

I do not have the kids do the cutting; I do all of that ahead of time, but if you are a classroom teacher, you may want to include that step for your sanity and to include fine motor practice. My reading students will go over their sight words with me then glue them...just to get the affirmation of ALL the sight words they know...they LOVE seeing so many words on their papers because it looks like SO MUCH!  

We take our sight word progress graphs a step further with this project; even though they love watching their bar graph get higher each week, this gives them something even more tangible. And they LOVE to show off their completed project to their classroom teachers and peers. A little boost in confidence for our most struggling students is a GREAT thing!


I will post photos of their completed projects sometime soon--keep an eye out. We'll be assessing on Friday and working on the actual project the beginning of next week. They will each get a baggie with their words to work on over break again, of course.

I also have ideas for Valentine's Day and Easter...I thought this would be a cute project to do before each long break with my younger kids. So if you love this project like I do, stay tuned!
Hopefully parents will actually practice sight words during the breaks...hey, I can dream, right? 


And here's what my 3rd graders worked on before Thanksgiving...I just didn't have time to post until today!

The Truth About Turkeys...


 We spent a few days reading Turkeys in the Trees from readinga-z.com. We talked about the author's purpose (to inform), then we went back through the text and highlighted all the facts about turkeys. After that, we spent some time choosing 4 facts and filling out our graphic organizers, then we copied them onto writing paper and put our turkeys together. Phew! That was a lot of work! They were so proud of their projects!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Handprint Alphabet Book (B, C, D)

Sometimes, you just can't take the teacher out of you! Combine that with a love for books and crafts plus a toddler who loves books and crafts, and you end up working on a handprint animal alphabet book with your *almost* 3 year old. Of course, there's always Pinterest for inspiration too. Not only is this an adorable keepsake for you, but it's a great way to encourage letter-sound correspondence.

You will need:
  • a scrapbook, with enough white filler paper and page protectors for 26 letters (we have a red one since it's Nolan's favorite color)
  • alphabet stickers, with both lowercase and capital letters
  • black Sharpie
  • washable paint
  • paintbrushes
  • googly eyes and any other textural fashionings (beads, feathers, fabric scraps, pom-poms, glitter, etc) you might want to add to your art work--initially I had planned on only doing paint and sharpie, but Nolan insisted on googly eyes for his dino :)
 
How to:
  1. Put your letters in the corner of each page.
  2. Google or Pinterest handprint alphabet and you'll get thousands of ideas.
  3. Decide on your letter. Nolan chooses the letter or animal he wants to make...and the colors if it's not a color-specific critter, then we get to work.
  4. Free-hand paint and do your handprint, add any extra paint details, let dry, then add background details with a Sharpie.
  5. Write the word for the animal (or whatever you've chosen) to the bottom corner with Sharpie...that way your toddler will "read" the book, "A is for alligator."
 
So anyway, here is the beginning of our alphabet book:

Bb bumblebee



Cc caterpillar ( we modeled it after The Very Hungry Caterpillar)


Dd dinosaur









Stay tuned for more letters to come!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Peek into my ClassroomS (finally)

Yes, there is an "S" on the end of that...I have 2 classrooms this year. And 2 jobs...I teach 8th grade Guided Reading in the morning and 1-3 grade AIS Reading in the afternoon. It's pretty hectic and overwhelming at times, but I'm really enjoying it!

Here are some photos from my middle school room--it's definitely still a work in progress. I share a room with some studyhall classes in the afternoon, so I'm leary of leaving much out and about in there...
storage for materials

I Can... statement area


modified Daily 5

rules

our D5 station anchor charts...we created them together in each class period then I condensed and printed out



School colors to cover the door window (not sure why it's so blurry, sorry)

thanks to some lovely co-workers, my bookcase is starting to fill up with a few books...there was NOTHING

journals


And here is a look at my elementary classroom; as you can see, Dr. Seuss still reigns supreme. :) I also share this room, but with a good friend who gave me full-reign over the room since she has her own in another hallway, but we do share the space.






Seuss stuffies (minus the red rhino Nolan is "borrowing")

decoding & comprehension strategies

K-2 High-Frequency Word Wall

Monday, September 1, 2014

September Currently

September is here. Can you believe it? Where, oh where, did my summer go? It seems like summer flies by faster and faster each year. I must say I am quite happy that crisp fall air, hoodies, pumpkin spice everything, apples, colorful leaves, and football are all around the corner! My drive to work is just gorgeous in the fall--makes going back to work a tad more bearable. I really do love my job, but it sure is bittersweet when you have to leave your little guy after spending 2 months with him all day every day!

Anyway, September is here, and it's time to link up with Farley for the monthly currently. So head on over and link up!
 
 
 


So, everything is pretty much self-explanatory on here, but for the 3 trips, you're supposed to list 3 places you've never been...your dream trips. I have some high hopes! Australia is my number one...I sooooo want to hold a koala and see little blue penguins and kangaroos. Tahiti wouldn't be so bad either, now that I think of it! :) I'd love to go on a Mediterranean cruise to see Italy, Greece, France, Spain, etc. I'm too nervous to stay in a place where I don't speak the language for too long. And, really, who doesn't want to make it to Hawaii? I love tropical places. Hawaii wasn't in the cards for our honeymoon, but the Dominican Republic sure was beautiful. :) LOVE tropical places. Just sayin'.

Happy September! 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Meet the Teacher Linky

Falling Into First is hosting a Meet the Teacher linky party! What a fun idea! I'm a little late to the party because we were out of town for a few days, but I just love stuff like this, so I have to join in. So, here goes...
 
I thought it would be fitting to use my school photo :)

My name is LeAnne Cooper, and I was a kindergarten teacher for 7 years. Now I'm making a big move into AIS reading; big changes like this are SOOOO not me, but waaay back when I first interviewed at my school, I told the principal that someday I wanted to be a reading teacher. Someday has arrived! The opportunity--and maybe more importantly the right timing--has arrived, and I went for it! I'm so excited to see what this new journey holds for me even though there are things about being a classroom teacher that I will miss. I will be split between K-4 and 8th grade. I don't know how many sections of 8th I will have yet which is the most stressful part since it's SUCH a departure from kindergarten! This year will definitely present some challenges and adjustments for me.
 
Niagara Falls
 My little family consists of Hubby, Little Man, and our two fur-babies, Olive & Pickles. Clay and I have been married 6 years and together for 10 this fall. We met in college during my sophomore year and started dating the next fall. It doesn't seem like it could be that long already; we're getting old (and really feeling old!). Nolan is in the midst of his terrible twos which really aren't so terrible. He's a smart little guy who can be quite stubborn--luckily he inherited that from both Mommy and Daddy. But he's a happy dude unless he's in a place that's too loud with too many people...he gets that from Mommy!
 
Olive & Pickles
Aren't they adorable? They're sisters from the same litter, and one of Hubby's coworkers has the brothers. If I had it my way, we'd have many more kitties, but Pickles would probably end up deeply depressed or something, and Olive would just be ticked off. Don't let them fool you, they are hard-core spoiled!


 
 
 THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS...

 my family. cats. beachy, tropical places. blog-stalking. jeans. hoodies. flats (anyone else not able to wear heels after pregnancy?). Flair pens. color-coding. office supplies. smelly markers (Mr. Sketch & Scentos). reading. the smell of old books & libraries. volleyball. Buffalo Bills football. Autumn. chai lattes. pumpkin spice anything. doritos. gelato. midnight Milkyways. Tim Horton's. Target. American Eagle. cute, fuzzy animals. blankets. naps. slippers. rugged boot socks.


 IF YOU WEREN'T A TEACHER, WHAT WOULD YOU WANT TO BE?
A baker? Or maybe a librarian. 
An author of children's books would be amazing. I'd be a good book editor, I think.
When I was young, I thought about being a psychiatrist or pastor, but I hardly think I'd be any good at either.


THREE LITTLE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE YOU.
 
introverted~loyal~giver

 
FINISH THE SENTENCE, "________,  SAID NO TEACHER EVER!!"

"I love going to all these meetings...said no teacher EVER!!"
 

Q: IT'S YOUR BIRTHDAY AND YOU CAN INVITE ANYONE {DEAD OR ALIVE} TO THE PARTY. WHO ARE YOU INVITING?

Grandpa


Q: IF SOMEONE WROTE A BOOK ABOUT YOUR LIFE, WHAT WOULD BE THE TITLE?

 Hangin' with Mrs. Cooper, of course! With some kind of funny and alliterative subtitle, but I can't come up with anything good at the moment. It would have to be something to do with being a momma, wife, & teacher.

 Q:YOU GET TO PICK ONE SUPERPOWER. WHAT IS IT?
 
  Healing people and animals--mentally, physically, emotionally, etc. Yep, that's a good one. I can't ever think of a really good superpower. What are some other options?

Q: WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE QUOTE OR SAYING?
 
I can't choose just one...here are my favorite teaching related ones:

"It's not, "How smart are you?" but, "How are you smart?"" -Howard Gardner

What Teachers Make (my all-time favorite poem...check out his other work while you're there. He's an amazing slam poet)

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." -Dr. Seuss

Q: IF YOU HAD TO SING ONE SONG ON AMERICAN IDOL, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

It's my FAVORITE song at the moment. So good!
 

 
 Q: ARE YOU A MORNING PERSON OR A NIGHT OWL?
Morning person...I go to bed when my toddler goes to bed. Sadly, this is not much earlier than before we had him! I'm one of those people that requires lots of sleep. Nuff said.

 
Q: WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE RESOURCE THAT YOU'VE CREATED IN YOUR TPT SHOP?

I thought I would get a head start for the upcoming school year back in the spring because I knew I wanted to revamp my behavior system. There were a few things that needed tweaking. Little did I know that I would actually land a reading position and wouldn't need to worry about my formerly used behavior system! I was super excited to use my Ink-Saver Clip Chart Behavior System with Resources for the 2014-15 school year, but now that I won't have a classroom full of rugrats, I won't get the chance to use it after spending all that time on it! However, my sister is moving up (graduating?) from Pre-K to take over my position in Kindergarten, so she has been given this file to use as she needs. So, that's good enough for me!


Q: SHARE SOMETHING WE MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT YOU!
 
I love playing volleyball. And, I *used* to be quite good at it back in the day. That is one thing I REALLY miss about high school. My position was setter, but we ran a 6-2, so I was also a weak-side hitter. I sure miss the game! When the summer Olympics roll around, I am a volleyball watching fiend between court and beach games! 

 

Wow! I think I got it all done! Now you should know a little bit more about me, and I'm really enjoying reading about everyone else who's participating.
 
Click the icon below to link up!
http://fallingintofirst.blogspot.com/2014/08/meet-teacher-linky.html