Thursday, January 18, 2018

Contraction Conversation Hearts

This post contains affiliate links.


Contractions can be pretty tricky for first graders to nail down!  To make it fun and give my students a bit of scaffolding, I created this free Contraction Conversation Hearts literacy center.

Since the "matching" hearts are the same color, the focus is less on students knowing the matches, but instead, more about giving them an opportunity to repeatedly see the correlations!

I don't really love the taste of traditional conversation hearts, but I'm hoping to eventually find some that are actually tasty!  The "very berry" ones (pictured above) do look promising, however...


Anyways, to prep this center, I simply printed out the Contraction Conversation Hearts onto card stock and then laminated them for classroom use.  Finally, I cut them apart and slipped them into a clear baggie for safe keeping!

    

My students easily understood that they were to spread out the pieces and find the matches.  I reiterated that once they matched up all the hearts, they needed to say all of the words out loud to "stick them in their brains".  


When all my kiddos had a chance to try out the center, I gave them all a few candy heart treats just for fun!

Ready to download this BLOG EXCLUSIVE FREEBIE???

Simply click on the blue button below!



Be sure to check out these other heart activities as well!


FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: 
Heart Letter Puzzles // Pocket of Preschool
Valentine Hearts Ten Frame Clip Cards // Mrs. Jones Creation Station
Heart Digraph Puzzles // The Kindergarten Connection
  Printable Valentine's Math Activities // Stay at Home Educator
  Alphabet Hearts // Playdough to Plato
  Valentine's Day Emergent Reader // Sweet Sounds of Kindergarten
  Heart Syllable Sort // Recipe for Teaching
  Candy Hearts Count and Clip Cards // Modern Preschool
  Heartbreakers Sensory Activity // Sugar Spice and Glitter
  CVC Hearts // The Primary Post
  Heart Counting Cards // Powerful Mothering
  Sorting Hearts Fine Motor Tray // Teach Me Mommy
  Candy Heart Estimation Station // The STEM Laboratory
  Contraction Conversation Hearts // The Simplified Classroom
  Chocolate Heart Play Dough Mats // Fantastic Fun and Learning
  Hearts Make Ten Game // Sara J Creations
  Heart Roll, Cover and Write Mats // Fun Learning for Kids
  Candy Heart Sentences // Pages of Grace
  Heart Sight Word Match // The Letters of Literacy
  Heart Name Crafts // Fun-A-Day


Friday, December 22, 2017

Postcards for Free Writing

This post contains affiliate links.


Almost every day, my first grade students have a writing "job".  We might be starting a week-long writing project, responding to prompts, adding a new entry into our independent journals, or we could be doing some sort of writing craft!  I like to mix it up, but regardless, my students are writing every day and they LOVE it!


One of the reasons my students love to write each day is because once they finish the "job" that has been assigned for that day, they get to "FREE WRITE".

Basically, I have a table with all sorts of blank writing templates on it and they can choose anything they want to do as long as they are writing!


I was lucky enough to have a retired teacher donate a huge bag of postcards to my classroom earlier this year, but when I noticed we were running low, I whipped up some of my own!

I simply printed a handful of postcards in color, and some on colored cardstock.

They aren't anything fancy, but my kiddos love to write a short message and then draw pictures on the back!  Some of my students just write postcards to their friends and family, but I also try to encourage my students to get creative and think about what they would say if they traveled somewhere different!


Having a variety of writing formats keeps things fresh, and I sure do love getting postcards "mailed" to my desk.  :)

Ready to download your FREE copy of this simple resource???   Just click the blue button below or hop over to my Teachers Pay Teachers Shop.


Thanks for visiting and happy teaching!
Need more literacy resources?
Check out one of my favorite activity packs!


Thursday, December 21, 2017

Magnetic Letters Center for All Year

This post contains affiliate links.


When I teach my first graders in guided reading groups, we almost always start out word work with magnetic letters.  I have my metal stove burner covers prepped ahead of time with magnetic letters so all my students have to do is "pull down" the letters needed to make a word.

For example, we might do:  at, bat, hat, chat

Because they are so familiar with building words with magnetic letters, I decided to make a "permanent" literacy center for my students to use ALL YEAR LONG!

 

All I did was fill up one of our latching center boxes with a few stove burner covers, magnetic letters, and recording sheets!
Because my students simply build the "words of the week" off our front board, nothing has to get swapped out for the rest of the year.  All I really do is copy more recording sheets when they run out.


(Click on the picture above to see the words I use each week!  It's just $2 on Teachers Pay Teachers)


*Quick tips:  
  1. I always draw an "X" in highlighter on the original recording sheet so my students know to bring it up to my desk for me to make more copies when the box runs out.
  2. I laminate the "cover sheet" and Velcro it to the outside of the latching box so that students can see what the literacy center is and read the directions for themselves!
  3. I only have two stove burners in the box because only two kiddos can do this center at a time.  (It can get a little hectic sharing the magnetic letters with more students)

Get a 6 pack of latching boxes and a 100 pack of storage bags:

    

This literacy center stays out all year, but the other centers I have out are swapped every week or so.  When centers are not "out" for students to use, I store them in 10x13 clear baggies that actually zip (as opposed to Ziplock gallon baggies that are too short, unfortunately!)


That's it!  This literacy center is fairly simple, but there is something SO MEANINGFUL about students building words out of magnetic letters.  This center allows them to do something hands-on while practicing our classroom words of the week!

Need magnetic letters???  Grab some from Target!


Download this BLOG EXCLUSIVE FREEBIE by clicking the blue button above, and then check out these other magnetic letter activities for kids:


FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
Elkonin Sound Boxes // Playdough to Plato
Self-correcting Magnetic Word Work // Differentiated Kindergarten
Alphabet Magnet Beginning Sounds Center // The Letters of Literacy
Pull and Trace Alphabet Magnets // The Kindergarten Connection
Secret Code Seasonal Words // Mom Inspired Life
Editable Sight Word Mats // Mrs. Jones' Creation Station
Letter Identification Alphabet Train // Stay at Home Educator
Number Word Mats // Fairy Poppins
Magnetic Letters Nouns Game // Teach Me Mommy
CVC Word Spinners // Sweet Sounds of Kindergarten
Magnetic Letters Center for All Year // The Simplified Classroom

Thanks so much for visiting my blog!

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Snow Monster Addition Puzzles

This post contains affiliate links.


One math skill I always seem to forget about teaching my first graders is adding three numbers together.  

In my state, students are expected to be able to add three numbers together within 20, but I usually just start within 10.  To teach this concept to my class, I simply gathered my students on the classroom carpet and wrote a problem on the board.  I explained that they should add the first two numbers together, and then add on the last number!  We repeated this a few times, and I made sure to have student volunteers help out!


After my students "rated" their understanding of adding three numbers together, I popped this Snow Monster Addition math center under our document camera!

I told my kiddos that they could simply match up the math problems with the answers, or they could make more of a game out of it and play "memory" or "go fish" with them!


Prepping these math puzzles were quick and easy-- I'll I did was print them out on cardstock and then laminate them.  Because it was so simply, I'll likely send them home with a student who needs extra practice after it's time to rotate them out of our math station choices.


If you'd like to download a copy of this FREE math center for your child or students, simply hop over to my Teachers Pay Teachers store or click the blue button below!


Then, check out these other amazing Monster Activities for kids!!!


FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
Feed the Monster Alphabet Match // Sara J Creations
Monster Alphabet Playdough Mats // Modern Preschool
Monster Counting Cards // Miss Kindergarten
Monster Math Addition Clip Cards // The Kindergarten Connection
Monster Counting Mats // The STEM Laboratory
Monster Measurement Cards // Fairy Poppins
Monster Alphabet Game // Stay at Home Educator
Felt Monsters Busy Box // Teach Me Mommy
Monster Letter Match // Schooling a Monkey
Monster Snowball Coverall // Recipe for Teaching
Snow Monster Addition Puzzles // The Simplified Classroom
Monster Shape Graphs // Playdough to Plato
Name the Monster Phonics Game // Play & Learn Every Day
Monster Counting Emergent Reader // A Dab of Glue Will Do
Color Monsters Write the Room // Letters of Literacy
Monster Truck Numbers: Bigger and Smaller // Liz's Early Learning Spot
Monster Creation Tray // Powerful Mothering
Monster Feelings Match Up // Pocket of Preschool

Thanks for stopping by my blog!  Please feel free to leave a comment and I'll be sure to reply!