Lots of Short Vowel Freebies!

Hope you are all off to a great November!  We have a short week this week, so during our reading instruction we’re reviewing some short vowel sounds.  We created 28 I have Who has cards for the short vowels a, e, i, o, & u.  They’re in our store for FREE and you can chek them out {HERE} or just click the picture below!

Along with some I have who has games this week, we created a few vowel worksheets and a 5 in a row game that can be played with a partner.  These activities relate to short vowels a, e, i, & o.  We’ll be introducing the short vowel u next week.  If you’re looking for some short vowel practice pages, just click on any of the pictures below!

We also wanted to let you know that we’ve updated our addition and subtraction ice cream packs!  We’ve added black and white options for ice cream cones, scoops, and awards!  So if you’ve purchased these, be sure to re-download!  You can click the pictures below to check them out!

Have a wonderful week!

Apps We Love & a Freebie

We're back to tell you about a few iPad apps that we just love, and we have a little freebie as well.
 We hope you're all off to a great start to your school year!  We're heading on week four and finally settled into a routine in our classrooms!  
Since taking an iPad class over the summer, we've discovered several new apps that we just love.  We thought you might be interested in them as well :) Before we share about some apps, we wanted to share a website that we recently discovered.   Technology in Education is a website that continually posts about educational apps with an emphasis on special education.  If you follow them on Facebook, you'll get daily updates on marked down, or even free educational apps!  We've learned about so many through this site.  

Here are a few apps we've recently added to our iPads:

This app contains ones, tens, and hundreds manipulatives, along with a virtual pen and eraser. There are three color options for the manipulatives, and two color options for the pen.
This could be used as a whole group, small group or individual lesson depending on how many iPads you have. You could show specific numbers using the manipulatives and have your students tell you the numbers. You could also say or write a number and have a student show you that specific number using the manipulatives.  Demonstrating how to add double digit numbers with regrouping can also be done when using this app. 

Similar to Number Pieces basic but contains more options making this app suitable for upper grades

We just love how you can create and organize your own flashcards.  
Plus, you can search for flashcard sets that have already been created, which saves A LOT of time.
This app provides you with access to hundreds of types of flashcards for a variety of subjects. You can also make your own. The cards can be read to you, and you can choose between several different languages. The decks that you choose to download can be saved in your "decks" section.
In younger grades this app would be great to use while reviewing Dolch sight words and addition and subtraction facts. As an independent activity, you could have a student listen to the sight words for extra practice. In upper grades this app could be used to review vocabulary words and their definition. You can utilize both sides of the flash cards when creating your own.

This is a virtual geoboard that contains 25 pegs or you can switch it to show 150 pegs. 
 There are 8 different rubber band colors. Shapes can be filled in as well.
You could have students create specific shapes. You could also compare shapes. For example, if you created a square and a rectangle, you could discuss how the square's sides each have the same amount of pegs, while the rectangle has two sides that have more pegs than the other sides. For older students you could compare fractions or create irregular shapes and count the square units. 

And here's our freebie!  
This is a set of classroom/subject labels that we've created to put up around our classrooms.  Just click the picture below if you'd like a copy!

Have a wonderful week!

Lesson Plan Notebook Freebies

We've just got a few weeks left until we head back to school and boy have we been busy!  Shopping for new classroom supplies is on our to-do list this week along with getting our classroom binders (lesson plans, emergency info, grades, etc..) together.  We're still waiting on editing our lesson plan template until our school wide schedule is finalized.  We'll share the template with you once it's created.  Until then, we thought you might like to see our new cover pages/inserts for our binders.  These pages could be used as covers for binders or slipped in clear pocket label dividers in a larger notebook.  We have used these both ways.  Often we place the schedules, important notes, assessment scores, and professional development pages in clear pocket dividers in our lesson plan notebook.  Grades, substitute info, student info, and emergency info are separate binders due to the amount of paperwork.

We created these in two different color combinations, and both can be found {HERE}!

A few years ago we used this set and it's been updated.  
If you'd like to take a look you can find it Here and Here is the original post!

We also wanted to share with you our newest product!
Just click the picture below to check it out and be sure to download the preview!

Have a great week!

apps we love & some freebies!

There's so much that you can do with an iPad, and this summer we've been learning about ways to use an iPad in the classroom, apps that are great for the classroom, and great app/iPad sites that are helpful to teachers!  We both have a classroom iPad that we started using in classrooms last year.  We received them mid year, and are very thankful for our parent group that purchased them for us!  We use them during our literacy and math centers.  Our kiddos absolutely LOVE it and we have quite a few apps that they enjoy!  
Below are two apps that we've recently discovered.  

 This app not only has tens frames, but it also has frames for five, 10, 20 & 100!  You can do so much with it and it's FREE!!!  We love that it has colored counters (very similar to the counters used in the math program we teach from.  You can also change the counters to other shapes and colors.  This could be used in a whole group lesson (projected on a White or SMART Board, or just holding up and showing particular numbers.  Number recognition activities are definitely activities we focus heavily on in first grade, especially during the first several months of school.  

 Here's another fun one that we'll definitely have our first graders use at literacy centers.  This one has a free and paid version.  We've just tried out the free version and it only contains capital letters.  The paid includes lowercase, numbers, symbols, and other figures.  Along with literacy centers, we plan to use this during small reading groups during word work lessons.  Since our small groups are 20-25 minutes each without a lot of time between to prepare for the next group, this app will work great! 
 We created some worksheets that could be used at centers that fit nicely with both of these apps.  Just click the picture below if you'd like a copy!
Have a great week!

Happy July!

Happy July!  Summer is definitely keeping us busy, but we are enjoying some Oregon sunshine this week!  The weather has been BEAUTIFUL here! 
We are currently in the process of updating several of our products that are currently in our TpT Store and have some new ones that we're adding as well this summer!  If you have purchased our Pocket Chart Calendar Cards we've updated the set by adding field trip, no school, and years (2014-2019).  Just click {HERE} if you'd like to read more about this set!

May and June were both filled with A LOT of review work, especially in math.   Below are a few of the worksheets that we did at the end of the school year.  We had several weeks of math review before our end of the year assessment.  You can click {HERE} if you'd like a copy of these!

We'll be back next week to share some iPad apps that we just love!  
We'll have a few freebies as well!
Have a wonderful week!

Five Senses Poem

Last month we were been busy creating a variety of poems with our first graders. If you're looking for a quick and fun poetry lesson you'll enjoy this one! 
One recent poem we worked on was a 5 senses poem.  
We began by reading several poems out of the book below.  This fabulous book contains several poems about everyday objects like pants, scissors, ice cream, spaghetti, socks, etc.. We read the poems to our first graders without showing the pictures, or reading the titles.  If the object was mentioned in the poem (which didn't happen very often), we left it out when we read.  Our goal was to have our kiddos pay close attention to the adjectives and descriptions in order to figure out what object we were reading about.  It was SO MUCH FUN!!!  Some they guessed, while others were difficult.

Then we read from a chart like the one below.  We created it before the lesson, had it turned around, then read from it making sure the kids could not see it.  It's definitely not fancy, but it was similar to the worksheet our kiddos would be using, so it fit the purpose :)  They enjoyed guessing, and many figured out what our poem was about.

Next, we told our first graders that they would be creating a five senses poem about popcorn to read aloud to their families.  We bought a big bag of popcorn from Costco, already pooped which made it sooo much easier!  After giving each kiddo a cup of popcorn, we looked at it, listened to it as we rubbed it next to our ears, smelled it, felt it, and finally tasted it (their favorite part)!  As we did each activity, we listed their descriptive words/phrases on our whiteboards in 5 separate columns. 

Finally, each of our students made their own poem using the words from the lists we created as a class. 
Then next day we discussed who they read their poem to, and if that person was able to figure it out.  They had a great time!  If you'd like a copy of our poem format you can find it {HERE}!

Have a great week!

It's Getting Close To Memory Book Time and a Shape Game Freebie!

Every year we have our first graders create a memory book as a little memory of first grade.  This little product has been in our store for a while now, but we've never shared how we use it. We also have a pre-school, kindergarten and second grade version!
We've had many emails and questions about how we create a memory book with half sheets, and since it's getting close to that time of year again, we thought we'd fill you in on what we do with a few of the pages that we include in our memory books.  Below, are a few photos explaining what we do with 5 of the 12 pages in our memory book.

If you'd like to check out these books, just click the links below!

This last week our kiddos began their 2-dimensional chapter in math.  Squares, rectangles, trapezoids, triangles, and circles have been the shapes introduced to our first graders so far.  

We've created a bingo game including all five shapes that we've introduced so far.  
We'd love to share our creation with you, so you'd like a copy, just click {HERE}!

OOH and if you're looking for some Earth Day activities, you can check out our 
Earth Day Unit {HERE}!

Thanks for stopping by!  We hope you have a wonderful week!

How to Writing, Some Great Children's Books & A New Product!

Well it may seem a little late to have your students complete a how to writing about building a snowman, but around here we rarely get snow and just a few weeks ago we did get snow!
And it was enough to make a snowman or two! 
 Our kiddos enjoy how to writings, especially when they know a lot about the topic, and making a snowman is a topic they DEFINITELY know about!  We read a story, watched a short YouTube video, and are just about finished with our class how to writing.  Monday the kiddos will write their own independently.  Below is the book, video and writing template :) 

We found this book on iTunes and read it to our kids on our iPads while displaying it on our Smartboards.  They love to listen to books while they're displayed, so much larger!

It's a cute little story about Caillou building
his first snowman with a friend. 

Next we watched a short YouTube video showing a
 person making a snowman.

Finally we started our shared how to writing piece.
Our kiddos helped us glue these cards in order on the chart below.

 Here's our process so far.
We shared the pen through this process, which our kids love to do!  
We're finishing this up on Monday and our first graders are going to complete their own How to Make a Snowman writing sample using this template.  
We have several options, just click the picture below to download!

We'll update tomorrow with our finished chart and some writing samples :)   

On Friday, our school will celebrate Dr. Seuss Day (March 2nd).  During the week our kiddos sign up to listen to a reader.  Then on Friday, at the end of the day, our students get to go and listen to another teacher read stories.  They have so much fun and love it!  Every year we like to find new books to read to the kids that come to our rooms!  We thought we'd share a few books that we've recently found!

We just LOVE Mo Willems around here and this book is hilarious.  We're reading the traditional Goldilocks and The Three Little Bears then reading this one to compare.  

And then there's these sweet stories.  So ADORABLE!  Sweet little Rocket is such a cute character and his teacher (the little yellow bird) is just as cute! We love reading how Rocket learns to read and write, and are sure our kids will enjoy following him on his journeys as well.  
Rocket's Mighty Words (board book) contains labels and pictures, 
which makes this book perfect for beginning readers and writers. 

 Finally, this sweet book goes well with our newest punctuation characters we've added to our store.  This story involves an exclamation point who feels that he just doesn't fit in amongst a group of periods.  After meeting a question mark, he soon cheers up and realizes he is special!  We love that the question mark always asks questions and finally gets exclamation point to say exclamatory sentences and words.

And here's our newest addition to our store!

Stop on by {HERE} and check them out!

Have a great week!

Vowels & Word Work

Well it’s been a while, but we’re back with some activiteis and a freebie that we thought we’d share with you all! 
Recently we’ve been working on understanding long and short vowels.  Our kiddos have really been doing a great job of using strategies when decoding words containing vowels.  We created this vowel book to work on in our small reading groups.  To find out more about how we do small groups and literacy centers you can go {HERE}.

The vowel book can be copied full page and stapeld into a booklet, or cut and stapled in half sheets. We added two cover page options so you can choose what works best for you.  When new sounds and words are introduced in our reading program we add them in our vowel books.   Our kids are very familiar with short vowels, and now that long vowels are being introduced, this is a great way to practice writing and reading words with long vowels.  
Just click the {Here} or pic below for a copy!

We’ve also been listening to a few vowel videos. 
Here’s one about two vowels walking side by side.  
Our kids just love it!

Here’s another favorite about silent e:

Word work is one of our centers during our small group/literacy center time.  We’re always looking for fun and engaging word work ideas.  We like to change them up a bit from week to week to keep our kiddos engaged.  Here’s a fun guessing game we found and changed up a bit for our first graders.  We can’t seem to remember where we found it, so if you know the original source please let us know and we’ll add a link!

Here’s how our kiddos play it:
First a student chooses a partener who is also at the word work center.  If they are there alone, they can ask a child from another center if they’d like to play with them.  Then they grab a plastic baggie that contains 10 counting bears (you can use anything small) and 3-4 cups, which each have the current week's sight words written on them.  One player is in charge of placing the bears under the cups and the other player guesses where the bear is.  The players sit side by side.  The game begins by player 2 turning around while player one places a bear under a cup.  Player 2 turns back around and says the sight word on the cup that he/she thinks the bear is under.  If player 2 is correct he/she gets to keep the bear.  If player 2 is not correct, player 1 gets to keep the bear.  This continues until all 10 bears have been used.  The player with the most bear wins.  Then they can play again, but switch roles.  They just LOVE this game, and we LOVE that they’re practicing their sight words!

  We’re always in need of new word work ideas, so if you’ve got any please comment below!  We’re sure there’s others that would also like to hear about some new ideas too!

Hope you all have a wonderful week!