Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Vacation Week!

I am beyond relieved for vacation week this week! It has given me lots of time to work on some new TPT units that have been in the works for awhile!

Right before we left for vacation we started unit 4 of Lucy Calkins Reader's Workshop through the lens of the common core- all about non-fiction! Teaching non-fiction in reading and writing is probably my favorite thing ever! Plus, all of those hesitant readers that aren't interested in anything ever always seem to love non-fiction! To go along with this new unit, I created this:

These posters are great for displaying after we discuss each text feature! 

We will be beginning our non-fiction/expert projects in writer's workshop soon as well. I really like teaching both non-fiction in reading and non-fiction in writing at the same time. I plan to use the woodland animals mini-unit I created recently. Here's a few pictures of what that looks like!

Sorry for the sideways pictures - still new at this! :)

Currently, we're finishing up writing comic books! I started doing a comic book unit last year when I taught K. This year, I started comic books during unit 3 of reader's workshop when we discussed characters. It was a great way to discuss character development! I'll try to get some work samples from comic books up in the next few days! 

Meanwhile, we've been doing so great with our literacy centers! I am really curious how other people organize their centers and how they run them. I usually have a half hour block after recess time to work at the 5 literacy centers I introduce at the beginning of the week. This works okay, but it took months before my first graders were independent enough to work at the centers independently so that I could provide small group instruction during center times. We've recently been working on these skills: 

Shoe Shop by Sarah Cooley! We've been working on mastering beginning and ending /sh/. This pack is perfect for this skill! (And, the kids love "shoe shopping!" 

This center is a favorite! I have used it for the past two weeks with my class. Deedee has her kids time themselves in 4 intervals. I do as well, only on the iPad. My kids are also able to record their voices while timing themselves on the QuickVoice app. It's free! If you have iPads, QuickVoice is great! 

I hope everyone that has a vacation this week is having a nice one :) 

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