For some reason, I am having trouble making the picture clickable, but if you go to the Literacy Resources section, you'll be able to access the EA (bread) file under North Lanarkshire Stage 1/2/3 Resources.
Enjoy your break when it comes!
We have our October holiday after this coming week, so I'm hoping to get a few weeks ahead with the Stage 3 flashcards, for anyone who is using them. But I have managed to get EA done, so they are ready for you to print out and use.
For some reason, I am having trouble making the picture clickable, but if you go to the Literacy Resources section, you'll be able to access the EA (bread) file under North Lanarkshire Stage 1/2/3 Resources.
Enjoy your break when it comes!
I was all set to assess place value this past week, and move on to addition and subtraction next week, when I realised that we hadn't 1) practised drawing Base 10 (diennes) representations of numbers or 2) rounded numbers to the nearest 10/100.
We had a bit of a crazy week, with different activities added here and there (plus we have our Class Assembly next week, so we are practising like mad), so maths time was more abbreviated than normal this week. We did manage, however, to practise drawing Base 10 representations of numbers, and I introduced the idea of rounding to the nearest 10 today.
Awhile ago, I found this very cute (and versatile) Mystery Number game on TPT (Teachers Pay Teachers). It's by Love to Learn, and best of all - it's FREE! It's also differentiated, as there are cards for TU, HTU and ThHTU. Perfect! I've been using it in a variety of different ways throughout our unit on place value.
Originally, I introduced the cards by playing a game in my small groups. I put the kids in pairs, then I read out a 'Mystery Number' (e.g., My mystery number has 4 in the Tens place and 8 in the units place). The first pair to build their number using Base 10 materials won a point. This was very popular!
The cards then moved to a station, where they had to draw a card from a bucket, then record their number on a recording sheet (the download includes a few different types of recording sheets, so you can take your pick). This works as a nice little assessment, to see who is getting the place value concepts, and who may be struggling a bit.
I also wanted to use the Mystery Number cards to get the kids to draw Base 10 representations of numbers (while also double checking their ability to identify and write the correct number from the 'Mystery Number' description), so I created my own recording sheets (below). They are differentiated for my 3 different groups - I have one group working with TU, another working with HTU and a third working on ThHTU:
I've also made recording sheets so I can use the same mystery number cards to get the class to practice rounding to the nearest 10 (again, differentiated for my 3 different maths groups). I'm only including a snapshot of one of the recording sheets included in the file, though, so the image will be bigger and easier to see:
Visit Teachers Pay Teachers to get your own set of Mystery Number cards (remember - the TPT download is FREE), then come back here to pick up the extra recording sheets to use with them (both the Base 10 drawing and rounding to the nearest 10 recording sheets are in the single file).
If you think of any additional ways to use these Mystery Number cards, let me know. It saves so much storage space when the same resource can be used in multiple ways!
As I've moved from P1 to P3 this year, I've been aware that I need to think more about how I adapt and stretch the ways I teach reading comprehension.
As a P1 teacher, while reading comprehension is always important, you spend much of your time, at least initially, focusing on the phonics side of things. Children need to be able to decode before they can read for understanding! But when your class of P3 children arrive one morning in August for the first time, they come equipped with a basic to good (depending on the child) understanding of letters and many phonemes. While the phonics work will obviously be on-going, the children are reading more widely, and they are beginning to read for information.
I feel like P3 is a transition year in many ways - their last year in infants, before transferring to the middle stages. Because I've been steeped in the P1, heavy on phonics mind set for the past few years, I decided to sign up for a twilight course this past week, looking at teaching reading comprehension in the middle and upper stages. While not all of my class will be ready for some of the ideas and suggestions, I do have a group that could easily be pushed on.
The course was very practical, and the course leaders were both knowledgeable and helpful. They introduced us to the website The Learning Zoo, which is worth a look, I think. Here is a link to a free 'Teachers' Checklist' from the site, which helpfully breaks down all of the literacy Es and Os for each level - I'm planning to print it out to add to my planning folder. I think it will make creating learning intentions and success criteria quite straightforward, but it's also helpful as a checklist for ensuring that I'm covering a broad range of learning intentions under the umbrella of each Literacy E and O.
At the training, the facilitators also talked about using 'Task Maps' with different reading groups. A task map looks like this:
In the middle square, you have the name of the text the children are reading. In the surrounding squares, you put in a variety of tasks for the children to complete. What I really like about this, is that as you are filling in the different tasks, you can make sure you are including tasks that allow the children to practice the different reading comprehension strategies you are teaching during whole class and small group reading sessions.
I think this will be helpful with one of my guided reading groups in particular. Once they have been trained in how to use their Task Maps, this should free me up to spend a bit more time with my groups who need a little bit more support.
The Learning Zoo has a section with some Task Maps for different books already uploaded and ready to use. But even if the tasks maps there won't work for your class, they give you a good idea of the different types of tasks you can include if you want to create and share your own maps for different books available in your own school. Other teachers at the twilight said that once they got into the swing of creating their own tasks maps, they were not as time consuming to make as they might look at first...here's hoping I find that to be true!
At the moment, my class is reviewing Stage 2 phonemes as part of North Lanarkshire's Stage 3 programme. As we are currently covering 3 phonemes a week, and I have 2 different phonics groups, our 'Phoneme Display Wall' is getting a bit crowded! It will be much easier once we are down to 2 phonemes (one per group) each week.
This is the first year I've used my expanded flashcards, which are far more structured than the flashcards I've used in years past. I'm finding it very helpful to have cards for both the base words, and the compound words that build on them. Depending on the phoneme, sometimes there are more or fewer of these. AW (in the picture) didnt' have as many base word/compound word pairs as some of the other sets. But it's still helpful to display them together, I think.
When I'm introducing a new phoneme, I use the flashcards, getting the kids to read each one as a class. I make sure to put them in difficulty order before we start, and I pair up the base word/compound word pairs. This is really helping kids use 2 decoding strategies: 1) findings words within words and 2) using syllables. And it's great to see some of the kids who find reading more tricky be successful with long, 'hard' words.
I keep the 'Phonemes of the Week' displayed near my teaching station all week. Then at the end of the week, I move them to our reference wall (see the picture below). This wall is big, but will fill up fast, so at the moment, I am choosing 4 words for each phoneme to leave on semi-permanent display. I've been trying to pair up base words with words that build on them (comb/honeycomb, or knock/knocking) for this, to reinforce the use of the 2 decoding strategies above.
If you are using these cards in your own class, I'd love to know how you are using them, and any ideas you have for making them a more effective teaching tool!
Last week, in reviewing Stage 2 words the class learned last year, we were going over 'would' and 'could'. Very tricky words - if you try to sound them out, you will definitely spell them the wrong way.
But mnemonics are great - we all know 'big elephants can always upset small elephants for 'because', right? So when I first started teaching, I made up a silly mnemonic (sillier ones are easier to remember, I think) for would/could/should. I teach it to my class every year, and I don't usually have problems with kiddos remembering how to spell these words (in our spelling assessment on Friday, only 1 child spelled 'would' wrong - and that child got 'could', funnily enough. Who knows what was going on there?).
So - for 'would', we remember 'Would otters upset lucky ducks?' To change it to 'could', we just remember 'Could otters upset lucky ducks?', and 'should' becomes, 'Sh...otters upset lucky ducks!'
Easy peasy! The kids really do remember it, just like they remember the elephant mnemonic for 'because'. If you try it and it works for your class, let me know!
This is a great little game I've been using in my class to work on number fact fluency. I use this in conjunction with Number Talks (see the 'Books' section to find out more), so that I'm helping kids develop addition strategies other than counting on their fingers (or counting all of the dots on the dice).
The game is simple. I keep my counting cubes separated into different colours, and I have several of these little blue jelly moulds (from Home Bargains) that I keep different colour cubes in. This game comes in a 2 dice version and a 3 dice version (a bit more challenging). The picture is of the 3 dice version.
Kids play in pairs (or in trios, if you have an extra kid). The first one rolls 3 dice and adds them up. They then cover the total number with a cube (so 6 + 4 + 2 would cover '12'). The next player then plays. If they roll a 12, they 'Bump' the other player off (remove their cube and replace it with one of their own). If they roll a different number, they can cover it with a cube.
As you can see in the picture, one number is covered with 2 cubes. If you roll the same total twice (or more times!) you can add an extra cube. Once that happens, that number is 'safe', and you can't be bumped off. At the end of the game, the player with the most numbers covered wins.
Kids really enjoy this little game, and so many kids need engaging ways to practice their number facts. The pictures below are clickable (you only need to click one picture - both pictures will take you to the same file, which contains both versions of the game), or you can get your copy of the game here.
One caveat - this really works best if you are combining this game with number talks that teach kids different strategies for adding. If they are just counting the number of dots on the dice each time, it isn't going to be as effective at improving number fact fluency. I usually teach this game initially in small groups where I can observe and encourage them to use addition strategies. We play it (with me observing) several times before I move it out to be an independent station.
Any questions, please ask! And if you use this, I'd love to hear how it works in your own class.
A couple of posts ago, I wasn't able to upload some OA and MB writing prompts because of difficulties with Adobe Acrobat. My husband has fixed that problem for me, so here are a couple of writing prompts I've been using with my class. I hope they might be helpful for someone else as well.
We've been looking at 'Picturing Peacock' (visualisation) as a reading comprehension strategy, so we've linked that reading strategy into our writing. How can we write interesting descriptions that help our readers to visualise our story?
Last week, my 2 phonics groups were working on OA and MB respectively, so I made writing prompts for a goat and a lamb. While we practice our phonemes, we can also practice writing descriptions (there is so much to fit in, I always like it when I can do 2 things at once). Both of the files give you two options for the prompts. You can either use the full page prompt (with a back page with extra lines if needed) - I use these when I plan to hang the finished writing up on the wall or on a washing line strung across the room), or you can use the slips of paper - just cut out a prompt for each child and have them paste it into their jotter as a reminder of what you are looking for from their description.
Last week on my Facebook page, I linked to a blog post about the benefits of unstructured creative art time. It was there to make me feel a bit braver about the free for all I planned to attempt with my class this week...
Well - we spent our afternoon re-reading The Kapok Tree, and re-creating it on our Topic Wall. You can see the results (still a work in progress) above. The children did so well, and really took ownership of the different tasks. Each table was assigned 2 different animals/people/plants to make. They all knew that when they were finished with their 'big' animals, they should start making leaves and vines to put up. Everyone was really engaged, and I gave very little direction (I did have 2 additional adults in the classroom, which was a great help).
You can see a few labels (on the Kapok Tree, the anteater and the sloth). Further label cards will be available throughout the week, so children can make labels for the other animals when they are finished with other work. We'll also keep out the brown, green and coloured paper, so children can continue to make vines, leaves and flowers to add to our rainforest.
This was a great reminder to me that it's usually worth it to trust our kiddos and let them express themselves creatively! In the pictures below, you can see the man and anteater as 'works in progress' (left and right pictures respectively). In the middle is a close up of the man with an axe and the rainforest boy.
We are currently reading The Magic Tree House - Afternoon on the Amazon as a class read aloud. During one of our read alouds at the end of last week, I introduced our next reading comprehension strategy: Picturing Peacock.
This strategy is essentially visualisation - encouraging kids to visualise (picture) what is happening, the setting, etc, when they are reading. Visualisation strengthens kids' re-telling skills; as they picture what is happening, they actively engage with the text, which boosts their recall of the story. It's fun to see - as I reminded them to picture what was happening in the book, I could see lots of kids closing their eyes and doing just that. And I'm finding that when I ask them to tell me what they are visualising, they are beginning to give me more detail as they retell bits of the story (we'll just need to work on getting those bits in the right order!).
Visualising is a fun strategy, which is one reason I picked it next. But I also chose it in conjunction with looking at where the class needs to go with their writing.
As I looked at the writing we've done over the first couple of weeks of school, a lot of the kids can structure a simple story, using connecting words, quite well. But there isn't a lot of detail, and there is not much 'scene setting' before we jump straight into the story 'problem'. So it made sense to me to pick a Reading Comprehension Strategy that they could also use as a writing focus. If we want our readers to visualise our story (to help them understand what is happening better), we need to set an effective scene.
So during both our taught writing, and our phoneme tasks this week, my class will be writing descriptions that set the scene for a story. We will be learning to write in a way that lets our readers picture what is happening.
So tomorrow, we'll be setting the scene for a Jack and Annie adventure on the Amazon. The Magic Tree House book is great for giving lots of simple examples of scene descriptions that the class can duplicate in their own writing.
We are also learning the phonemes 'OA' and 'MB' this week. Our 'OA' group will describe the setting for a goat story, while our 'MB' group will set the scene for a story about a lamb. Unfortunately, I'm having a problem with opening Adobe at the moment, so I haven't been able to save my templates to a PDF to upload. If you are interested in having them, though, check back in a couple of days. My technical consultant (husband!) is trying to sort the problem for me.
When I'm able to upload the files, there will be both a full page template with an additional page of writing lines you can print on the back (if you want to display the writing - I always displayed on a washing line, as we are open plan, and there is no wall space). I'm planning on using the individual strips this week (middle picture below). Ech child will get 1 strip of paper, which they can paste into their jotters as a reminder of what their task is, and what I'm looking for in their description. Then they can complete the task in their Daily Writing jotters (saving a few trees along the way).
Second week of school finished, and still huge amounts to organise. I think the beginning of the school year is a bit like childbirth - your brain blocks out just how difficult it is, so you'll eventually do it all over again!
I have managed to finish all of the Magic E flashcards, though - which you'll need soon, if you are following North Lanarkshire's Stage 2 programme. If not, hopefully they will be useful some time later in the year.
In Magic E words, the vowel makes it 'long' sound, or it 'says its name'. We all know this, and it often seems fairly straightforward to teach. As I've been listening to my new class sound out words, read their books, and write down a bit about their summer for me, I've realised that a few of my kiddos keep forgetting that vowels can say their names in words, and not just make their vowel sound.
If children don't realise that A can make both the short a (cat) and long a (cake) sounds (we won't even get into the other sounds that it can make!), it must all be quite confusing. And it's no wonder some kids can find it difficult to retain these phonemes.
So - a few of us will be doing a bit of work on 'A, E, I, O, U' next week. Here's a great video I used a lot with my P1s at the beginning of last year. They loved it, and it reinforced the vowel names, so when we came across words with long vowel sounds, they weren't as confusing.
I really like North Lanarkshire's Active Literacy programme for getting kids sounding out and decoding words. After my last couple of years, though, I felt like I needed to be more structured with how I taught Reading Comprehension strategies - and I wanted a 'hook' into them, that kids would remember easily. So I had a look on Teachers Pay Teachers (I'm sorry this isn't a freebie!) and came up with this pack from A Teachable Teacher.
In the pack, she gives each strategy an animal. You can see 'Retelling Rhino' above, and there are 6 more (Picturing Peacock - visualisation, Wondering Walrus - questioning, etc). The pack includes posters for each strategy, smaller versions of the posters (so you can put them on scrapbooking rings, to keep in your reading area, or for each child to have their own) and various structured worksheets that the children can use to help them get started using the different strategies.
In my class, we started with re-telling (so it is up on our wall), and I linked it last week to our writing, as the children retold their favourite day during the summer holidays. This week, I've followed up by having each reading group re-tell their own reading story as our 2nd day 'comprehension' task (I used my Story Maps - click if you need some for your own class).
In the past, my teaching of Reading Comprehension strategies hasn't been as structured as I would like. I really like this little pack, and the kids already remember 'Retelling Rhino' without any problem at all!
As we add more strategies, more posters will go up on the wall. I'm also planning to order scrapbooking rings, so every child can have their own set of Reading Comprehension strategy reminders.
Our Primary 2 (1st grade) teacher and I are both using the same pack. Hopefully, this continuity will boost reading comprehension in subsequent years as well. I love the way the animals are associated with each strategy - such a great way to help little ones remember them!
How do you teach reading comprehension strategies in your class? Are there any specific resources that you use? I'd love to hear new ideas, if you'd like to share!
Being able to retell stories is such a basic skill - but one that many of our kiddos struggle with. So that is the first reading strategy we are focusing on this year as a class - developing our ability to re-tell the main points of what we have just read.
So - as I was doing my planning, I'm having all of my groups do re-tells on Story Maps this week. BUT - I have 3 groups and 2 individuals...as I was planning, I realised that I needed 5 different story maps, because the books all have different numbers of main events.
It's fairly easy to find the standard 3-5 box story maps, but I really needed up to 8 boxes for one of my groups. In years past, I've just drawn a new Story Map when I needed it for a group. But I'm being more structured with how I teach Reading Comprehension strategies, and we are all going to be working on the same strategy, at our own levels, at the same time this year. That way, our class read alouds can also be used to reinforce whichever strategy we are currently working on.
But that would mean drawing out 5 different Story Maps this week - and then doing it again (because I'll inevitably lose the ones I've drawn - organisation isn't a strong point) in subsequent weeks. So I decided it would be easiest (in the long run, you understand) to create electronic copies.
I can't be the only one who needs Story Maps on a regular basis, so I thought I'd share them here (or you can click on the picture above).
Hope your weekly planning is going well. The boys in our family have gone down to Knockhill for racing all day today (and they are off again tomorrow), so the girls just put in an order for pizza and we're going to watch a movie together. The rest of my planning will have to wait!
You can see the general pattern of the easiest (3 box) story map on the front cover of the pack above. Here are a couple more screenshots from the pack, so you have an idea of what you would be getting before you download anything (I know we often download things we end up not really wanting when we see them!). They aren't anything fancy, but they're all in one place and they'll do the trick!
Just trying to get all of the flashcards that are finished uploaded, before I forget that I haven't done them. As always, you can click on the picture to download this resource, or just click here.
I'm planning to teach both FF and KN next week, rather than teaching them over 2 different weeks, as most of the kids in that Phonics group know them anyway. So I needed this resource right away. It's nice to have MB finished as well, and ready for the following week.
I think I only need to do the 'magic e' flashcards, then all of Stage 2 will be finished and available for others to use. I'll let you know when that happens, but hopefully soon. Get the KN & MB cards by clicking on the picture or by clicking here.
My daughter has been (very kindly) laminating and cutting out all of my flashcards for me, then organising them into 'Stage 2' and 'Stage 3' phoneme folders. She puts all of the flashcards for a given phoneme into a polypocket, which she then labels with that phoneme. All of the phonemes are in the North Lanarkshire order, so it's very easy to find each week's resources.
As the weeks go by, and I plan/create different activities for each phoneme, a template or resources for that activity will go into the polypocket - ready for the next time I teach P3.
I think this is what is a bit sad about moving stages...I already have a similar folder organised and ready to go for Primary 1....ah, well. Such is life, right? And when/if I ever move back to Primary 1, I'll be ready to go (except by then, I may well be dissatisfied with the way my P1 resources look...in which case this process may well start all over again).Nor
Off to enjoy a Friday night movie in the living room, I think. Such excitement!
I am slowly working my way through a very long 'To Do' list. At my school, we have agreed to start sending out homework next week, so finishing my literacy (spelling words & phonemes) homework sheets was a priority.
Not the most fun way to spend a Friday evening, but a great feeling now that it is finished and printed out!
Unfortunately, my husband and I haven't found the time for an 'In Design' desktop publishing tutorial yet, so this isn't in booklet form. Maybe next August! However, I've updated the look of the pages a bit, and it worked fine last year to send it home as a packet that was just stapled in the corner. The first picture below is the packet all stapled together, with a covering letter to parents on the front. In the second picture, you can see what it looks like inside. There are 4 pages of Spelling ideas and 4 pages of Phoneme ideas (most are the same, it has to be said!). I copy them back to back, so I'm only sending home 5 pages all together (including the cover letter to parents).
I love having my class choose their own task, along with their parents. As a parent myself, I know how stressful it is when you have 3 different activities on, and your child has been assigned the most time-consuming spelling or phonics task possible - to be completed and handed in the next day! Using this packet, families can choose what they'd like or what they have time to do.
In my covering letter, I do highlight the task I often find has the most impact on pupils remembering how to spell words - 'Tricky Words'. This task asks them to tell me whether their words are 'easy' (can sound them out in a straightforward way - like 'cat') or tricky. If they are tricky, they need to tell me what makes them tricky (in the word 'again', you don't hear the 'a', for example). We always do this in class as well - talk about what makes a word harder to spell & what special things we need to remember about different words to help us. It does seem to help quite a bit more than copying out the word 3-4 times. Children can copy their word without thinking - but this particular tasks asks them to engage a bit more with how a word is spelled.
If you think this would be helpful, you can get the packet here or by clicking on the cover picture at the top of the post. Sample page from the pack below (including the 'Tricky Word' task):
I really thought I'd posted this before (I seem to remember typing that I was pleased with my cover picture - which has children playing with sand pails - covering both of the included phonemes).
I've checked back through the blog (quickly), and couldn't find them, however - and they didn't seem to already be uploaded to the site when I checked on the resources page, so I thought it wouldn't hurt to put them up again (or for the first time - I definitely have 'back to school' brain...there are so many things to do, I can't remember any of them unless I write them down).
The AI phoneme is first taught at the end of Stage 1 (often Primary 1), then it is reviewed in the first few weeks of Stage 2. The AY phoneme is the first phoneme taught in Stage 2, after all of the Stage 1 phonemes have been reviewed. It seemed to make sense to put them together, though. I know that I taught my P1s the 'AY' phoneme last year - they were writing it every day when they wrote the name of each weekday along with their date, so most of them picked it up quite quickly. Get these cards by clicking either the picture above or here.
Silly me - I started this flashcard project with the beginning of Stage 2, because those phonemes are reviewed during the first 5 weeks of Stage 3, which I assumed I would start with (I also have a few kiddos who will be going onto Stage 2 phonemes this year).
When I finally looked more closely at my handover notes, I see that my kids are starting (next week!) on FF (Stage 2, Week 35!). So I've been rushing to get these finished, and here they are. Then just 2 more weeks of Stage 2, and I'll be able to get back to work on Stage 3 phonemes.
However - if you are a Stage 3 teacher, you should be fine with the Stage 2 flashcards, as you'll need to be reviewing those at the start of the year with your class.
Welcome to anyone who has come over from the Scottish Teachers FB pages - I hope at least some of these resources are useful! I don't think there is a way to follow this page, but I've started a Monday Morning Teacher page on FB - if you like that, I'll post there whenever I add a new post/resources, so you'll get a notification.
When we start our different calculations on our 'Number of the Day', I have kids give me a 'thumbs up' (with their thumb placed right on their chest, so no arms waving in the air) if they think they know the answer to a given question. Then I take several different answers.
When another child gives an answer, I ask the class to either 1) keep their 'thumbs up' on their chest if they got a different answer or 2) give me the 'me, too' sign if they got the same answer. The 'me, too' sign is just making a 'hang 10' sign with your hand (from a fist, stick out your thumb and pinky fingers), and moving it from your chest outwards and back again). That way, I can see who is getting the right (or wrong!) answers. The idea with this routine is that EVERY child is expected to come up with an answer (and show that they have an answer by giving me a 'thumbs up'). We want everyone to be thinking!
The picture above is our first day - I wouldn't normally use quite as many cards, but I wanted to get a picture of what kinds of problems they were used to, and what was less familiar.
The picture below is our 'Number of the Day' from this morning.
Our number was 11, and we answered a few simple questions about 11, as you can see. We doubled 11 (they did that easily), then we doubled 22 - which was a bit trickier for some, but when we did it with our base 10 magnets on the white board, most of the kids 'got' what we were doing. In the picture, you can see the equations I wrote for doubling both 11 and 22 (with the 'expanded form' written below each number). In the picture, we've moved on to writing the expanded form for 11 (10+1), but when we were doubling both 11 and 22, I modelled what we were doing with the base 10 magnets - this makes the problem much more accessible to all of the kids, rather than only the kids who are comfortable working with the abstract equation.
Tomorrow, we'll add in our 'Addition' and 'Subtraction' pages.
If you'd like the 'Number of the Day' pack yourself, you can get it here. It is geared at Primary 1-3, stretching into P4, with the basic questions K-3 in the States), but it can easily be adapted to suit older stages as well (instead of giving them 11 to work with, you can give them 1147!).
Back to school is hectic! I've been trying to get all of the North Lanarkshire Stage 2 phonemes printed off at work (3 different teachers need them, either because we are teaching Stage 2 phonemes to our classes for the first time, or because we are reviewing Stage 2 phonemes before moving on) - and I realised I hadn't finished Week 3 review phonemes - such a bummer, when you think you've finished them!
These Week 3 phonemes are first taught at the end of Stage 1 - so if you are teaching Primary 1, bookmark this page, so you can come back in the Spring! But for those of you who will be reviewing these phonemes shortly, here are the OY, OA and QU picture flashcards. AI is also reviewed during Week 3, but those flashcards have been posted together with the AY cards (I thought it made sense to put the long A sounds together). Apologies for the strange combination of sounds in a single file, but I wanted to get them done as quickly as possible.
I've promised my daughters we'll watch a quick episode of Parks & Recreation, so I'm off - hope these are useful! And please keep checking back - I know I have a few more Stage 2 phonemes to finish off., and I'll hopefully be getting to those very soon.
Back to School is definitely here! One of the routines I like to start at the beginning of the year is 'Counting the Days of School'.
This is borrowed from the States, where many schools count each day they are in school, and then celebrate when they reach Day 100. That usually happens some time in February - and who doesn't need a reason to celebrate in cold, dark February?!
Along with providing some much needed cheer, however, this routine is wonderful for building number sense in our littlest learners. Last year, all of the classes in our infant department set up ‘100 Days of School’ displays, and we all counted how many days we’d been in school that year by adding a new dot into a 10 frame each morning.
This routine is very simple and takes very little time, yet it gives children a very real sense of the size of different numbers, as well as reinforcing place value concepts. My Primary 1s (kindergarteners) did not have difficulties this year with figuring out the difference between 26 and 62 – using the ‘Counting the Days’ display gave them daily concrete experience with the reason why numbers in the 20s have 2 groups of 10, while numbers in the 60s have 6 groups of 10. And almost all of my P1s could easily read numbers beyond 100 at the end of the year (this is not something that could be said for my Primary 1s before I started this particular routine!).
This file includes a Title for your display, a page of 10 frames (just copy them to get the number of frames that you need),and number cards for the decade numbers from 0-200. I use these cards to label each 10 frame once we fill it up. You can see this in the picture below to the left – this was my display last year. To the right, you'll see 3 images from the file you can download - as you can tell, I've given the display a bit of a face lift!
There are also some blank number cards (you can see these after the '90' below) – these are for writing the day’s number when you are NOT on the decade. For example, when you reach day 16, you would have the ‘10’ card next to the first 10 frame, then rub out ’15’ that you wrote on the blank card the day before, and change it to ‘16’. The card with ‘16’ written on it would then go next to the 10 frame that has 6 dots (in the picture, the last card says ‘177’ because that is how many dots total there are). There are number cards (counting by 10) in this pack going up to 200, as I found it was helpful to keep counting after we'd had our 100 day celebration.
I have taught primarily in the early years (Primary 1-3 or K-2), although have also taught in Primaries 4 and 5 (3rd and 4th grades). You'll find a variety of resources and ideas appropriate for these year groups as you explore this blog. I'm glad you are here and I hope you find activities, ideas or resources that are useful in your own class.
All resources provided here have been produced by Carolyn Johnston and are freely available for other teachers to use as part of their resources.
2015 Monday Morning Teacher