Thursday, February 27, 2014

Groovy Sight Word Fluency and Math Fluency Too

Welcome back to another day of Groovy Cat Week were I am collaborating with Vanessa from Pre-K Pages!  During December we presented at the Atlanta Conference for Kindergarten Teachers by SDE (Staff Development for Educators).  Eric Litwin was the keynote speaker.  I was right up front singing, "I love my white shoes. I love my white shoes." Yes, I had to have a photo op in there too.

I also waited in line to get 3 books autographed for my 2 grandsons and my future granddaughter.  Since I wasn't 100% percent for sure on what her name would be, I just had Eric put this:

Yes, I am "Nana K" to my grandchildren. Our new granddaughter, McKenzie, should be arriving in 2 weeks and this "Nana K" can't wait to start reading to her!

Here are some ideas that I use for working with math fluency facts to 5.  I love Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons.  I made a Pete the Cat and put magnetic tape on the back of laminated construction paper and the buttons too.  I used circle magnets for the back of the buttons.  Then I put Pete on a cookie sheet.

We act out the story and children take turns taking off the buttons.  Once introduced in group time, this becomes a center.  You can differentiate this activity by working with 5 and 10 frames too.  Click HERE to get my FREE Flip the 5 and 10 Frames Button Set.

You can also sing the words below to "Pop Goes the Weasel" and differentiate the numbers for your students moving from the 4 buttons to work with 5 and 10 frames.

If you want to see part of the story on YouTube Harper Collins has given you a great sample to provide a "hook" for your students.

Let's switch gears to reading fluency and support children to read emerging texts and favorite stories.  I'm going to show you how I work with my students on building sight word fluency to support emergent readers.  I program a 5 x 5 chart with words from the story.  Choose 5 words for each chart and record them in random order.  Students can practice reading these fluency sheets during guided reading, just-right reading, or as homework.  I made some sight word fluency sheets to go with I Love My White Shoes.

You can get them HERE on from my Google Docs.  This is what they look like.  Quick, easy, and effective!  There are 5 sheets to help support reading this story.  Of course you will not always be able to cover all of the words in the book.  You want to provide enough support so the reader can use other strategies to figure out unknown words too.  This book is perfect because it has picture clues, and they children get lots of reading fluency practice by singing the song.
I can't believe it is Thursday!  One more day . . . and many more tips to give.

You might be interested in the other Groovy Cat ideas from Monday-Wednesday this week.  Click on the links below.

And don't forget to drop by Pre-K Pages blog for more ideas on using Pete the Cat books with your students.  It's all good!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Pete the Cat, Math, & a Flip the 5 & 10 Frames Freebie

Welcome back to Groovy Cat Week!  Today you are getting a sneak peak at my “Flip the 5 and 10 Frames” sets.  YAY!  Here is a shout out to a teacher in Maryland that attended my conference session yesterday.  I promised I would load this today just for her :)

We love using these flip frames for working with combinations of 5 and 10.  I thought this would be a great way to introduce you to my other “Flip the 5 & 10 Frames” sets that I have available. This set contains buttons which can be used with My Four Groovy Buttons or as a part of your math program or other themes.

You can download this set HERE.  The directions for all of the activities are included in the packet, and it is differentiated to meet the many needs in your early childhood classroom.

So let’s have some fun with READING today too!  I created an EMERGENT READER for your students to practice  sight words and reading fluency.   We all know that Pete the Cat loves to wear his white shoes.  But what would color of shoes would your students wear? How about their pants?  What color would their shirt be? What color of socks would they choose?  Would they match?   I wrote this with my oldest daughter in mind.  When she was in kindergarten, picking out clothes was quite the process.  What to choose?  So many choices?  Committing to the outfit!  

You could send this book home for students to read to their parents and maybe that might solve the dilemma “What Will I Wear Today?” The children can sing the words in this reader to “Skip to My Lou.”  Who knows?  Maybe if I would have sang this with my daughter, we might have eliminated a lot of drama and days of running late!  Click HERE to download this FREE book.

Thanks for stopping by my blog.  I have more ideas for Thursday and Friday.  Hmmm . . . How will I fit them all in?  Maybe I should add on another 5 days?  If not, the next 2 posts are going to be LONG and full of ideas!

Don't forget to hop on over to Pre-K Pages for some more Groovy Cat ideas.


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Measuring with Pete the Cat

It's DAY 2 of Groovy Cat Week.  And guess who I saw yesterday?  Eric Litwin.  I am presenting at the Maryland Conference for Kindergarten Teachers, and he was the keynote speaker.  He is so amazing and an engaging presenter as he sang "My 4 Groovy Buttons."  I was a little star struck as his room was next to mine!

I also saw him in December in Atlanta, so this has been a great presenting season.
Standing between 2 amazing people:  Eric Litwin and Vanessa from Pre-K Pages!
So today, I created these fun tools for your students to help measuring items around your classroom. You can download this measuring packet HERE.

You can choose from several different versions to meet your needs.

Use this tool to as a guide for where to start measuring by lining up the green button at the beginning of the object.

Use this tool to as a guide for where to start measuring by lining up the green button at the beginning of the object.

Thanks for stopping by!  Don't forget to hop on over to Pre-K Pages for some more Groovy Cat ideas.

See you tomorrow for more GROOVY FUN!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Five Days of Groovy Cat Fun

It's GROOVY CAT WEEK!  I'm teaming up with Pre-K Pages to bring you 5 days of learning fun with our favorite blue cat.  Check back every day this week for new ideas in reading, phonemic awareness, phonics, reading strategies, close reading, and math too.

First up!  Increase your students' reading fluency with this fun song.  I sang this song my sophomore year during my school's production of Bye Bye Birdie. You can find the clip art on these pocket chart strips on the Harper Collin's Website.  I used the pictures from the "Making Valentines with Pete the Cat" download.  While you are there, check out their new video of Old MacDonald and Pete the Cat. Love it!

Here is a link to Pandora that has a sample of the original song tune.  CLICK HERE. 

Here is another example of the tune from YouTube.  

Check back tomorrow.  I will have some ideas for math with the Groovy Cat and a FREE download too.  And head on over to Pre-K Pages for more ideas.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Angels in Oklahoma

I wanted to share a personal story with my blogging friends today. I had 2 angels with me on Tuesday. One in heaven and one in Norman, OK. I was presenting at the Oklahoma Conference for Kindergarten and PreK Teachers Monday and Tuesday. Tuesday morning during my keynote, I realized that my diamond was missing from my wedding ring. During my next session I shared that my diamond fell out. Now teachers are just amazing. They helped me look and I retraced my steps for that morning. The whole time, I was thinking how I had just lost my Mom to cancer and now my ring. So I told my Mom that I missed her so much as I was scanning the hotel, and I really needed to find my diamond. And this angel here on earth walked up to me at the end of my first session and asked, "Is this it?" And it WAS!!! It was under her table (covered by a tablecloth) by her foot. Thank you Mom for listening and thank you to this amazing teacher who happened to glance down and see a needle in a haystack. I think I hugged her 10 times, there were tears from me, the others in the room were cheering, and I felt my Mom's presence too.  
To my Angel in Norman: I was so excited and full of emotion, I forgot to get your name.  Remember I have something for you :)

This is Kaci from Mrs. Hoffler's Spot.  We originally met through the blogging world.  We live in the same state but have only managed to see each other at conferences.  The first time was this summer at the I Teach K Conference in Vegas.  She is full of energy, ideas, and I think she is just amazing. I was so happy when I found out she was going to present at this year's Oklahoma conference.  Thank you Kaci for your friendship the last few months.  I have been so blessed to meet so many life-changing teachers at conferences and through the blogging world.  You can check out her blog HERE.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Brain Breaks for Winter Days

Welcome to the blog hop "Bright Ideas."  We hope you find some ideas to brighten up these winter months with tips and tricks for your classroom.

It's been a COLD, Snowy, Icy, Rainy type of winter unless you live in the western United States.  And with that comes inside recess and a lot of "togetherness."

How do I manage those types of days?  We move, move, move!  YouTube videos are my friend, and there are so many available to us as teachers.  If you do not have access to technology,  you can play the music portion from your computer just like a CD player.

The first site is Adventure to Fitness.  You can check out their website HERE. Teachers can sign up for free.

Here is an example of one of their adventures.  Learning, moving, and fun all mixed together.

Stephen Fite:  I own this DVD but here is a sample of his music to get your children moving during inside recess or anytime your class needs a movement break.

And of course you can't forget this classic.  Your students will love doing the "Continental Drift."

And if you haven't checked out all of the Wii Just Dance Videos on YouTube, there are too many to link too.  Here is one for the little ones in your class.  But there are dances for all ages, so look around for those that fit your students' ages.

The last link that I would like to show is Story Theater with Miss Booksy.  She does "Cool School Story Time." She is creative and her stories are unique and will keep your students engaged.  Don't just stop with this one, she has many more.  And do what I do, subscribe to her channel to be notified when she adds more.

If you don't know about SafeShare.TV, check out their site to share safe view videos on YouTube.  It will remove all of the ads and put a gray border around the video to put it in safe view.

I put red arrows where you will need to enter information or push a button for a  safe link.
If you are looking for more ways to get your students moving, check out my Pinterest board TECHNOLOGY for more ideas.   Click HERE.

If you are looking for more great ideas, please visit the next blog on this blog hop, written by Valerie Young!  She writes the blog "All Students Can Shine."  She shares some great solutions for copycats.


Check out these other blogs for other bright ideas.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

10 Cold Snowmen Math, Literacy, & YouTube Video Fun

Are you snowed in? Do you need some movement? I found a cute YouTube video about a snowman melting (see below).  I made this snowman math and literacy activity to go with the 10 (or 5) Cold Snowmen  poem that I wrote.  You can use the large cards during whole group and let the children act out the poem. Then the children can build the poem as a station and also work on their math skills too.

Pass out the snowmen cards and weather card (print sun on one side and snow cloud on the other).  Have the students act out the poem.  Let them build the poem with the cards to word on reading fluency too.  There are dots under the words according to how many syllables are in each word to help with tracking. If the word has 1 syllable, touch the word 1 time.  If the word has 2 syllables, touch the word 2 times.  CLICK HERE to download it.

Need a fun video to provide the "hook" for this activity?  The Snowman Song is one of my FAVORITES to play before this activity.