Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Books Teachers Love: The Night Before Christmas

Welcome to Books Teachers Love! A monthly, blog link up where teachers share some of our favorite read aloud for the upcoming months! This month, I am sharing the book, "The Night Before Christmas" by Natasha Wing.

This is an adorable book about how the night before Christmas, nothing would go right for the family. Unfortunate and comical things kept happening on the night before Christmas. It's an adorable book that any child would enjoy.

Right after I read this book, I envisioned that students create a present and on the present, write some of the things they do or would like to do on the night before Christmas.

In each part of the present, students just write one of the things they would do a draw a simple picture. You could add little white pieces of paper so students can write on that and add color the their pictures if you would want them to. Sometimes, though I just love the simplicity of a black picture! :)

Making this present is super simple. You just need to cut out a square or rectangle piece of construction paper. Cut multiple strips of green for the ribbon. Then, to add the bow - bend four pieces of paper in half and glue - like the picture you see below.

Then, glue the ribbons to the back of the present! It's super easy and would make an adorable bulletin board in your classroom!

Last, year I did a post about the Gingerbread man.
You can find that post here.

To check out more ideas for the month of December, check out the posts below.

To enter to win 4 books of your choice seen below, enter the giveaway!!

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Friday, October 21, 2016

Stellaluna Obsessed!

Don't you just love the book Stellaluna? I sure do! Each year, I make little things, here and there for the book and this year, I finally went all in and finished my Stellaluna Unit! It's easy prep and fun to teach! It includes some math, literacy, writing and a little stem experiment! Better yet, you don't have to buy anything to go along with the unit (my favorite part)!

Here's a peek at our fun with Stellaluna this week!

First, we started off by reading the book! If you don't own it, you can find it here to play online.

After, we read the book, we filled out an anchor chart and pulled out some story elements. On the first day, we discussed the setting pretty heavily. This is because on the graphic organizer, I didn't just want students to tell me what the setting was, but I wanted them to tell me HOW they knew that was the setting.

For the rest of the week, we discussed the story elements even further. Here is a problem and solution example!

I am so proud of how they're explaining themselves!

Something else we worked on was short vowel words. Students got smalls square letters to cut out and a bat mat.

Then, each time they made a word, they read it and wrote it,
This little sweetie caught on quick, to stick with a word family!
After we did this whole group, I stuck it at word work for the week! This is one that can be done again and again!

We completed a few math activities!
This week, we worked a lot on finding missing addends.
We also did a write the room activity to get the kids up and moving around!
On the activity seen below, they used their bats in their ten frame on their paper to find the missing addend.

Then, one of my favorite activities we did this week was a stem one! It was a last minute idea I got when we were listening to the book being read to us online.
In the book it says, "Stellaluna could not fly because her wings were like wet paper."
So... I thought... let's test that out and see what it means!?!!

We made guesses before we tested it out. We talked about what it meant for a bat to fly 'better.'

Afterwards, students reflected on their own, then we shared out!

-It was heavier which made it fall faster.-
-It glided down slowly.-

After doing the activity, students can then complete a fun little craft to document their learning.

To put some icing on the cake for our Stellaluna week, we sang a song, read a poem and drew a picture to illustrate our learning!

Next, week we are going to be learning all about non-fiction text and learning about actual bats! EEKK!! We will be using my Text Features Unit to pull out facts and use Text Features!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Otis and the Scarecrow - Books Teacher Love

Welcome to another monthly edition of Books Teachers Love. This month, I am sharing a book with you (well books) that I used last year in the month of November. It is one of my favorite units!

The books I am sharing this month is, "Otis and the Scarecrow."

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We spent an entire week on Otis and learning about him as a character. 
We also threw in some verb work!

We first read the book, "Otis and the Scarecrow."
We reviewed the term character and we added the words, "main character" to the anchor chart.
After we read the book, we discussed his inside character traits. I wrote them on sticky notes and added them to the chart. 

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We read a different Otis book each day of the week. Each time, we added more character traits.

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As we came up with character traits throughout the week, we also worked on providing reasons for why we chose those traits.

We picked three character traits to REALLY focus on. We numbered the trait, numbered the word because and numbered some more text evidence. This worked like a *charm.*

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After our character study, we did a directed drawing activity of Otis. Then, we added our character trait description.

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The kids had so much fun with this unit!

To check out more books for November, click the links below!