Friday, May 31, 2013

Summer Vacation in 7 days and A Freebie!

Linking up again with Kacey from Doodle Bugs Teaching! 

This week I had to try a different approach to my teaching once again with my class.  They are VERY restless and have unbelievable amounts of energy so my goal this week was to find and/or create activities that would keep them engaged and still learning with the end of the year so close.  Here are four activities I tried with my class with great success.

1.  My students have been so interested in researching animals the last few months I decided to pull out Deanna Jump's Zoo Animal Unit .  We conducted a class vote to research two animals and the Giraffe and Zebra won!  This unit along with a great website called Pebble Go is all I used and my students are becoming pros at hunting for important information, writing details in a web, and then writing the actual research paper.  I used this opportunity to have them try this independently and then helped my struggling students with their writing.  I ended up helping 5 students and the other 18 did everything else all on their own!  I am soooooo proud!!

Deanna Jump's Blog

2.  Calendar FINISHED!!  I finally finished my new calendar all year product.  I printed it out to see what it looks like and I am ready to use it next year.  Here is a picture of my May calendar:
My computer is acting up so I am sorry for the May heading being cut off.  I made two different calendar designs for each month and added two bonus designs.  I always post all the numbers each month so my students know how many days are in each month.  To distinguish what day it is for each month they will flip over that date and see a break in the pattern.  I staged this calendar to show May 16.  Here is the preview file on my TpT Store HERE  So far this product is 162 pages.  Here is the preview file:
And the two bonus patterns: 


3.  Adding 9 bump game. Another teacher showed me a doubles Bump game a couple weeks ago.  My students absolutely LOVED the game so I created an adding 9 bump game to go with our math fact focus these last couple weeks.  I cannot believe how well my students are actually understanding the adding 9 fact strategy.  Here is an example of their thinking for the number sentence 9 + 5 = , " I know that if I take one away from the 5 and make the nine a 10 then 10 + 4=14."  I swear my students will tell you this!! 

To get your copy of this game click HERE
 I am planning on posting a large bulk of Bump games such has time, money, subtraction strategies, 3 addends, and more!!  Please follow My TpT Store HERE to find out when my newest products are posted! 

4.  Math Fact Assessment-  I was so impressed with their math thinking I finally put them to the test.  I gave my class the second grade 3 minute math facts test in both addition and subtraction.  The goal is to get 40/50 or at least 80% on both tests by the end of SECOND grade.  When I corrected the addition tests 6/23 (26%) got 80% or better and  another 5 were within 2-4 points or 1-2 problems.  Since I collect the math data for our school I compared the current second graders scores at the beginning of the school year and then again in November and my class scores were comparable with the second grade scores in November. 

The subtraction fact test was a lot lower, which always seems to be the case, but my first graders performed comparable again with the November second grader scores again.  The highest score in my class was 68%, but that is still very impressive for a first grader.  I know the second grade teachers will be pleased because we are focusing on the math strategies rather than the memorizing and forgetting method. 

With the subtraction scores so much lower even though we focused strongly on skip counting backwards, -0, -1, -2, -5, -10 on decade, and -10 off decade my student were still missing critical strategies to be successful at subtraction in testing terms.  I decided to focus on the subtraction "halves" (2 - 1, 4 - 2, 6 - 3, 8 - 4, 10 - 5, and so on up to 18 - 9).  Since the game Bump was such a big hit I created a subtraction halves bump game.  I also will focus on the subtraction tens pairs (10 - 2, 10 -3, 10 - 4, and so on) and create another Bump game for this strategy.  When introducing these strategies we gather whole group and as I write the number sentences (in order of least to greatest sum) I ask them to look for a number pattern.  I have them think, pair, share and then come up with the next number sentence in the pattern.  From there we talk further about anything else they notice and then try to make a strategy rule for this group of number sentences.  Once we come up with a strategy rule then we put it to the test to see if we are correct. 

5.  It was my youngest daughter's 2nd birthday yesterday.  I can't believe she is already 2!  She started the day with a 102 degree temp and CRABBY, but still ended the day with a cupcake and just beamed at all the attention that was being placed on her that day. 

Well that is all I have for today.  As the severe weather rolls through tonight I hope to work late trying to catch up on my to do list for the last 7 days of school!!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Counting Down the Weeks with a Freebie!

Here we are again on another Friday.  I only have two more Fridays after today so the excitement in my classroom is unbelievable!  Here is my five for Friday for this week:

Doodle Bugs Teaching

1.  OMG those tornadoes in Oklahoma!  I can't even imagine what everyone is going through....  Just breaks my heart.  Both TpT and Teacher's Notebook have wonderful fundraisers going right now to help the victims of this devastating tragedy! 

For a $25 dollar donation you can get over $200 worth of talented teacher material all for a great cause. 
Click on the link to donate:  The Teacher's Treasure Chest   Thanks to Ashley for helping to get all this together!!  I am anxiously awaiting all my wonderful new product and all for such a great cause.

For a $20 dollar donation to Teacher's Notebook  you can get over $1800 worth of teaching materials!  This is a great way to get ready for next year's school year!  I just paid my donation and this deal is UNBELIEVABLE!! 

Click on the link to donate:  Teacher's Notebook Moore, OK Donation

2.  I can't believe how many teachers are out of school already!  We go until June 11 with students with one teacher work day, but I would much rather start that last week of August and finish up the first week of June.  We are down to 12 days including today.  I know summer will come, but is sure is crawling. 

3.  I STILL have not heard anything about the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST).  I was recognized at our school board meeting this week by our superintendent.  I was nervous at first due to my fear of being in the center of attention ( how ironic I am a teacher right? :)), but I am honored that the district took the time to honor me. 

I am also looking into getting trained as a Math Recovery Trained instructor this summer.  This is a year long program to certification that focuses on math intervention and assessment.  Two of my teaching loves!! 

4.  Double digit subtraction from The Teacher's Chair.  Tracey was so kind to offer her subtraction packet as a flash freebie earlier this week.  I have been working on the open number lines with my first graders since subtraction always seems to be more of a struggle.  This product is well worth the money spent since it includes teacher tutorial sheets to make sure we are teaching according to the common core!

Get your copy on TpT : Subtraction Strategies for Common Core Instruction

5.  My grandfather is in the middle of open heart surgery as I write this post.  My fingers are crossed and praying he comes out of this surgery and has as little of pain as possible.  He will be spending his 87th birthday tomorrow in the hospital, but hoping we get to celebrate with him!  He is a spitfire and one of the funniest men I know.  Even last night talking to him on the phone he was cracking jokes despite the kind of day he was going to have today!  Love you Grandpa!!
**update- surgery was a bit scary.  His 5 hour surgery turned into a 10 hour surgery due to excess bleeding.  They needed to get the bleeding under control and that took about 3 hours.  He did make it out of surgery and is in stable condition, but the bleeding is still an issue.  He is still losing blood, but it is under control and he is in stable condition.

Now for my freebies.  The first freebie is one of my clip art background packages.  I have been tinkering around with Photoshop Elements 11 and even though this program is so over my level of understanding I am picking up on some things. 

So sorry for my messy preview.  I was in a bit of a hurry to get this posted!  Sorry.  I will also post this freebie on TpT by this weekend!  Feedback is welcome!
You can get your free copy here: TP Vertical Backgrounds Freebie

My second freebie is a sentence structure sample.  This is not a completed packet just yet, but you may be able to use it as a refresher or formative assessment. 

Get your copy here: Sentence Structure Sample

Thanks and have a wonderful weekend!!  Please consider following me on my Facebook Page Here!  I am newer so the fact that I only have 9 followers is a bit depressing!!


Saturday, May 18, 2013

Five for Friday and Freebies!

Hello!   I share my top 5 from this week........

Doodle Bugs Teaching

1.  We finished up our Math Core Program this week and now I get to work on fun concepts such as math fact review and common core areas that need more focus than our current math program provides.  I also use this time to create math centers that will continue to keep my students engaged in learning before the end of the school year.

2.TESTING!!!!  We had AIMS web testing on Tuesday and I made a deal with my class that if the class scored 80% or better in each of the 5 math areas of testing then they would earn a "theme" day for each area they were 80% or better.  I am happy to say that they scored higher than 80% in 3 of the 5 areas (oral counting, quantity discrimination, and missing number).  Number ID (77%) and Math Computation(68%) were close, but I really thought they could do it. 
So next week we have hat day, PJ day, and game day.  Just because I thought they all tried so hard to do well I am taking them outside to have a class picnic. 

3.  New math core program pilot next school year.  It looks like we are closer to deciding which core program to go with for mathematics.  We critically reviewed 3 programs and K-5 are in full agreement of which program we recommend. 

4. New TpT product posted!  I have so many unfinished products that I am making myself work on finishing up before I start a new product...... okay I am trying not to start anything new!!

My latest product is a math intervention packet that I used as part of our Target Time intervention time block.  I had the "bubble" first graders that struggle with the universal math program and hopefully need that number sense boost to catch up.  I have to say that every one of the activities in this packet were engaging and have very minimal prep.  With typed lesson plans (warm up, main activity, and extra activity) for every activity you will be set for 4-5 weeks.  I also added some progress monitoring assessments that are all Common Core State Standard aligned. 

All you need are 6 sided dice and number tiles.  Everything else you need for these activities are already included.  Check it out Here on Teachers pay Teachers

5.  Instagram-  Oh my!!  You must sign up for this!!  I thought Facebook was addicting...... 
I love seeing what other teachers are doing at school.  I also find myself able to post my classroom activities more often because I do not need to download them to my computer from my camera and try to edit them before posting.  So quick, so easy, so much fun!!  Follow me @tparkerfirstgrade

Jamie over at Bright Concepts 4 Teachers is celebrating her Blogiversary by having a huge giveaway.  Enter over at her blog for your chance to win!!

My Freebies this week are a few progress monitoring activities that are all common core aligned.  Get all these freebies HERE!!!!

One more FREEBIE.  I created this quick math fact game that will help your students practice adding 9 and 10 to numbers 1-6.  I had to create the dice myself on blank foam cubes.  I drew 9 dots on three sides of the dice and 10 on the other sides.  Before playing this game we reviewed strategies that we could use to add nine.  The goal is to make sure students can "see" the number 9 and take one away from the other addend to make 10.  For example 9 + 4 should be thought as 10 +3 since adding 10 is much easier to add.  I created a recording sheet, but you can also have students have 10 cubes of the same color.  The student that says the sum first will stack their cubes on the table.  The first to get rid of all their cubes is the winner. 

You will need blank foam dice (from the dollar store) and draw 9 dots on three sides and 10 on the other three sides. 

Have a wonderful weekend!  Summer will be here before we know it!!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Winter Again????

My Five for Friday (okay, Sunday) for this week

Doodle Bugs Teaching

1.  I thought by posting that it was finally spring that there was NO way winter would come around again this year.  My goodness it was May already!!  Well, I was wrong.  We ended up getting 10 inches of snow this past week.  Here is the picture to prove it: 

2.  The good news is that the snow is almost already gone so hopefully we will be able to start the baseball season soon.  We signed up my son for t-ball this year and they had their first practice last Tuesday before the snowstorm.  My husband is the coach so I thought my son would be fine at practice.  Besides my oldest daughter was also on the team.  Well, he lasted 10 whole minutes before I got a call to come get him.  I stood with him with the baby on my hip to try to get him to see how fun it could be, but he was not having it.  I finally took him home after he started doing the potty dance.  When I asked him why he did not want to be there he replied, "I don't like the coach."  Too funny since he was talking about his dad!"  He was actually talking about one of the other coaches, but still I had fun telling his response to my husband :).

3.  I wish I could tell you I took a ton of pictures this week, but I can't.  I am going to try to take pictures of my Target Time/math intervention group this week though.  I have a math intervention packet finished with activities, but I just need to come up with a title before posting.  This packet currently has 15 activities for you to use along with lesson plans for each activity.  Each lesson plan has a warm-up activity, the actual activity, an extra activity, and then a space for your to write notes about students and what they are struggling with to help with progress monitoring.  I created all of these lessons myself and the best part of all is that all you need are number tiles and 6 sided dice.  I have everything else you need!  Stay tuned- I am planning on posting this product next week at the latest, but am trying hard to get it posted before the big TpT teacher appreciation sale on May 7-8.  Like me on facebook HERE to find out when this is posted!

4.  Speaking of Teachers pay Teachers.....  They are holding a HUGE Teacher Appreciation sale May 7-8.  All of my products will be 20% off and you can get an additional 10% off from TpT with the coupon code TAD13.  You can find the direct link to my store HERE.  The deals on these two days are amazing!!  I already am filling up my shopping cart :).

5.   I posted the following product to my store today:

Get your copy in my TpT store HERE.  This 90 page document will help you break down the Kindergarten Common Core State Standards for Mathematics to make sure you cover every aspect!

6.  Well as you can see my posts are consistently two days late and it does not look like that will change anytime soon.  Maybe I should start a Six for Sunday Linky about what is coming up the following week??  My sixth will be a freebie from my Teen Number Packet  Freebie HERE!.  If you want to check out the complete product at my store you can find it HERE

Thanks and Enjoy!!