Wednesday we had a pajama day! My children chose this as their class prize for all being able to TIE SHOES!!! YES! Everyone!
Pajama Partner Reading
Every year our PE teachers have a contest to see which class in K, 1, and 2 can tie shoes first. The prize is an extra PE class full of fun and games. This is always a great chance to really stress the importance of tying shoes to families. I send home lots of
Anyway, we won! One of my sweeties is out for a while, and I don't want him to miss our celebration in PE, so we will wait for him to return for that. We had a pajama party to celebrate in the meantime, because the class was so proud and exited.
I take NO credit for this win. I did get out my sparkly shoes and cardboard shoes during free choice and work some with the children, but here is my secret weapon...
(His little tongue sticking out just says it all...)
We started our 'How-to' books this week. I wrote a post HERE about all the different things I do to teach writing How-to books.
I wanted to think of a fun way to introduce writing 'How-to' books that I could model and we all could do together. Since it was a FUN day, I decided we should teach someone how to eat a lollipop.
I have a bag of small size Tootsie Pops, just in case an emergency fun idea like this 'pops' up.
We had to review all the steps of eating a lollipop, by... eating a lollipop. We talked our way through each step. I modeled writing the simple steps we talked about using the transition words, as some of the children modeled the actions:
FIRST, you pick your favorite color lollipop.
NEXT, you take the wrapper off the lollipop.
THEN, you lick and lick the lollipop until it is gone.
LAST, you throw away the trash.
I used these pictures of the children with the following day's lesson, to review the steps and have the children order them just like we did with the cards, before they continued writing their books. It was a great reminder, and they loved it.
You could also make a class "How-to" book with the photographs and writing, and laminate it.
I just drew some quick illustrations to go with our words as the children helped me decide what we would write for each step. For this modeling, I didn't have the children come up to help write. Sometimes that gets too time consuming, and the children are quick to lose interest. I have a very busy group, and I need to always assess carefully what my goal for the lesson is. Today it was for them to talk through the story with me and understand how to tell and write it sequentially using the transition words.
Then, with a little lift of sugar, the children headed to their seats to begin writing. They did fabulous! I didn't leave our sample up, so they didn't copy my papers. They were familiar with the ideas and were welcome to use them, but they had to plan what they were going to say and write it themselves.
Here are a couple samples:
(the tongue licking it!!!)
It worked well to have everyone write about the same topic for our first how-to book. They could help each other if they needed to, and were very familiar with the steps.
This QR Code packet has given me another way to immerse the children in nonfiction text. It's been great for them to be able to hear some different nonfiction stories and see the features as they listen to these books on their iPads. They are also reading nonfiction during private and partner reading time.
Here are the books included in the packet:
Here is another packet of MORE QR Codes to use for listening centers that I just finished a little while ago.
My children LOVE to use QR codes. I use them all the time for a literacy center. This packet features stories from eight authors because I also love to do mini author studies, so my children are really familiar with different authors and their styles. Here are the stories included in the packet.
The children feel so smart and ARE so smart to know about these great authors. We often refer to different techniques that the different authors use as we write our own books.
So, since the children love the stories so much when we read them, I wanted them to be able to hear the stories over and over again- which gave me the idea to make Author Study QR Code Books.
I have scanned all of the videos through ViewPure to remove any advertisements or distractions. Please check the sample QR Codes to be sure ViewPure isn't blocked at your school. If it is, many times the IT person at your school can easily unblock the site for you if you ask (or give them cookies or donuts...).
I print the QR Codes out with the author cover page, and the children can choose an author packet to use for center time.
I have also included a biography page for each author in the packet. We talk about the authors and learn about their lives, and then I send this page home with each child so parents know who we are learning about in class.
My Author Prezi is also a huge part of our studies. I have included a link to that in this packet as well. As we study a particular author, I show the videos of that author throughout the week on the Smart TV.
It is so rewarding when the children hear a story and connect it to an author we have studied! I am pretty sure I hear angels singing. "That picture looks like an Eric Carle drew it!" Or when the children write a story along the same lines as a particular author. My children LOVE Exclamation Mark by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, and I get lots of variations of this book after we read it and they hear it a few times. I get The Question Mark Book, The Period Book, and Quotation Mark books with lots of talking going on in the story and quotation marks everywhere!
The last section in this QR Code Packet is Favorite Familiar Stories. I included lots of nursery rhymes and stories that SHOULD be familiar to children. Unfortunately, these stories are not so familiar anymore. Having the QR Center allows the children to listen to the stories many times and be able to retell them, since many don't have stories read to them over and over like children used to.
I also have these QR Codes with Writing Prompts.
Sometimes I use the prompts as a quick little activity or assessment after a center- or as a whole group activity. They also are fabulous activities to leave as sub plans! This packet has the QR Codes for making into books, as well as the QR Code on the writing prompt so you can send the story right home with the children! They LOVE that.
Thank you for stopping by. Have a wonderful weekend!