Thursday, July 11, 2013

Throwback Thursday-Punctuation Marks?!

I am linking up with Cara at The First Grade Parade for Throwback Thursday!  Thank you, Cara, for hosting this! :)

OK- before I start- here is my little story about the "gold" rocks.  I ran out of gold spray paint and went to buy some more.  As I was checking out with the paint, some bananas, crayons, and bandaids- the girl said, "You aren't going to go up in your tree house and sniff that, are you?"  WHAT?!  All I could think of was Jeff always saying, "What does this say about us?" when he looks at our conveyor belt of groceries.  Apparently, my items looked suspicious to her.  Luckily, I had the bandaids in case I fell out of that tree house that I was decorating with my crayons while eating my bananas.  Whew!  So... don't look suspicious when you buy gold spraypaint.  That's my tip to you!
Next- Does anybody else feel like when they leave comments and write those letters and numbers that just maybe a computer/robot  leaving spam may be able to read those things better than you can? 


Here is my Throwback Thursday pick.  I picked it because... I am in the process of trying to make pasta punctuation marks.

It is a work in progress- but I used these pastas:

And then I played around with them trying to turn them into hands-on punctuation marks.  Not real thrilled with the question mark... Hmmm.  That one will keep me up at night- still a work in progress. I love that versatile little elbow noodle- he's busy all over the place!  Of course I wouldn't have Kindergarteners do something like this- but maybe they could add exclamation points on a paper, or periods- some commas on another- or even quotation marks later in the year.  Maybe I should invent a question mark shaped pasta and just retire.  You can also color the pasta to make it more fun, of course! This is just a sample of what you could do-


Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Punctuation Marks!

We have lots of fun learning punctuation marks in our classroom.  I found a new favorite book.  Yes I did! 
It is perfect for Kindergarten.  My kids love it.  I should say, "MY KIDS LOVE IT!!!!!"
It makes a wonderful Writer's Workshop mini lesson, because my kids are having a ball writing punctuation stories! The Ellipsis, The Question Mark, and The Exclamation Point are favorites. 
One of my little girls wrote this Question Mark Book for me today, FULL of questions.  
Here is her sweet dedication.  <3
 She shared it, and I answered the questions in it.  Notice on her, "What will you be when you grow up?" page, the illustration with the question is  me as a doctor. hmmm. 
When she read it, she said, "Maybe you could be a doctor... Or a horse. " hmmm.
So then, a little boy saved her and said, "She already IS grown up, and she is a teacher!" I didn't have to say a word. :)  This will be in my library right beside My Exclamation Point book forever. 

We also  play Four Corners with punctuation marks.  I have a bag full of different sentences that require different punctuation: statements, questions, lists of things that need commas, and excited sentences. The four corners of the room are labeled with a paper  that says Period., Question Mark?, Exclamation Point!, and Comma, .  It is played like all Four Corners games.  The children choose and run to a corner. I pull out a sentence and read it.  Whatever punctuation mark it needs, is the corner that has to go sit down.  Then, the rest of the class runs to a different corner, and we keep playing until there is one person left. 

Here is a little Punctuation Poem I made up and use. My little actresses were very deliberate doing this because I told them they were going to teach other people how to say the poem. :)

My kids are very good at telling me the name and use of punctuation marks, and are having fun experimenting with using them in their writing.  I think that is wonderful at this stage.  We keep reviewing when to use each punctuation mark, and slowly, they are getting into the right places!

Often, the children just love to stick a period at the end of a line of writing, not a complete thought.  This activity really helps them to hear when a complete thought ends and when they naturally come to a stop when reading.   I made up a paper with sentences but no periods. I did this activity at a small group and it worked beautifully.  Everyone got a pack of Smarties and 6 of these awesome little stickers. 

I found these stickers at a Teacher Store, and they just look like a hand saying, "STOP!"  Perfect for a period!

I tried to write simple sentences that did not always end at the end of the line, but sometimes in the middle of a line, so they could hear when a sentence ended and not just stick a period at the end of the page.  Learning that a sentence is a complete thought- and that a sentence does not always just end at the end of the page- is the trickiest thing about learning to use a period.  (Well, that and remembering to actually USE one! :) 
I have also used Fruit Loops for this activity, but Smarties seemed perfect.  Of course they need to eat one before they begin for Smartie Power!  Then, after we put on the Smarties, we read the sentences together and clap at each period (Smartie).  Next, the child can eat the Smartie and replace it with a sticker. 
Since they each got six stickers and only needed five periods, I dictated a sentence on the back so they could end that with their final sticker.  One group only wrote one dictated sentence, but for the others, I dictated a statement, a question, and one that needed an exclamation point.
I hope you had fun going back to April with me! If any of you invent a question mark shaped pasta, let me know! :)    Also- I have lots of punctuation activities/videos on my Primary Writing Prezi
 at my TPT store. This is the Prezi I use each day for Writer's Workshop. I have also bundled my Beginning Reading and Writing Prezis at my TPT store. 


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