October 2014 - Miss Kindergarten

Reading Word Families Fluently {freebie!}

I put together some word family fluency practice to help my kiddos with their reading fluency. One of the most important skills for beginning readers to attain is fluency in reading. Fluency means the ability to read text quickly and accurately. When students gain an understanding of word families, and start to see “chunks” in words, they become better readers. 

Instead of sounding out each phoneme, or sound, in the word, they are able to transfer what they know about “chunks” and apply it to their reading. Word family fluency is a great way for your students to practice reading accurately and fluently. I grouped all the word family words on a ring for my students to flip through and practice reading.

The word family chunks are color coded to help your students see each chunk!

These cards would also be great to copy onto colored paper!

And I also included some words with blends for your "advanced" readers ;)

The other fluency page is all on one sheet. You can slide the page into sheet protectors and keep them in a binder at your reading table! This would be great quick practice before starting your reading groups!

The students can roll a dice, or you can just tell them which row to read.

You can grab this freebie in my TpT store!

You can also find the rest of the short a word family words in my store!


Morning Work Update!

November is almost here and I have officially completed 1/3 of my Morning Work Bundle! Woohoo!

Here's a look at the newest mornings work set. I think it is my favorite yet!

Matching uppercase and lowercase letters, reading and writing sight words, rhyming words, and syllables:

Beginning sounds and more sight word practice:
 Some fun writing practice:

Teen number practice and identifying the group that has more:
 Counting on from a give number and one-to-one correspondence:
 Making a ten, finding the bigger number and more one-to-one practice:
 Making number bonds, beginning addition sentences and working on tally marks:

The clip art is just so cute and makes me so happy! You can grab the November Morning Work in my store, or grab the bundle for a discount!

The bundle includes morning work for August, September, October and November currently! The rest of the months will be added as I finish making them!


A Peek at Our Week!

Isn't it always fun to take a peek into other teachers' classrooms? I love doing it! I have been secretly stalking Mrs. Will's Peek at My Week Linky Party since she started, and I've never had the guts to link up. But I all of a sudden was inspired this week, so I made sure to take lots of pictures so I can show you what we did LAST week! 

I also always get tons of questions about how we "fit it all in" since we are half-day kinder, so hopefully this answers those questions! Just so you know, we have "science week" about every other month where we dedicate a whole week to our science units. We then sprinkle in other science, crafts, social studies and health throughout our language arts and math units.

Okay, let's talk about last week!
{you can click on any picture in this post to see where it's from}
We start our day off with some morning work and then we work on our literacy centers. During centers, I am able to pull small groups of students to work on specific needs. We practice letter sounds, segmenting words, phonics skills, and guided writing.

During guided writing last week, we focused on using our sight words to build a sentence. We focused on the words "I" and "see". Sometimes during guided writing we use the cut and paste sentences, and sometimes we just fold paper into parts and write each word in the correct box.

While I am working with a small group, the rest of the students on working on these centers. 
Two students visit the listening center, two students get to paint and one student uses the iPad. The rest of the kiddos choose from a center tub. {almost all of our center work is in write and wipe pockets so that they can be re-used multiple times and we save on paper!}
At the ABC center, we worked on letter formation.

At the stamping center, we worked on stamping upper & lowercase letters.
At the play-doh center, we worked on building letters.

At the word work center, we practiced beginning sounds. The students matched the picture on the lunchbox with the letter on the backpack and then recorded what they found.

We are also worked on matching uppercase and lowercase letters.

At the handwriting center, we reviewed our focus letter from last week, as well as practiced our current focus letter.

At the sight word center, we are practiced using our new sight words to build sentences.


The next hour is our literacy block. Last week we worked on correctly forming the the letter Mm. We follow the Handwriting Without Tears curriculum to teach our letters. The students love the little letter chants and it really helps them remember how to write the letters correctly.

We also practiced our new sight word "see". You can read more about how we teach sight words {here}.

 Now let's take a look at reading groups! 
The first 15 minutes is a whole group lesson. We usually read a story from our Houghton Mifflin curriculum, or work on a phonics skill. The next 45 minutes we run three rotations. We are able to split our classes by ability level so that each group gets to work on the skills they need. Our rotations are about 12 minutes long so that we have time to clean up and rotate in between.

The first rotation is reading with the teacher. We use phonics books from Houghton Mifflin which incorporate the sight words and phonics rules we're learning. 

The second rotation is run by our amazingly wonderful classroom aide. Last week the students worked on the letter Mm.

And practiced more beginning sounds.

The third rotation is either run by a parent volunteer, or completed independently. Since we don't always have a volunteer, this means the activities have to be self explanatory and easy enough to be done without constant direction ;) Last week we practiced writing the letter Mm.

Our Houghton Mifflin story from earlier in the week was about fish, so we created a fish scene and used our sight word "see" to complete the sentence.

We also worked on sorting beginning sounds using this print and go activity.

{are you tired yet?? I'm exhausted!}

During math, we finished up our unit on sorting, completed our Halloween graph, and introduced our new unit on position words.

We made this super cute and fun bee book from Kindergarten Crayons. I had an abundance of bee stickers {#hoarder} so we stuck them on the end of a popsicle stick and used it to tell the story while practicing our position words. The kiddos loved it!

After our whole group math, we chose math centers to work on.

We practiced one-to-one correspondence and fine motor skills by counting apples on the tree.

We worked on counting on using pumpkin numbers.

We also counted and graphed candy dice.

We practiced building our numbers using play-doh.

And finally, we used our number stamps.

After math, the early birds go to snack and recess and the late birds start school. We mirror our day from the morning, so late birds start with math.

Then all of our students come together for calendar time.

After calendar, the early birds go home and the late birds go to snack and recess. We finish off our day with our literacy stations and reading groups again with the late birds.

It is short, quick and exhausting, but we sure do have a lot of fun!


Save the Date!

In August, my fiancé Tom and I spent the day with the most amazing photographer ever, Melissa Vossler, and took our engagement pictures in beautiful Corona del Mar, California. It was by far one of the most fun days we have had together and we are so excited for what our future holds! When it was time to choose a picture for our Save the Date cards though, it was SO hard to choose! I mean look at how amazing they all turned out!?

See what I mean!? Well, I knew I wanted to order my Save the Date cards through Minted.com, so I spent a few weeks playing around with pictures and designs. Have you used Minted before?? It's amazing! The designs are so clean and neat, and I didn't have to do any of the hard work ;)

I ended up choosing a picture that was originally landscape, and cropped it so that it would be portrait. I LOVE how it turned out!

 Minted also printed out our recipients addresses right onto the envelope before shipping them to me!!!! 

It was so easy to get these ready to be mailed out. And I am all about finding ways to be efficient ;)

I also love that Minted offered a design for the back of the cards. Since I obviously had a tough time choosing just one picture, it was nice to be able to include more ;)

And I found a really cute return address stamp on Etsy and stamped my parents' address onto the back of the envelopes!!

I am so excited for our wedding day and I can't wait to share more pictures with you! 6 months to go :)