2019 the Year of BALANCED LITERACY!

2019 is the Year of Balanced Literacy. Week 1: Read Alouds

And a FREE Balanced Literacy resource to help you get STARTED!

2019 is the Year of BALANCED LITERACY!

Ready to UPDATE your literacy block? 

Balanced Literacy: Here is your NEW YEAR’s PLAN!

The Why? The What? and The How?

Balanced literacy has been defined as  “an approach designed to help individual students learn how to process a variety of increasingly challenging texts with understanding and fluency.” (Fountas & Pinnell, 2001)

It is an approach to teaching. NOT a curriculum. It is HOW we teach our students to be independent readers and writers. It is NOT what books we use to teach them.

Balanced Literacy has been defined in “components” or  “pieces” of literacy instruction.

This 8-week series will focus on the components of a complete BALANCED LITERACY program. We will focus on clear and concise definitions. Definitions that educators can discuss in collaborations. A “common language” where we can learn from each other and with each other.

The 8 components we will focus on are:

  1. Read Alouds
  2. Shared Reading
  3. Guided Reading
  4. Independent Reading
  5. Modeled / Interactive Writing
  6. Shared Writing
  7. Guided Writing / Writer’s Workshop
  8. Word Work

Each week we will focus on one area of Balanced Literacy and share experiences,  teacher tips, and resources to support and expand our Balanced Literacy repertoire.

This week:   READ  ALOUDS.

As defined by education.com, the teacher reads aloud various types of text. She often models her thinking aloud as she reads. The students participate by listening to the text and the teacher’s thinking strategies and then trying some of them out by talking with partners. The teacher reads the text, therefore taking away the visual sources of information, so that students can focus on meaning and structure.

The READ ALOUD is done BY the teacher FOR the students.

Marie Clay (1991) writes that when teachers read aloud to students “meanings can be negotiated in discussion before, during, and after the story reading” (p.171). Reading aloud to students should include think-aloud or interactive elements and focus intentionally on the meaning “within the text,” “about the text,” and “beyond the text” (Fountas & Pinnell, 2006, p.33). Read aloud, as part of the gradual release of responsibility, feeds naturally into shared, guided, and independent reading as teachers demonstrate for students the ways the reading process works (Burkins & Croft, 2010).

Among the many benefits of a read aloud, Rog (2001) lists the following:

  • building vocabulary
  • developing understandings of story structures
  • supporting developing connections between print elements
  • encouraging high levels of understanding
  • teaching the reading process in a meaningful context
  • modeling fluency
  • motivating students to read

There are many types of print for Read Alouds. Classroom library books, Big Books, chapter books, charts, and poetry are resources for teachers to read TO students.

Here some great educators share their resources.

first-grade-read-aloud-opt-400x634

15 Read Aloud Books for First Grade

Erica at what do we do all day    

has a list of First Grade Read Alouds.

firstgradereadalouds

19 Perfect Read Alouds

Mia at the Pragmatic Mom also has a list.

Pinterest has many fun and exciting ideas!

The main goal of a read aloud is to engage students with the text.

To create their own thinking based on their life connections,  and discuss the text with peers. Each will bring their own comprehension based on their life experiences. As they learn to communicate their thoughts and understanding to others, their own comprehension will expand. The teacher has an opportunity to draw the students INTO the book. Use your storytelling techniques, be the characters, create the world using your voice, and open the doors to new adventures.

Slide1

How to PLAN Read Aloud Lessons

Paige from Our Elementary Lives shows us HOW to plan a Read Aloud Lesson.

And there are MORE. Click the links below for more information on READ ALOUDS.

Upper Elementary Snapshots

The Inspired Apple

Intentional Homeschooling

A Dab of Glue Will Do

In summary, a READ ALOUD is a book, a chart, a poem on a smartboard, or any other text, where the teacher reads TO the students using self-questions and think aloud reading strategies. The goal is to model fluent and expressive reading. The students then INTERACT with the text through discussions, writing, and/or thinking for themselves.

These literacy posts may help in YOUR Balanced Literacy journey.

Balanced Literacy

Read At Home

Flexible Seating

These resource books for TEACHERS may be helpful for YOUR reading.

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The Ultimate Read-Aloud Resource

The Ultimate Read-Aloud Resource 

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The Read-Aloud Handbook

The Read Aloud Handbook

I hope YOU are prepared to practice DAILY Read Alouds in YOUR classroom!

Stay tuned for next week… Week 2 Shared Reading.

Please share with friends.

Leave me a comment…How do YOU use Read Alouds in YOUR classroom?

Print

Read Aloud for 15 Minutes

Read Aloud

Partner Reading Comprehension Sticks. Talk about your READING!

For MORE Balanced Literacy Resources..

CHECK out my TpT Store 1stgradefireworks

HAPPY New Year!

Wendy

Informational Writing

This week we did some EXCELLENT WRITING!

 I have to be honest…I have not taught ALL of my SCIENCE standards.

 Somewhere, I have a new Science series, but my new ELA series takes up most ALL of our day…& Math… so, as any good teacher ( who LOVES science & writing) would do INTEGRATE!

We wrote about ANIMALS!

Living things…yaadaa. yaadaa. yaadaa…NO!

WE WROTE ABOUT REAL ANIMALS!

My EL’s had a hard time with the new vocabulary, (Thank You Project GLAD), we did new academic language, made charts, filled out graphic organizers, did shared writing, sloppy copies, and a final draft!

After our animal reports, we painted!

We had to edit for spelling, handwriting, complete sentences, punctuation, AND IT HAD TO MAKE SENSE!

All of that in 5 days!

AND THEN….. They got to make a “tear art” bear head.

 ( They HATE  tear art… “Can I PLEASE use my scissors?” “NO!”)

Simple…tear construction  paper, glue to small paper plate, add ears (with torn paper..they need FUR too), add eyes, nose, & mouth.

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/351843789621516644/
Tear BEAR! 

As a culminating activity, we painted out animals & added our reports for sharing. ( see above)

SO….here are the units we used to RUN the MARATHON!

Animal Classification from 1stgradefireworks on TpT
Animal  Classifications 
Animal Classification GAME!

Enjoy! Check it out on my TPT store!

Word Work

Guided Reading

Balanced  Literacy

Why Am I Changing My Classroom Library Again?

Change my Classroom Library…AGAIN?

OH, NO YOU DON’T!!!!

So again…WHAT AM I DOING???


REDOING MY CLASSROOM LIBRARY!

WHAT????   AGAIN???? NO!!!!!!!
So, How many times do I have to do it..before I LIKE it??

Here is the BEFORE…

Classroom Library- before or after?
Classroom Library- before or after?

Classroom Library

So, why? Oh, why?

Why mess with a GOOD thing? ( Can you hear the shame in my voice?)
BECAUSE. Because I know what wonderful books are in the tubs.

BUT …  the kids DON’T!
They know their favorites. They go to the same tub over & over. I LOVE THAT.BUT…
How do you know… there might be a BOOK you would LOVE BETTER!

They don’t search. They just go to what they know.


SO…I am expanding their KNOWLEDGE BASE!


I have decided to TAKE AWAY THE TUBS!

WHAT???? I know…you with OCD will HATE ME!
WHY?

Because..it’s not MY library…it’s OURS!

I am going to dump EVERY book in a pile in the middle of our carpet area.

AND WE WILL SORT!


Common core says NONFICTION is a PRIORITY!

My kids don’t even know WHAT Nonfiction books we have!

So…we shall sort!

Fiction…Nonfiction…author study…science…etc..etc..etc…NOT ME!

Not my SUMMER! (again )

OURS…ALL OF US!


(Do not do this the day your admin is observing YOU!)

This will take time…time well spent!

My thoughts are to have the kids make labels...NOT ME!

And put them right ON THE SHELF!

YES…ON THE SHELF!

They take ownership,  so they can put things away!

Not ME!

Others have perservered…it IS POSSIBLE!

WOW! A Classroom library that mimics a PUBLIC LIBRARY!???


They will know HOW to USE a PUBLIC LIBARY!

Not “What tub is LIBRARY——-  book in?” Hmm…


Food for thought.


So…if you are thinking of RAISING THE BAR in YOUR classroom library…


LET THEM DO IT!


Close your eyes…change your MINDSET..and collaborate WITH YOUR STUDENTS!


They might surprise YOU!

Classroom Management with BRAG TAGS!

Read At Home

My One Word Resolution is BREATHE!

I DO NOT Like Making New Year’s Resolutions!

I detest, hate, do NOT like making New Year’s resolutions!

I am totally NOT GOOD AT IT! I know…FAILURE! Who wants to relive that each day? NOT ME!

So… how about a word…ONE word to remind myself to SUCCEED!

A few years ago I came across a great idea to reduce your expectations and increase your success.

I use a one-word resolution.

That’s right, all of the things I need to do can usually be summed up in one word.”


So..my friends…here is my ONE WORD

My One Word Resolution is BREATHE!
My “ONE WORD” Resolution is BREATHE!

YES!  BREATHE!

Now I know you will breathe…BUT I MEAN…BREATHE!

Take a step back, breathe in deep calming breaths, and RELAX!

Calm the body, mind, & spirit.

NOW…look at what is going on with a new “view”.

A relaxed, positive, and enjoyable VIEW.

SO…as  FAITH HILL

 ( love me some country music) tells us,


“JUST  BREATHE!”
Happy New Year!  🙂

Hi HO Hi HO it’s Off to HFW we go!

Word Walls

Shared Writing

Winter is Wonderful!

Winter.

Snow.

Jackets, mittens, scarves, & snowboots.

I am NOT an expert on SNOW!

I live in NORCAL.

Wine country. 

Not a lot of snow here.

My students LOVE to learn about WINTER!

Our favorite theme.

EAsy Prep & Go centers for JANUARY

Winter is WONDERFUL! Reading / Writing & Math Centers

Easy Prep & Go for January Centers

Winter is WONDERFUL! Reading / Writing & Math Centers

ELA  AND  MATH  CENTERS

English  Language  Arts

Contractions

Winter is WONDERFUL! Reading / Writing & Math Centers

Contractions

Verbs

Winter is WONDERFUL! Reading / Writing & Math Centers

VERBS

MIXED UP SENTENCES

Main Ideas & Details in writing

Winter is WONDERFUL! Reading / Writing & Math Centers

WRITING…MAIN IDEA  &  DETAILS

MATH

Math Mountains & Missing addends

Winter is WONDERFUL! Reading / Writing & Math Centers

Math Mountains

Missing  Addends

Making 10 Strategy for winter math

Winter is WONDERFUL! Reading / Writing & Math Centers

MAKING  10  STRATEGY

PLACE  VALUE

Easy prep & Go for January

Winter is WONDERFUL! Reading / Writing & Math Centers

WINTER  IS  WONDERFUL

Easy Prep & Go!  Get started organizing now..so YOU are ready for January!

Remember…2019 is the Year of BALANCED LITERACY!

Here’s a start   BALANCED LITERACY

The New Year is a Great time to “CLEAN UP”!

Can you hear the song?

Here’s a link to help you…

CLEAN UP CLEAN UP!

My NEW YEAR’S Mantra!

CLEAN UP!   CLEAN UP!

I LOVE to start the NEW YEAR with cleanliness!

NO …I AM NOT  OCD ( quite the opposite ).

I like to start the year off with a clean slate…

doesn’t always stay that way!

Helping start out your “Clean up” in the classroom with your literacy block! 🙂

So here I  go!

MY Closet! 

ICK!

Keeping these…pants together..skirts…etc

Hubby even did his shoes! 🙂

Pile to GO!
Cleaned out my closet…found my LOST slippers!YIPPEY!
Pile of unneeded hangers!Gave some of them away with donated clothes.
Kept some…yes..I got rid of the WIRE HANGERS!HAHAHAHAHA

So I am DONATING 2 bags of 

“UNUSED” clothes & shoes

( Doesn’t fit, holes, haven’t worn, aren’t going to wear…)

to Goodwill.

Have you tried this COOL  closet  trick?

Take ALL of your hangers and turn them 

BACKWARDS!

As you wear something…

turn the hanger forwards.

Next year…

ANY hanger still turned backwards…

YOU HAVE NOT WORN IN ONE YEAR!

DONATE  IT to someone who will!

The Christmas Decor!

I LOVE my Christmas tree.

I turn on the lights, sit in the dark, and watch it twinkle!

But…it has been up since November.

( Yes, before THANKSGIVING!)

I didn’t have Thanksgiving at MY house..so..

UP WENT THE CHRISTMAS DECOR!

Makes me happy!

But…Time to “CLEAN UP, CLEAN UP!”

Gma loves help! Such a decorator!

It takes a LONG time to put ornaments away!

You have to touch each one…remember when or where you got it…

the memories are sometimes OVERWHELMING..

Sniff..sniff..giggle..giggle

We started this years ago…

When we travel, or have a special place…

we buy an ornament.

Check out my UPDATED post on 

“In Life…there is NO “Do OVER!”

Newest member of my snowman ornament collection.
Don’t forget the year!
Little sister got married  in HAWAII!We were ALL there!So FUN!

and last…

ME!

I don’t make New Year’s Resolutions…

I don’t need ANOTHER thing to worry about!

But..

I have changed my eating habits!

( Lost 32  pounds …so far )

YEAH!!!

My new favorite “treat”…

APPLES & Peanut Butter!

But wait!

 Isn’t Peanut Butter FATTENING??????

Here’s my SECRET..

Slice apples ( I buy mine pre packaged & sliced ). 🙂

Put them single layer on a plate.

Put 1 Tablespoon ( Yes I measure ) peanut butter in a small zip-lock bag.

Close bag. Microwave PB ( mine about 20 seconds).

Snip ( tech term) the corner off of the bottom of the PB bag.

DRIZZLE over apples!

It’s like FROSTING the cake!

* UPDATE…  You CAN use PB.

BUT…

My newest LOVE

PB2.

Powdered Peanuts…NO  FAT!

Mix 2 TBL powder with 1 TBL  water!

PRESTO!

PB  with NO  FAT!

I LOVE LOVE  LOVE  the PB2 with CHOCOLATE!

CAN YOU SAY…  REESES???

I have it on my toast in the AM.

So…I am beginning my

CLEAN UP 

mode.

I should start on the kitchen cabinets, or the bathroom…..

I think I hear 

APPLES & PB

calling me!

Check out my ZOODLES, too! 

Happy New Year’s,  my friends!

I am a Cookie Exchange CHEATER! And YOU?

I am a COOKIE Exchange CHEATER!

Bake Cookies? ME?

You bring 1-2 dozen cookies.

You take home a variety of cookies…

as many cookies as you brought.

Here are some of the cookies made from years past:

and these

And so…

those of you who know me…

I don’t bake

well, I have..

I just don’t ENJOY it!

* I made a batch of persimmon cookies last weekend.

I felt I had to before the perimmons rotted.

YUCK!

Bad BAKER!

I gave them to the chickens!

And so…  What to take to the family cookie exchange?

Make it…..don’t BAKE it!

TA DA!

Enter..

NUTTER  BUTTER  REINDEER!

Check out my COOKIE Pinterest board for MORE ideas!

And so…

Will it be a Pinterest SUCCESS?

or

A Pinterest FAIL?

Here we go!

Supplies.

Lay out the Nutter Butters.

Break the pretzels into antlers.

Mix powdered sugar into

ROYAL  FROSTING.

(It dries like CEMENT…it holds everything!)

I think ..Pinterest SUCCESS!

The grandkids LOVE them!

So was I a COOKIE EXCHANGE cheater?

Maybe. But you know what?

The smiles & hugs made it ALL worth while!

Merry Christmas!

Helper Elf

Are YOU an ELF? A Christmas “HELPER” ELF?

Not, an ELF ON THE SHELF!

A REAL HELPER ELF!

It’s the MOST, WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR!

SANTA  CLAUS is COMIN’ TO TOWN!

Santa Claus Is Coming to TOWN!

First of all…
I work at a low socioeconomic, Title 1 school.

This time of year can be very hard for some kids.

Some families DON’T celebrate Christmas.

Some families can’t afford gifts.

Some are VERY proud and won’t accept donations.

This means…Santa & his elves don’t come to EVERY house.

So today..we had  THE TALK.


THE talk about what December, Christmas, and Santa

are REALLY  about.


GIVING & HELPING!

Then…
Today, we became HELPER  ELVES!

We talked about 

HOW we can HELP at HOME, 

at SCHOOL, 

and help our FRIENDS!

The kids talked about giving from the “heart”.

Our class meeting was SO enlightening!

My kids were SO engaged.

The conversation was NOT about “ME..ME..ME”.

They were SO excited to brainstorm  “What can I do for OTHERS?”

Sniff..sniff..made tears of joy come to my eyes!

IT WAS AWESOME!

And so..

Santa, you can come to ROOM 3.

(I have a feeling…he will)

Here are  some suggestions for YOU!

But for now..

WE WILL BE HELPING YOU, SANTA!

WE ARE HELPER ELVES!

To help YOU out in this BUSY month..

 Here are some 

CHRISTMAS Goodies

from  my TPT store.

1stgradefireworks

Here is a FREEBIE

from my store!

  MERRY CHRISTMAS, 

 Helper ELVES!

I am a COOKIE MONSTER!

Yes. I admit it. 

I LOVE COOKIES!

I count points. Weight Watcher, here!

BUT… they are NOT good for my hips & thighs.

SO WHAT IS A COOKIE MONSTER TO DO?

BAKE cookies for OTHERS!

The giving plate for COOKIES!
The Giving Plate for COOKIES!

Yes. I will taste a few. And then walk on my treadmill… a LOT! 

But life is about LIVING!  MODERATION in everything! EAT THE COOKIES!

And life goes on.

I stalk Pinterest. I know there must be a 12-step program somewhere.

But for now, Pinterest has my heart. I can find ANYTHING there!

I am sharing my BEST cookie pins from my COOKIE board.

Cookies for the COOKIE MONSTER in YOU!

My CHALLENGE to you. 

Make the cookies.  Some for you… some to share.

I take a plate to the neighbors, leave a box at the fire dept., police dept., hospital, for my mail lady, and the garbage collector. 

My school does a cookie exchange & our family has a HUGE one!

Finally… freeze some for later.  The COOKIE MONSTER in you will be VERY happy AFTER the holidays!  

Enjoy my friends!

Merry Christmas, my friends. And HAPPY BAKING!

Don’t BLINK!

Family

Leave me a comment…  what is YOUR FAVORITE COOKIE?

Mine?   ANY!  🙂  

How to Survive WINTER in the Classroom (with KIDS!)

It’s Here. Ready or Not.

WINTER IS HERE!

It’s ALL about SURVIVAL. Think JUNGLE. Think SWAMP! THINK SNOWSTORM!  EEEKKKKK!!!!

Our of bed
Yes you must get out of bed…YOU are the TEACHER!

You can do it. You are the teacher. 

Now, we here in NORCAL have rain, fog, some snow (in the Sierra mountains)…but YOU ALL have

WINTER SNOW DAYS!

And YOU get a SNOW DAY..and YOU get a SNOW DAY
And YOU get a Snow day!

NOT EVERYONE.

We get to go to school. No recess ( rain ). Short lunch.  BOUNCY KIDS!

So to help out with the teachers who are INDOORS in WINTER with a class full of students who want to be OUTDOORS…

I have put together a WINTER SURVIVAL Guide for YOU!

First and foremost, GET IT READY NOW!

DON’T WAIT!  ( You won’t have time to prep ALL of it the WINTER Day you NEED it! )

Have it ready to pull out and VOILA!  SUPER TEACHER!

Here are a few samples to help:

Baby It's COLD OUTSIDE Winter Centers
Baby It’s COLD OUTSIDE Winter Reading, writing, & word work centers

BABY It’s COLD Outside! Winter Language Arts Centers

WINTER Place Value Snowman
Do You WANT to build a SNOWMAN? Place Value FUN! Winter math craftivity for first and second grade!

Do YOU Want to Build a SNOWMAN? Place Value FUN!

Here are a few more Winter Survival Products  to check out!

The ELVES are Working OVERTIME!

Word Trees for Reading Fluency
Word Tree BUNDLE for Fall, WInter, & Spring. Reading Fluency for ALL!

Need some WINTER “HOW-TO?” 🙂  Here you go!

BALANCED LITERACY

Winter BUNDLE
5 Packet Winter BUNDLE!

5 Packet WINTER BUNDLE

Winter PINTEREST BOARDS 

So..Get READY, Get Set, GO!  

Get Ready for the WINTER SURVIVAL in the classroom!  HURRY! 

Get Ready for WINTER
WINTER Snowman

Breathe. Relax. and Remember…

The sun will come out…EVENTUALLY!  HAHA

January..are YOU ready?