Contractions and that Crazy Apostrophe Guy

Contractions (and common possessives) are a part of the Common Core standards.  We have been hitting them hard, minus the possessives part.  We will get there next!!

It is interesting to watch my kids with contractions.  We worked and worked and worked. Most get the idea, but forget the apostrophe.  It is like he is a forgettable little thing. Here are a few of the activities we did:

Singing like Crazies:

We watched the Between the Lions song:



Sang our own song that a colleague shared with me.

Sorted It Out
Sorted the contractions on the Promethean board (I can't share this, I think it would be a no no according to my district) where we sorted the words by ending and noticed how they were created.

We also did an old fashioned cut and paste sort.  I just shared the freebie on my Facebook page!  Make sure to check it out here!


Human Contractions
We played human contractions where students were each given a card with a letter until a word was spelled.  They had to show a space between the two words (it is for example) because it is TWO different words.  Then one child was given the bossy apostrophe card and had to tell which letters it was kicking out to create one word (the contraction). That was a wild, but very well liked activity.   The kids were given white boards to follow along so all were engaged in making the contractions.

Games
We also played my oldie but goodie Contraction Action games in partners.
It has 4 different partner games and is FREE in my TpT store!

**As a side note written by a crabby pregnant lady with no filter (reader beware): Don't rate down freebies.  It is in poor taste. The seller is offering it out of his or her good will.  If there is an error, please contact the seller.  Most (myself included) are grateful when errors are spotted- our eyes cross after looking at these for so long).  And really...it is FREE.   I don't tell the nice lady at Publix letting me sample her yummy Simple Apron meals that it wasn't that great.  Nope, I shove it in my big ol' mouth and calculate how I can can get another teeny-tiny plate without her noticing.  Rant over.**

Folded Some Foldables
We worked on a foldable project. 

Kids had to brainstorm 4 contractions, write the two words that create the contraction and then use the contraction in a sentence.

Here is the outside: 


Kids were given a checklist to help make sure the project met the expectations.  I made the checklists small and fit four to a page. This really helped out kids.  I will have to make sure to do this more often.


If you would like a copy of the check list, click here.  I kept it in Word format so it can be edited as needed. :)

I already have this book and I am going to whip it out to help make the connection between contractions and apostrophes.



I don't have this book, but think it looks CUTE!  It is on my wishlist....

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My Favorite Children's Books About Jackie Robinson

I have posted a bunch about the Civil Rights Movement recently.  In second grade in Georgia we learn about Jackie Robinson and Martin Luther King Jr.  It is a great unit for this time of the year and my kids are eating it up!!!



I love this book to teach Jackie Robinson.  It is a great way to show examples of sportsmanship (good and bad), patience, and dependability.  It DOES mention the KKK and death threats.  I am not comfortable discussion this with my second graders so I just skim over this part.



This is a longer book and we did not read it all, but read parts.  It has AWESOME examples of text features and my kids ate them all up.  We did this as a shared reading lesson.



Adler's books are always great.  Not too many text features, but good sequential information in a kids friendly format.  The perfect intro to biographies.


I didn't read this book aloud (pretty heavy topic and content).  However, I showed the pictures.  Many of my  kids were amazed at how old things appeared to them and how the leagues could even be separated at all!



This one I haven't read- but it looks good, doesn't it??  It is on my wishlist!

Another awesome resource is Pebble Go.  It is a paid resource my school district has bought and I LOVE it.  I literally cannot praise it enough!!  It is so kid and user friendly!!!  Here is a screen shot of what it looks like.  There is also a Biography Pebble Go as well.


We read the information often with the topics we study.  To start the unit we read about Jackie Robinson and then created a web of the main ideas of each section.

VERY tired!  Off to bed! :)


PS- We found out last week that we will be having a bouncing baby girl!  I will be the mother of two little girls.  I love pink as much as the next girl, but I would be lying if I said I wasn't already starting to sweat the idea of teenage years! LOL!
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More About Segregation and The Civil Rights Movement

On Tuesday I wrote about the lesson that we did using the book  Freedom Summer.  I meant to take a picture of the anchor chart and forgot (of course!).  I took a picture today.  It is nothing to write home about so don't get too excited! :)

The kids enjoyed it.  

We did a simulation activity to help kids understand segregation and discrimination.  The idea was shared on our county website so I cannot take credit for it.  

I put out new markers and crayons, fresh paper, and wrinkled, nasty paper from the recycle bin with broken crayons.  Before we started the activity I told students that the only rule for the activity we were about to do was they could not ONLY use what I gave them (no sharing or getting materials elsewhere in the room).  I asked students to draw a picture of their favorite thing to do after school.  I secretly selected one group of students (students wearing red or bright pink shirts) to get new crayons and fresh paper.  I was careful to make sure the group encompassed all of minorities  just to cover myself (you never know).   The rest of the class got 4 random, broken crayons and the wrinkled paper.  Then I put out peppermints that I give out when kids have a tummy ache and then a mixed bag of Willy Wonka candy with Twizzlers, Gobstoppers, Lemonheads, etc.  The kids in red could choose any candy they wanted.  The rest of the kids only got 1 red peppermint.  I made sure the kids did NOT eat the candy when they picked it out.

 Can you believe not one child complained or grumbled ?!?!  I about fell over!!  We have PREACHED this year "You get what you get and you don't pitch a fit!" and our kiddos have taken it to heart!  Sweet things!  I then called the kids to the carpet and asked the more outspoken ones to talk about how they felt.  I explain what I was up to and why and how it related to segregation and discrimination   Then they all got to pick out 1 piece of candy of their choice since they were good sports- and got to eat it then too!

The light started to spark but the concept was still just too big for my kids. I really feel blessed that this is a concept that is foreign to most of my students- I would hate the alternative.  My co-teacher shared this fantastic idea and they GOT it (well, as much as an 8 year old can get such a heavy, controversial topic). 

Have you seen the video or read the book The Sneetches by Dr. Seuss?  It is a great, child friendly example of segregation and discrimination ("They had no stars upon 'thars!").  


We watched it and then related it to the definitions for segregation and discrimination.  It was really the perfect,simple example!

You can watch the video on School Tube for free!  Click here for a direct link!

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A Whole Bunch of Random

This post is going to be a whole bunch of random.  I have a cold and am high on cold meds and it will show!:)

So we are starting our unit on the Civil Rights.  We study Jackie Robinson and Martin Luther King Jr.    Some of my kids have a really hard time relating to segregation- many KNOW about it.  However, the ACTUAL, true experience is almost too much for them to truly grasp. Sometimes I wonder if even I can truly grasp it. So we did a  few great activities to build background before I jump into Jackie.


Have you read this book?  I LOVE it.  It has a fantastic ending- very unexpected. 

Here is a (spoiler) summary:  It is about two boys, Will (he is the narrator and the kids had to infer his name because it doesn't directly state it.  Loved this too!) and John Henry are best friends.  One is white, the other is African American.  They are best friends, but can't do the same things together (go to the same store, swim in the same pool , etc).  However, they play marbles and swim in the creek.    The Civil Rights Act passes and integration begins to take into effect: the boys are THRILLED that the county pool will finally be open to BOTH boys. They wake up bright and early the next day to finally enjoy the pool together.  When they arrive at the pool- the county trucks are filling the pool with tar.  The pool is now closed (surprise ending, much!?).  John Henry is devastated   He so wanted to be able to swim.  In the last scene the boys link arms to walk into the local store together to buy icy pops.  It will be the first time John Henry will get to pick his own out.

It boggled the kids minds.  I will say many were actually confused on what filling a pool in meant.  If I had to go back, I would draw a picture to illustrate it.  Many were very confused on this.   They got the WHY it was being filled in, but not that the pool was unusable to anyone.

We read the story and created a chart.  We asked and answered questions in partners about the story.  We also talked about how the author hints at the setting (time) but never specifically addresses that it is summer time in the 1960's.   LOTS of great conversation with this book!

I forgot to take a picture of the chart, BUT I will take one tomorrow and will post it asap!  Sorry!

Tomorrow I will share a great segregation simulation.  It was HARD to do it, but I think it made the abstract concepts of discrimination and segregation more concrete.

As a side note, my friend Teresa at 

2nd Grade Pig Pen

Just started a Facebook page.  Make sure to click on over- she also has LOTS of cute stuff! Starting  Jan 9th- 13th she is running a giveaway on her blog where she will give her entire TpT store to one lucky winner!  Nice!

And (see, there are so many squirrels running all over this post!) last of all, Valentine's Day.  I already have this math graphing product with bar graphs and line plot graphs
so it is perfect for the second grade Common Core Standards.  It is the only Valentine's product I have at the moment and I want to make a few more.  Does anyone have any special requests of what they would like to see?  Obviously, the "requester" would get the product free.  I can't guarantee I can make it, but at least it will give me a starting place! My brain is fried.  This cold medicine is killing me!

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Give Away Winner!

I will make this short and sweet.  Tomorrow is the first day back and this sleepy girl is ready for bed!  

The two winners of my newest products, Hot Chocolate Round Up and Skating Through Addition and Subtraction with Regrouping Practice are....

Joan and Lynetteapo!

I have emailed the winners!   To everyone else-thank you so much for commenting

I will announce the Facebook winners on my Facebook page!   
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First Give Away of the Year!

My New Year's resolution is to be better about blogging and Facebook.  So far... I am doing just about was well as my past resolutions to get in shape!  Eh! Maybe the whole resolution thing is not for me!

I DID get two new products published.  I have been working on them since Thanksgiving in bits and pieces so I am very grateful to be DONE!

They are both simple games.  The first is an addition and subtraction activity with regrouping.


This game is just like a previous (free) game from my blog that I shared that focused on addition and subtraction WITHOUT regrouping.  It is a grab and go game and I love doing them as a formative assessment during small guided math groups.  It is only $2 in my TpT store.  Here is a preview:

The second is a whole class game/ activity.  I have shared my (free) scavenger hunts here and here.   This is a scavenger hunt identifying an adjective or adverb in a given sentence with a cold weather theme!

Randomly hang the cards up around the room and the students rotate and answer on a recording sheet.  It is like the game Scoot!  with more movement!  It is also a great formative assessment.


It is also only $2 in my TpT store

 I will be giving away a copy of each to two lucky winners!  If you would like to win leave YOUR New Year's resolution in the comments below WITH your email address!  I will select two winners using a random number generator Sunday, January 6th!

I will also be doing the SAME give away to two additional people on my Facebook page.   Hop over there to double your chances to win!  It is actually more than double since more people usually comment on my blog than Facebook ;)!

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