Sharing Sunday for April

I feel like this whole year has just flown by me.  I mean, didn't we just take down our Christmas tree?  I mean, really, it feels like just a few days ago! And now it is spring!?!?  Eekk!

I would like to say that I love April and that I love all this gorgeous weather we have been having here in Georgia...


but that would be a lie.


.

I am the kid on the bottom.  From about March to May I am just a snotty, yucky mess.


The struggle is real around here...real gross! LOL

I DO have good news!  It is Sharing Sunday for April!


I have tons of goodies for you! Make sure to click on the image to get the pdf- then you can click on the images to get your freebies!


Kick off April with informational reading and integrate science!  Spring is the best time to teach life cycles!  I just finished a new product and have a HUGE freebie.  If you like my other informational articles, then you don't want to miss this freebie! It has an informational article about the butterfly life cycle plus lots of practice with main idea!



In April, we started studying Jimmy Carter, which is a part of our Georgia Social Studies standards. I wrote a blog post about informational writing about Jimmy Carter, however, you could apply it to any nonfiction topic.  Lots of freebies and ideas!!



Math time!  Time to teach TIME and GRAPHING!  Time was always so hard, and we practiced it all year.  The Spring Time pack has lots of differentiated activities to meet all levels of learners.  Want to try a "taste" of the graphing pack?  Click on the picture for a sample center!



In third grade we studied conservation and recycling.  This Earth Day informational article is a perfect way to tie in a seasonal celebration with science! It includes an article, main idea practice, text features practice, AND fluency practice!  I included a FREE center for students to practice sorting  recyclable materials.  Click on the picture to get your copy!


I hope this makes you planning for April a breeze! 




 If you would like more ideas from me, be sure to follow me on Teachers Pay Teachers, Pinterest, and Facebook to catch all the freebies and ideas and more!
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Growing Readers and Writers with Mentor Texts

I am so excited to join in on the Growing Readers and Writers with Mentor Texts Spring Link Up!  So many fabulous idea were shared in the winter link up- I can't wait to go through all these spring ones!!


On each blog, we will be sharing a mentor text lesson using the book we've chosen. The lesson will be modeling a reading skill (comprehension or writing typically, but some at the primary level may target vocabulary, fluency, or word building).  The materials that are shared may be forever freebies or may be free for a limited time. Please take note of this as you visit the blogs. Also, affiliate links are included below.  I may receive a small commission upon purchase from any links below.

Are you ready to get started?


I actually choose a book that was new to me.


Butterfly House by Eve Bunting is a tale told in an interesting sentence structure.  In some ways, it resembles poetry.  It is the story of a young girl that finds a caterpillar.  She and her grandfather build it a butterfly house to live in while it changes into a butterfly.



I stumbled across a read aloud of this book on you tube.



There are so many things to do with this book.  I really loved the idea of using it as an introduction for the butterfly life cycle.  This book does a great job providing students simple and child friendly background information about life cycles. 

This is a great opportunity to brainstorm with students the differences between informational and literary text.





I wanted a nonfiction resource to pair up with this wonderful literary text.  I wrote an informational article about the life cycle of the butterfly. It is written at about an end of the second grade reading level.  I wanted to jam pack as many text features as I could. The two page article includes:


Simply copy the article front to back.  I included a color version and a black and white version. There are several activities to accompany the article.


The following activities are included:

Circle map for accessing prior knowledge about butterflies
Multiple choice questions about the text
Open response questions about the article.  The questions are the same as the multiple choice questions, only the format is different.
Main idea worksheet about two sections of the text
Main idea and supporting details worksheet about two sections of the text
Main idea and supporting details of the entire text




I wanted to make sure to tie the article back to the mentor text, Butterfly House. I also included a Venn diagram to compare the mentor text to the article.  I included a worksheet format and a format for interactive notebooks.


Want to snag your copy of the freebie?  Click on the picture below!


This is actually part of a larger pack.  The full version has tons of materials for Butterfly House.


and for teaching the butterfly life cycle.


You can snag it for only $4.00 my my Tpt store here!

PIN FOR LATER:


Before you move on to the next post, my mystery word is life cycle. [HERE] is the link to the form you can use to keep track of the mystery words at each stop. You'll need them for an entry on the Rafflecopter below.


Thanks so much for visiting today. If you have any questions related to this lesson, please let me now. Have a wonderful Spring, and be sure to come back soon.

Want to see all the other lessons in the link up? Check here!



An InLinkz Link-up

Do you feel like you need more help with reading instruction?



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5 Tips for Efficient Parent Communication


When I first started teaching I would always gets annoyed when a child's folder came back fully stuffed with papers, obviously untouched.  I mean really, people?  How hard is it to check a folder?

Now that I am a parent I realize, it can be hard, very hard. And my girls are still in preschool!  I can imagine it will only get more difficult as the girls get older and we add dance and gymnastics and Wednesday night church to our plates.



I guess the trick is to make it as easy on parents as possible.  So how can you make this easy on YOU and the parents?  How can you increase parent involvement and communication?

Head on over to the Primary Peach to check out my suggestions!  My post will hopefully make your year, well...a treasure ;).


 
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Author's Purpose: Easy as PIE (and More) FREEBIE!


Author's purpose can be so important for kids to figure out as readers.  It can help them determine the author's point of view and can also make connections to the writing process.  It can help them as writers to determine THEIR own purpose for writing (other than the teacher told me to! LOL!).


I have rounded up some great author's purpose ideas and FREEBIES! 

Please note, that many of the ideas below are from OTHER blogs.  Please do NOT pin those pictures from this post.  Click on the picture and open the original post and pin from there.  This gives credit to the original creator, please!


Love this idea from The Lemonade Stand Teachers! Students cut apart a book order form  and sorted the author's purpose for writing each book in a pie tin before gluing it down on construction paper.  The chef hats are an adorable touch!


LOVE this post from the Teacher Next Door on the Upper Elementary Snapshots collaborative blog! She included a list of mentor texts to model each author's purpose for PIE!  Yahoo!  No more hunting for books!


I love this student generated anchor chart by Katie Klohn at Miss Klohn's Classroom.  It sums up exactly WHY we need to teach author's purpose nicely!


Do you like to sing with your kids?  Love this FREE author's purpose song by Pam at Teaching 4 Real!

There is a TON  of stuff out there to teach author's purpose as persuade, inform, or entertain.  I know with the Common Core Standards in second grade it is stated a bit differently.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.2.6- Identify the main purpose of a text, including what the author wants to answer, explain, or describe.

It is MUCH harder to find materials to meet this standard.


I really liked this anchor chart from Camping Out in Second Grade. I think it summarized all the purposes nicely.

I created this little Saint Patrick's Day freebie for you guys!


Students create a cute little leprechaun peek over  and pot of gold and sort to determine author's purpose.


Students can cut and color the leprechaun for a fun seasonal twist.


However, they are still practicing academics! I included TWO versions.  One is pictured above, and practices author's purpose with persuade, inform, and entertain.


I included a second version to meet the second grade CCS for describe, explain, and answer.

The best part?  It is FREE!



Enjoy!


 If you would like more ideas from me, be sure to follow me on Teachers Pay Teachers, Pinterest, and Facebook to catch all the freebies and ideas and more!

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Reading Comprehension HELP!

I wrote an earlier post with what to do when a students doesn't recall or understand the text when you tap in on a student reading during guided reading.



What do you do when the students STILL doesn’t understand? Some students simply need even more scaffolding and support.  If the students is still struggling and behind, there may be an underlying cause such as a learning disability or problem with working memory.

Well, what do you do when you have ran out of tricks?  Your bag of tricks is empty?   That really isn't an option for us, so maybe these tips can refill your bag!



One strategy to support students that are struggling to retain the text is to chunk up the text into smaller portions.

 For younger students, simply have students say, “I just read about…..” and complete the sentence stem after reading each page. I often had students tap the corner of the page and then retell what happened on the page as a strategy to help them remember to retell.



For older students, place a post it note after each chunk of text (one page, two pages, or even a paragraph depending on the student’s needs) and ask the student to WRITE, “I just read about…” and complete the prompt.



Students can then go back and put the post its notes in order to create a full retelling.



You can also use this worksheet for this strategy.



Simply right the page number in the far left column.  I also marked that page with a post it note.  When students reached the post it note, they wrote a very short summary in the center column.  After read the entire text, students can use all the boxes to write a summary of the text in the far right box.

Click here to grab this sheet FREE!




After students have mastered this, another strategy is READ, COVER, REMEMBER, RETELL. This is very similar to the strategy above, but it simply helps the students internalize the retelling strategy without referring to the text and relying on their memory.

  1. Ask students to READ a chunk of text.
  2. Then, have students COVER the portion of the text with their hand.
  3. Have students think aloud about what they REMEMBER. This is similar to the, “I just read about…” stem from above.
  4. Finally, have students RETELL the text in detail. When students finish, they can uncover the text and check to see if they added or omitted any details.



I wrote my newest product with struggling readers in mind.  I wanted something easy to use and print for teachers, but powerful for students struggling to retain text. The Little Readers, Big Thinkers (Spring Edition) has several one page mini books of text.



At the bottom of each page, students are prompted to answer a question from the text.




The mini books are leveled end first, beginning second, and mid second.




I also included a one page format of the text for teachers to use as a running record to practice for repeated readings. Want to try it out for FREE?  Just click on the picture below!


Do you feel like you need more help with reading instruction?



  Sign up to have specific tips and strategies send straight to your email for FREE! You can sign up here! Please note, this is an additional, BRAND NEW newsletter that is separate from my blog newsletter.  If you want to get these tips, you have to sign up here!

 If you would like more ideas from me, be sure to follow me on Teachers Pay Teachers, Pinterest, and Facebook to catch all the freebies and ideas and more!

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