Sunday, March 15, 2015

Teaching Figurative Language

Figurative Language is one of my favorite things to teach! There are so many fun ways to teach this skill and the kids always seem to enjoy it. I wanted to share a fun little presentation that I created with a site called Nearpod. Have y'all ever heard of this site? It's a wonderful FREE presentation tool. You can check it out here. There are tons of free, already created presentations that you have access to. You can also purchase presentations or create your own. I decided to make my own so I can put in exactly what I wanted for my lesson on figurative language. You can use it too! I made a definition slide for each type of figurative language and them provided a video clip that showed an example of each type. This was their favorite part of the entire lesson and it really helped them see how that type was used in context. They were constantly referring back to the videos. You can check out my Nearpod below.

After we viewed the Nearpod presentation, we made this little foldable, which served as a study guide for the test. 







I also made these posters that serve as a visual aid and reminder. 


You can grab my figurative language foldable and posters here :)

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Powtoon: My New Favorite Thing

Hi friends! Today I wanted to share with y'all my newest favorite web discovery: Powtoon. I may be late to the party and living under a rock, but I still wanted to share in case some of y'all were like me and had never used this fun site.

Basically, Powtoon is a free animated presentation site that you can use in your classroom. I'm not gonna lie. When I first starting trying to create an animated presentation, I almost gave up. It was hard. Creating the slide wasn't hard, but getting the timing right was! I abandoned my project and began working on something else. I came back to it a few days later and something clicked. Suddenly the program didn't seem that tricky.

The free version comes with 30 student accounts. While you can create your own presentations like I did, there are also premade ones that you can use. This site would be perfect for having your students create a presentation on a novel or topic. Since I have 70 kids, I'm having a trickier time figuring out how to get the program in the kids' hands but for now, it's fab to use as a presentation tool. 
I created 5 short presentations to show meanings of idioms that we will be discussing next week. Come check them out and then be sure and create your free account on Powtoon :) I promise you'll love it!

               




              




             


            


           

Friday, February 27, 2015

Five for Friday: Snow Edition!

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We finally had snow this week! Snow days for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday! I was one happy camper. I love my job, but there is nothing like a snow day! 

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In the spirit of a good snow day, Reese and I have been catching up on our movies. I downloaded The Last Five Years from itunes (have y'all ever done this? It was insanely easy and convenient!). I adore all things Anna Kendrick and this movie was the best. I love musicals so it was perfection for me. Except the ending. Has anyone ever seen this movie or musical? Please email me and discuss the ending. Seriously lifeinfirstgrade@gmail.com

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When I'm not engrossed in a movie, I've been reading these new additions for our classroom library so I can tell the kids about them. I love children's books, but I may or may not be in need of a grown up book. Recommendations? 

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My favorite part of a snow day is hands down the mornings. Time to sip coffee and read/blog

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For those of you who have asked, I am turning the Comp Files into a monthly resource. I'm currently working on March (slowly working, but working nonetheless!)

Link up with Doodle Bugs and share your Five for Friday!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

My favorite products for the TpT SALE!


Y'all, I am so excited! We have our first official snow day tomorrow and the Teachers Pay Teachers HERO sale is happening! I am LOVING it! I'm busy stocking my cart with some wonderful products from my favorite teachers and I thought I'd share a few of my favorite products that will be on sale tomorrow (along with everything else in my store!)
Special thanks to LadyBugs Teacher Files for the amazing button! 

This product is great to group your students and learn about historical figures and literary characters at the same time :) 26 sets are included You can check this product out here.


This is my new favorite resource. I'm turning this into a monthly resource and I'm currently working on a March version. :) You can grab your copy here.

Book Talks are always good for motivating your students to read. You can read about these here and grab your copy here

Spice up boring worksheets and graphic organizers with these fun, reusable Think Mats. You can read about them here and put them in your cart here
I've gotten so many emails and comments about these Bloom's Ladders and that makes me so happy! These are a fun and easy way to increase the rigor in your classroom and get kids to use those Higher Order Thinking Skills. You can grab the fiction ladders here and the non fiction ladders here

Reading Tuck Everlasting? Check out my activities herehere and here and grab your copy here

My favorite unit of all time and the thing that I've found to be most helpful with teaching character traits can be found here

Don't forget to grab your free copy of my Close Reading Toolkit printables while you're shopping! :) 

Everything in my shop will be on sale tomorrow! I'll be back tomorrow to share what I bought! :) 

Monday, February 23, 2015

Teaching Onomatopoeia with Batman (And TCR!)

Hi friends! Today I'm excited to showcase a new collection from Teacher Created Resources. Their new superheroes theme has some great pieces in it and I'm especially loving the speech bubble accent pieces. There's SO much you can do with these and when I first saw them, I knew exactly how I would use them.

We just finished up our novel study on Tuck Everlasting and what I love about that novel is how rich it is in figurative language. We discussed onomatopoeia last week and I used the superhero collection from TCR as a mini lesson. 

To introduce this element of figurative language, I used this amazing poem from Oscar Learn, Oscar Teach that I found via Pinterest

Then we watched a clip from the old Batman tv show and we wrote down the onomatopoeias we found in the video clip. 
                                

I used the superhero accent pieces to create some examples.

I wrote the onomatopoeia on the accent pieces and covered them with sticky notes. We read each sentence and determined the onomatopoeia. Then we pulled off the sticky notes.





We then tested our knowledge using this fabulous little figurative language resource from Erin Cobb.

I'll be back soon to show y'all how I'm using TCR's other new collection: Chalkboard! Stayed Tuned! 

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Close Reading Toolkits Printables- Free!

Hi friends! I've just uploaded my Close Reading Toolkit printables as a free resource :) Click here to download your copy. Feedback is greatly appreciated!




Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Close Reading Toolkits- Make Your Own!

Close reading is big right now. I've been doing close reading with my kids since last year and my kids have started to think of it as work. They are right...it is work. But it shouldn't necessarily feel like it. I want them to be excited about digging deep into a piece of text! I set out to create a fun way to spice up close reading, thus these close reading tool kits were born:


When we start to dissect a piece of text, I have one of my kids pass out the toolkits and everyone begins to unpack their kit. Here's what's included in mine: 


-a pack of sticky notes
-a highlight with 3 colors. A parent donated these fun triangle highlighters, but if you don't have these, just include three different colors
- an evidence bookmark. These come in handy when citing evidence after reading You can find the bookmarks in my Comp Files unit. 
- a close reading symbols card for the kids to refer to.  There are tons out there that you can decide which works best for your students. This is the one we are currently using but I do change them for time to time depending on what type of passage we are working with. 
- a pen. Most teachers would prefer pencils and understandably so, but there's something about a pen that makes it just a little more fun for the kids. Whatever works, right?

I plan on posting later this week on how we use these supplies to actually close read a piece of text, so check back!

If you're interested in these printables, let me know and I'll upload them! :) 

UPDATE: 2/21- These printables are now uploaded. You can find them here