Sunday, October 25, 2015

Happy Anniversary!!

Hi teacher friends! I'm excited to FINALLY share this blog post with you! It's my one year Teachers Pay Teachers Anniversary!! Teachers Pay Teachers has been one of the most challenging and rewarding things I've done. It's been a wonderful year of connecting and growth. To celebrate, I've teamed up with some amazing bloggers for a little giveaway!

Michelle from Teaching Ideas For Those Who Love Teaching and I have teamed up to give away a couple of gift cards. How does a $25 TpT and $50 Target gift card sound? Pretty good right?
Does anyone else have this problem at Target?
In addition to the gift cards, one well deserving teacher is going win some serious teacher swag from the following sellers:

One product of your choice from Lovin' Little Learners
$10 credit to Shifting Teacher K-2
One product of your choice from Lattes and Lunchrooms
Respect Packet from Penelope's Portfolio
Product of your choice from Sweet Sweet Primary
Product of your choice from Chrissy Beltran
Product of your choice from Activated Education
Product of your choice from Firstie Friends
Credit from MM Bilingual
One product from Teach 2 Love

Don't forget to show these bloggers some love by following their TpT stores and blogs. Enter the giveaway below, and good luck!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, October 17, 2015

You Oughta Know for October

Hi everyone! I'm linking up with a fabulous group of bloggers again for the You Oughta Know blog hop. Thanks Mrs. McClain for hosting!

This month I'm going to share a few quick tips about ThingLink. ThingLink is my new favorite app, and the possibilities for classroom use are endless! There is an option to create web based accounts for you and your students but for now my class is just using the app to share our creations with each other.
For an example my class decided to create a "thing" about pumpkins. You can choose to use an image already saved or a new one.

There are four choices for adding media to your image.
Your image can be as interactive as you'd like. I've always called the circles pulse points or dots, not sure what the official name is! 

We discussed some pumpkin facts as a class and added them to our image. You'll notice the dots will look different based on what content you add. The writing part was fun, but what my kids loved the most was adding videos.

Before my students add a YouTube video they know I must approve it. I'm hoping the creators of ThingLink can somehow add safety features so students don't accidentally stumble upon something they shouldn't.
We were able to find a student friendly video that showed how to carve faces on a pumpkin.
How cool would this app be for a research project? You can also save a public ThingLink created by someone else if you'd like. I've discovered some amazing ones created by other teachers. I'm presenting a PD session for my district next month, and this app is at the top of the list to share.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Fluency Fun!

Happy Sunday! I'm FINALLY getting around to my fluency post after weeks of delaying it. Today, I'm going to share some of my favorite ways to practice fluency in the classroom. It's one of my favorite things to teach. Why? Because it's so easy to make engaging, exciting, and differentiated for all your students! One of my main goals for fluency is to lay a foundation while also providing engagement and fun activities. Prepare for tons of pictures!

First up is an app that's quickly become a staple in my classroom. One Minute Reader is a free iPad app similar to the program Read Naturally. Teachers set reading levels for their students based on how they perform on a quick placement test.
Here's a screenshot of two different reading levels. Who doesn't love an app that can work for multiple students? Each student's progress can be saved so you don't have to start over.

Students work through different activities with each story such as a cold read and read along, just like with the program Read Naturally.
Each level has one free story, with additional stories available to purchase. It takes a lot for me to spend money on apps. I can say with confidence additional purchases for One Minute reader are well worth the price.
Next, is one of our FAVORITE activities to do in the classroom, Fluency With a Twist. It's guaranteed that I'll hear tons of giggles when my students do this activity.

Students scan a QR code to read the stories in a special voice or while doing a certain task. No story is read the same way twice in a row.

Even the most shy, reluctant reader can find their inner actor/actress!  A little tech combined with movement is a winner combination! There's also an  October Edition now available in my store.

Cara Carroll, one of my favorite bloggers has a wonderful set of products called Rock Your Fluency. I have both the first grade and second grade editions. I love how the fluency phrases are divided into sets. The dice games are a favorite in our weekly fluency station. There's just something magical about students getting to use a highlighter while working!
Miss DeCarbo has two wonderful products to practice sight word fluency.I laminated my copies to save paper. Students draw their illustrations with a dry erase marker. Repeated reading certainly does help with fluency. I also love that students get a chance to practice expression in their voices with the different end punctuation in the passages.
Sorry for the lamination glare! I use the fluency passages for my intervention groups. My struggling readers gain confidence each time they read. 
What are you favorite resources for fluency? Have a fabulous week!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Currently October

Oh. my. goodness. I don't know about y'all, but September kicked my butt! It's time for another linky with Farley for Currently October.
Listening- House Hunters is on as background noise. I love trying to guess what house gets picked.
Loving- I'm so glad October is finally here. October to me is the start of the holiday season, not to mention one of the best movies ever comes on.
You're never too old for a little Hocus Pocus!
Thinking- Tomorrow I'm running a 5k. My pink tutu is ready! I'm not the world's fastest runner by any means, but I do enjoy participating in a 5k race when I can.
Wanting- Having pizza for dinner is all kinds of wrong if I'm running tomorrow morning, Lord help me fight temptation. Has anyone tried ordering Domino's with the pizza emjoi? I've always wondered how that works.
Needing- Last weekend I moved, and there are still boxes to go through. I DESPISE unpacking anything. I also need to finish a blog post about fluency I've been planning on sharing for a few weeks now. Maybe Sunday I can finally sit down and finish.
Boo-tiful- Seeing others show kindness and caring has always been beautiful to me.
Don't forget to link up and share your post!