Fall Blog Hop



Happy first day of fall! I'm joining a great group of blogging friends today to share some fall fun and I wanted to share some great fall books and fun freebies to go with them.

Finding a good nonfiction book to use with kinders can be tough! I always look for books with real nonfiction features that I can use for teaching points.  I also try to find books that are short and simple enough for my students to understand without being overwhelmed by the amount of information. One of my favorite resources for finding these books is scholastic! They often have thematic packs of "Science Vocabulary Readers" that are perfect for primary classes.

Colorful Leaves By: Maria Fleming is one of the books in this awesome series and is a great addition to learning about leaves.
 The pictures in this book are beautiful!
 It begins with a table of contents, so I like to point out text features whenever I can! Students will learn about leaf shapes, what leaves do, and a leaf's life. We discuss how in nonfiction books you don't always have to read the entire book cover to cover.  The table of contents can help you find just the information you are looking for, a great researching skill!
 I really like that the leaf shape section shows that leaves aren't just on trees!
 The students can clearly learn a lot from just the photographs on this page. I have them draw different leaf shapes that they didn't know about before after viewing this page.
 This and other books in this series have new vocabulary in red with a definition on the page as well as in the glossary.
 The photo, captions, close up and drawing on this page are more great examples of helpful text features I point out to my students. We discuss how and what we learned from each of these features.


The glossary in the back is a great reference for the new vocabulary in this book.  The comprehension questions aren't great, but are good for basic recall.

I created some graphic organizers to use with this book that could be used with other leaf books as well.  You can grab them here free!







Another one of my favorite fall topics to teach is Apples! If you teach apples in the fall, here is my FAVORITE book for teaching about this topic. There is so much information crammed into this little book.

Apples, Apples, Apples by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace
I love this chart about the different types of apples.
This diagram of the parts of apples is great.
This explanation on how apples are grown from seeds is simple but informative.

I always make applesauce with my class, so I like that this book has a recipe to follow. 
There are also directions for making apple prints.
I created a few freebies to go along with this book.  You can download them for free here.





Hop on over to see what Katie from Mrs. Decatur's Little Gators has to share with you next!




DIY Felt Board for Story Retelling

Disclosure: Some of these products were samples provided to me to try. Opinions and the choice to use  are 100% my own! This post contains product links.

Hi Friends! I am excited to share with you a fun do it yourself project I have been working on to help with story retelling in kindergarten.  If you are super lucky your classroom may already have a felt board that you use with your students, but if you are like me you may have to get creative and create your own.  But don't worry it is SUPER easy!

First you want to gather your supplies.  You will need to purchase an artist's canvas in the size that you would like your board to be. Make it big for whole class use, or small for a retelling center, the choice it totally yours :) You will also need to purchase a few yards of fabric in a variety of different colors to make your board and story pieces. I used cut by the yard Kunin Eco-fiPlus™ Premiumfelt which worked perfectly.
Next you will want to choose one color to cover your board with. For this board I decided to use white so that the colors would really pop, but you could really use any color you like. Cut the felt to size, leaving enough extra on all sides to fold over onto the back of the board.
Then you can start to fold the fabric up and over the canvas and staple it onto the backside of the frame.  I used my Paper Pro 30 Sheet Stapler, but you could also use a bigger staple gun if you have one handy as well.
 Continue to pull the felt back over each side, stretching the fabric tight and stapling it down.  I find it best to start in the middle of one side and work towards the outer edge to be sure it doesn't bunch up.
That's it! I also purchased a small easel stand to hold the board so that it can stand alone without having to be leaned against a wall. Now the fun part...creating story telling pieces!  I chose a few of my favorite kindergarten must have read alouds to create first.
 I always start retelling with Brown Bear, Brown Bear.  It is such a simple story and students just love feeling successful as they retell it.  In order to create the pieces for this story I used templates I found on Making Learning Fun. You can find TONS of printable templates there for popular stories. You simply print the template, trace the pieces onto felt, cut the pieces out and hot glue them together.  If you are short on time, you can also print the pictures on card stock, laminate and attach velcro dots to the back.  Here are a few other stories I created:
A September favorite of mine is Ten Apples Up on Top. I use this story a lot to practice counting with my class, so these apples are perfect for interactive practice.
And for October, Five Little Pumpkins. I didn't even use a template for this one.  I just cut out long and short rectangles to make a fence, round orange pieces for pumpkins, and small brown stems for each one.  
Another great option for retelling is nursery rhymes! Most kids are familiar with several of these rhymes, and I found a set of little nursery rhyme readers from Scholastic that are perfect for kindergarten.
 And who doesn't Love Mrs. Wishy Washy?
 And last but certainly not least...Chicka Chicka Boom Boom! This one was a bit more time consuming to make because I created all of the upper and lowercase letters, but I love that kids can use them to not only retell the story, but also to build their names, sight words and more!
I really hope you enjoyed checking out my latest project, and I would love to know how you use the felt board in your classroom. But wait that's not all! Enter below to win a stash of creative supplies to get creating for your own classroom!

And don't forget to check out more great felt projects from these awesome bloggers:


An InLinkz Link-up

You can now find an expanded color line of Kunin Eco-fi Classicfelt™; Eco-fiPlus™ Premiumfelt and ShaggiChic  non-wovens fabrics in cut by the yard at your local Walmart please inquire as to what is available in your area.

Fall Into Great Savings!

I'm super excited to be linking up some of my blogging friends to bring you a great "Fall Into Savings" sale.  EVERYTHING in my store is 20% off including already discounted bundles. A few of us are also sharing our favorite products on our blogs that we think you might love.

I wanted to share why I just LOVE my Common Core Exit Ticket ELA Bundles.  I've shared my math sets before and so many of you wonderful friends have asked me to create ELA versions as well.  Even if you've never used exit tickets, I promise these are quick and easy to use! And if you thought exit tickets were just for the older grades, don't worry these were made specifically for the primary grades so they only have a few questions on each one.

Here are a few pictures of the kindergarten set of ELA exit tickets:
 
Each exit ticket has 4 options for differentiation. For this skill, each ticket some letters filled in or no letters filled in, making the task more difficult for the students.
The directions are simple to explain to students and they can be done in about a minute or less.
These quick samples are so easy to check and use as a tool for assessing student understanding and guiding further instruction.

The whole Kindergarten Bundle includes:
• 181 different exit tickets (with 4 of the same on each page for easy copying)

• Black and white print only to save on ink
• Common Core Standards listed on each ticket for quick reference/organization
• Exit tickets for 46 Kindergarten ELA Standards (Reading: Literature, Reading: Informational Text, Foundational Skills, and Language)
 Answer keys included for foundational skills and language exit tickets

You can check out the bundle here, or check out any of the sets individually using the links in the description on TPT.


But wait you teach 1st or 2nd grade? I've got you covered too! 

The First Grade Bundle includes:
• 204 different exit tickets (with 4 of the same on each page for easy copying)
• Black and white print only to save on ink
• Common Core Standards listed on each ticket for quick reference/organization
• Exit tickets for 51 First Grade ELA Standards (Reading: Literature, Reading: Informational Text, Foundational Skills, and Language)
 Answer keys included for foundational skills and language exit tickets

You can check out the bundle here, or check out any of the sets individually using the links in the description on TPT.

And the Second Grade Bundle, which is currently being completed, will include:
• Over 200 different exit tickets (with 4 of the same on each page for easy copying)
• Black and white print only to save on ink
• Common Core Standards listed on each ticket for quick reference/organization
• Exit tickets for 42 Second Grade Math Standards (Reading: Literature, Reading: Informational Text, Foundational Skills, and Language)
 Answer keys included for foundational skills and language exit tickets

You can check out the GROWING bundle here, or check out any of the sets individually using the links in the description on TPT. This bundle will be completed by the end of next week, but you can grab it now for an extra discounted price!

Want to win a bundle? Enter below and I will giveaway one ELA exit ticket bundle for the grade level the winner chooses!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Alrighty now head on over to these other great stores/blogs to check out all of the great items on sale this weekend!


Oh Snap! It's Almost October!


I hate to break it to you all, but September is half over, which means...time to start prepping for October!! If you are like me though, you love the changing seasons and fall is definitely a favorite season of mine. I love apples, pumpkins, hayrides, corn mazes, and of course Halloween :)

Today I want to share all of the great ways that task cards can be used as well as some cute Halloween sets to use this October!

First, when you have a skill that everyone in the class could use some work or review on, try out these whole group ideas.

  
Next, if you just have a few students that could use reinforcement or review, try these small group ideas.

 Or if you are looking for productive and targeted practice for individual students take a look at these individual practice ideas.
  
And here are just a few more thoughts on how you can make the most of the task cards you have in your classroom.

If you'd like to try these ideas out but don't have any task card sets. Check out the cute and fun task cards I created for Halloween to practice both math and ELA skills!

Practice counting sets to 20 with Halloween Candy Count.

Practice counting sets of money with Monster Money.

Practice counting base ten blocks to 100 with Place Value Potion.

Practice identifying beginning sounds with Batty Beginnings.

Practice identifying the number of syllables in words with Syllable Spiders.

Practice reading CVC words with Wicked Words.

You can also grab them all bundled together here for just $10!

Be sure to head over to Teacher Deals and Dollar Steals to check out more great October resources!