Monday, 29 October 2012

Words Rule - spelling program

When I changed to grade 2/3 I asked my teacher colleagues what Word Study program they used.  Here is the current program I follow which came from a friend, who got it from a friend and so on.

Monday - Write 5 new words for the week in a sentence on a chart paper.  Cover the word.  Students guess the covered words.  Discuss what the words have in common (word pattern).  Students write the words in their agenda.
Tuesday - Students box the words and write a sentence for each word.  If students are unsure how to spell a word in the sentence, they underline the word.  We share sentences at the carpet and 5 new students add sentences to the class list.  When I review their notebooks, I use the editing marks.  Students make corrections.
Wednesday - Whole group Hangman.  Students follow along in their Spelling Journals.  Like Hangman, students guess letters to reveal the mystery word.  Choose 1 student to draw on the whiteboard.  Students build small words from the mystery word.
Thursday - Word Sorting and Word Work Games.
Friday - Spelling quiz: 5 words + 1 bonus sentence. The sentence uses a few of the week's words. The sentence has to be completely correct, including all: spelling, capitalization and proper punctuation.

Each week as we edit writing, spelling or when students ask how to spell a word, I write it down.  I add them to a pocket chart Words from Writing.  We sort these words according to pattern rules on our word wall, or other sorting means.  You can find 2 weeks of words from writing here.

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Must Have Recipes for Teachers: lice + laundry tips

Well I had my first case of lice in the classroom this week.  Yuck!  Luckily I am also a Certified Aromatherapist, so I went straight to my cupboard and made up an essential oil blend for myself and the colleagues I share a classroom with.  I wanted to share my recipe since I know how itchy the topic makes all of us!  If you have questions about the essential oil blend, please contact me at:

I am also including a great laundry tip to remove art stains from clothing.  Click the picture to download the freebies.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Stellaluna - book study flip book freebie

Here is a double decker flip book for one of my favourite stories: Stellaluna by Janell Cannon. 
Enjoy - Kerri

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Spiders and Bats oh my! + a couple freebies :)

This past week we have been reading informational texts on spiders and bats.  I wanted to start from the beginning so that my students had a foundation to build on. 

We started with a read aloud from a section on spiders.  As the children enjoyed their snack, their job was to listen for important, interesting and cool facts.  After the reading and snacks were away, we came to the carpet and listed everything we could remember from the reading.  I have been alternating colours on my charts this year so the students can differentiate between facts / words.

We focused on facts from the text (not opinions or prior knowledge of spiders).
The children were in groups of 2/3 with a new text on spiders.  The following day they viewed all of the posters "museum style"(idea from:
They chose their top 3 facts and wrote them on paper chains.  Next they ordered their facts and wrote out their planning sheet.  We edited together, they wrote their draft and again we met briefly to check for capitals and periods.  Good copies were written on their spider craftivity.

On to bats.  Here is a bat companion to spiders.  This time we highlighted important keywords and parts of sentences.  I'd recommend checking out: Kids National Geographic, 42explore, Bat Conservation and even eHow.  All are great for projecting onto whiteboards for an interactive lesson.  Click on the page below for your copy :)

Here's a quick music + sound effects in movies activity.  Perfect during Hallowe'en season!

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Text Features, Sticky Notes + Writing a Paragraph

Last year I reviewed text features with the Titanic.  This year its spiders and bats.  So far we have talked about the index, labeled diagram and glossary.  Here are a couple of the lesson anchor charts:
We completed the glossary poster on Friday (the blanks being glossary, keywords, definition (meaning).  We practiced highlighting keywords and parts of sentences with a Bat Fact sheet that I projected onto my whiteboard.  Of course I Xd their highlights out twice!  The next day we looked at a great Mailbox sheet about bats and the glossary (no Xing it out that day).

A few weeks back we looked at writing our notes on sticky notes.  Here is the list:
We have also begun to write paragraphs.  Here are our charts for writing a basic paragraph.  We used this format to write about spiders and now bats as well.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Hallowe'en Word Work and Descriptive Writing

I finally finished my Hallowe'en Word Work and Descriptive Writing bundle!  I can't wait to share it with my kids this week and next.  Here is a sneak peek of the activities.  I will get my preview file on my TPT store tomorrow :)

My favourite Hallowe'en writing activity. Here are a few sample pages.
My new favourite Word Work game: Trouble.
And a Figurative Language activity on Hallowe'en Idioms.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Descriptive Text Subway Art

I have posted my Descriptive Text Subway Art as a freebie on my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  Here's a peek:

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

DIY Word Work Games

I tried out my Password Trouble with a few of my students today.  They loved it!  I can't wait to share it with my whole class this week!  I have 2 Trouble gameboards, so almost half the class can play the game at once.  You can find my Word Work Games here.  Let the games begin!

I found the gameboard for $2.99 at a local Value Village! 
Copy the gameboard onto colourful cardstock with cards to match. 
You can colour code a variety of Word Work Games through the year.
This game can be found in my package:
Word Work Games for groups and partners.