Sharing my LOVE of Literacy!

If you can read this, thank a teacher !!

July 29, 2010

Favorite Fourth Grade Read Alouds

I am not ignoring all those wonderful 2nd or 3rd grade teachers, it is just that I am writing about 4th grade because I spent four years teaching there.

I loved it and there are so many wonderful books to read aloud. I taught 5th grade for two years and I just know 5th graders would love some of these books, too!

Sideways Stories from WaySide School by Louis Sachar

Each chapter is a story about a different student in this school! My 4th graders loved the silly tales of each book so much, I would read the next two in the series.

Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech

There are two stories going on in this book. This story is has a mystery, with a friendship theme, and a story about family. My students are hooked every year and always surprised by the ending! I have used this in book club book in grade five and six!

Absolutely Normal Chaos by Sharon Creech

This book is similar to Walk Two Moons. There are some characters in this book from Walk Two Moons, too, but it is a completely different story.

*** Please note there is some delicate material in Chaos that I skip over when I read it aloud. ***

Happy Reading !

July 24, 2010

Favorite First Grade Read Alouds!

I love picture books. I have a slight addiction to children's books. I have been resisting the urge to buy them! In honor of another blog I read (It's Not All Flowers and Sausages), I am posting a few of my favorite read alouds that I have used in first grade.

Stellaluna by Janelle Cannon

This is such a sweet story about a baby bat. It teaches us about friendship and family! This illustrations are just as beautiful as the story.

The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister

A great first day or first week of school read aloud! It's a story of friendship and sharing. I have used this book in 4th grade on the first day of school with a poetry writing activity.

Click, Clack, MOO: Cows That Type by Doreen Cronin

A funny story about cows who go on strike with a surprise ending. The first graders just love it because of the repetitive text and the funny ending!

Lilly's Plastic Purse by Kevin Henkes

Lilly loves everything about school until her most prized possession is taken by her teacher. This is a cute book that teaches some valuable lessons.

Happy Reading!

July 17, 2010

Favorite Websites

Summer gives me time to browse my favorite teacher websites. Here are a few of my favorites (Click on the name to open a new window):

Mrs. Newingham Website

Mrs. Madden's Website

Mrs. Cowan's Website

Busy Teacher's Cafe

Take a look around. Some of these websites have more than just reading ideas!

Happy Reading !

July 13, 2010

Summer Reading

Arthur's Family Vacation by March Brown
A perfect book to read during the summer time because goes on a vacation with his family. He turns a rainy vacation in to different daily field trips for the whole family to enjoy!

Here are some fun activities to do with this book:

  • There are sample postcards on page 20 of this book. Write postcards from different points of view of the characters. Use the illustrations in the book to make the cover of your postcard.

  • Make a T-chart and compare what Arthur does on his vacation to what types of activities you have done on your summer vacation.

  • Make a book called "______________ summer/family vacation" Take some pictures of fun places you visit and add them to your book.

  • There are several compound words in this book. Go on a word hunt for compound words.

Happy Reading !

July 11, 2010

Poetry Possibilites !

On Friday I attended a workshop about using poetry can in the classroom. Here is the blog of the the teacher/presenter:

Five "big ideas" I came away with regarding poetry in a classroom are:

1. Read poetry to your students as a part of a daily ritual in your schedule.

2. Revisit poems over and over. Each time a poem is heard or read, it has a new meaning.

3. Create a poetry center and change it up a lot! Make it a place to read poems, illustrate poems, write poems, find favorite poems or even a favorite line from a poem.... a place to foster a love of poetry!

4. Keep your own poetry journal and when your students write and read poetry, do the same... be a poetry loving role model!

The most meaniful lesson for me was when the presenter said:

5. "Remember words stay with you... always!" She suggested that everyone should find words they love, words that bring comfort. As teachers, we should teach our students to do the same with poetry!

Happy Reading !

July 8, 2010

Poetry Books for Teachers

Poetry is part of my weekly tutoring. As I have said before it is great for increasing fluency and word recognition. I also use poems for looking at word patterns.

Here are a few of my favorite books I use for poetry:

Phonics Through Poetry
by B. Hajdusiewicz
These poems are wonderful. I pull from this book when I am looking for a specific theme or holiday poem. There is also a lot of word patterns withing these poems!

Scholastic's 70 Wonderful Word Family Poems
*** Even though this books has the grades K-2 on the corner, I have used it with my 4th graders as part of their weekly spelling units.

Scholastic's 40 Wonderful Blend & Digraph Poems *** Great for first and second graders! I have used this with the kido I tutor when we work on a specific blend. It makes a nice bi-weekly change from those phonics worksheets.

Happy Reading !