Sharing my LOVE of Literacy!

If you can read this, thank a teacher !!

June 11, 2017

Happy June

I am still teaching! We are plugging along in New York. Three more teaching days, then 4 days with finals! It will be a crazy week.

On a personal note I have had an uneventful week. When school ends I will have a much needed two weeks to relax before I work the summer school program for reading.

I have been reading the debates from Scholastic's Storyworks Magazine. The kids love talking about both opinions. It's a great way to end teaching reading with the 5th graders! We also have done some vocabulary work with the most common words that kids screw up in their writing.

Here are a few pics:
 
I start out with an easy practice.
Then make it harder.

 Kiddos write their sentences first, then I called kids to write one sentence from their list 
to check for their understanding. 






Plus here is a pic of my current book pile. 
(There is quite the variety): 

 

I found this on my whiteboard: 
This is why I love teaching!

I am not sure if I will take photos during the last three days. Hoping to blog about some books over the summer. I love book recommendations if anyone wants to share a favorite book in my comments!

Happy Reading! 




May 28, 2017

What... May...

Happy Memorial Day Weekend! 

I have been so busy at school and with life! It has been so long since I wrote a post. We had state testing for two weeks which zaps my creative teaching juices - not to mention the students wanting to read once they tests are over for the day! 

I am enjoying y three day weekend. Today I spent some time planting some flowers to make my patio pretty for summer.  
Here are two pictures: 

 

I had to substitute teach in the 5th grade classroom I push into for reading. It was fun. Every time I teach the class, I miss having my own room and kids. I did a fun lesson where the kids had to answer a question on a post it note: 

 

The students choose a book (that was not a movie. LOL) and I talked about the antagonist. The made Most Wanted Villain posters: 


Three of the best ones! 

I actually made a power point of six of the best posters for the other 5th grade class I work with when I push in for reading. They are bringing their posters in this coming week. I hope to take a few photos.

I have 18 days of teaching left. I have mixed feelings about it. This happens every year because I do not have my forever school job. I have been a year long temporary teacher for the last 3 years. I love being in middle school. I hope I get to go back next year! 

I hope everyone enjoys their three day weekend! 
Happy Reading! 


April 9, 2017

Happy Spring Break & Weekly Photos

YAY! I am on spring break for the next week. I am going to enjoy my stay-cation! I plan to read, nap, and read some more. I will throw some spring cleaning in there too!

It was been a busy few weeks. I was sick for the second time which was a bummer. NY had the state test in ELA. Glad that is DONE!

Here are some photos from my lessons:

I asked the library media specialist to help with a book tasting for one of the 5th grade classes I push into. It was a hit. The best part was students saying the found a book they would have never considered reading!





One of my kiddos.
We need to work on descriptive writing!

I began a poetry unit with my 7th graders. I always begin with song lyrics. It hooks the kids. 

 
Analyzing "Kill a Word" 

Then the kids made these using powerpoint: 

 
The 5th graders choose a book to read and then made a wanted poster.
The classroom teacher and I talked about the antagonist/ villain in a text. 
 


Here is another "I Can" statement I had my 7th graders work on for a two weeks: 

 
The students wrote summaries using the academic vocabulary words from different articles. 
Here is my examples: 

The day before vacation the PBIS committee (which I serve on) planned an afternoon "FEST"
The students made choices about three different activites they wanted to do.
I offered to have a reading room. 
Here are some kiddos reading in the hallway:




 
If only I could get my study hall kids to read like this! 


I love my job, but as we all know teachers LOVE their spring breaks. We need to be energized just as much as the kids! Here are my plans for my break: 
 What else would a reading teacher do, but read books on her spring break! LOL.  

Happy Spring Vacation Everyone! 


Happy Reading! 

March 13, 2017

Birthday

I am WAITING for my school to announce a snow day. Every district around me has announced a closing for tomorrow.

I had a nice birthday today. One of the best parts of my day was getting this birthday card:

 

As a reading specialist of students in grades 5-7 I see those students who often feel defeated by reading and school. I have to make the first few weeks of y reading groups fun! We take baby steps in reading. When I get a card like this I remember why I work so hard to promote a love of books and reading. 

It has been a wonderful day. Thanks to my husband, family, and friends for a perfect birthday!

Happy Reading! 

March 12, 2017

Birthday Brunch

Every year the sweet husband takes me for a birthday brunch. We go to the place where we got married. It is SO YUMMY! I laughed when I saw what I wore last year:



Because I wore this this year:
 

Can you tell I like green? I'm just a little blonder this year!

Tomorrow is the official day! There is suppose to be an evening blizzard. I better my birthday dessert before the snow comes! 

Happy Reading! 

March 11, 2017

Ready for Spring!

It is snowing outside and there are weather warnings of a winter blast. I always tell my family to not expect spring until after March 13th. That's my birthday and ONLY ONCE was it above 60.
It snowed like this when I turned 21, so I guess a birthday blizzard is due! It is also VERY COLD! Single digits!

I was sick for two weeks and still have a lingering cough! I went to the doctor for a work note because I was so under the weather! I cannot believe it has been a few weeks since I posted classroom pictures.

This was a reading I used to teach a new strategy to my students with key vocabulary words:

I saw this on a blog I read. I thought this would be great for my students who continue to struggle with writing a detailed summary sentence.

 

 Here is the learning target I had up for the last two weeks: 

In grade 6 the classroom teacher asked me to teach a lesson on using context clues to figure out unknown words. I used this chart below to begin the lesson.
 

 
I adapted the "chunk it up" strategy (which is NOT my original idea)
We began reading about Dr. Seuss and we are finding vocabulary words related to the text.
The students will begin with a one sentence summary and them move onto a longer summary. 

  
Another learning target example


I know this is not the best picture BUT I went to see Maroon 5 this past week!
I was SO HAPPY that I felt good! 
Adam Levine is BEAUTIFUL! 
Great show! 


The 7th graders finished The Cay. I am now going to have them read about different careers and then use a neat web page to make a "FAKEBOOK" page about a career of their choosing after they do some research.

I hope everyone has a great week. Monday is my birthday!! We have district wide wellness week - yoga pants all week! Even with the snow, It will be a great week!

Happy Reading!

February 19, 2017

Sunday Funday

I MADE IT! I am on my early spring break. It was a nice week, but a long week!

I had to substitute teach on Tuesday - ELA ( the classes I push into, so that was fun!) and two sections of social studies. It always feels good to teach in a classroom. I miss having my own class. I loved my job when I was a classroom teacher. My hometown is flooded with elementary teachers, so I do not think I will ever have a job like that again. It makes me feel sad.

Wednesday started out like a normal day, but in the afternoon I went into one of my classes and there was a substitute. This is a tough group. They like to have choices, but they also LOVE TO TALK. There are a few kiddos in the room who like control. Everyone has had these kids. They need choice, they need flexibility, but mostly they NEED to feel power and control. These are the kids we as teachers treat with delicate gloves! Well, there was an incident and for the first time in all my years of teaching I had to sprint after a student. He won. I swim, I go to cycling classes, but I DO NOT RUN. LOL. It was an experience and I am leaving it at that!

Because of my busy week I only took a few pictures. Here they are:

 
Students choose a story to read.
They used "FAST"
On the back they wrote about a character trait with text evidence.


 
This kiddo cracks me up! 
I said leave your board blank if you don't know the answer.


 

Just a funny thing I found on Twitter. 


My Mom and I at a local concert. 
This is how I began my vacation!
I LOVE my shirt! 

I am so happy to have a week to myself. I hope all my NY teacher friends enjoy their week off or if you have a three day weekend enjoy that, too! 

February 15, 2017

Missing "Currently"

For a long time another blogger would post a monthly Currently. She then decided she did not want to do it anymore. I was looking through my old blog posts and smiled every time I read my month Currently. It was a great way to discover other blogs and see how teachers were enjoying the month. I sure miss those monthly posts

Maybe I am suffering from the winter blues. I want it t be warmer and I want to have some relaxation. I am SO glad I have next week off. I think because I was feeling sentimental I decided just for the heck of it to post a new Currently for February. Here's to Farley who created this fun monthly tradition. Feel free to comment or post your own Currently. Let me know if you make your home. I included the templet below, too.

Here is it:
 

I love my Wednesday night comedy shows. I am REALLY tired of winter! I want a vacation to someone warm, but it is not happening yet! I need so serious sleep! I could probably sleep 9 hours a night, if I did not have such a tech addiction. As always, I am swooning of my hubby! 

Here is the Templet if you are in the mood to make your own Currently. 


Leave me a comment if you make your own with your website URL.
Have FUN!

Happy Reading!!


P.S. If you want to visit Farley's blog here is the link:
  www.ohboyitsfarley

February 11, 2017

Weekly Photos

I have been enjoying school, but this week was rough. I am not sure if it was the full moon, the winter grumps, or the need for a vacation, but boy oh boy were the kids tough this week!

I am plugging along at school. We have one week and then we have a week off. It will be nice just to take a week to read for pleasure and watch The Today Show.

Here are some photos from my lessons:

 If you have not tried Story Works by Scholastic - you are missing out on some great literature and nonfiction lessons.
The students have been working oin finding the most important detail from a text. I write it and put it in a secret envelope and the kids have to guess. They love it when they match mine.




 I found this on TPT and used it with my word study group. 

The sort 

I began a unit on working on determining character traits in stories and poetry. I used the acronym FAST. I have used this strategy in the past -  See this post: Character Traits Lesson



 The boys are minimalists. LOL. 
 Applying it to a poem:
 The poem was from Super Teacher Worksheets. Another great website, I recommend. 

We then began writing the response to the prompt about the character traits from the story: 
 
We need to work on the rest of the essay next week. 



Earlier this week I went to a workshop about student engagement and  then the next morning this popped up on my twitter feed: 

Student engagement is hard to find for struggling readers. Everyday I try something new. 
I often wonder how to motivate those students who have no interest, no motivations, no commitment. 

I am ready to try something new with my one 7th grade group. I am just not sure what type of unit. 
Here's to a great week!

Happy Reading!