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Friday, August 28, 2015

How we do Daily 5

When I was student teaching, the Daily 5 craze began and I fell in love with it too!  I was able to observe kindergarten students at my student teaching placement school that were on task while their teacher worked with small groups.  It was amazing!

When I got my own classroom, the first year, I tried to do Daily 5, but I just was so overwhelmed with everything else that comes with the first year of teaching, that I didn't really give it a try.  Then the next school year, our elementary house was "going" Daily 5.  I followed the book chapter by chapter as we learned about each component of Daily 5.  It worked, but my kids and I struggled with some components like Read To Someone - small classroom and lack of control of a whisper voice - lead to a frustrated teacher. 

So fast forward to year 3, where I begin to make Daily 5 my own!  I have used very similar Daily 5 rotations since then with a few tweaks each year.  This year I only have 45 minutes for Daily 5, so we do 3 rounds each day.  I have four Daily 5/Reading groups for Daily 5 with 5-6 students in each group.

A couple weeks ago, I got so frustrated with my new kiddos asking me what to do each round of Daily 5, that I made this cool schedule that I display on my board during Daily 5.  Pictures included so that they can see what they should be doing each round.

Going Strong in 2nd Grade

Be prepared - this will be a long post!  I'm going to try to explain what my kiddos do each day during Daily 5 and what the different activities are (and where I got some of them!)

Going Strong in 2nd Grade

Work With Teacher - this is when I work with each group for Guided Reading Groups.  We read books on their level and work on comprehension after we complete each book.

Read To Self- this is just like your typical Daily 5 Read To Self.  My kiddos have a gallon-sized freezer ziplock bag (freezer is stronger than a regular gallon bag) that they keep their books in.  In our classroom library, I have a book box for each table that they keep their bag of books in.  I let them have 5 books in their bag of books.

Word Work: Dictionary - a couple years ago, I ditched my word wall and made my kiddos a personal dictionary.  This personal dictionary is from Natalie's Nook on TPT.  Students use their personal dictionary write at least 10 words from our spelling pattern(s) that week in their dictionary.  I encourage them to pick spelling words that they might struggle with - if they already know how to spell it - there isn't much point to write it in their dictionary.

Lots of pages and space for students to add words.  Pre-made lists were included.

Then there are pages for each letter of the alphabet!

Listening - Listening is also a component of Daily 5 that I still use!  I got these QR code listening center iPods from Peppy Zesty Teacherista (although they do not seem to be available in her store any longer).  I also have some from Always First With Sue Lynch.
My kiddos grab their iPad, a couple QR codes and their ear buds - scan the QR code and watch/listen to the story on YouTube through SafeShare. 

Going Strong in 2nd Grade

Comprehension: This is not one of the Daily 5 original activities, but I have found it beneficial for my students to read a short (seasonal) passage and answer comprehension questions independently.  I got these passages from Meet Miss Parker and oh-em-gee they are wonderful!!  There are 61 differentiated stories in this year-long bundle and include both fiction and non-fiction.  There are 3 levels per passage so I use a drawer unit to sort the passages for each group.  They open their drawer, take out their passage and work on it.  Easy differentiation!  I give each group 2 days of Daily 5 to work on their comprehension passages - so on the schedule, you'll see they have it 2 days in a row.

We read about Friday Night Football this week!

Each passage includes 5 multiple choice questions and 5-7 written comprehension questions.

Word Work Choice: On Tuesday, my kiddos get their choice of word work activities to practice our spelling pattern for the week.  They have lots to choose from!

Rainbow Roll-N-Write, Bananagrams, old bulletin board letters, etch-a-sketch (Target $1 spot!)

Going Strong in 2nd Grade
Paper activities - Wheel of Fortune, Stop & Smell the Spelling, and Scrabble Spelling

My kiddos can also use their iPads for Word Work Choice choosing from one of the following apps:

This Letterland Word Builder app goes along with our phonics program.

iPad Read To Self: This is a modified Read to Self - going digital!  My kiddos can choose from Epic! or RAZ-Kids when they are doing iPad RTS.  They LOVE Epic!

Sign up for a FREE teachers account - there are TONS of books for kids to choose from!

Going Strong in 2nd Grade

Now we are getting into some repeat activities!

What's new on Wednesday?

Word Work Sort: this comes with Letterland, our phonics program.  Students have to use the word chart to sort spelling words into the correct spelling pattern categories.
Going Strong in 2nd Grade
Also pictured here is Boggle for Thursday's Word Work.

Going Strong in 2nd Grade

Word Work Boggle (pictured above): Boggle is something I created to go along with our weekly spelling units - kind of modified Boggle - the kids have to use the letter(s) in the middle box and use the other surrounding letters to make words that fit our spelling pattern.  No rules about touching letters and not using letters twice - I'm not that talented of a Boggle-creater - haha!

Going Strong in 2nd Grade

Ahh!! Friday!  We made it to the end of the week!

Most everything on Friday is a repeat expect for "Catch-Up".  I know all my students work at a different pace, but some need some extra encouragement to get their work done during the week.  So, I have a built-in catch-up time in our Daily 5 block on Friday where they can finish any unfinished work, or, if it's all done they get to choose a fun, but educational activity to do on their iPad.

They can choose from...




So, that's how I do Daily 5 in my classroom.  With Daily 5, you really have to find what works for you and your classroom.  There is no right or wrong way of doing Daily 5 - it's just what works for you.  It took me a few years to figure out how I wanted to do it, but at this point, I like how I am doing Daily 5.  Who knows - next year it might change!

Monday, August 24, 2015

21 Days we are using Class Dojo!

Well, friends, today was the 21st day of school for me!  It's hard to believe that we are practically half way through the first quarter of the school year.  Assessments will be done by the end of the week which I will be so happy about!  Anywho...once I got my kiddos into the groove of using Class Dojo, we added some new fun things and I let them have some say in how we are giving/taking points, so I wanted to share that with you.
The first week - I stayed ALL POSITIVE on Class Dojo - my kiddos didn't even know what the negative point sound sounded like until the middle of the second week of school.  I really wanted to focus on the positive and teaching students the expectations of what they should and should not do.  I also used that week to say, "next time, we will lose a dojo point for that action". 
The first couple week of school my positive and negative actions for points were pretty generic and somewhat matched our classroom rules, which are the WBT 5 classroom rules.  After about 2 and a half weeks of school, we had a Dojo work lunch (since we eat lunch in our classrooms) and we, as a class, adjusted the behaviors for positive and negative points.  
Here is what we ended up with:

Now, you know working with 7-year-olds meant they wanted to get really specific, and sometimes silly on these behaviors.  I couldn't put all of their ideas or we would have 20+ positive and negatives each, so I had to convince them that we group a lot of their ideas under some of the ones we already had (like poor choice).  What silly behavior would a 7-year-old come up with - one of my sweet girls wanted a positive point for "being awesome"!!

After ClassDojo's release of the Groups Feature this year, it is so much easier for me to be able to give points to a group of students at one time.  So, now, we have Table of the Week!  I have 4 tables in my classroom, so I have one group for each table.  When we are transitioning or working on a project, I'll look around for a table that is doing what they should be, or see which table is done the quickest, and they earn a dojo point for their table.  At the end of the week, we look at the Group points and the table with the most gets this fancy sign in their table caddy for the next week.  We then reset the table group points and start over on Monday.

Click the picture for a free download!

Now that we are 4 weeks into school, my kiddos are beginning to rack up some points!  Friday afternoon, we had our first members join the 100 point Dojo club!  I used monster clipart from ClassDojo to make these little monsters to display student names.

And lastly, our Dojo Leader of the Week!  Each Friday afternoon, I look on the Class Dojo reports to see which student has the highest combined points for the week and that student is the Dojo Leader of the Week.  They get a brag tag, a certificate, and their name gets added to our Class Dojo bulletin board.  They start asking me on Monday who has the most points - but I make them wait until Friday!

The monsters off to the side are preview Dojo Leaders of the Week - they might be a leader again, so keeping their monster nearby is helpful!

Have you started school yet?  Are you going to Dojo!?!?!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

NEW Class Dojo Feature #2 - Releasing TODAY!

There is a brand new Class Dojo feature releasing today that is super awesome!!

It's has the look of Facebook but with much more security!

This latest feature is going to allow you to share so much more with your families and create a classroom newsfeed  - it's called Class Story.

Class Story helped you, as a teacher, to pen your classroom door to families.  You will be able to easily share anything about class in an unbelievably safe and simple way.  You can now instantly share the happenings of your day without sitting down to write an email or a newsletter.

Why did Class Dojo build this feature?
Teachers love the ways ClassDojo helps them keep parents in the loop. From letting them see their child’s progress anytime and anywhere to sharing updates and photos with ClassDojo Messaging , ClassDojo lets teachers engage parents easily.  Millions of parents use ClassDojo to stay connected with the classroom and to help teachers at home. Class Story the latest addition to ClassDojo makes sharing the story of the day even easier and more beautiful for teachers.

How is it going to work?
Teachers can share stories from class using photos or text updates! Posts are shared with all connected parents, and no one else. Unlike class websites, Twitter, or Instagram, this means that only parents can see these important stories and no one else, keeping ClassDojo safe for families, students, and teachers. Teachers will know when parents have seen their posts with read receipts, plus they’ll feel the love when parents “like” their posts. Over time, Class Dojo will be asking teachers what types of new “posts” teachers would like to make such as videos and voice notes!

Make sure you check out the new Class Dojo Story feature!  I know I can't wait to use it with my new batch of kiddos and their families!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Math Tip Monday Linky - August Back To School Math Ideas

Good morning y'all!  I'm joining K's Classroom Kreations and Theresa's Teaching Tidbits this morning for the first in a year-long series called Math Tip Monday!  This month's linky party is all about getting your math classroom ready for back to school!
I'm here this month to share with you about how I organize my math manipulatives in my classroom. I am a super-organized teacher and I have cubby shelves from Target & Big Lots all over my classroom.  These cubby shelves are made for the fabric bins and that allows me to "hide" a lot of things in my classroom.   2nd graders are no where near as organized as I am, so instead of driving myself crazy cleaning up behind them all the time and re-organizing, when it's in the fabric bin, I can't see it!
On to how I organize my math manipulatives!
So, below are most of my math manipulatives.  I keep them out all year so that my students can have access to them when they need them.

What's inside these bins you ask?  Looks like lots of food storage items!

Back at the end of school, I ventured through the $1 Spot at Target and saw these cute food storage containers.  I was going to head to the food storage section for some anyways, but these were colored and Disney too - and a 4 pack for $1!!  I used these containers to make individual math manipulative containers for each kiddo.

They are the perfect size to store foam counters...


 and money!

My base ten blocks are stored and organized in Rubbermaid food storage containers.

I have about 6 of these boxes and each box has one hundreds flat and a lot of tens sticks on the left side which is larger.  The smaller side houses ones blocks.

BUT, this year I think we might go digital with our base ten blocks!  I came across the Number Pieces Basic iPad app recently and since I have a class set of iPads, I'm super excited to use this app once we get to place value concepts!  But I'll keep these out for the kiddos to use for my kiddos that need to touch their manipulatives.

I store my unifix cubes in these green storage boxes from Dollar Tree.  They used to be sorted by color and type (I had 2 different types), but you know 2nd graders - they couldn't stay that way forever!

I hope I've given you some organizational math tips that you can use in your classroom!  Check out the other posts below for more back to school math tips to kick your year off right!