Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Making Sense of Math: Real-World Experiences {Linky Week 1}


I am so excited to be working with some sweet friends on a linky series all about number sense!  Over the next 2 months we will focus on guiding principles outlined by math guru (and founder of Math Solutions), Marilyn Burns.  Our hope is to share tips, strategies and examples that help impact student learning and push number sense to the next level!

Why is Number Sense Important?

  • encourages students to think flexibly
  • instills confidence with numbers
  • builds a foundation for more complex math
  • helps students to understand numbers and their relationship to one another

Week 1: Linking Math to Real-World Experiences

This is something we do many times without even realizing it, whether it be with the hook of our lesson or examples that relate to our students' lives!  It is so important to relate math with the real world because it helps students to make connections and see the reasoning behind the skill.  Let me be honest.  I strongly disliked math as a kid.  I didn't understand the purpose in a lot of it and wasn't very confident in it.  (Thank goodness I teach K and not 8th, right?) I'm sure I am not alone.  Because of that I have made it a personal mission to never end a math lesson with my kids still wondering, "But why are we doing this??"  I want them to see the reasoning behind the skill and a great way to do that is by relating it directly to my learners and their world. 
One of my most popular math units each year involves images of real-world objects found in the environment.  I have a whole slew of photographs I took that I use throughout the unit.


The pack includes: 79 photo cards, 8 shape scene cards, 3-In-a-Row game (8 game mats), 26 sorting cards, 2 Spin and Graph games, "I Can" and "Math Talk" task cards

Make sure and download the FREE PREVIEW FILE to grab your "sample" activity {here} or click on the Google doc {here}.

Want to add a Visible Thinking Routine to add rigor?  
I suggest asking your students to complete a "See, Think, Wonder" by studying a shape scene card and discussing what they see, think and wonder about the picture.  The thinking routine will get your students digging deeper to focus on detail and is a great routine for introducing and/or exploring ideas.

Relating math to the real world can be as simple as discussing slicing a pizza during a fractions lesson, identifying shapes with food or relating doubles facts to concrete examples that students are familiar with.  Check out these ideas I pinned on my All About Math Pinterest board. (Click each picture for the link to head to the original source- love these free printables!)
https://www.pinterest.com/pin/285204588879495864/https://www.pinterest.com/pin/285204588872381809/https://www.pinterest.com/pin/285204588879495849/

I went to Eureka Math Curriculum training this week and one of the presenters shared a simple- yet effective- fluency activity.   The idea is to have your students close their eyes and count in their heads as the teacher drops coins into a can.  When using pennies, students would practice counting by 1's and would give you the total amount of money in the can at the end.  You could extend this to work on composing/decomposing by asking the students questions such as, "If you know I have 6 pennies in the can and I remove 2, how many are left in the can?"
This could be used to practice skip counting as well by using other coins.  Use nickels for 5's and dimes for skip counting by 10's.  You could take it a step further by practicing +10 and -10.
That is real world, right?  What kid can't relate to wanting money? :)


Lastly, we know that integrating literature into our math lessons is a must.  There are so many wonderful books that cater specifically to our standards!  Here are some of my favorites that work well for relating math to inside and outside the classroom.


I found this book on clearance at my local bookstore last week.  I was drawn in immediately by the real-world items!  Take a look at a few of the pages inside this book.  I'm thinking it would be perfect for taking a "shape walk."  What do you think?



I hope that some of these ideas helped to get you thinking on how you incorporate real-world experiences in your own classroom to strengthen number sense.  I would LOVE for you to link-up your own ideas and experiences on this week's topic!  Join in on the linky below.



Next week Mrs. Samuelson's Swamp Frogs will be hosting Week 2 of our Making Sense of Math series so don't forget to get those blog posts ready and join in on the fun!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Blends in Bloom! {FREE ELA Activity}

Hello there!

I have a simple blends activity to share with you!  I used this in my classroom last month as a morning work drawer station but whipped it out this afternoon as a review activity to keep my 6 year old busy for a minute.  Just an easy exercise to review a few beginning l and r blend words. It follows the same format as many of my other station activities so it makes for great independent practice.

Grab it for free {here} or by clicking the picture. :)

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Old Lady Swallowed a Frog {FREE Roll and Cover Games}

Here are my latest Roll and Cover addition games to go along with the Old Lady book series.  This set is for spring!  Thankfully, at this point in the year all of my students are able to play the adding 2 numbers version.  Many of my students ask for the adding 3 version now!  You can download all 3 versions (identifying numbers to 6, finding the sum of 2 numbers, finding the sum of 3 numbers) for FREE by clicking the picture below or {here}.  Enjoy!
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Old-Lady-Swallowed-a-Frog-3-Roll-and-Cover-Games-FREE-1847493
Here is the book that goes along with the games:


Download all of my FREE Old Lady Roll and Cover games {here}.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

May? Really? Morning Messages are ready!

I can not believe it is May already!  Where has this year gone??? Only 16 school days left for me! 
I wrapped up May's morning messages this evening.  Check out a few of the messages and details about the skills covered below.

(I will be making a June/July combo pack for those of you who are in school past May!  Look for it towards the end of May.)
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-May-Kindergarten-1837281

Topics covered this month include:

Plot (Beginning, middle, end)
Story comprehension
Identifying/Producing rhyming words
Cloze sentences
Beginning sounds/blends/digraphs
Beginning/Ending digraph -th
Ending sounds
Medial sounds
Stretching out CVC words
Stretching out CVCe words
Stretching out CCVC words
Substituting sounds to make new words
Blending/Reading words
short vowel words: a, e, i, o, u
Sight words: of, to, out, love, does, come, my, get, play, here, what, will, from, there, that, said, was, may
Action Verbs
Affixes
Prepositions/positional words
Compound words
Identifying/writing numbers 0-30
Making 10
Decomposing/base 10
Representing numbers/number sentences
Orally counting to 100
Skip counting by 2's
Numbers before, in between, after
Graphing
Tally marks
Place value (tens, ones)
Addition/Subtraction to 10
Addition word problem
Subtraction word problem
Fact fluency to 5
Days of the week
Months of the year
Calendar skills- writing the date
Sequencing
Predicting/ Drawing Conclusions
Sentence Order
Editing spelling/punctuation marks
Asking questions/question words
Opinions
Vocabulary
Multiple meaning words
Writing a story
Identifying what does not belong
Life cycles
Cinco de Mayo
Frogs
Labeling
Insects
Mother's Day
baseball

There are also messages that correlate with the following books:
There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Frog
Cinco de Mouse-O!
The Pout-Pout Fish
any May-themed book, Insects, Spring, Frogs



Grab your May Morning Messages {here}. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

It was a WORM kind of day...

There's nothing like kick-starting your Earth Day study with a few Earthworms! We researched, explored and wrote about them today.  When we were finished, we released those squirmy worms into our school flower beds!

A photo posted by Mary Lirette (@marylirette) on


 
Don't you love kindergarten writing? :)
I let my students free-write a fiction story this afternoon about their imaginary pet worm.

Top: I would name my worm Ros. I would put my worm in a bucket full of dirt when it's spring.  I would put my worm in the dirt.

Bottom: Once upon a time a little girl named Whitney had a little worm named Lucy.  Whitney liked Lucy because Lucy was an Earth helper.  White gives garbage to Lucy.

Weekly Reader usually has great informational text about worms in their spring "Let's Find Out" magazines.  I laminated the big issue of the Earth's Helpers one from a few years ago.  You can find the March 2015 "Springtime in the Soil" flyer online for free right now at Scholastic News {here}.  You can download and print or project it on your Smartboard. 

I also love, love, love the Curious George Goes Green DVD!  It has some wonderful episodes about seeds, worms and compost!  Check out these great read alouds too!



In case you missed this a few years ago....make sure to stop by First Grade Blue Skies to grab her free worm day pack! It has a great collection of facts included in it as well as some graphic organizers! :)

Monday, April 13, 2015

A Simple Plant Project {labeling parts}

We have started one of my favorite Science units....plants!  After learning about the different parts of a plant, my students put their knowledge to good use with this art project.
A photo posted by Mary Lirette (@marylirette) on
Here's what we used:  blue construction paper for the background, 1/3 brown construction paper for the soil, snippets of brown yarn for the roots, half of a green chenille stick for the stem, free-drawn leaves on green felt, bold colored cupcake liners for the flowers, sunflower seeds for the center of the flower.

After assembling their plant, I asked my students to cut and paste these labels to complete their project.  Grab the labels here if you can use them!
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BwW7vuV_FLG-cDZyVzcwVEExVTQ/view?usp=sharing

Thursday, April 2, 2015

A Suprise Announcement with a Earth Day Freebie!

Today is the grand opening of Educents Storefront Marketplace!!  For a while now Educents has been offering amazing daily deals....now you can get fabulous products all day, everyday!
I'm featuring a brand new FREEBIE that you can grab in my brand new Educents storefront!  It is a 10 page, Earth Day-themed, small group game that practices subtraction fact fluency.  Click {HERE} or on an image to head to my Educents storefront.  Earth Day POOF is listed at the bottom of the page (it was my most recent addition!).
http://www.educents.com/mrs-lirettes-learning-detectives
http://www.educents.com/earth-day-poof-subtraction-to-5-free.htmlhttp://www.educents.com/earth-day-poof-subtraction-to-5-free.html
Educents is offering a giveaway right now too!
Enter to win $50 in Edubucks!
I will steadily be adding more and more products to my store so make sure to check back soon. ;)
http://www.educents.com/mrs-lirettes-learning-detectives

Make sure to visit the kindergarten sites below to download more free products! :)

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Morning Messages for April!!

For real.  These messages took me twice as long as the others.  I'm not sure why but good grief am I glad they are finished in time for April 1st!  They are on sale through April 2nd!
Here are a few pics and the skills covered are listed at the bottom of this post.  :)
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Meaningful-Morning-Messages-for-April-Kindergarten-1791595

Here are the skills covered this month:
Plot (Beginning, middle, end)
Identifying/Producing rhyming words
Cloze sentences
Beginning sounds/blends/digraphs
Beginning/Ending digraph -ch
Ending sounds
Stretching out CVC words
Substituting sounds to make new words
Blending/Reading words
short e words
Sight words: away, day, to, get, but, may, play, for, on, said, where, will, up, her, his, does, come, this, what
Action Verbs
Prepositions/positional words
Identifying/writing numbers 0-20
Making 10
Decomposing/base 10
Representing numbers/number sentences
Orally counting to 100
Skip counting by 2's
Graphing
Tally marks
Non-standard measurement
Addition word problem
Subtraction word problem
Fact fluency to 5
Days of the week
Months of the year
Calendar skills- writing the date
Weather
Comparing winter and spring
Sequencing
Predicting
Editing spelling/punctuation marks
Opinions
Multiple meaning words
Writing a story
Vocabulary
Life cycles
April Fools' Day
Jokes/riddles
Oviparous animals
Plants
Earth Day/3 R's

There are also messages that correlate with the following books:
There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Chick
A Bad Case of Stripes
Duck! Rabbit!
any April-themed book, Easter, Spring, Earth Day
You can get this month's Morning Message pack {HERE}.  I hope you and your kiddos love it!