I know, it's been awhile!

Boy do I have a ton of things to share with all of you! Not only has my classroom been very busy but my personal life has too! I think I started writing up this post a week ago but just have not had the time to read over it and post it. So instead I have been adding classroom happenings as I go. So I am going to take you through a ton of classroom action.

First up I have to show you a better picture of my Daily 5 wall! I could not believe that the one I last shared was blurry! I felt so bad I could not show you a good picture! So here you go… a new and might I add, clear picture!  I even added my shoe pictures around the I PICK poster so the kids remember to read books that are a "good fit."  If you want to know where you can get these I added them to my Daily 5 Classroom pack for FREE a few weeks ago so make sure you grab the updated pack if you haven’t!

I have also started adding poster to my anchor chart wall. Right now I  have had a ton of reading anchor charts because of the Daily 5. So this flip chart storage idea has really come in handy.

Speaking of Daily 5 I wanted to show you some of my D5 rotations and set up. Two aspects that I struggled with when reading the Daily 5 was that 1. I have computers as part of centers and I have to have my below level students do Istation every week as part of an intervention and 2. I only have 3 listening spots. So to solve this dilemma I decided to make a rotation for computers and listening center then allow the students to choose the other centers throughout the week. The idea of choice was important to me because I want them to know that I do trust them to make good choices however my interventions are really important and I felt like I needed to make sure the students that needed the documentation were getting it. I took some pictures of the organization.


I have each computer labeled and then I made a chart with the days of the week and then two spots under each day. If the students name is in the first spot they go to computer 1 and if their name is in the second spot then they go to computer 2. A piece of cake! It make me feel so much better knowing I am getting the documentation I need. Behind the rotation chart is the computer program sheet (must do - can do).

 For listen to reading I did the same rotation chart as the one for computers. I put it in a folder at the center. I also added the poster for how to set up the tape along with the response pages. I do not copy the response pages for the students, instead I just have a spiral notebook at the center for the students to record their responses to their listening. It is a good comprehension check since all the words are read to them.

I still have a bunch of pictures to take of the other centers so I will be sharing more with you soon.

As far as reading instruction goes my little second graders have been visualizing, making connections and learning about nonfiction in the last 3 weeks. I have been so proud of their thinking. My teaching buddy Diana Patrissi has a super cute anchor chart for visualizing that we used. We both made one two years ago... mine was a scuba mask but the letters for visualizing feel off so we used hers! Its so cute! If you are wondering what inspired us to make them it was our room themes! You need a scuba mask to see in the ocean and you need binoculars to see in the Jungle. I know we are pretty ridiculous!

One of my favorite read alouds to use for visualizing is The Salamanders Room by Anne Mazer. The words used to describe the story are amazing for visualizing! Also to get them using their 5 senses I use the book Hello Ocean by Pam Munoz Ryan. If you want to check them out click on the images below!

After visualizing we moved into connections. We started off teaching connections with some concrete examples. One of the activities we used involved puzzles. Yes puzzles, but not the kind you are thinking of. We wanted then to see and experience the pieces connecting in the puzzle however what makes a great connection is when students use the text. So I created 4 different puzzles with sentences on them. Each sentence evoked a different feeling the students can connect to. Let me just tell you this lesson worked! I think it made them really understand how to make connections! After that we did some thinking and recording in our HERO notebooks.

They referenced this page throughout our week with connections. It really helped them make meaningful connections and provided them with thinking stems for connections.

If you are interested in the materials I used for teaching connections you can click on the product cover from my Concrete Connection unit and it will take you to my TpT store.

After Connections we moved into nonfiction. I just love teaching nonfiction. We started off by using a resource from Scholastic! If you don't have this resource I really suggest getting it. It is basically a nonfiction book that you use to teach nonfiction! The book has every nonfiction feature imaginable in it. If you click on the picture it will take you to the Scholastic listing.

We also made a chart that I found on Pinterest for before, during and after reading. I changed it a little because i wanted the students to be writing and responding to our reading, so I added symbols for sticky notes so i knew what strategy the students were using in their responses. It worked out great. Here is my anchor chart and some samples of their work.

Look at my good little reader! She asked a question and then when she found the answer she wrote it down! AWESOME!

I am in the process of putting together all the resources I use to teach nonfiction so I will have them available soon!

Speaking of available, I wanted to let you know that I updated my CAFE Pack and it now includes the expand vocabulary section. Just click on the product cover below to update your copy!

Before I go I want to share a little writing activity that I did a few weeks ago! It really got the kids up and moving. We started learning about nouns, verbs, and adjectives. We took our kiddos and split them into the 3 different parts of speech groups. We each took a group (Diana, Ms. April our Speech and Language specialist, and myself) around the school and found nouns, verbs, and adjectives. We took pictures of the things we found around our school that they found! They were so cute posing with their finds. Then they had to write a sentence with their word once they found it. Everyone was definitely focused on their team's task.

Team adjective rocked! It was tons of fun! If you are interested in this unit you can click on the product preview below and pick it up at my TpT store.

I have so much more I want to share! With that being said, I have already shared a ton, so I will be saving more for later. I hope everyone enjoys their weekend! Until the next post.

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