Hiking to Success

Tonight I am going to make this post quick and to the point. I finally had time to put the finishing touches on my Hiking To Success Unit. This unit's main purpose is to help students get ready for state testing. Last year I used the elements in You've Got Game. This year my students were familiar with this unit so I needed something new to keep them testing their best! So my team came up with the theme hiking to success. The more I thought about the theme the more ideas I came up with! Hints the long completion date.....ha! I am still putting finishing touches on some lessons, but i will talk more about that later. Take a look at this unit!
All the resources you will find in this unit focus on a camping theme. What fun, right?
There are ten testing strategies in this unit! Each strategy poster features a picture, badge, and explanation of how it works. I have also added blank posters in case you want students to take notes while they learn and work with them. In addition to these posters, I have provided a PowerPoint editable file that allows you to edit each poster. This means if you want to say things differently that what I did, you can!

To make sure your students use and practice the strategies that you teach them, they have the opportunity to earn camping badges! Each strategy has a matching badge. Once they earn the badge I have provided a little craft that they can use to display all their newly earned badges! You can allow them to earn badges everyday and add them to their banner or you can create it at the end and pass out all earned badges! There are full color as well as grayscale options. You can use colored paper on the grayscale images to add a little color on them. All the white areas will pick up the color of the paper you use!
On your hike through the testing trail I have created posters to displaying your daily purpose. There are options that I have filled out as merely an example of what you COULD write. But just like the strategy posters I have made blank as well as editable versions on the posters! Now each day will start with such purpose and focus your students will enjoy working hard for their badges because they will know what is expected of them.

The student tracking pages all them to work hand in hand with your purpose posters. As you are assessing their understanding of the strategies and skills you cover, you can use the tracking pages as a way to assess your students. They can answer essential questions on the sheet, check off learning objectives, or simple use it as an exit ticket each day. I provide you with two options here. One is a printable that has a path the students fill in daily understanding. The second is a foldable which uses envelopes and index cards to showcase learning and mastery. Step-by-step pictures are included in the unit for how to create the foldable.

Of course becoming a camper is essential in the hiking to success journey! This means a camping sack is in order! I have included step-by-step directions for creating a pack the sack for each little camper. All you need is a brown paper bag. I have also included flap toppers for the sack which will allow you to personalize each one. There are blank as well as editable options in the unit.

As you are working with review text, I like to use different ways to review the correct answer choices. My school provides us with practice passages that resemble our state testing passages. I use these as we practice. Since i want them to attend to each and every question, I review differently during the week. I have included the different way that I review in the unit. Please know that independent work is still of importance here. They first must take the practice test independently, the review is then checked, using these games! I do it this way only because each person needs to learn something different and to do this they need to realize what THEY did on the question.

I love to reward exemplar work and thinking during these review games/days. So when there is a camper that is really working hard I hand out rewards. In the unit I have included six different reward coupons. One of the six allows the teacher to pick a "surprise" reward. This allows you to really do anything you need to or want to do for that reward.
I don't know about your school but where I work, we have to cover/take down any anchor charts or posters that would provide our students with help during testing. I hate this because the environment of the room changes. The colors and text rich classroom essentially disappears! So I made these positive posters to help encourage my little test takers. You never know when they need some positive encouragement to not give up! Another little resource I provided in the unit is a poem to send home the night before the test. Sometime nerves get the best of us, so I made some ready confetti and poem to give your students the day before. That night they will ready it and hopefully get a good nights sleep, stress free. {Please believe, this one might just be for me! =)}

After all the testing is over and your students have truly tested their best, I have made a little trail mix party for them! There are signs to post in your classroom, ingredient labels and treat bags! In addition I have included sheets for tracking ingredients hard working tester earn! Just another way you could choose to motive your students! I provide trail mix suggestions and meanings for each ingredient. You can use my suggestions or create your own trail mix ingredients.
Okay, so this resource is just because I wanted to keep things motivating and fun during the actual testing week. I want to use this a relaxing cool down after the test each day. I plan on reading one or two of the campfire riddles for the students to try and infer what ingredient they think is being described! I have included student guessing sheets with each riddle on them so you can tally votes and see who infers correctly. The riddles focus on the eight ingredients I suggest in the unit. However, I provide blank slides that you can use to create riddles for additional ingredients you wish to use.

That pretty much does it! I am so excited to start this unit with my students! As the activities start to unfold in my classroom, I will try to post about it. However, I love to add photos of classroom happenings on my Instagram. So if you follow me on there you might get more sneak peeks!
I am creating read aloud lessons to accompany the camping theme! So be on a look out for this unit!
Coming Soon!!

Have a great week and happy teaching! 


  1. Hi Shannon! I just found your blog through TPT and adore it! I want everything in your store!!! I'm going to feature your habitat flipbooks on my blog today. Hope you have a chance to visit!

    A Teaspoon of Teaching

    1. Melissa,
      Thank you so much. I have to admit, I have been out of the loop for 2 months and I come to my blog to find your comment! It was just the inspiration I needed to get a post out there again! Thank you! I also uploaded a freebie today so make sure you check it out!


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