This week is going to be busy and packed with fun: subtracting cars, dinosaurs, and Backwards Bootcamp! This week for Backwards Bootcamp: m for mustaches, k for kings, l for lollipops, j for jeans, and i for ice cream! And…I’m leaving my school and moving to a new school (STILL KINDERGARTEN) so I have to start packing my classroom!
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Phonics And Phonemic Awareness: Vowel Bootcamp
We are following our required foundational skills curriculum. And we are supplementing with our TKS BOOTCAMP Vowel Bootcamp! Our foundational skills curriculum is teaching uppercase letters (true story. I can’t ya’ll.) and since we’ve already mastered those we will be moving on and working with CVC-E words!
This week will be i_e words. Vowel Bootcamp is the perfect resource that aligns with the science of reading, and is fun, developmentally appropriate, classroom-proven, and teacher-friendly! And after two weeks of Vowel Bootcamp, my students are reading and writing cvc_e words so well!!
Monday is the circle chart. We say the word, segment the sounds, spell the word/map the sounds, and blend the word. We’re also building in vocabulary by defining the words.
Tuesday is word building and blending. We use the large letter cards from Vowel Bootcamp to build and blend words.
Wednesday is word writing. First, we use our whiteboards to practice writing whole group. We say the word, segment the sounds and write the word. Then we blend the word. After we practice students do their own writing which serves as an assessment piece so I can see who needs additional help in small groups.
Thursday students complete an independent activity where they blend the words and match the words to the picture. This also serves as an assessment piece. While this is independent, if I have students who I know will need extra support, I will pull them into a small group and give them some scaffolding as they work!
Friday will be decoding, blending, and writing words with a fun game or activity!
We also use our decodable texts in small groups to work on the skills in text. I have seen so much growth in my student’s reading with these decodables. The kids love them and I love seeing their confidence and excitement as they read!
In small groups, we’re using our Word Mapping Mats to really help us segment, spell and read words! Since we started using these I’ve seen great improvement in my students’ ability to segment, spell and read words!
We’re also doing a lot of word chaining with CVC words, blends, digraphs, and double letters! Word chaining is when you change one sound to make new words. This phonics activity is one of the best for helping students blend and write words and understanding how words work. For these lessons, we’re using our Digital Word Building resource! This resource includes a PowerPoint file and a Google Slides file so it can be used on any device!
As the school year has moved along, we’re noticing our handwriting and letter formation is slipping some. This tends to happen every year around this time. Part of it is that we as teachers are overwhelmed with everything and trying to help students master all the things, we just slack off a bit. Ya’ll! It’s ok. We’re human. We recognize the problem and we make a plan to work on it! So, each day for just a few minutes, we’re going to do some explicit handwriting practice using chalk and chalkboards. Here’s why chalk! Chalk creates friction. Friction creates muscle memory. Muscle memory helps us retain information. But we’re not just writing letters, we will add in sound recognition and vocabulary by coming up with words for each letter!
I will show a slide that shows correct letter formation, I will model correct letter formation and then students will practice!
We actually have these little chalkboards that my mom and dad made for my class about 10 years ago! it’s one of the few things left in my classroom that my mom touched and made for me! These are just small pieces of wood painted with chalkboard paint! I ordered dustless chalk from Amazon to use with these!
We will also be using our CVC-E word blending cards during small groups!
We’re down to the last 3 weeks of school and my students need lots of practice with subtraction so we’re going to focus on what they need and do subtraction.
This week we’re going to subtract cars!
My class LOVES these activities because they get to use toy cars. Ya’ll. Make math fun. Let them play while subtracting.
Each day we do story problems and write equations. We’re putting cars on the road and taking them away. We’re putting cars in the garage and taking them away! We will do some whole group work with modeling from me. Then we will do lots of independent practice and small groups!
Reading Comprehension: Dinosaurs Research Project
We have finished our three-week animal research project and I asked the kids what they wanted to learn next and they said dinosaurs, so we’re doing dinosaurs! What better way to keep the kids engaged these last three weeks!?
We start with our schema map. Students share their schema or background knowledge about dinosaurs and we record it on our chart. As we learn about dinosaurs, we add to our new learning and address misconceptions.
Before we can learn about dinosaurs we have to become paleontologists. We read about paleontologists and then we go on a dinosaur dig. We highly recommend this book when learning about paleontologists! I had no idea that the first dinosaur fossils were discovered by a woman so this is a must-read in the classroom!
For our dinosaur dig, we excavate fossils from the dirt. And by dirt we mean cookies. And by fossils we mean chocolate chips. Students use tweezers, a plastic knife, and a paintbrush to excavate the fossils.
Then we learn about a different dinosaur each day. We use a read aloud to research about the dinosaur. We record our learning on our graphic organizer. We label the dinosaurs and we write about the dinosaur.
Mad Science Thursday
This week for Mad Science we’re going to try a new experiment: glow-in-the-dark volcanos. We’re going to add fluorescent paint to our vinegar and baking soda experiment to make it glow! Stay tuned for details!
Foodie Fun Friday
This week’s Foodie Fun Friday is ice cream! It just happens that our Backwards Bootcamp letter for Friday is i for ice cream!
Greeting-dinosaur greeting! We flash pictures on the smartboard and we “roar” at each other to say good morning!