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Monday, October 29, 2012

Ghost Rubbings

Do you have time for a quick, Halloween project?  

Ghost rubbings are easy and fun for any age.

Begin by having your students cut a ghost shape out of construction paper scraps; any color but white.  Using small pieces of white chalk, have them rub the chalk all around the edges of the ghost shape.  A line 1/4" wide should be sufficient.  

I always have my kiddos put their ghost shape on a "dirty sheet" (a piece of paper from our recycling box) before rubbing the chalk along the edges. This saves lots of time on clean up!

Next, have them carefully put the ghost shape on the black paper with the chalked side up.  While holding the center of the ghost shape steady with one hand, they use a finger from the other hand to rub the chalk off onto the black paper.  

They should always rub in 1 direction - from the ghost shape out.  Rubbing back toward the ghost shape can cause the ghost shape to tear and/or the outline to blur. It's important not to let the ghost move around while rubbing.  

Once they have rubbed the chalk line around the entire ghost, remove the shape.  

Oooooo.  Now use the piece of chalk to add facial features.

For even more fun, repeat the process, making additional ghostly images elsewhere on the black paper.  If your students want 1 ghost to appear behind another, tell them not to rub the chalk off where the ghost shape touches the 1st ghost.  

Just in time for Halloween, It's a Spooktacular Sale on TpT! 

A bunch of sellers have joined forces to make this a Howling good sale, myself included. On Halloween ONLY you can get 20% off of everything in my store.  If you visit JD's Rockin' Readers, our hostess, you will find links to every store that has joined this event. Hurry! The clock is ticking!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Word Work, the Reading Recovery Way - Pt. 8

Who-oo-oo knows what time it is? 

Yes, it's time, teachers, to move onto the next step in how words work. That step involves adding letters to the end of known words. We are not talking about inflections! We already did that.  Rather, we are leading the child to notice known words within other words. To do this, make a known word for your student. Say, “This says ‘cat’.  Watch while I add something to it.”  

Push ch to the end of the word. Instruct your student to, “Say it and check it with your finger.”

In the same lesson, do this with other words,  for example, see + m  or can + dy.

Continue to practice this skill in subsequent lessons until the child can do it with ease.  

Reinforce this concept when she is reading a new book by finger masking the last letters of a new word containing a known word.  

You will heave a sigh of satisfaction when she does this for herself while reading.  As my RR trainer used to say, “You will be doing cartwheels down the hallway!”  Indeed, you will.

If you would like a concise document of these Word Work tips, you can find it in my TpT Store.

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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Word Work, the Reading Recovery Way -- Pt. 7

It’s about time, teachers, … to begin working on rimes. 

At the white board, construct 3 known words that have the same onset, e.g. me, my, mom.  

Ask your student what is alike in these words.  Hopefully, she will notice that they all begin with m.  Ask, “Can you say another word that starts like that?”  Whereupon, you accept any word that begins with the same sound.  You need not be concerned about the correct spelling of the word.  That is, a word which is correctly spelled with /kn/ or /gn/ will be perfectly acceptable for the onset sound of /n/. 

On subsequent days, continue working with 1 letter onsets until you are sure the child understands the task and how words work when the onset remains the same.  The goal here is to bring your student's attention to the rime.

Now you are ready to use blends for onsets.  Following the same procedure, construct 3 words with the same initial blend, e.g. she, ship, show.  

Ask her to say another word that starts like that.  However, if she says sit or another word that has the /s/ sound, do NOT accept that word.  If necessary, over emphasize the /sh/ as you repeat the words you constructed.  If she still cannot produce a word with that blend, try again later, but in the same lesson, with a different onset blend.

Just as an aside, if your student struggles with distinguishing between blends and single consonants, you may want to have your speech & language specialist and/or an audiologist, do further assessments on her.

As always, you should proceed to the next task only after your student demonstrates mastery of this task.

It's nearly time for Halloween and in that spirit, my friend, Brian, at 

has boo-ed me. Don't fret that he's being a bully; it's a fun linky party. Brian's blog is well worth a visit. I am especially fond of his Positive Friday posts.  You will also appreciate the fall linky party he's running.

Now, here's the scoop on the I've Been Boo-ed linky party:
  1. When you have been boo-ed, copy and paste the above picture and these "rules" into your blog post.
  2. Give a shout out to the blogger who boo-ed you and link back to their site.
  3. Share 3 - 5 October activities, books, products (yours or others'), and/or freebie(s) that you love.
  4. Share the boo love with 5 bloggers.  Make sure you check this link to avoid boo-ing someone who has already been boo-ed.
Now it's time for me to share resources:
  1. My emergent reader book, What the Little Ghost Saw on Halloween, has been extremely popular.  Don't miss out on this FREE book.                                                                                                                  
  2. I also have a FREE Autumn Scarecrow Glyph.    It's fun and easy.                                                                                      
  3. Lest you think I'm only focused on the littlest scholars, let me assure you that I'm always on the lookout for activities for intermediate students.  In my role as an enrichment specialist for the school, I was thrilled to find Lisa's Boo! Ha Ha! Math Centers for Bigger Kids at Fourth and Ten. She uses them to constructively engage the students who have mastered a math skill while she works with those who need more help.  That's a win-win!                                             

The time has come to share some Boo love ...

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Word Work, the Reading Recovery Way -- Pt. 6

It's about time, teachers, for onset changes with harder analogies.  Begin by displaying the letters for a KNOWN word, plus another letter than can change the onset to make another KNOWN word.  

Say, "Make he.  Now change he to me."  After she has done so, ask her to run her finger under it and say it slowly.

In the same lesson, have the child construct a different onset change, for example, can / man.  

Always have the child run her finger under it, saying it slowly, to check that the sounds match the letters.

The next step is a little harder.  Make a known word, such as look.  Say, "You know this word -- look."  Give the student the letters for cook.  Instruct her to "make a word that is like look."  

Continue making analogies with onsets until the child demonstrates that she understands.

Next time, we will work with rimes.

In the meantime, I'd like to share some Pinteresting news.  Being a pragmatist, I decided to create 2 new boards on my Pinterest account especially for you, my readers and followers.  One board is a visual archive of my blog posts.  Because I’m a visual learner, it’s what appeals to me.  Hopefully, it does to you as well.

The other board is a collection of my free products on TpT.  

I’ve seen that several top sellers on TpT have done this and, since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, they must be blushing!  When you have time, check these boards out.

Have time for a giveaway?  Who doesn't??  Enter for your chance to win nearly $200 in teaching materials at Rockin' Teacher Materials.  

Until next time...

It's about time for Halloween.  Have you picked up these Halloween freebies from my TpT store?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Word Work, the Reading Recovery Way -- Pt. 5

The time has come, teachers, to focus on how onsets work in words.  To do this, present the letters for a set of known words, e.g. g o n o s o.  

Say, "I'm going to make 2 words you know."  Assemble go and no.  Ask the child to run her finger under those 2 words as she says them slowly, thereby reaffirming the need to check the sound sequence.

Push the remaining 2 letters toward the center of your vertical plane white board, telling the child to make another word she knows.  After she assembles so, instruct her to run her finger under it and say the word slowly.  Remember, you must work with KNOWN words, as you are teaching the task, not the words.

Continue on subsequent days with other known words, such as he, be, me or cat, fat, bat.  

Once you are certain your student understands how words work with onsets, you will be ready to begin harder analogies with onsets.  I'll address that next time.

Are you teaching about the election?  If so, you might like to check out Erin's linky party @ Tales from Room 112.

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Saturday, October 13, 2012

Word Work, the Reading Recovery Way -- Pt. 4

It's about time, teachers, ... for more Word Work, the Reading Recovery Way.

Now that your student is making KNOWN words easily from a set of letters, it's time to add inflections.  To do this, make a known word for the child, e.g. look.  Initially, you demonstrate the task by saying, "This says look."  

"Watch while I add something to it."  Slide an s to make looks.  

"Now it says looks.  Say it and check it with your finger."  

Do another word in the same lesson with the same inflection.  

Continue in this way on subsequent days, always using known words.  Avoid using words that require a spelling change, such as liking or batted.  Add other inflections until you are sure the child knows the task and understands how words work with inflections. 

As always, push as much of the task onto the child as you can, as soon as you can.

* * * * *

Now it's time for some fun!  

Cynthia over at 2nd Grade Pad has started a game, Who Will be Boo'd?  You've probably all played BOO at school where you leave a ghost on someone's desk or mailbox along with a treat. Let's do the same by sharing some love from our stores...

Here's how to play:

  • Choose a fellow blogger that has FEWER followers, another that has about the SAME number of followers, and last, someone that has MORE followers.
  • Highlight their blogs with links to encourage others to check them out. Don't forget to let your fellow bloggers know that you shared about them. 
  • Last, leave them some love by offering them a goody from your store as their "treat."

Here are my three:

Kristi teaches 2nd grade. She's been blogging since Feb., like me. She loves pinning and has great ideas to share. Check out Lucky in Learning.

Heather at Creation Castle is my newest bloggy friend. She just hosted a Celebrating Literacy Giveaway. I was lucky enough to participate (my 1st giveaway) and loved it! 

Vicky at Traditions, Laughter, & Happily Ever After was one of the first teachers to follow my blog, making her near and dear to my heart. She has an awesome blog filled with fantastic ideas. You've got to check it out.

Now it's your turn. Pass on the BOO to 3 of your favorite blogs, tell us about them, and link up! Feel free to add your link here through Oct. 31st before the ghosts all flee and the turkeys arrive! :-)

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