Thursday, April 27, 2017

Integrate Science with Reading and Writing {FREE Activities Included!}

Ideas by Jivey shares through video and free activities how to use one book (What Do You Do With a Tail Like This? by Steve Jenkins) to teach science, reading, and writing standards in first and second grades! Using mentor texts can truly cover so many standards!

Hey, teacher friends! It's Jivey from Ideas by Jivey, and if you know me, you know I am PASSIONATE about integrating with mentor texts as much as possible! In this post, I will be sharing how to use a great book for reading and writing while teaching about animal adaptations or attributes:

**The above link is an affiliate link. 
The few pennies I earn on each purchase goes towards future giveaways!**


What Do You Do With a Tail Like This? by Steve Jenkins and Robin Page is a fantastic book to use to expose students to animals they most likely have never seen in real life. It's a great book to use across K-5, but the activities I'm going to share with you in this post are perfect for grades 1 and 2. 

As you read the book the first time, allow them to make a guess at the animal that belongs to the features shown on each page. When you turn the page, it shows the whole animal and describes why that feature is important for the animal. This would be a great opportunity to allow them to write down something new they learned about some of those attributes, or animals. 

There are also SEVERAL animals in the book that have some similarities, as well as differences. Use this book to compare animals, not just with the text, but the pictures of the animals, too!

You will find a video below of me walking you through the book and the comparison activity. This was originally posted as a Facebook Live video, so ignore when I talk about links in the description. :) You will find the "links" below this video instead!



As promised, you can pick up free activities for this book for first and second grade below!


If you teach about animals in first or second grade, you might also love this Animals Reading and Writing pack that provides activities similar to the ones I've shared in this post, and you can even integrate grammar with those same fabulous nonfiction mentor texts in the reading and writing pack by using mentor sentences:

     




Ideas by Jivey shares through video and free activities how to use one book (What Do You Do With a Tail Like This? by Steve Jenkins) to teach science, reading, and writing standards in first and second grades! Using mentor texts can truly cover so many standards!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Books to help you recharge over the Summer

Hello Friends, it's Erin from The Elementary Darling. The countdown is on! I have about four weeks left before the end of the year, and this is the time that I start planning for the summer and organizing for the beginning of the year. I know some of you are thinking, "She is crazy!" and I might be a little bit, BUT the end of the year is the best time to organize and plan.  Last year, I wrote this post about what I do a the end of the year, and Kristin wrote this post, about planning during the end of the year.

But TODAY, I am going to show you my favorite professional development books. Obviously, I would recommend checking out one or two based on your needs, however they are ALL amazing!



For the teacher that needs to RECHARGE

I love anything written by Ron Clark, but Move your Bus is my favorite. I reread it often to remind myself to be a runner! If you don't know, his co-owner of The Ron Clark Academy is Kim Bearden, and her book, Crash Course will remind you why you went into teaching. It is my ultimate favorite! I also recently found the book Conscious Discipline, thanks to my friend, Theresa from True Life I'm a Teacher. This book is all about teacher mindset. I just started it, and I am loving it!


For the teacher beginning Reading Groups

These books are good for reading groups, or ideas for your groups. Even if you have been implementing reading groups for several years, I know you will find something useful in them! These two books are my everything when it comes to Guided Reading. Jan Richardson has everything you need, including strategies and printables in this book for every level of guided reading. The Daily Five book is great for anyone who uses a grouping method for reading.  I also LOVE Word Nerds. This book has amazing ideas for vocabulary instruction. While I would recommend it for 2nd grade and above, it could be modified for Kindergarten and 1st grade.


For the teacher looking for Math Group ideas

I LOVE this book! Debbie Diller is an amazing math group guru, and she has fabulous ideas in this book! It is for grades K-2, so if you have a book suggestion for 3-6, I would love to hear it!


For the teacher looking for Differentiation Ideas 

If you are a GenEd teacher and you have a huge range of student abilities in your classroom, these are my top picks! I got my gifted endorsement several years ago and the book, Teaching Gifted Kids in Today's Classroom is my all time favorite. It has so many suggestions to extend the learning of higher level students.  Advancing Differentiation and How to Differentiate Instruction for Mixed Ability Classrooms are both amazing and so helpful when your classroom ranges in ability levels.


For the teacher looking for IDEAS or Strategies

How many times have we all run out of ideas or needed new fresh strategies for teaching a topic?  I recently found these books this year, and I never knew what I was missing. THEY ARE SO GOOD! You can use these books no matter what ELA format you use. It is literally a book full of strategies for every level. They do cost a little more, but honestly, they are worth EVERY penny. You can find the reading one here and the writing one here. These two will be the ones that I will be reading over the summer!


What professional development books will you dive into this summer? Whether you are reading to recharge, learn new strategies, or try a new method, these books will help you achieve your goal! Do you have an awesome book that I didn't show, leave it in the comments below! Happy Reading!





Thursday, April 20, 2017

Earth Day for the Last Minute Teacher

Earth Day is just a few days away!  If you have been busy or preoccupied like me the last few weeks, you might have very little time to come up with fun Earth Day activities.  BUT, don't stress, I have activities that are low prep for those last minute teachers like me! - Meghan from Keeping Up with Mrs. Harris

Newspaper Drawings



You more than likely can get your hands on a few newspapers from a closet, front office or that nerdy social studies teacher down the hallway!  Grab those and do a quick lesson on upcycling!  Talk to your students about the amount of paper that we use during a typical school day.  Remind them that even paper can be reused!  Use paints, markers, or crayons to create newspaper drawings.


Read a few books!


Katie from Gift of Curiosity has an awesome list of books to read on Earth Day!  Checkout her post by clicking here!


Plants and Seeds


Earth Day is also a great time to pull in Science standards for plant life cycles.  I have a comprehension pack on seeds and plants that would be great to print and use for your classroom.  Or better yet, you can project the pages on the active board and answer the questions together or on dry erase boards.  Click here to see more about the Plants and Seeds pack.


Dirt and Worms - YUM!


Earth Day in the Classroom - 6 Ways to celebrate Earth Day - You will love #4!
Close out Earth Day with a fun snack!  Mash up oreos and add a gummy worm.  How cute are these???

Don't let Earth Day pass without doing something fun with your students!  Challenge yourself to even try to go paperless for the day!  There are a ton of fun Google activities that you could try!  I have several that you can find by clicking here.  Happy Earth Day!




Thursday, April 13, 2017

Earth Day Everyday!

Hi, friends!  Shannon here from Bryant's Brain Train.  If your April is like mine, there are tons of things going on at school during this busy spring season...state testing, field trips, Easter, field day, spring break, etc.  

April is also the perfect time to sprinkle in a bit of special Science instruction--April 22nd is Earth Day, and April 28th is Arbor Day.  What a great time to teach the 3 R's--REDUCE, REUSE, and RECYCLE!  I thought I would share a few ideas and freebies to try, based upon these upcoming days.
I just love this Earth Day song, full of great ideas for kids to try!  Why not make a chart and brainstorm ideas that your class can put into practice in the weeks ahead?!

    Click HERE to see some of my favorite classroom crafts and ideas on Pinterest.  
Like these adorable cookies...
 Or this milk jug watering can...
Or even this simple bird feeder made from Cheerios and chenille stems.

Lastly, how about a couple of Earth Day FREEBIES?  Just click the images below...
   
I hope your April is simply awesome!  Happy Spring, and Happy, Hoppy Easter!