August 28, 2016

Reading Bags

One of my favorite tools to use with my students each year are these reading bags:

We take them out each day for different activities, including phonics, poetry, sight words, and much more!  The Reading Bags are just zippered pencil pouches that I bought at Walmart a few years ago.  They have lasted me about four years!  Let me give you a better look at what we keep inside.

We use the letter charts when we sing Jack Hartmann's "Learning Letter Sounds."  The kids use their "Reading Finger" (the witch finger) to point as they sing.  We also use these fingers to point when we read predictable books, poems, and pretty much everything else!  The highlighters are used for highlighting our Rainbow Words (high frequency words) and for coding chunks we know (more about this at the bottom of this post).  The purple sight word cards are part of our Rainbow Word program, which is from rainbowwords.com.  The stretchy snakes I use to teach students to stretch out words when we are spelling phonetically and also when we are listening for beginning, medial, and final sounds in words.  Throughout the year, I will also add our Saxon Phonics letter tiles to the Reading Bags as we learn each letter.

These Reading Bags make learning hands on and really help my students stay involved during whole group lessons.  I used to have students store these in their chair pockets, but last year I received a Donors Choose grant that allowed me to get Wobble Chairs.  I LOVE my Wobble Chairs, but the chair pockets had to go.  So, I tried having students store the Reading Bags in their cubbies, but found that we didn't use them as often because it was a hassle to have them leave their seat to get them.  It is MUCH better when they are on hand and ready to use!  This year, I am trying Command hooks under the table.  I will update you on how it works for us!

Click text under the photos below to go to my Teachers Pay Teachers Store for the "Learning Letter Sounds" FREE Download and or to purchase the posters I use when we code our "chunks" in predictable readers and poems!

August 15, 2016

A Quick Teacher Tip!

Today's post is a quickie!  I am busy prepping my room for our first day, which is Friday!  I can't wait to meet my new little Kinder family!  One of the the things I do every year to keep my classroom easel looking nice and new is cover each side with lamination.  So quick, so easy, and saves me lots of clean up.  I only have to change the lamination about once a year, sometimes even less!  I hope that this little tip helps you in your classroom!

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