Friday, February 27, 2015

Effective Reading Activities & Resources {K-3} Linky Party

Happy Friday, Café Friends!
I could get used to working only Monday and Friday with 3 snow days in between.
Everything's wonderful until I get back to school this morning and try to make up for the 3 days we were out! Just when I think I'm getting back into our daily groove, the fire drill sounds! Go figure.
TGIF is all I have to say!!
Mid-term reports just went home this week and we're in full-swing with getting these little first graders reading at and above grade level. With only 3 solid months of school left I've been trying to find various ways to help ensure my students are ready for second grade. {My heart just skipped a few beats and my anxiety level just rose a bit when I typed that---3 MONTHS!} Where has the year gone?!?!
If you're like me, you're constantly looking for new tools, tricks, and activities to help your kids during this "crunch time".
Join the party!
Feel free to link up to 5 EFFECTIVE READING ACTIVITIES, RESOURCES, or BLOG POSTS that you've used and found to be SUCCESSFUL with your K-3 students in helping them become better readers. Please be sure the links are suitable for K-3 students.

 Thanks for stopping by the Crazy Critter Café! I hope you'll join the linky! {it ends 3/9/15}
Once the linky party is over, stop back by, check out the links, find some awesome resources for reading and get ready to finish out your school year with ease!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Huge ONE DAY Teachers Pay Teachers SALE!

It's a SALE!!! Save big on your favorite products and activities! Clean out your Wish List!

My entire TPT store is on sale + get an extra % off by entering the code: HEROES at checkout.

 photo sale banner heroes2 copy_zpsirfkqp7u.jpg
{Thanks to Strawberry Shake for the awesome promotion banner!}

post signature

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Penguins, Penguins, Everywhere! ~ Art and Writing Activity

What a COLD week it's been here at the Crazy Critter Café!
We had 2 "snow" days here in NC--freezing rain, no fluffy stuff {yet}. :(
Since it's been so icy lately, I thought it would be perfect to continue our penguin activities.
Each year I love having students create their own penguin scene using construction paper and chalk.
Each student is given:
~1/2 sheet of black construction paper to make the body and wings
~1/4 sheet of orange construction paper for the feet and beak
~1/4 sheet of white construction paper for the belly
~1 whole sheet of blue construction paper for the background
~scissors, glue, and white chalk to create their scene
First they create their penguin and glue it onto the blue paper. Then students create their snow scene using white chalk. It's interesting to see all of the wonderful creativity!
Check out these adorable penguins!!


Some early finishers wanted to get extra paper, so they made a penguin family. How cute!?
Afterwards, I pulled a page from my Writing Paper Templates Pack for students to write their final draft of penguin facts.  

Finally, we read the book Penguins, Penguins, Everywhere! by Bob Barner.

It was a perfect, arctic week to continue with our penguin fun.
Now, I think it's time to pull out my Spring files! Maybe that'll help these cold temps to rise!
I've had enough of Winter already. Anybody with me? I know my friends up north have BEEN ready!

post signature

Saturday, February 7, 2015

FREEBIE~14 Color Your Own Valentine's Day Cards

Hello Café Friends! It's finally Friday!!
I've been fighting sinus/allergies all week long, so I was SO glad for today to get here.
I was looking at my calendar today and realized that Valentine's Day is next week! That means we need to get busy creating our Valentine's bags! The past few years I've used brown or white paper lunch bags and had various cut-outs of hearts and stickers for students to decorate their bags.
Let's face it, about 2 hours after the party and Valentine exchange, we know the fate of those cute little Valentine bags. So....that's why I like to keep it simple and fun. The bags work so well because I can fold and staple the top before the kids go home and no candy gets dumped on the floor. :-)
Another thought that crossed my mind was Valentine cards. Do I buy 'em or make 'em?
I decided I'd make some cards for my students to use as part of a writing activity.
Students can choose their card(s) and color their own using markers, colored pencils, or crayons. During the writing activity, they'll write a message to their "Valentine". 
{3 of the 14 cards are shown in the pic below:}
I plan to use these cards to give as rewards to students "caught being good".
I have Valentine's pencils or little treats I can tape on the inside. I'll also write a positive message about their behavior. :-)
Students always love coloring in my class, so I thought these cards would be perfect to incorporate with a Valentine's writing activity. Once they make a card for their valentine, they'll write about WHY they chose to send a card to that person.
What ways would you use these cards with your students? Please feel free to comment below.
Have a great weekend everybody!

post signature

Monday, February 2, 2015

FREEBIE~ 100th Day of School Booklet for Stickers, Stamps or Fingerprints

Happy Monday! Welcome back to the Crazy Critter Café! Let me just tell ya'--today was a CrAzY day.
You can't convince me that kids don't act differently when there's a FULL moon ~ my own boys included. :-) Whew! And it's only Monday....
Well, to get things looking up, our 100th day of school will be this week. Already 100 days!!!
I like to do table rotations as part of my activities that day. It's a good way to stuff a lot of fun activities into one short day. (We always carry over to 101 days anyway.)
As one of my centers this year I created a 100 sticker book that could also be used for 100 stamps or 100 fingerprints. I found packs of 350 stickers at our local Dollar Tree, so I'll put several sheets in a table basket for the kids to use while creating their 100th day sticker booklets.
They can use colored pencils, crayons or markers to customize and decorate their covers.
Please feel free to share how you do rotations on the 100th day of school. What activities are your favorite? Which are easy for kids to work on independently?
Thanks for stopping by the café! Hopefully the full moon will be over tomorrow and things will settle back down a little. :-)

post signature