Victoria's  Classroom  Pictures

February 25, 2001

This page is filled with wonderful classroom photos, so it may take a few extra moments to load ... thanks for your patience :o)

Springtime is coming to Bakersfield!
In my backyard ... plum blossoms, a pink camellia, yellow shrub daisies, and white alyssum.

This page is going online a week later than planned, mainly because I've been home for a couple weekends with my family, doing family things and enjoying our time together.  Another reason it's later than expected is because I keep wanting to add just one more thing before I upload the files, and one thing leads to another which leads to yet another, and pretty soon I'm not quite finished and it's well past my bedtime.

The past two weeks at school have flown by, especially since they were both only four days long.  We celebrated Valentine's Day without getting too wild and wound up, and we had two more Black History Month assemblies.  One was put on by students, and the other featured a terrific husband-and-wife group called Kuimba.  You'll find more about them below.

Despite the numerous February holidays and special occasions -- Groundhog Day, Dental Health Month, Presidents Day, Black History Month, Valentine's Day, and more -- February tends to feel a bit unfocused to me.  We're typing up a bunch of loose ends, and finishing our Author Studies on  Jan Brett and Lois Ehlert and also doing our final activities in our P is for Penguin Unit.
 

To fill in the gaps between Valentine's Day and early-to-mid-March -- when we'll begin our huge Going Buggy Unit on insects -- we've decided to go back and revisit the Down on the Farm unit, which the KinderKids really enjoyed in September and October.

Because we were doing so many non-farm activities during our Down on the Farm unit last Fall, we didn't get a chance to do some of the really great activities we would have enjoyed spending more time on.

We now have some extra time available to build upon what we already learned, and to use our improved reading and writing skills working with familiar material.

Research shows that repeated readings of familiar stories, songs, and poems builds fluency and automaticity, and increases comprehension.  All of which means it's always a good idea -- as well as enjoyable -- to revisit familiar stories and activities.

 Our TLC Art Projects over the past two weeks included Mrs. Wishy-washy, and the duck, cow, and pig.  We're using them to illustrate our own Mrs. Wishy-washy Big Book.  This was a great way to get refocused on farm stories and activities, and we're already excited about the many farm-themed things we'll be doing in the next few weeks.

I'm equally excited about adding some new activities to my online Down on the Farm unit, including fun follow up activities for Mrs. Wishy-washy.  I'll be doing a full-revision of the unit, so be sure to stop by and see what's new and check out the new, easier-to-use, look ... it's all coming soon!

This week's InMyRoom page also includes a What Other Teachers Are Doing section.  You'll find Valentine's Day artwork, a fun Friends poem, and a February wordbank from Ms. B's room, along with pictures of two of our Kindergarten classes performing in the Black History Month student assembly.
 

Have a great week!

~ Victoria
 


 

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This Week's TLC Art Projects
Valentine Cards 
The KinderKids had a great time making these simple Valentines,
using the wonderful TLC Valentines instructions in the TLC Winter book.
click here to go to the TLC Website

 
 

Mrs. Wishy-washy
This adorable Mrs. Wishy-washy is made from the lesson called "Woman" in the "More People" book from TLC.  I'd never really noticed that particular lesson, but I was searching for something fun to do this week and was therefore looking through ALL of my TLC books for something that would tie in with my current themes.  I didn't want to do another Presidents art project, even though TLC has some terrific ones in several of their books.

As I looked through the "More People" book -- actually reading the fine print and end notes for each project -- I found a note from Kaye and Virginia that said they make a class Big Book of Mrs. Wishy-washy, using the Woman project from the TLC "More People" book and the pig, cow, and goose (for the duck) from the TLC Farm book.

What a great idea!  And what a wonderful way to get our Down on the Farm unit off to a great start, too.  The class decided to add legs and change Mrs. Wishy-washy's shoes from black ones to fat red slippers.

Next we had to make the pig, cow, and duck for Mrs. Wishy-washy.  We used the patterns in the TLC Farm book:

Here they all look the same size.  In the book pages below, you'll see that they're sized proportionately.

We made two types of ducks, using the same pieces.  The girl's ducks have their heads in the center, and the boy's ducks have their heads on the left, as if they were walking away.

Our pigs turned out various sizes and with distinct personalities.

For more information about TLC Art Books, visit www.tlcart.com

Our Mrs. Wishy-washy
Big Book

A Work-In-Progress

The cover background was sponge painted using purple, turquoise, and green tempera paints.

 Mrs. Wishy-Washy is one of the first books I read at the beginning of the school year, and she's a classroom favorite all year long.

We do many things to act out the story, using animal masks, a hula hoop on the floor for the washtub, and a bucket, apron, and kerchief for Mrs. Wishy-Washy.

Available from Amazon.com
as a child-friendly board book
for under $5

The Wright Group has published several Mrs. Wishy-Washy stories by Joy Cowley, including Wishy-Washy Day and Splishy-Sploshy, which features The Meanies from another Joy Cowley book of the same name. 

The books -- except for the board book on the left --are available only through The Wright Group


Page from original book

The "finished" pages will have colored construction paper borders like this one.

On several pages, I've needed  to cut off Mrs. Wishy-washy's arms and reposition them to make the illustrations look more like the ones in the Cowley book.   It's been fun to see the kids' reactions to this "rearranging" of their creations :o)

Our book is not quite finished.  I need to do the final pages, and then I can laminate and assemble the book.

I'll post the final page photos in my next InMyRoom update.

 

Our Big Book is made on painting paper pages that measure 19 x 24 inches (I've cropped the edges for the most of the photos).

I photocopied the text/words directly from the Mrs. Wishy-washy Big Book -- available only from The Wright Group -- then pasted it to each page.  Our book will contain all the text from the original book, but will have fewer pages, as I've combined two pages worth of text on some of the pages.


 



 
 

 

Down on the Farm



 
 
 

Down On The Farm Balanced Literacy Workshop
Phoenix, Arizona
Saturday October 5, 2002
click here for registration information

Workshop Resource Packets will be available in October 2002
to purchase, go to online order form


 

Featured Books


 

Big Red Barn
Big Book Edition

Also available in a hardcover edition, as a book-and-cassette set, as an easy-to-handle board book, and in Spanish as
El Gran Granero Rojo.

By the big red barn
In the great green field,
There was a pink pig
Who was learning to squeal.


 

Come visit the barn on a night and day when the children are away, and let Brown's gentle rhythms transport you to the barn and meadow seen through the eyes of the animals who live there.

A peaceful and evocative story written by Margaret Wise Brown, author of Goodnight Moon, and newly illustrated by Felicia Bond, illustrator of  If You Give A Pig A Pancake.


Big Red Barn

I share this book right after reading Mrs. Wishy-washy, as it sets a quiet tone that contributes to discussions about the farm and farm animals.  This soothing story is perfect for after-lunch storytime and is a nice contrast to many of the noisier farm stories we'll read later.
 

Follow Up Activities

K-W-L Chart

Build on prior knowledge by making a chart that shows what your students know about life on the farm.  Be sure to add a column of things they want to find out.

Graphing
Have You Been to the Farm?

I made a versatile Farm Graph Chart that can be used throughout my Down on the Farm unit.  It's a sheet of laminated manila tagboard, decorated with a Red Barn notepad sheet at the top and columns below.

There's room at the top to write a daily question (use dry erase or overhead markers).  I often use cute thematic post-it notes or die-cuts for the children to chart their answers.

Sample Daily Graphing Questions:

* Have you ever milked a cow?
* Which color horse do you like best?
* Have you ever seen a piglet?
* Did you see the rabbits at the County Fair?
* Can you crow like a rooster?
* Which milk product do you like best, cheese or ice cream?
* What is your favorite farm animal?

Language Experience Chart

Use this writing frame:
"A _____ lives on the farm," said _____.

Pocket Chart
Who Lives On a Farm?
~~~
Who Lives on a Farm?
An original story by Victoria Smith


 

This is the perfect follow up to the Language Experience Chart. We build it in the Pocket Chart a day or two after reading the Big Red Barn Big Book.  Use clip art or  Ellison die-cut animals and barns to make it a rebus story, for easy tracking and reading.

Read Aloud Book
And Individual Student Books

Who Lives On a Farm?
By Victoria Smith


"OLD" Cover used in my classroom
see *note* below

Use clip art or Ellison die-cut animals to illustrate this easy-to-read book to share with your class.  You can also make individual books for student book boxes or to send home to show off their reading skills.  First and second graders enjoy drawing the animals or making them from construction paper.

Emergent Reader
Blackline Masters
By Victoria Smith
A 3 book set that includes:

* Color Bears *

* Who Lives On A Farm? *

* Shape, Shape, What Do You See? *

Emergent Readers designed to teach CAP (Concepts About Print), Colors and Color Words, Shapes, and High Frequency Words.  Includes  suggestions for extending each book.

11 Pages

Illustrate with Ellison die cut shapes or cut-and-paste clip art (bear clip art included).












 

10 Pages














 

12 Pages

 


 
 
 

Pig Stories
 

If You Give A Pig A Pancake
Big Book Edition

Also available in hardcover.


If You Give A Pig A Pancake

I read this book after Big Red Barn, because both books have the same illustrator, Felicia Bond.

The class is already familiar with other books that feature Bond's illustrations, including our favorite -- If You Give A Mouse A Cookie --  which we also re-visit during our Down on the Farm unit ... after all, mice are farm animals, too.

Follow Up Activities

K-W-L Charts

Make three large pigs from bulletin board paper ... one pink, one white, one light brown, because pigs come in many different colors.

Use one pig to list things the kids already know about pigs, another to list the things they want to know, and the last one to list new things they learn.
 


 

Illustrator Study

Compare Bond's illustrations in Big Red Barn, If You Give a Pig a Pancake, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, and any other books you already own by this illustrator.


 

Story Maps

Make a Story Map for If You Give A Pig A Pancake,  showing that the story is a "Circle Story" that ends up where it began.  Do the same for any of the other "If You Give A ..." stories you read.
 


 

Lift The Flap Book

Make a Lift-the-Flap book for each student to illustrate their favorite parts of the story, or to show what happened at the beginning, middle, and the end of the story.

Make the individual books by folding a sheet of 12x18 construction paper in half lengthwise, then folding it in thirds or quarters.  Open until it has only the original fold (and is now 6x18) and cut on the fold lines up to the crease (cut the top layer only).  Writing can go on top or below the flap, with corresponding student illustrations.
 


 

Word Families / Working With Words

Brainstorm a list of words that rhyme with /pig/.  For more advanced students, make a list of words that contain /ig/.

I do the rest of these making words activities in the pocket chart or with magnetic letters:

Change the onset letter to make new words, i.e., big, wig, etc.  Change the final letter to make new words, i.e., pit, pin.

Experiment with the new words you've made, and see how they change if you change the vowel.

Once I've modeled these activities with a particular book or word family, my students love to do them independently using their own alphabet cards in our big pocket charts, or at the ABC Magnets Literacy Center (on the side of a filing cabinet, or on a pie pan or cookie sheet).
 


Favorite Pig Stories

Pig Out!

The KinderKids LOVED this silly Rebus story!

I read it on Wednesday, to get us in the mood for making our TLC Pigs for our Mrs. Wishy-washy Big Book.


Five Little Piggies

This is a roll-on-the-floor and giggle book that my class adores.  I save it to read at special times, like the end of the day or right before recess, because the kids literally roll around laughing at these short-and-silly stories based on the familiar "This Little Piggy Went to Market" rhyme.  Highly recommended.
Also available in a hardcover edition.

Mini Author Study Companion Book


Piggies

By Audrey Wood

In this new twist on the This Little Piggy Went to Market rhyme, there are ten little piggies playing on a child's fingers and doing all sorts of silly tricks.  Don Wood's illustrations are wonderful, and each Piggy has it's own unique personality.  This oversized book is an outstanding edition to your collection of piggy prose!

Pair Piggies with the Woods' classic naptime tale, The Napping House, for a mini-author study on bedtime books -- don't forget to compare the illustrations and the use of light in the two stories!  Piggies is also available as an easy-to-handle board book, and in collectible hardcover edition.



Mini Author Study Companion Book


The Napping House

By Audrey Wood

There is a house,
a napping house,
where everyone is sleeping.
 

"Everyone" includes a snoring granny, a dreaming child, a dozing dog, a snoozing cat, a slumbering mouse, and a wakeful flea that gets everyone up and moving! 

This classic Audrey Wood tale about a houseful of nimble nappers on a rainy afternoon is an all-time favorite with children of all ages.  The KinderKids love looking for the little mouse in each picture, and watching the room brighten as the sun comes out after the storm.  The illustrations are superb, slowly shifting from slumbering blues to shimmering yellows and golds.

This inexpensive board book edition is a great companion to your other bedtime board books.  Also available in a handsome hardcover edition, in a Big Book edition for Shared Reading, and on an audio cassette narrated by Lynn Redgrave.


 

More Farm Stories
Plus Info on How I Build A Unit
 

This section is either going to be kind of fun or kind of confusing :o)

When I was working on this part of the page the other night -- and thinking about the changes I'm planning to the "old" online version of my Down On The Farm unit -- things started coming together very quickly, and in less than an hour I had mentally put together some new "mini themes" for the unit.

And while I was doing all that work -- on the computer and in my head -- I was also trying to write down the process I was going through as I selected stories and books and began making connections between them that I hadn't deliberately set out to make.  That's one of the best parts about creating lessons and units, the part where you take a look at what you already have and think about new ways you can put the materials together.

I'm going to add the books more-or-less in the order I chose them a few nights ago, along with the notes I typed at that time.  Hopefully it will make as much sense to you now as it did to me then.



 
 
 
 

Farm Animal Board Books
By Sandra Boynton

Moo, Baa, LaLaLa!

Delightful silliness the KinderKids love!  Publisher Simon Schuster says:  "Artist Sandra Boynton is back and better than ever with completely redrawn versions of her multi-million selling board books. These whimsical and hilarious books, featuring nontraditional texts and her famous animal characters ...  are sure to educate and entertain children of all ages."

Under $4


Barnyard Dance

Another farm favorite board book from Sandra Boynton!  Publisher's Weekly says:  "Farm animals dance a boisterous, breathless, knee-slapping reel called, with great panache, by a fiddle-playing cow: ``Bow to the horse. / Bow to the cow. / Twirl with the pig if you know how.''  These are billed as "baby books" but my KinderKids have practicaly worn the print off the pages.  Highly recommeded!

Under $6


Going To Bed Books

 


Baby's First Library, A Three Book Set

By Margaret Wise Brown

Sturdy board book copies of my three favorite stories by this fabulous children's author:

Big Red Barn

Goodnight Moon

The Runaway Bunny

All three of these were favorites with my own sons before they learned to walk, and when they visit my classroom (they're 12 and almost-15 now) they love to read these to the KinderKids!

The patterns, rhythms, and rhymes are captivating, and the stories themselves are just right for young children.

20% off the publisher's price, perfect for your classroom or as a special gift for any child ~ this is my current favorite baby shower present.


 
 


The Going to Bed Book

By Sandra Boynton

The moon is high.
The sea is deep.
They rock
and rock
and rock
to sleep.

A big boatful of animals watches the sun go down and then prepares for bed.

They take a bath ("in one big tub"), find pajamas, brush their teeth, do exercises up on deck (imagine an elephant jumping rope, a moose lifting weights, and a pig doing handstands), and finally say good night.

 

Reflections On How I Build A
New Thematic Unit

When I'm putting together new materials for a thematic unit, my mind is literally all over the place, making the kinds of connections we hope our students will make, weaving seemingly different materials together in new ways,and looking at the world -- I hope -- through children's eyes.

What I "saw" just now was a mini-unit-within-a-unit -- a Going To Bed Theme inside the Down on the Farm Theme -- that gives you time and space to do some author study work on Margaret Wise Brown and Sandra Boynton.

Why not extend Big Red Barn's nighttime ending to encompass Goodnight Moon and The Runaway Bunny (which ends with bunny asleep and contented), and follow them with Boynton's The Going to Bed Book?  All four stories deal with bedtime rituals, something our students know a LOT about.

Numerous follow up activities come to mind, including individual student Bedtime Books, a class Big Book, building a bedtime word bank for Writer's Workshop time, bringing favorite stuffed animals to school to share and graph (by type, color, size, etc.), and even a pajama party to celebrate reading, like I did with the KinderKids before Winter Break.  Our party had a G is for Gingerbread  theme ... your party could be about animals or take place inside a make-believe barn decorated with life-size animal figures on the walls to help set the mood.

Let your imagination take you and your students somewhere new and have fun with it, enjoying the rich language experiences and combination of fun, fact, and fantasy you'll share.

 

More "Going To Bed" Books

 


A Child's Good Night Book

By Margaret Wise Brown

1944 Caldecott Honor Book

Called "the first of the true goodnight books," this soothing and rhythmic board book explores a world of things getting ready for bed ... sleepy bunnies, sleepy birds, sleepy lambs, and sleepy children, plus kangaroos and pussycats, sailboats and steam engines.

Another ideal story for your Margaret Wise Brown Author Study and Mini Unit on Going to Bed.


 


Little Donkey Close Your Eyes

By Margaret Wise Brown

. Wild young birds
that sweetly sing
Curve your heads
beneath your wing
Dark night covers
all the skies
Wild young birds
now close your eyes.
 

Another must-have board book from Margaret Wise Brown.  Originally copyrighted in 1959, this new edition features illustrations by Ashley Wolff (illustrator of the wonderful Miss Bindergarten Books and Raffi's Baby Beluga).

 


 


Snoozers

7 Short Bedtime Stories for Lively Little Kids
 

Another terrific board book of funny animal stories from Sandra Boynton.  These stories are great for filling those short teachable moments at the end of the day.


 


Time For Bed

By Mem Fox

It's time for bed, little mouse, little mouse,
Darkness is falling all over the house.
 

A charming board book with a bedtime rhyme and lovely double page illustrations of mother and baby animals snuggling down for the night.

Featured Professional Book


Mosaic of Thought:
Teaching Comprehension In A Reader's Workshop

By Ellin Keene & Susan Zimmermann

I've said it dozens -- if not hundreds -- of times in the past two years ... this book has changed the way I teach as well as the way I think about teaching and planning lessons and units.

Mosaic of Thought reads like a good novel, and you're always waiting to see what happens next.  Keene and Zimmermann present well-rounded ideas and actual classroom scripts and scenarios that teach you to model the "think aloud" process that will help your students grow as readers, writers, and thinkers.

Their explanations of current research are easy to understand and show how to build background knowledge in your students and create the bridges and learning environment necessary for all students to succeed.  Mosaic of Thought  is always on my Top 10 Must-Have Books for Teachers list.  Highly recommended.

 

 

More Fun Farm Books

Down on Grandpa's Farm

This one is super easy to make!  For the cover, I used an Ellison barn on a blue background, with cut paper hills and torn paper grass.  The inside pages are white, with an Ellison animal and two words of text per page ... the animal's color and name.  I wrote the color words in the corresponding colors, to make it even easier for the KinderKids.  This book remains popular throughout the year.

sample inside page ... add as many pages as you like

~~~

ABC Farm


ABC Farm
Cover and Inside Page

Another super easy Big Book made on 12" x 18" construction paper.  I used Ellison shapes for the cover, and enlarged a blackline ABC book that I run off for each student.  They keep their ABC Farm books (photocopied pages they can color if they wish, stapled inside a laminated construction paper cover) in their book boxes, and use them for writing all year long.  At this time of year, they use them for basic frame writing ...
I see a _____.  I like the _____.  I saw a _____ on the farm.
 
 
 
 


 
 

Valentine's Day 
In Mrs. Smith's Class

Keana

Willow

Matthew


 
 


 
 

Black History Month

Kuimba


 

For the second week in a row, we had an outstanding assembly celebrating African music, played by a talented family with musical roots.
 


 

Kuimba is a husband-and-wife team.  Lark grew up in South Africa, and she had a lot of wonderful information to share about the country and its music.  The instruments they played were beautiful works of art, as seen in the photos:
 


 
 

~~~~~~~

Our principal, Mr. Buckner

~~~~~~~


My Favorite Books For
Black History Month ~ Including New Titles Added This Week!

Virgie Goes to School
With Us Boys

2001 Coretta Scott King
Illustrator Honors Book

Virgie, youngest in a family of boys, wants to learn to read and write just like her brothers. But the boys have to walk seven miles to Jonesborough, Tennessee each Monday morning, carrying their food and clothes, and stay all week at the Quaker school.  A true family story, set just after the Civil War.


Let It Shine:
Stories of Ten Black Women Freedom Fighters

2001 Coretta Scott King
Author Honors Book

Lively, compelling compelling stories about Rosa Parks, Harriett Tubman, Shirley Chisholm, Biddy Mason, and other women -- historical and contemporary -- who have played important roles in Black American history.  Author Andrea Davis Pinkney has written many award-winning picture book autobiographies.


Only Passing Through:
The Story of Sojourner Truth

2001 Coretta Scott King
Illustrator Honors Book

Sojourner Truth began her
journeys in the latter half of the 19th century -- at the age of forty-six -- to speak out for the abolition of slavery.  She told of a slave girl who was sold three times by age 13, who was beaten for not understanding her master's orders, who watched her parents die of cold and hunger when they could no longer work for their keep.  A powerful story about one of the most important voices in the Abolitionist movement.


Wings

Author-Illustrator Christopher Myers (illustrator of Harlem, written by his father) retells the myth of Icarus through the story of Ikarus Jackson, the new boy on the block, who can fly above the rooftops and over the crowd. In this contemporary version, the winged kid nearly falls from the sky, not because he flies too high and dares to go too near the sun, but because jeering kids in the schoolyard and repressive adults don't like his being different and try to break his soaring spirit.  Highly recommended.


Uptown

2001 Coretta Scott King
Illustrator Award Winner

Discover the vibrant world of Harlem, New York, as seen through the eyes of one little boy who lives there.  Uptown is a rich mix of flavors, colors, sounds, and cultures that come together to create a
 vibrant community like no other in the world.  A wonderful addition to your bookshelf, filled with rich language and pictures.


Harlem

This outstanding Caldecott Honor Book is similar to Bryan Collier's Uptown, but goes deeper and shows us more.  Written by Walter Dean Meyers and illustrated by his son, Christoper Meyers, author/illustrator of Wings.  A Parent's Choice Book, 1999.


i see the rhythm

1999 Coretta Scott King
Illustrator Award Winner

 The blues, ragtime, jazz, gospel, R&B, rock, funk, rap, and hip hop all come under scrutiny in free-verse poems that incorporate lyrics about and the rhythms of every style.  Great for all grades!


In Daddy's Arms I Am Tall:
African Americans Celebrating Fathers

1998 Coretta Scott King
Illustrator Award Winner

A splendid series of images in mixed media -- from found objects, torn and cut paper, and color --  illustrates a series of short poems about fathers.


Shades of Black:
A Celebration of Our Children

A photo collection published by Scholastic, celebrating the varied appearances of African American children.  This is a wonderful book for any and all children, and a terrific book for starting classroom discussions and building positive self images in all students.


In The Time Of The Drums
2000 Coretta Scott King
Illustrator Award Winner

Based on the Gullah legend of a slave rebellion at Ibo's Landing in the Sea Islands, this stirring picture book tells the story from the point of view of an African American girl named Mentu.


The Palm of my Heart

A collection of 20 poems by African American children, that express the joy and pride of the black experience.  Wonderful pen and acrylic illustrations.


Ashley Bryan's ABC of African American Poetry

Exuberant, vibrant paintings illustrate this imaginative alphabet book designed to introduce readers to twenty-six African-American poets.


Black Books Galore!
A Guide to Great African American Children's Books About Girls

Black Books Galore!
A Guide to Great African American Children's Books About Boys

 

~~~~~~~
Ms. B's & Mrs. Landucci's Kindergarten Classes
Performing At Our Black History Student Assembly




 
 


February Homework Calendar

Our February art project is a mosaic heart, made from pre-cut construction paper squares of random sizes.  This year one child made his entire heart red ... I've never had a child do that before, and it looked terrific!


 
Victoria's Calendar Blackline Master sets include:
  • 13 months of homework (August through August for the current school year)
     
  • 365 simple standards-based activities, with no religious holiday references
     
  • Directions for suggested artwork for each month
     
  • Separate sets are available for both Kindergarten and First Grade,
    in your choice of English or Spanish.

    For ordering information -- or to print a sample page --
    please click here to visit Victoria's online products catalog.

  • Calendar sets are available for Instant Download
    and can also be shipped by postal mail.

 


 

Readers and Writers
At Work



Language Arts Resource Books
For Your Professional Bookshelf
These are reading and writing books discussed on the KinderKorner Listserve
during the past two weeks.

On Solid Ground : Strategies for Teaching Reading K-3
By Sharon Taberski

One of my very favorite books for creating successful and motivated readers and writers, and I recommend it highly.  Here's part of the Amazon review:  "Sharon deals with the same issues other teachers face: limited resources, tremendous diversity, and the constant
 threat of overcrowding. What makes her exceptional is her clear vision. She is systematic in her thinking, wise in her decision making."

 

Rhymes & Reasons:
Literature and Language Play for Phonological Awareness
By Michael F. Optiz

Go read the Amazon reviews on this one, it's great!  This book has everything you need to teach phonemic awareness in a context-rich manner, using readily available books you can find in your school library, public library, Target or Walmart or local bookstore.  Optiz lists more than 350 books your students will enjoy while exploring word play and language.

 

Lifetime Guarantees:
Toward Ambitious Literacy Teaching
By Shelley Harwayne

Another book that every early childhood teacher should have on their reading table ... ask your principal to buy copies of this for ALL the teachers at your school, especially if they're as committed to developing literacy as they are to improving test scores :o)

Discover how to provide students with real-world reasons to write and engage them in effective writing workshops. There are also suggestions on how the entire school culture can support the teaching of poetry and nonfiction.

Snapshots:
Literacy Mini-lessons Up Close
By Linda Hoyt

Another must-have book for primary grade teachers working with emergent readers and writers.  Hoyt shares more than 170 of her best mini-lessons for use during shared reading and shared writing, as well as small group and individual literacy instruction.  Filled with information you can read today and use tomorrow to improve your Balanced Literacy program.

Be sure to check out Hoyt's other popular title, Revisit, Reflect, Retell : Strategies for Improving Reading Comprehension



 

What Other Teachers 
Are Doing



 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Ms. B's Room
Valentine Collages
Colored Tissue Paper over construction paper, with fun and fancy stuff glued on.

Happy Teaching!

Victoria :o)
 

Go To:


Online Thematic Units
Index
KinderKorner Home Page
Write to Victoria

Photo Pages Index
Resource Products
Order Form

Let It Snow Thematic Unit 

P Is For Penguin
Thematic Unit Activities


Jan Brett
Author Study ~ December & January

G Is For Gingerbread
Thematic Unit

It's Beginning To Look
A Lot Like Christmas
Thematic Unit
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KinderKorner, The KinderKorner Website, and all non-credited photos and text materials on this page
are copyright by Victoria Smith, ©1998 - 2003.  All rights reserved.
Nothing may be reproduced or placed on another website
without the written permission of the copyright holder, Victoria Smith.

This page went online on February 26, 2001, and was updated January 5, 2003