Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Super Summary Lessons & Printables!!

Hello! My name is Emily Rocha. I’m a first grade teacher near Houston in Richmond, Texas. I am so excited to be a guest blogger! I currently don’t have a blog, but I am considering starting one of my own once things start to settle down. I would love to share some of the things I have created and lesson plans I have made for free to the blog world!

My students have been working on writing a summary this week. This can be a difficult process for many students. I decided to take a step by step approach.

        Day 1 and 2:
I introduced what a summary is. I defined  a summary using the following terminology, “A summary is a brief account of the text and giving the main points. It’s not telling everything. It’s putting together important information.”

I read aloud a book and modeled filling out a portion of the pre-writing page. This pre-writing page is meant to collect their ideas. It is not written in complete sentences, but rather in lists with bullets. I then read another book aloud, and students then completed the pre-writing independently on the second book read aloud.

Day 3 and 4:
Students use their pre-writing to create a draft. The draft uses the bullet points and turns the list into complete sentences. I encouraged students to write the title and author in their introduction. I also modeled how to write the summary into the story without explicitly stating it. I wanted to avoid students writing, “The setting is outside.” but rather write, “It was a beautiful, sunny day.” I modeled the steps of the draft using my pre-writing page, then had students complete their draft independently.

Day 5:
I modeled how to turn a draft into a final copy. I emphasized using nice handwriting, four star sentences, and the importance of a final copy. Students then completed their final draft summary independently. Students were also expected to draw an illustration they feel best sums up the story.

I hope you find this useful! I have also included the exact lesson plan I used for you to have for your records, and the rubric I used to grade it. I always present the students with the rubric criteria before they turn their papers in.

Lesson Plan
Click the the picture to download
Click the the picture to download

Thank you for reading!

Emily Rocha

Monday, October 17, 2011

Goal Setting

Hey y'all!!! Goal setting is HUGE at my school!! One of my amazing team members made this cute little goal setting printable that I just had to share with you {with her permission}!! It's simple and sweet. Enjoy!!!

Click on the picture to download it!!
Gobble, Gobble, Gobble!!!
Many of you have asked about when I'll have my Thanksgiving themed centers ready!! Now that I'm not writing a paper every day, I am back to my center making self!!! I hope to have my turkey themed  centers posted by the weekend!! I'm so excited about them!!!

Stay tuned for an awesome post from a guest blogger tomorrow!!! If you would like to be a guest blogger here, please feel free to e-mail me!!

Have a GREAT week!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

FREE Technology Toys!!!

Hey Friends!! I'm SO excited to announce that I completed my Master's degree program yesterday!! I feel like a new person today...recharged, inspired, and RELIEVED!!! I want to say THANK YOU to all of the sweet guest bloggers that dropped by this week to keep things rolling over here!!! Please make sure to check out their blogs and TpT products if you haven't already!!

I attended the best technology fair ever and learned about some really amazing FREE technology resources on Friday!! I've been waiting ever since then to tell you all about it!!! Seriously, who doesn't love FREE?!?!

Are you ready?!?! This stuff is going to blow your sweet teacher heart away!!!

Random Name/Word Generator
Check out this name/word generator cuteness.  You just enter your students' names or words and it will randomly select them!! What a great way to make sure you are not calling on the same kids over and over again!!! Click here for this FREE resource!

Countdown Timer
Wanna make timing your kids FUN?!?!? Try this awesome countdown timer!! My favorite thing about it is that you can pick a soundtrack to go with your visual countdown!! I can't wait to use this with the Mission Impossible soundtrack for our clean up time tomorrow afternoon!! What would you use it for it your classroom?!?!?

Have you ever heard of Wordle?!?! Ohmyword!! Talk about word heaven!! This technology toy lets you take words from a text to make an instant word cloud!! You can copy/paste words from a document, enter a url to find words, or enter your own. I did one from the words in my lil' blog! The more the word has been used, the bigger it is in the cloud!! Cool, huh?!?! It gets better you can even customize your fonts, colors, backgrounds, etc.

If you like Wordle, you will LOVE Tagxedo!! You can actually make your word clouds in the shape of an apple, heart, star, etc!! Too cute!!

Digital Flipbook Maker
Do you use flipbooks in your classroom? You must check out ReadWriteThink's digital flipbook maker!! You can make a digital flipbook page by page and print it out!! A-MAZ-ING!!


 I about fell out of my seat when I learned about Zooburst!! You can make your own digital 3D pop up books on this site for FREE with a basic account!! Not only am I excited to use this with my kiddos, but I also can't wait to show it to Parker!!

 Comix is a place where you sweeties can actually create their own digital comic strips!! What a great activity to incorporate creativity and critical thinking in your classroom!!!

I hope you have found something in this post that you had no idea was out there in cyberland that you can use in your wonderful classroom!!!

Happy, Happy Teaching!!!