I have always taught in an inclusive classroom, which means I have always taught students with diverse learning abilities. I have had a number of students who struggle with written output. As a teacher in the North American school system which relies heavily on literacy skills it was often really challenging to assess students’ comprehension when writing difficulties inhibited their ability to write down their ideas. As such, as an alternative to answering questions or constructing essays during reading or listening comprehension lessons I would allow my students to map their understanding.
After reading a story to my students or having them read a tale independently, I would have my students draw pictures of all the main events and details of the story, and also draw path that showed their understanding of the sequencing of each event in the plot. I would specific that each map was to include all the characters, all main events, the different settings and a key like a traditional map would. I would also ensure my students understand what the terms, plot, character and setting meant.
A PDF version Story Map template can be downloaded for free here from my Teachers pay Teachers Store. Continue reading “Freebie Friday: How to Story Map with a Free Story Map Template”
As you may remember we have a bunch of different games and activities for geometry. Shape identification is an important skill acquired in the lower elementary grades. So today’s Freebie Friday is Shape Bingo, which provides a fun, engaging, play-based method to have students practice both the construction of shapes as well as the identification. This activity can be played using two or three dimensional shapes. I have also used it as part of a unit on differentiating quadrilaterals. It is a game that is easily modified to suit a teacher curricular needs, and as such I have found it to be an excellent substitute teacher activity or even a home learning game.
In the classroom, I have used Shape Bingo across the grades by modifying the shapes I ask my students to fill their bingo. For example, for the younger grades will choose squares, triangles, diamonds, squares and rectangles. Furthermore, for primary students I will often model the shapes by drawing each on the board and labeling them and allowing the students to copy them directly. Whereas, for the intermediate and upper grades I will often write only the word on the board (e.g. cube, sphere, cone etc.) and ask my students to draw the shape independently.
In my experience this activity provides excellent repetitive practice in drawing the different shapes. As such, I often will collect the game boards after the activity as a formative assessment measure to see how efficiently my students can compose the different shapes. Continue reading “Freebie Friday: Shape Bingo”
One of my all time favourite aspects of blogging is connecting with other bloggers and professionals across the globe. In all my years working in education I have actually never set foot in a teacher store, nor have I bought a published curriculum book like a black line master (crazy I know!). I draw all my inspiration from the wealth of resources fellow educators and instructional designers share in their own small corners of the web. The way I see it teacher blog reading, Pinteresting and teachers pay teachers perusing should count at professional development credits.
So needless to say I was super excited to see one of my favourite teacher blogs, Teaching Blog Addict, showcase my Free Halloween Bingo resource! Teaching Blog Addict is an excellent resource to find great education bloggers and a plethora of rich resources. Head over and check out the new resources being shared today, as there are constantly new materials being showcased.
Another activity I designed is up on the Yellin Center Blog. Noggle is a math game that I developed when I first started substitute teaching since it is flexible across grades and required little material prep. Noggle follows the same rules as Boggle but with numbers instead of letters. For more information on the game rules, how I have used this activity, its alignment to the educational standards and an example of the Noggle game board I designed head over the the Yellin Center blog. As always, I hope you enjoy it and can make great use out of it. I know my students have loved it.
Like what you see? I would love to connect. Let’s be FRIENDS!
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In light of The Jordan Project Teachers pay Teachers Store being up and running I figured I should start a recurring theme to highlight some of the free resources available. As you remember our store is still a work in progress but I have played around with some of the pricing resulting in even more free materials. My main motivation behind the store is to help ease my colleges planning, so please go explore. I am loving watching all my resources be downloaded. You have no idea how much my heart leaps knowing that exceptional educators all over the place are downloading and using MY curricular design. I seriously am so over the top excited about it all.
As for this week, the free resource is a simple classroom management tool to help organize the learning environment. It is a series of beautiful and minimal supply labels for teachers to use to decorate and label the supplies in their classroom. Each label is 4 inches by four inches and can be cut out by hand or with a 4 inch die cut. It is up to the educator but I always laminate my labels to help them withstand the wear and tear of little hands. Outside the classroom, these labels could also be used by the extra organized mama who wants to keep an orderly, curated home learning space. Enjoy, share and don’t hesitate to send pictures of how you use the materials. I love seeing my work in real time.
As always, giving credit where credit is due, the awesome wreath graphic from the exceptionally talented people behind Angie Makes