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Showing posts with label sub plans. Show all posts
Showing posts with label sub plans. Show all posts

Six Ways to Use Seasonal and Holiday Printables

Seasonal and holiday printables are a real time saver! 

Plus, they bring valuable skills practice. 
Oh yes, and the children LOVE them!

Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

Here are 6 ways I have used these in my classroom:
Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

1.  Leave for a substitute teacher.

This is why I originally created seasonal printables. If I know I'm going to be out, I will make packets for my substitute to use for each of the subject areas. It's easy to differentiate both up and down. 
  • For an extra challenge, write in an extra challenge. (Example: in math, you can ask these students to write story problems with 2-digit numbers, then solve them!) 
  • To differentiate for more challenged students: give them fewer pages, or circle only some of the items for them to complete. (This is a trick I use all the time for both classwork and for homework. They know to only do the problems I have circled. If they finish early, they can attempt the other ones, but there's no "have to!" I am strategic when I circle the "have to")
Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

2. Leave for when someone has to cover your class for a meeting.

You know those days: You'll have to leave your classroom with someone else. You don't want to leave complicated directions, especially if you don't even know who will be covering your class. But you want to leave meaningful skills practice that your students will enjoy. 
Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

3. Use on a day you just don't have the time to prepare.

We all know these days as well! Perhaps you were at school late the night before with parent conferences. Perhaps you've put in lots of hours preparing report cards. Maybe your child was up sick last night. Maybe you were up sick last night. There are a million reasons for running out of time to plan ahead. Seasonal printables to the rescue! Kids love them, and they'll make your life so much easier!
Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

4. Use for independent practice.

Sometimes they just need something quiet to work on while you're working with reading or math groups. Seasonal printables will give them extra practice with their literacy and/ or math skills while letting them have a little fun. They really do enjoy the work a bit more if it has an element of fun!

Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

5. Use for guided practice.

Your lower-abled students don't want to miss out on the fun of these seasonal pages! I've been known to use some of these printables during reading and/ or math groups for skills that are just a little beyond the abilities of my cherubs. (It might be the same thing some of the others are working on independently!) With a little bit of help, they'll feel a great sense of pride!
Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

6. Use as partner work.

There are a lot of ways to partner up the students and a lot of good reasons to do this! Sometimes the partners would be relatively equal in abilities. This is a great way to get them talking! Yes, sometimes that's a good thing, isn't it? When they're talking through how they get their answers, that discussion internalizes learning! That's a good thing!

Sometimes it's ok to partner a stronger student with a weaker student, but this must be done very carefully. There is never a reason for a student to feel inferior to another. But with the right combination of students, some great conversations could happen, and they can both could learn from each other!

Here is a collection of Printables that could help you through the whole year: No Prep Activities and Worksheets for the Whole Year

Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

Looking for some Science and Social Studies Printables? Try these! Science and Social Studies Activities for the Year!

Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

What are your ideas for using seasonal and holiday printables?

Six Ways to Use Seasonal Holiday Printables: Those holiday themed printables are fun for the students and helpful for teachers. Here are a few ways they can be used.

Eight Things to Think About While Long-Term Planning

I never thought of long-term planning as something set in stone. In fact, I would never think about writing long-term plans in permanent ink!
8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!


I'll never forget the time I got marked down on my teacher evaluation because I didn't "show evidence of long-term planning." It was pretty frustrating since, had she asked, I'd have directed her to the flap inside my plan book with all my charts!

Yes, I'm a planner, but I do know better than to expect everything in the classroom to go exactly as planned! 

Here are 8 things to think about while you're long-term planning"

1. Break the year into manageable chunks.

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

I typically do short-term planning by the week, but my longer plans are split into months. I know a lot of teachers like to use online planners, but I like to use old-fashioned paper. I start with a big grid labeled with each month. 

2. Start with the big picture.

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

It's a good idea to start by plotting the big chunks of curriculum into smaller chunks. For example, I'll take a look at the writing curriculum, and break it into smaller parts such as writing narratives, creating a hook, word choice, fiction writing, informational writing, opinion writing, using dialogue, writing poetry, developing voice, and sentence fluency. Here's a rough draft of my writing long-term plans.
8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

Even though you've plotted out the parts, we all know things will change. But if you teach the same grade next year, a lot of the work will be already done!

3. Establish routines.

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!


We all know that the first few weeks of the year are dedicated to establishing routines that will be in place for the rest of the school year. If these routines are well taught, they will make your life easier in the long run. One example is starting each math lesson with 5 minutes of fact fluency practice. 

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead! 

These are the systems I use. They are easy to differentate and keep organized, and the students love them. (Much like a video game, it's a great accomplishment to "move up a level!") The students can practice alone, with a partner, with a small group, or even on ipads or laptops. Once the routine is set, that frees up the teacher to prepare the classroom for the rest of the daily math lessons, or to "listen in" to assess.

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!    8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

I also start my reading groups with a warm up. These phrase cards are perfect for this purpose.  (See more about reading warm ups HERE.)

Here are some other resources that can help you establish valuable routines: 

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!  8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!  8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

4. Consider seasonal themes.

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

Certain things are very appropriate for teaching at certain times of the year. For example, when I created the list of writing chunks above, I immediately put poetry into the April category, as April is poetry month. Clearly, teaching writing procedures comes at the beginning of the school year. (late August here) January is a great time to teach writing thank you notes, as they have a lot to write from the holidays! (Writing Thank You Notes) I teach writing friendly letters near the beginning of the year, because once they've learned the "routine," it goes straight into the Sub Tub! (See HERE for this routine!) I try to get most of the "nitty gritty" writing, (editing, proofreading, punctuation, and parts of speech) near the beginning, then go back to these as I see they need review.

When teaching about life cycles, I'll probably teach certain life cycles around December, like pine trees and reindeer. (See Winter LIfe Cycle Bundle) Some life cycles are more appropriate for springtime, like robins, butterflies, or dandelions. (See Spring Life Cycle Bundle)

5 Collaborate with colleagues.

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

We all have our strengths as well as weaknesses. We all have different experiences and different ideas. We all have our own styles. And thank goodness for this! As we chat with our colleagues and teammates, we can use these differences to benefit our students. Which teacher on your team is best at organization? Which teacher on your team is best at modeling writing behaviors? Which teacher on your team is best at finding the right books that model the skills you're working on? Most of the teaching for your own students goes with you, but it doesn't hurt to branch out, does it? 

6. Integrate subjects when you can.

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!

We all know there is never enough time in the classroom to do all that is needed to be done, as teachers all wear plenty of hats! When you are able, do "double duty!" What does that mean? Well, you can teach reading and writing skills while teaching social studies as well! You can teach science while integrating important math skills such as graphing and measuring! The resources below are perfect for combining subjects to save class time.

7. Don't forget sub plans!

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!


It's a good idea to put aside plenty of activities that are valuable tasks that can be done any time of year, need minimal directions, and aren't dependent on previous lessons. This is a great time for review! 

As mentioned above, I have my friendly letters all set to go in my sub tub. It's an activity that can be done over and over again, and their writing skills will grow each time. (Plus, they love it!)


These "no-prep" activities are perfect for such occasions! I keep several pages of my Camping No-Prep in the sub tub, as these can be done any time of year. But if you know you're going to be out, try one of these seasonal sets. (They do love when you integrate something seasonal with learning, don't they?) Seasonal No Prep Activities, Worksheets, and Printables for the Whole Year.

8. Be flexible.

8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!


Honestly, when it all comes down to it, the students should take the lead when it comes to planning. Yes, we have a curriculum to follow. But if you're about to teach multiplication and you realize there are several who can't remember how to add, you might need to change your plans. If you're teaching the long o patterns, and you see your students don't remember the short o sound, change your plans. It's really all about the kids!


Here's a hint: when you see something you think will help you plan for a whole year, put it in your wishlist! Then, when a sale comes up, you can easily move it to your cart at the discounted price!

Happy teaching! May this one be the one filled with joy, excitement, wonder, and endless possibilities!
8 Things to think about while long-term planning:  Long term plans need to be flexible, but here are 8 things you can do to get ahead!


Paper Bag Dramatics: A Fun Activity for Team Building and Developing Community

Here's a fun activity that's easy to put together, gives the children a chance to be creative, and gives them a chance to work together. It's called Paper Bag Dramatics.


Paper Bag Dramatics: A fun activity for Team Building and Developing Community. Here's an idea that can be used just about anywhere at any time. It encourages groups to solve problems, think creatively, and work as a team.

You'll need enough paper bags for as many groups you'll have. They can work in pairs or small groups, depending on your group.

In each paper bag, you'll put a few items.These can be any items you happen to have hanging around.You can make all the bags identical, or totally different, that's up to you!

You'll need 3 or 4 items per bag.

Here are some ideas:

Paper Bag Dramatics: A fun activity for Team Building and Developing Community. Here's an idea that can be used just about anywhere at any time. It encourages groups to solve problems, think creatively, and work as a team.

If you want, you can have all the items in the bag follow a theme, possibly including areas of the curriculum!

This is the task: Create a skit that includes all the items in the bag. The group will need to write, practice, and perform the play for their classmates.


Some ideas about the process:


1. The time allowed really depends on your group. It's more likely that older groups will require more time than younger groups.

2. Make sure each group plans a beginning, middle, and especially an ending for their skit.

3. Make some ground rules before you begin: one person speaking at a time, someone to write down ideas, what to do if there is a disagreement, and, of course, using good manners.

4. Resist the urge to "help". This challenge is all about problem solving, so let them solve problems as much as they can. I can't help but remember the comments of one of my former students concerning problems in a group project: "We argued at first, then we started listening to each other, and we worked it out." It was one of those moments you really wish an administrator were there!

5. Don't forget to allow time for bows and lots of applause!

6. After all performances, debrief by having the children discuss questions such as: What did your group do well? What was tough for your group? What do you wish you had done differently? What do you want to remember next time you work with a group?

Enjoy your Paper Bag Dramatics!


If you need more ideas for team building, see here: 20  Team Building Games
 
Looking for a more extensive collection of team-building games? 60 Team Building Games and Activities 

Paper Bag Dramatics: A fun activity for Team Building and Developing Community. Here's an idea that can be used just about anywhere at any time. It encourages groups to solve problems, think creatively, and work as a team.






Ten Ways to Stay Healthy

Teaching has many challenges! 

One of the big challenges is staying healthy! Winter is the worst, since the kids (and teachers) are all cooped up inside breathing the same air and touching the same germs. 
 
Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
 

Here are ten things you can do to help fight those germs and help your immune system do what it needs to do!


Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
1. Wash your hands! We all know this is the #1 way to fight germs!

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
2. Eat healthy! What you put into your body really does make a difference! Of course we can't totally deny ourselves of the "fun" foods, but most of the food you eat should be healthy. In particular, avoid processed foods, they're mostly chemicals and very little nutrition that your body needs to fight germs.

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
3. Exercise! Exercising helps your body in many ways. Many studies have proved that the same hormones produced while exercising help strengthen the immune system. (Plus, they make you feel happy: bonus!)

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
4. Get fresh air daily! Yes, more studies have been done on the impact of fresh air on health, and it really does make a difference! Keeping all those kiddos (and teachers) cooped up all day breathing the same air just doesn't seem too healthy, does it?

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
5. Get enough sleep! One night with insufficient sleep weakens the immune system. We need to keep that immune system strong, since there are germs all around us!

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
6. Avoid too much screen time! The main reason we need to avoid too much screen time is because it keeps us from doing the things that help us stay healthy! (See the rest of this list!)

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
7. Cope with stress! Laughter is a great way to cope with stress and help strengthen the immune system. (See THIS post.) Listening to "happy music" will also help melt that stress away! (See THIS post.)

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do! 
8. Visit the doctor regularly! Keep up with your vaccinations and check ups! (That includes the dentist and gyno for women!)

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
9. Drink plenty of water! I think we all know the importance of drinking plenty of water! Unfortunately, for teachers, we need to be careful about WHEN we drink the water. I tend to increase my intake when I'm about an hour from a bathroom break. 

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!
10. Strive to be happy! Being happy actually creates chemicals that help build the immune system
 
Check out THIS blog post for ways to be happy!

Here are some resources to help your students learn how to stay healthy:

If for some reason you are unable to fight those germs, HERE are some tips to help you with Sub Plans!

Sub Plans

Ten Ways to Stay Healthy - There are things you can do to fight all those germs around us! Here are 10 things you can do!

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