A Labor Day Mini Book For Little Kids

This is a mini book that offers a simple explanation of Labor Day for you to relate to your kiddos. Each fact is supported with the relevant graphics needed for your students to get a clear picture of what Labor Day is all about. It can be used to support your Labor Day unit or it can be used as a standalone lesson. After using this mini book, it can be placed in your literacy centers.

This resource contains two copies per print.

Please note that the vocabulary may be difficult for the young ones so I suggest that students are not left to attempt to read them on their own. Guidance is key!

If you are interested in purchasing this mini book click HERE for further details.

A Contract Mini Book For Serious School Kids

Here's a mini book that can support your first week of school activities. It was created for kids from pre-k to grade 2.

Click on the picture below for further information.

Readiness For Kindergarten

I know that some parents are concerned about their children's readiness for Kindergarten. I also know that kindergarten teachers are busy planning their checklists and programs to ensure that ALL students are well on the way to learning. Whether a child starts off on the ball or lingering behind the teacher's main task is to get them all on the same boat. So what is readiness? How important is it in the life of a school child? What do teachers look for? Well, today I am going to give you some idea of what we teachers look for in each child when we meet our new class.

What is Readiness?
School readiness is the child's state of having the ability to learn and cope with the school environment without undue stress. A child who is ready is identified as the child who shows that he is able to function as he is expected to in a school setting. As teachers we look out for any difficulties or behaviors that trouble the student. Some students show problems with socializing while others seem unable to complete academic tasks.

Here is a list of the characteristics of children who are ready for kindergarten as is suggested by the Beal Early Childhood Center:

 The child who shows social emotional readiness is ready to:
  • Separate from family
  • Trust adults in school
  • Learn how to share
  • Learn how to wait
  • Assume responsibility and independence
  • Handle situations, emotions, fears
  • Follow teacher's agenda

 The child who shows Intellectual readiness is:
  • Eager to learn and to engage in new activities
  • Interested in print, alphabet letters
  • Interested in listening to stories and music
  • Interested in talking about ideas
  • Interested in math concepts- number, comparisons, shapes

The child who shows motor-neurological readiness is ready to:
  • Hold writing tools
  • Use scissors
  • Button, zip own clothing
Some children show all these behaviors together while others may show only a few. What teachers do very early is to check each child for these characteristics and plan instruction and activities that allow all students to grow.

Building Student Responsibility With Classroom Jobs

Classroom jobs are a great way for your students to take responsibility for their classroom. It helps them to gain a collective sense of pride and to show others how much they care for their learning environment. Students learn to work cooperatively  with their peers in the class community. For these reasons and more I think that every class should have a well organized classroom job system. After all, what a better way to teach our students to be responsible than to give them responsibilities.

Organizing a Classroom Job System
Here are a few ideas that I have gathered which will assist any teacher in beginning to use a class job system.

 Plan Before School Starts

If you are not back to school yet, then now is the best time to start. Make a list of all routine tasks from the beginning of the school day to the end. Some tasks may require little manpower while others may need a heft. Some may need a long time to complete while others may be short. Depending on time and duration you may need one student or more. Think about it carefully.

  Jobs For All!

This may sound a bit too much, but it is best that ALL students get an opportunity to perform tasks during the course of the day. Create jobs for as many pupils that you have in your class in this way every one will be busy managing something and there would be little time for mischief. To give you a little idea of some of the possible jobs for your students check out K6 EducatorsAbout.com and this article entitled Best Classroom JobsList Elementary School.

Have a Rotation System

Everyone knows the dangers of having one person in the same role for too long! They get very powerful! Students sometimes get rooted into the positions that they are put in and they can wreak havoc in the classroom. This can work against you and all your efforts to sustain peace in your classroom. Of course in your planning stage you must think about the duration of roles before switches are made. One week is good so shuffling around should be done by the Friday or Monday if you’re late at it.

Display Assignments 

The assigned responsibilities as well as the description of these responsibilities must be displayed to remind ALL of what they are supposed to be doing. Pocket charts are great tools for classroom helper display.  

 Remember To Use Your System!

I am so guilty of forgetting about using the assigned students that I get into a lot of trouble afterwards. Naturally I get stern reminders from watchful eyes to make sure that it does not happen again in the future. 

Give Feedback!

Feedback is always appreciated by kids whether it comes in the form of praises or reprimands.  Your students want to be assured that you are monitoring what is taking place at all times. They do not appreciate being given tasks while you are using your now spare time to attend to external matters. Look on! Monitor! Listen! Advise! Guide!

 Here are some classroom job resources that you may find interesting.

 Here is my Superhero themed Classroom Helpers Chart. For further details click the picture below!

Check out my TpT store for editable classroom job resources.

Fan Freebies

Interested in some great freebies? Then become my Facebook Fan and you will get some awesome resources that are not offered as a free product in any of my stores. From time to time I will be adding even more resources just for you. Just CLICK HERE and join my over 1600 fan base. That's a blogful of fans and freebies, don't you think?:)


Teachers Pay Teachers Sale 2013

Well it's about time! The great Teachers Pay Teachers Back To School site-wide sale is finally here! This is the time when you can get great savings when purchasing your much needed resources. So I'm joining the super opportunity at my Teachers Pay Teachers store A Teacher's Idea to hone in on the action!  This phenomenal  sale will take place from Sunday, August 18th through Monday, August 19thEverything in my store will be at a whopping 20 % off! TPT gives you an additional 8% off. That makes it a total of 28% off! You can get these AUGUST best sellers at the lowest prices ever!

All you do is simply go through my store and select those resources that you wish to purchase.
**Wait till the Sunday through Monday sale to checkout!**
When checking out use the promo code, BTS13 to get additional savings.  Remember to click on the "Apply" button after entering the promo code to ensure that the savings goes through.

So hop on over to my TPT Store and start adding those resources that you will need for the school year to your cart.  



Enjoy and start stockpiling HERE for the best savings opportunity! :)

Making Connections As We Read

Have you ever had the experience of listening to a child read quite well, but, at the end of it he was unable to answer higher order questions? As you look at his face you see a completely blank expression, almost as if he was in no way connected with what he just read. In most cases, he probably really wasn't! There are many kids who pretend to read by simply modeling the behaviors of a successful reader. Those kids 'call out' the words successively and successfully, however they are unable to complete the reading act which is understanding those words on the page. In order to get them to make connections as they read we need to give them much needed support and guidance.

Helping children to make connections as they read can be done by teaching them how it is done. The 'schema' theory explains that we make connections with text through our experiences. The things that we know, the things that we experience and the things that we understand can all help in bringing meaning to the printed word. Keene and Zimmerman (1997) identified three such connections that helps students comprehend better. They are text-to-self, text-to-text and  text-to-world. Get your students to relate what they read to their own lives. Get them to relate what they read to other books that they have read, and get them to relate to the general world. When we guide our students in the right direction theY would be able to use this framework to analyze any text.

For more ideas on how to make connections click HERE!

For my Making Connections Resource Set click the picture below: