Mother’s Day Mother of the Year Writing & Art Project

May 11th 2017

Mother’s Day is right around the corner and what better way to celebrate Mom than with her own Mother of the Year magazine cover and article. Inspired by Time Magazine’s Woman of the Year issue, this persuasive writing and art […]

Celebrate Earth Day with The Lorax

Apr 17th 2017

Earth Day is fast approaching and with spring fever in full force, our engaging, comprehensive Lorax literature study is the perfect solution! Our Lorax literature study integrates elements from our Guided Reading Strategies Bundle which teaches critical reading strategies in a child-friendly way. […]

Roar Into Research

Apr 2nd 2017

Spring fever is full force in my classroom and I have tried every trick of the trade to keep my students calm and engaged with little success. After taking a Common Core ELA class through my district, I found the […]

Happy 100! Celebrating the 100th Day of School

Jan 23rd 2017

I can’t believe we’ve already been in school for 100 days! Where does time go? To celebrate this momentous occasion, my class participated in several 100 Day activities. Here are a few highlights from our special day: 1. If I […]

Guided Reading Survival Guide Part 4

Oct 17th 2016

Guided reading challenging, even to veteran teachers because there are so many factors to consider. In my 4 part blog series, Guided Reading Survival Guide, I explain how to go beyond the basal and provide engaging, authentic supplemental texts; teach research-based […]

Guided Reading Survival Guide Part 3

Oct 16th 2016

In part 1 and part 2 of my Guided Reading Survival Guide blog series, I explained how teachers must go beyond the basal and provide authentic, high-quality supplemental texts ranging in genre and teach research-based reading strategies using our cast […]

Guided Reading Survival Guide Part 2

Oct 15th 2016

Yesterday in part 1 of my blog series, Guided Reading Survival Guide, I explained how teachers must go beyond the basal to provide several authentic, high-quality supplemental texts ranging in complexity and genre to promote a deeper understanding of content. In […]

Guided Reading Survival Guide Part 1

Oct 14th 2016

Guided reading can be daunting, especially with the new instructional shifts and standards. Teachers are asking themselves such questions as: “What texts do I use?” “What strategies do I teach?” “How do I motivate and engage?” “How do I integrate […]

The Ugly Truth About Halloween

Oct 9th 2016

Halloween is just around the corner and kids are focused on costumes, candy and creepy creatures–it’s enough to make you batty before Halloween even arrives! It’s tempting to use Halloween coloring pages and other fluffy activities to keep students calm […]

Increase Student Engagement in 2 Easy Steps!

Aug 15th 2016

Create an amazing interactive whiteboard table for guided reading groups and math groups in two easy steps!  Purchase a roll of self-adhesive dry-erase paper. 1. Measure Table.  Use a yardstick or measuring tape to determine dimensions of table. Roll out […]

Set Up Your Best Classroom Yet: Part 3

Jul 20th 2016

Yesterday as part of my blog series, Set Up Your Best Classroom Yet, I gave you a sneak peek into my second grade classroom with a focus on my math area. I use the district prescribed curricula along with our reading, […]

Set Up Your Best Classroom Yet: Part 2

Jul 19th 2016

Yesterday as part of my blog series, Set Up Your Best Classroom Yet, I gave you a sneak peek into my second grade classroom with a focus on my guided reading area. I use the district prescribed curricula along with our […]

Set Up Your Best Classroom Yet

Jul 18th 2016

Welcome to my second grade classroom, my home away from home.  Each year, I refine my classroom with special finds from Target and Hobby Lobby (my favorite!) to make it comfortable and inviting. I love to think outside of the […]

Master Meet the Teacher in 5 Easy Steps

Jul 17th 2016

Just the mention of Meet the Teacher or Curriculum Night makes most teachers break out into a cold sweat. Why is this? We speak in front of people all day, every day, but the difference is their age. Children will […]

Make Morning Meetings More Meaningful

Jun 28th 2016

The Morning Meeting should be the most meaningful 10 minutes of your day. Morning Meetings are at their best when they are the perfect blend of social, emotional, and academic activities. It is a time to reflect on yesterday’s success, set goals and […]

End of the Year Survival Guide

May 24th 2016

                              Let’s face it, at this time of year, we all feel like the owl on the right. Keeping students engaged at the end of the […]

Secrets for Teaching Opinion & Persuasive Writing

Apr 17th 2016

Teaching opinion and persuasive writing can be difficult, but not any more. Here are 3 secrets for delivering engaging, differentiated writing instruction from our latest strategy-based resource, Cats vs Dogs: A Common Core Research Opinion Writing Unit. Plus, it’s on […]

Multi-sensory Retelling Made Easy

Apr 3rd 2016

Retelling is the process in which a child reads or listens to a story and then summarizes it in his own words including the beginning, middle and ending. Retelling helps students develop a sense of story structure and become more […]

Guiding Students to Use Context Clues Independently

Mar 27th 2016

“Hello, Ramona the Rereading Raccoon is my name. Using context clues is my favorite game. As you read, ask yourself: Does it look right, does it sound right, and does it make sense? I guarantee my strategy will make you […]

Teach Central Message & Theme with Dr. Seuss

Feb 29th 2016

Students love Dr. Seuss books because of their engaging, rhymed text, memorable characters, and whimsical illustrations. But, Dr. Seuss books are so much more. They are the ideal tool for teaching central message because each one focuses on a specific theme or life lesson. Plus, the […]

Celebrate Dr. Seuss in Style

Feb 28th 2016

Read Across America is around the corner–celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday with these fun, no-prep activities: 1. Cat in the Hat Kabob: Download this FREE recipe to make these adorable Cat in the Hat kabobs, a perfect activity to incorporate during […]

5 Tips to Survive Science Fair

Jan 31st 2016

The Science Fair usually brings a mix of emotions. Students love the hands-on learning but for teachers, the Science Fair can be nightmare. What project(s) should the class do? How can I organize students’ work samples? How do I involve parents?  Use […]

Create Write-On, Wipe-Off Problem-Solving Journals

Jan 3rd 2016

Problem-solving plays an important role in my daily math instruction. Students use pre-made journals to help them complete the problem-solving steps, solve the problem in 2 ways, explain their thinking and rate themselves on a learning scale. These journals track […]

Creative Ways to Teach Character Analysis

Nov 8th 2015

Authors use many different types of characters to tell a story.  Characters help us feel like we are a part of the story and give us an opportunity to see into their hearts and examine their motivations. Since characters play such […]

Making Meaningful Text Connections

Nov 1st 2015

“I’m Chloe the Connecting Coyote, and I make connections. Connections help you understand your reading selections. Link the story to your life or what you’ve read in a book. These text connections are guaranteed to get you hooked.” Chloe the […]