Binder Task Card Organization

It's that time again y'all!  Mondays are just the BEST in the summer thanks to Tara at 4th Grade Frolics!  If you are starting here, be sure to click the image above to see all the great contributions this week!

Before I share my MMI, let me say thanks for all the great feedback for my Freebie last week!  You make a girl feel so special!  I appreciate you taking the time to give me your thoughts.  If you do Insta, I'd hashtag this #teacherssupportteachers #yourock 

Your freebie this week is simply an idea!  And frankly, it comes from a typical summer problem for me.  Teacher spends free time making stuff + all storage stuff is locked in your classroom = THIS!

Task cards EVERYWHERE!  I had a printing and laminating session and here it is.  In the midst of cutting and trying to figure out how I was going to keep what I've done straight... and knowing whether or not I've printed the answer documents, it hit me!  I put all my master copies in binders...why not put my task cards WITH them!
So...that's what I did
I piled my task cards with the sheet protectors.

Put the cards in the front of the answer document.  I got tired of cutting, so I just trimmed the outside of these until I'm ready to cut again.  But they have a home other than my floor, my end table, my computer desk, or whatever!

This is a binder full of just Place Value Task Cards

Feeling accomplished, I have that floor full of mess neatly organized into two binders.  I might just add a job to my summer list and make binder covers and do this with all of my cards!  Might be a better system in the end!!

On the June 2nd MMI, I shared how I plan to set up my Reading Interactive Notebooks this year.  I guess this was kind of a teaser!  I got a few messages asking when I was going to post them on TpT.  I had kind of put it on the back burner.  I guess I'm a little ADD--starting projects and stray off task.  If you didn't see that post, be sure to click back to read Reading Interactive Notebooks.

So, I got back on track!  I am so very please with the product and having a plan to tackle Reading Street this fall with a plan for certain tasks.  

I really liked how the first unit turned out.  I was able to fit 2 on one sheet of paper for all of the Vocabulary and Comprehension Skills.  They really want us using less paper in my district, so getting it all to FIT on the least amount of paper was my goal.  I found that my FAVORITE INBs tended to use alot of paper.  Trying to balance things out.
I did have one that took up a whole sheet, but I just loved the shape!

You can find Unit 1 in my store by clicking on the picture.

So, I was planning to take a break when I started getting questions about the NEXT one.  So, I know?  It would stink to start the year with something not knowing if this strange lady in Alabama was going to do Units 2-6!  That was all I needed to plow ahead and complete Unit 2, too.  And I think I love this one even more!

I'm going to take a break to work on some other things for school, but I know I want to get Unit 3 done before I go back to school.  Knowing I have them ready until I come back in January will be put peace in my mind.

You link up with Unit 2 by clicking on THIS picture.  I listed it last night, and it's half-price for the first two days.  That seems to be the going "deal" these days!  If you're not following me on Facebook to have gotten first one (yeah, I could have saved it for today), I'll go ahead and mark Unit 1 back down, too!

That is my week!  Lots of rainy days make for plenty of computer time!  And I'll find just about ANYTHING to do that helps me avoid doing laundry!

Can't believe it's almost July, y'all!  Have a great week!


Guided Math Book Study: Chapter 5

This is a great chapter guys!  But in all, if you are reading along with us, the advantages and rationale for small groups is really preaching to the choir!  We know that we cannot meet the needs of all of our students in the whole group.  What is important to take away, in my opinion, is the emphasis on flexibility in forming groups. Teachers have an added challenge in grouping students in math, however.  Unlike reading, grouping can change from day-to-day depending on how well a student grasps new concepts.  Therefore, teachers need to have an arsenal of assessment methods!  

Let's look at the questions posed at the end of the chapter.
Let's look at some areas where we can collect data to help us create our small groups.
Unit Pre-tests
Perhaps your math curriculum has some assessments that will give you an idea of where your students are at the beginning.  However, once the unit has begun, the teacher needs to continually monitor as the strand progresses.
Performance with Previous Sequential Concepts
Broader concepts will lay groundwork that builds upon the next.  At these times, knowing how your students performed previously could be a beginning point without using a formal pre-assessment.
Formative Tests
I use these quite frequently in my classroom.  These quick evaluations can be administered at any given time.  I will often pose a question to display at the beginning or end of the lesson.  Students will respond on a Post-It.  They will then post the sticky on their classroom number. I made this one from chart paper and clip art.  Not terribly fancy, but it works for me!  On days when I don't meet with formal groups, the kids take their online Envision Quiz and report their score on a Post-it.  Those that score 2 out of 5 will see me right away, and we have a quick remedial session while others work independently.
Performance Tasks 
I will have to admit that I've used Envision Math for two years, and I have skimmed past the Performance Assessment task at the end of the topic up until this past winter.  With time pressures to move ahead, it just seemed fine to use what we could put in a grade book.  Thinking of the fallout for grading something worth 20 points per question seemed like a nightmare!  This fall, our district is moving towards a Standards-Based Report Card.  Giving assessments that have 5 questions are no longer deemed "not enough" now.  They are valuable pieces of information.  Additionally, it will really help drive my small group instruction more efficiently.  I want to give a shout-out to what our team has purchased that will give information "as we go".  We liked the open-ended nature of the assessments and that they were more performance based.  I love, LOVE Blair Turner's work.  As much as I enjoy creating projects tailored for my needs, she is one of my "Go-To" places when I need something!   We will be using a combination of both for daily assessments. I really love that each page covers ONE tiny part of the standard---not the whole thing.  These will be perfect!

Observations & Conversations with Students
A key component here is record keeping.  I can still remember random things from long ago, like the Greek Alphabet song from my college sorority days, but it isn't reasonable to keep all the tiny nuances that we notice in our heads.  It needs to be organized and useful.  Laney suggests keeping a notebook of some sort.  You can make notes on post-its and transfer the data to help form your groups and design the lessons for these groups.

By taking the time to create these flexible groups, our goal is to take each child where they are....and bring them to a level that demonstrates a deeper level of mastery.  Gone are the days of watch me---now you do it THIS way.  A small group provides the safe environment to take risks.  The students pull out their arsenal of knowledge and strategies that have worked to apply in a new setting.  These risks get immediate feedback rather than waiting for the teacher to monitor 20+ other students.

A final note I wanted to share was in preparing for our students, whether in whole or small group, is to provide multiple tools that will help them problem solve.  Laney brings to attention that manipulatives can be time consuming to pass out in whole group, thus small group being a more ideal place to use them.  I agree!  This is the perfect setting to whip out the two-color counters, fraction bars, etc. But I also like the idea of students using paper models to help construct their thinking, too.  At an inservice this year, it was suggested that we have multiple copies of ready for kids to grab during this exploration time.  During the dreaded "standardized tests", explaining and illustrating your problem solving will not be with the use of real manipulatives.  Some great ones would be:

Grid paper
I personally love grid paper to encourage place value structure.  It's perfect for creating arrays, fraction models, you name it!

Dot Paper
Dot paper can used in a lot of the same ways as grid paper.   Geometric shapes, arrays, partitioning fractions, etc.

Number Lines
Number lines are a new favorite for me.  A sheet like this can be used for adding & subtracting, fraction models,  equivalent fractions, etc.

The grid paper and dot paper are readily available if you Google it.  I have created an open number line document that you are welcome to save for yourself.  Keeping half sheets of each of these at your table stations and as "options" in your small groups will encourage using multiple ways to problem solve.  As part of your "prep time" for small groups, consider other models like these that might correlate with what you are teaching.  It will save precious time while working with your students.  I've watched kids make number lines, erase them, start over, erase, etc.  If they are ready to go, the focus will be on the  MATH!

It's GOODIE time!  The weekly giveaway!

Now, before I head off, I want to share a new blog that I'm going to start following!  You might want to check them out as we take on this way of teaching in our classroom.  The highlighted book on the page looks great and might be my next read!
Be sure to check out all the other great posts!


Wishlist Wednesday- 6/2

I missed yesterday's weekly Two-For Tuesday, but I think this will be better!  We wait until TpT's big sale...the 20% plus the extra 10% to get those Wishlisted items.  I have way too many pages on mine!!

So, here's a way to clean up your TpT Wishlist and get some "Back-to-School" prep out of the way!  And YOU get to pick!  I put this query out to my sweet Facebook friends, and I saw this item rise to the top!

 Here's your pick!

This set includes what you need to update your Word Wall, in either White or Chalkboard Centers

You are ready to display your daily schedule in your room!  Includes a blank PowerPoint page to insert your own text.

Glue some ribbon backing or punch holes to add rings.  You only need some clothes pins with your kiddoes names to begin you newest classroom management system.  Your choice of White Center/Chalkboard...or Mix & Match!

A complete set of labels and banners to customize your classroom!  Label your cubbies, desks, supplies, bulletin boards, name it!!

Some Bonus Items are in the Bundled pack that aren't found in the individual sets.  

Labels your resources in tubs and bins with your finds from TpT by Common Core strand.

Print 2 each, laminate them back to back, hang from a puffy tissue ball in Lime green or Bright blue.  Get the WOW effect when you have visitors!  Manage your kiddoes by table number, and you're good to go!

So, head back my TpT store to get this item 30% for 6/25-6/26!

Go to pick 

Blue & Green Classroom Decoration Set: Mix & Match Chalkboard and White it up. 

You can also enter to WIN this set!  Good luck!

See y'all soon!  And be sure to pick something for NEXT week's Wishlist Wednesday!!


Pocket Chart Location Freebie

It's that time again, y'all!  Man!  It's been a busy week!  Amazing what you can do in a week in the SUMMER!  Linking up with Tara at 4th Grade Frolics once again!  If you are starting with me, be sure to click on her logo to head back and see all the FAB projects this week!
So, this isn't me!  But he is MINE!  My boy and I ventured off this week for his college orientation.  I'm proud of him for MAKING his first college schedule.  We found a great route from home to Starkeville and had chat time while we burned rubber.  Hoping "Bully" will take good care of my boy.

While cleaning out my craft room (lovingly referred to as the CRAP room by my family), I came across a pile of these that were never used.
Be honest...they are a $1 at Dollar Tree and Target's Dollar Spot.  You grab them while they are there, and usually grab more than you need.  So I decided I NEEDED to put one to use & I put together a  "Where Are We?" chart for outside the classroom door.  

Man, it was a breeze!  First, I measured the space so that my sessions would fit properly.  Forgot the old adage to measure twice...had to go back and redo the height.  :-(
The fun part was creating and using some fun papers!  I picked some great ones at SDL Designs a while back for .12 a set!  They look textured and weathered--like that thick, handmade paper.  I love them!  After designing it, I laminated, cut and slipped them in.

I haven't decided if I'll do it this way with the "Where Are We?" in the middle--and hiding an extra one behind another slot not used regularly.
Or....... just post the sign above the pocket chart and display them all!

I love my little clip to move up and down the sides to show where we are!

I put together ANOTHER set to go with a class theme I've been working on, too.  I think it turned out pretty fun, too!

I've set it up in my TpT store as a FREEBIE for you!  Hope you'll enjoy this pop of color to let your visitors know where you are!!  Click HERE to snatch it up for your classroom!

Finally finished a classroom set that I've put into my store.  I LOVE my blue and green set that I made for myself, but I just felt like I wanted pops of orange in a set.  I think all these fun and funky papers spoke to me when I was making some task cards, and I was inspired to do another one for my store.
My Facebook friends said they preferred things broken up into smaller sets to meet their budgets, so that is what I have done.  I will likely bundle it up in the next few days though!

Click picture to see in my store

I love these Editable Labels in both of my sets.  There are always so many things to be personalized that it's great to have a "Go-To" spot to fill in the blanks....Print...and ....GO!!!  I've added these cute and funky Melonheadz Birdies, too.  So, you can go plain or have a little Tweeter!  For me to make a set and NOT to use Froggies know I was in Love!

Click picture to see in my store
Here's the Word Wall set to match.  I've thrown in a Welcome Banner for you, too!  These textured papers have such a cool effect!  

My Classroom Schedule Cards have been a great resource for many, so I HAD to make another set to match!  There are two headers to choose from.  I"ve also added a Powerpoint slide to you can insert your own text if there's a subject that I left off!  I've used the Green & Gray in my room last year and plan to use them again.  I love that the kids refer to this throughout the day.

I also made a clip chart to display in your room.  I personally LOVE the Chalkboard effect in these....definitely planning to update my classroom with my blue & green version.

I'm itching to make another classroom set, so if you LIKE my blue & green and the aqua, lime and orange....but it doesn't work you...leave me a suggestion!  I'm prepping for my "empty nest" days to come!  (tears.....)

Have a great week y'all!