Monday, October 27, 2014

Crazy for Colors!

I LOVE teaching all about color words! Colors are something that all children have schema in, and I think that's why they love learning about them so much! Talking about colors also gives a lot of children opportunities to be successful!

I usually spend 2-3 weeks focusing on color words. Many of the students come in knowing their colors, but not knowing how to read the color words themselves.

I always start with our emergent storybook Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? Even though it is a pattern book, we use it as a close read for a week.

Every day, I would introduce a color word. We would start by singing the Frog Street Press Color Word songs. These are amazing and the kiddos love them! Here are a few examples of the songs :)

I also have songbook versions of each song that you can have for free here!

Then we would make a color map for each color. The kids would give their idea and I would write the word. Then, they would come up and help me with the pictures.

We also used a TON of resources from Cara Carroll's True Colors packet. This AMAZING packet really gives students a ton of practice with each color/color word. 

True Colors {A Color Word Identification Practice Packet}

We used her emergent readers for each color (obviously it would match our color for the day!). These are a few pages of a book my student completed.

Then for morning work, my students would do a color word find (also from the True Colors pack). This was awesome practice for reading and writing each color word. 

We also practiced identifying the color words by doing a sequencing/matching activity. We retold the story together, and matched the color word to the animal as the story went on. SO much fun!

At the end of Brown Bear week, each student made their own Brown Bear book. Students got a small book with each of the pictures that the had to color the correct color. Then, they cut and glued the words to match. They turned out so cute and are a favorite for my kiddos in their independent book tubs!

(Picture to come!)

And since my kiddos do get so strong in reading the pattern, I usually make a class version too! I wanted to make a template for you all, but it is so personalized, you'll just have to use my idea and make it for yourself :) They kiddos could not believe they got a book about themselves!

(Picture to come!)

The next week's book in our color extravaganza was Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes! Who doesn't love Pete? (If you say you don't like him, I think my kids might stone you!)

We had a BLAST learning more about color words this week! We continued learning about a color each day. It became an exciting surprise each day when my students heard my letter each morning and learned what color we would be exploring that day!

To assess my students in their retelling of Pete the Cat and their color word identification, we used the retelling page from this awesome FREE Pete the Cat pack! (Can you tell I'm cheap and use as many freebies as possible?? :)) My students had to cut out each retelling card, color it to match the words, and then glue them in order of the story. They turned out super cute! (Besides the brown was what we had the most of!)

(Picture to come!)

We also got to make Pete himself! It is AMAZING how well my kiddos follow directions when they get to make something fun! 

We began by discussing how when Pete stepped in something, his shoes turned that color. For example, when Pete stepped in strawberries, it turned his shoes red. So my kiddos had to think of their own idea of what Pete could step in, and what color it would turn his shoes. So of the ideas were hysterical! It was also a really great way to assess to see if my kiddos understand that concept in the book (what Pete stepped in changed the color of his shoes!).

Here are a few examples of my students finished products! They turned out even cuter then I expected. You can get your templates to create your own Pete for free HERE!

Since the end of our Pete week was basically the end of our direct instruction of colors, I wanted to do a quick check at the end of the day to see how many color words my students could identify. So once again, I found this freebie Pete the Cat color book

pete the cat shoes book.pdf - I love Pete the cat! Don't know if I'll ever be in a classroom young enough to teach him but just in case!

Students read the sentence on each page, and color the shoes to match the words. I watched to see if my students could read the words, or if they were able to look up on the word wall and use it as a resource. They actually did much better then I thought!!

So this week, boy were we surprised to be reading another Pete book, Pete the Cat and His 4 Groovy Buttons. Although this book is not about colors, we are beginning to learn new word work games for color words.

These games are from Cara Carroll's True Colors pack again! This first game is a matching game. Students match the paint splotch to the color word and then complete the optional response sheet. We did this as a whole group game, and then put it at the word work center as a matching game.

Today, we worked on our predictable sentences with color words. Once again, we built the sentences together as a whole group and choral read them. Now my students will be able to try to build the sentences independently in the word work center.

To really challenge them, we tried this True/False game. My students really had to think about what color word they were reading and if it matched the color on the ice cream cone. I had them work together with a partner next to them to decide if it was true or false. They LOVED it!!

To finish off color word fun, my students made a class book of our favorite colors! You can get the template for it here :)

Are you crazy for colors?

Monday, October 6, 2014

The Three Bears, More/Fewer, and a Peek at my Week (10/6)!

Whew!! This whole fall without any breaks thing is getting tough. My babies work REALLY hard, but even I'm starting to get stir crazy. Only 2 months till Thanksgiving Break right? :(

Last week we read The Three Bears!

It is amazing how many of my kiddos have never been exposed to these classic stories before. They just thought my Papa Bear voice was phenomenal!

During this time in my reading units, when we are close reading each emergent storybook, we are really looking for the students to get deeper into the book! We have been focusing on the aspect of retelling the book. I found a similar version to the following activity on Pinterest. 

My kiddos and I retold The Three Bears orally and I made sure they included the important parts. Then, each child took a part of the story to retell and illustrate on this large piece of construction paper. I made a big deal out of the fact that each part of the story is important (for the whiners who didn't get the part they wanted!). 

They worked collaboratively together to finish it! I made it in the shape of a road map, so during other parts of our day (literacy centers/learning centers), my kiddos could walk the road and tell the story!

They were so proud of their part, and it really forced  slightly pushed some of my kids out of their comfort zone that normally didn't participate as much in the retelling process :)

We also read the most adorable Three Bears poem! I found it on pinterest here :)

Love this song for a pre-k bear theme.  Sung to the tune of Three Blind Mice.

We have also been using our Guiding Kinders math resource to learn all about more/fewer. These are some pictures of my students choosing cards, building the number with bears, deciding which has more/less, then spinning to see if the winner is the person with more/less. YES! MY KINDERS CAN DO THIS!!

Here are a few pictures of my kiddos in action!

So precious right? They are so proud of themselves for all the math they can do! And bonus for me, my kiddos are progressing faster and more fully than last year at this time and they started out lower in general!! WOO!

As usual, I'm linking up with Mrs. Wills Kindergarten to share a peek at my week! 

You can get a copy of my lesson plans here :)

We are reading Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? this week and learning TONS about color words!! I'll try to share more throughout the week :)

Have a great end to your Monday! I am watching my Cardinals and hoping for a win!!

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