Sunday, February 27, 2011

My new literacy centers!

This week we did our Rainbow unit! I do a Rainbow unit with my Kinders every year, but this year we have started implementing literacy centers into our curriculum so, I made some to go along with this unit. Surprisingly enough, my own, self-made centers went rather well! YAY!!!
You can purchase 2 of my literacy centers at: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Katie-Mense ;)
We did a sight word center. At this center, the children had to look at the word printed on the rainbow. They then built the word using the rainbow colored letter tiles. Then they recorded the word on their response sheets using colored pencils. The colors they used had to match the colors on the letter tiles...
Another center that we did was a word family center. The students had to look at the picture on the pot. They then had to sound the word out and build it using letter tiles. They had to decide what word family the word was from and record it on their response sheets under the correct word family.
The third center we did this week was a color word center. The students had to look at the mixed up word on the paint jar. They then had to unscramble the word and write in on their response sheets. (I got the word scramble idea from Kathleen Pedersen)They used the paint brushes with the color words on them to help them figure out which word was which.
This student is comparing the words to try to figure out which color word it is.

This center was a little more difficult for them to keep track of which words they had already done. After thinking about a way to solve this, I think next year I will give each child their own flip book set of the color words. That way, they can just flip through them in order and they won't have to search around the table for the sheet that they haven't done yet.
This center is also very easily differentiated. I also made a set of these that had the first letter underlined. (So, in the picture above, the b would have been underlined.) I used that set for my struggling students.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Literacy Centers-I'm new at this=)!

I have been teaching Kindergarten for 7 years now. We have always done thematic learning centers in my classroom, but this year, I decided I needed to implement Literacy Centers as well!
After going to workshops and doing lots of research, I have tried several different ways of managing these centers. The 1st couple attempts were a total failure...Live and Learn:) I decided that what worked best for me, was to assign groups to different centers where they had to fill out response sheets. I think the response sheets were nice because they keep the kids on task and holds them accountable for doing their work. I have done LOTS of searches to try to find ideas for literacy centers and have found some pretty cute stuff.  But, THEN I found Kathleen Pedersen's Blog!!!http://growingkinders.blogspot.com She sells her products on teachers pay teachers http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Kathleen-Pedersen and it is AMAZING stuff! I'm so excited now! These centers are working out great and she has inspired me!!!;)
Here are a couple of the Kathleen's literacy centers that we have been working on the past couple of weeks!

This one is at the working with words center. The kids look at the pic on the 1st bug and build it. Then they change one letter in the word to make another word. (This one is bug to bag)
This one is a popcorn word scramble. They have to unscramble to popcorn word and then write it on their response sheet. LOVE IT!!
Right now, I have 3 of these kind of centers going, while I am doing guided reading with a 4th small group.
Literacy centers are 30 minutes long. So, when the students are finished with their "MUST DO" centers and response sheets, then they can choose a "CAN DO" center to go to.
Here are a few pictures of a couple of the "Can Do" centers that I have available for the kiddos:
The Reading tent is always a big hit! I got this adorable Tree tent from Target!!
Reading the Room!
Making letters and words with different manipulatives. This child has chosen the geoboards to work with.
Various Alphabet, rhyming and words puzzles.
Like I said, Kathleen Pedersen has inspired me and I have found some centers that I LOVE and that work really well in my classroom. But, next week we are starting our rainbow theme! So, I decided to give it a try and create some of my own centers.
Here is the 1st one I've made:) The students will look at the popcorn word on each rainbow and build it using the rainbow colored letters.  They will then write the words that they made on their response sheet using crayola fine tip markers and matching each letter to the color as they write making "Rainbow Words"!  We'll see how it goes on Tuesday...Wish me luck!!!