Valentine’s Day Freebie

Happy Valentine’s Day…a few days early.
My daughter is really excited about Valentine’s Day.  She helped to make her own valentines for all her little friends at daycare.  I don’t care much about the holiday, but she made me think about all the kids in my class.  I know they are excited for Thursday and that is what led me to make some new task cards.
We are working on multiplication and division, so that is the skill on the cards.  I found some cute clip art and there you go!  You will find eight cards and a recording sheet.
When I share these cards with my kids, I will be using them in a small group setting.  This will give me a chance to check everyone’s understanding of story problems and multiplying/dividing.
You can find these cards for FREE on the Tpt page.

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Have a great week!

Spelling and Grammar Practice

I’ll admit it…I’m not a big fan of the weekly spelling lists. We all know how it goes. The kids study the words, ace the test and then forget how to spell the words the next week. I wish I could teach spelling patterns/rules throughout the year and not have a weekly test. My district’s report card has a space for grading spelling tests, so I have to do them.

Last year, my team and I changed our spelling program and I think it makes it a little better. Some of our units last for two weeks so that we have more time to work on the patterns. Also, each student has their own high frequency words during the unit. My students are supposed to practice their words at home every night. I usually send home some activities for them to use, but I don’t collect the work. I really am not looking for more papers to be turned in to me. During the week, I do like to have a few lessons about the spelling pattern. We do lots of sorts, work on whiteboards and even task cards.  I’m always looking for new and meaningful ways to work on spelling.

A colleague of mine introduced me to a spelling activity last year. The activities incorporate grammar with spelling.  Each week the students work on two grammar skills using their spelling words. For example, this week my students were working on singular/plural and past tense.

spelling blog

I love these activities because my kids are learning to spell their words, but working on grammar skills with the words.  They are great little assessments as well.  After the kids turned in their work, I realized that many of them didn’t understand the concept of singular/plural.  They simple wrote their spelling words and then added an “s.”

Singular: unusual  Plural: unusuals

Guess what we are working on next week?

Another reason these activities are great is because each skill is only practiced four or five times each.  When we work on nouns, they write five of their spelling words that are nouns.  The practice and quick and meaningful.  I can tell if they get it from those five examples.  Some of the skills we practice are: synonyms, antonyms, rhymes, abc order, endings, nouns, adjectives, verbs, prefixes, suffixes and syllables.

Last year, my students did all their work on lined paper.  They needed to learn to label and number the paper.  To save time labeling, erasing, forgetting how to number the paper, I decided to just make the sheets on the computer.  Now I can pull a sheet, copy it and work on those skills for the week.  Now I feel a bit better about the weekly spelling lists because they students have a purpose for using their words.  If you’re interested, feel free to check out the whole package on Tpt.

It has been wonderful seeing so many visitors from 4th Grade Frolics.  My way of thanking you for coming over is to put these on SALE! 

spelling blog

I’d love to hear your thoughts about practicing spelling words.

Enjoy your weekend!

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Multiplication and Division Word Problems

We started multiplication and division last week in third grade. Our math series has the students working on facts and word problems at the same time. My students do well with facts, but I think we moved too fast with the word problems. So this week I’m slowing it down. I started by making two anchor charts – multiplication and division.

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We are going to fill in the key words for each operation.  Then we will review what they mean and the symbols that are used for each one.

I also made some fun activities for the kids.  I have 8 task cards that I will hang up around the room.  Each card has either a multiplication or division story.  I’ll have my students write down if the problem is multiplication or division.  Then we will go over the problems together.  I try to make the stories funny so that they aren’t boring like the ones in the workbook.  I usually will have animals eating pizza or teachers in the school doing funny things.  I like seeing the smiles on the kids’ faces as they read the stories.

After we go over the problems, I’ll have the students complete a worksheet with a few problems on their own.

The next day we are going to review the charts.  I’m thinking of making a foldable for both multiplication and division for us to add to our math journals.  I’m then going to have the students complete a sort.  They will need to read the problem and then place it in the correct category – multiply or divide.  Once I see that they sorted correctly, they will have to solve the problems on the sort card.

I know my students will like this type of practice because they stories are a bit different and they aren’t just filling in a worksheet.

If you are interested in these activities, you can find them at my Tpt store.

multiplication division word problem task cards

Hope you have a nice weekend.

Starting Out

Here we go with my first blog.  It may take me a little while to get this figured out.  I’m looking forward to using this blog as a way to share my teaching ideas.  I’m hoping to also hear about some of your thoughts.  That is the great thing about teaching, there are always so many new and wonderful ideas out there.  It’s getting late, but I hope to be back this weekend with some new thoughts and ideas.  Have a great rest of the week!