Friday, January 30, 2015

Opinion & Narrative Writing Resources

Writing in Kindergarten & 1st Grade

Many teachers struggle with teaching writing.  Some districts have strict writing curriculum in place, while others have no curriculum and those teachers are left to fend for themselves.  Regardless of which category you fall into, Self-Regulated Strategy Development (SRSD from here on out)  can work in your classroom.  SRSD is not a writing curriculum, but a framework designed to mesh with your current writing instruction.  If you're not familiar with this writing framework you can read a past post of mine HERE, visit the Think SRSD website, or checkout Project Write by Vanderbilt Kennedy Center.

The Common Core Standards for writing focus on these three mode- informative, opinion, and narrative.  If you invest the time to model and implement this strategy in your classroom, you will have students meeting the standards for these writing modes.

My past post was on informative writing, so today's will focus on narrative and opinion.  The mnemonic POW applies to all three modes: P-pull apart the prompt, O-organize my notes. W-write and say more.  POW can easily be applied to math tasks, by the way...
The librarian in me wanted a list of books I could use as mentor texts when either introducing or teaching one of the three modes of writing, so I threw together a list of picture books appropriate for read-alouds.  You can download the list by clicking the image below.

The mnemonic for informative writing was TIDE: Topic introduction, Important Detail, & Ending.

Within the SRSD framework, opinion's mnemonic is POW TREE: Topic sentence, Reasons, Ending, & Examine.  One of our Core Coaches created this cute graphic organizer that you can download by clicking the image.
Another popular mnemonic is OREO.  I don't know where this idea originated, but it stands for Opinion, Reason, Example, & Opinion (restated).
I found a nice, Common Core based PowerPoint that goes through the steps of opinion writing, using OREO, that was posted online by Birmingham City Schools.  I like it because there are multiple writing samples from students.  You can see that by clicking the image below.

Zaner Bloser also has some great resources for writing that you can download for free.  The opinion writing unit is great! You can access it HERE.

Getting back to the SRSD framework, the narrative mnemonic for 1st graders is POW+W-W-W What How.  The first three W's stand for Who, When, & Where.  Another mnemonic, created by a fellow Core Coach, is STORY.  The graphic below explains STORY.
If you are unfamiliar with SWAG (under Y), here is your explanation-
You can download the complete free resource HERE.

If it's graphic organizers, rubrics, or lined writing paper you need, download this resource!

If your students need a reminder when it comes to making sure they have all the elements of a narrative, this visual might help-
It is free to download from my TpT store!

I hope you found some resources that will help you in your classroom!  I will add to this post as I find more things to share with you.  I hope you will share great resources with me in the comments below.  Be sure to follow my TpT store to receive updates when new products are added and follow my blog by email so you never miss a thing!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Who made the cut of the 2014 Top 50 Tweeters in Tennessee Education?

That's me, right there at #41! This was a cool little suprise I recieved a few weeks ago.  I feel pretty special to be among the ranks of these fabulous and influential Tweeters! Here is the complete list if you'd like to follow some of these cool folks!

This list was compiled by Professional Educators of Tennessee.  If you'd like to read more, click {HERE}.

Are you on Twitter? If so, leave your link in the comments below. I'd love to see what you have to say!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Labels, Labels, Labels! Who doesn't love a good label??

How cute are these??
I think teachers have a special love for labels.  Before I became a teachers, labels were not that important to me.  But since, labels have grown to be one of my most favorite things.  They have also evolved, from handwritten, to printed, to printed with backgrounds. You get the gist...
I label everything with help from my Silhouette and Kidecals.  I'm sure you all know the fabulous Silhouette Cameo {vinyl cutter}, but do you know Kidecals??
Kidecals offers labels for EVERYTHING.  They are durable and super cute! Watch this 45 second video to get a feel for all you can do with Kidecals.

Chevron makes everything better!
The decals were easy to apply and have not even shown a hint of peeling off and I've been using them for 5 months now.
I get compliments ALL. THE. TIME.
You can take your labels and decals from BORING to BEAUTIFUL too!  Kidecals has a special just for my readers....enter the coupon code "kidecals2014" to receive 15% off your order! 
Do yourself a favor and check them out!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Storybook Pumpkin Patch

"Growing" a storybook pumpkin patch in your classroom or library is a fantastic way to get kids excited about reading! Students simply choose their favorite book character and decorate a pumpkin to look like that character.  My only rules are that the pumpkin can't be cut or have holes poked in it because this drastically shortens its shelflife!
 Below are some characters I've had in the library the past few years.
As you can see, this project doesn't require much more than a good imagination! 
Here is the letter I sent home concerning the project-
You can download an editable version of this letter by clicking {HERE}.
The download will open in Powerpoint.  The text will look different unless you have the fonts I used (which were DJ Punkin, Annie Use Your Telescope, & Architects Daughter).
Have fun growing your pumpkin patch!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

I found a new passion!!

Ok, so this blog post is a tiny bit lot off the topic of education, but I promise you'll forgive me...
I am so excited to announce that I am an independent presenter with Younique! You may remember my blog post back in May about the most amazing mascara ever invented.  Well, after trying 3D Fiber Lash Mascara by Younique, I was hooked.  I spent a few months thinking about buying into the company and decided to take the plunge in August.  I had several pro and cons to joining the Younique family...

For example, some of my cons were:
1. I don't know ANYthing about applying makeup correctly.
2. Some people were born to be sales(wo)men, I was not.  I'm to quiet and a chicken when it comes to approaching people.
3. I don't want to be one of those annoying product pushers that junk up Facebook feeds.

Some of my pros were:
1. I'll get a discount when I order for myself.
2.  Commissions are paid every THREE HOURS, not weeks later, like most other companies.
3. The Presenter's Kit comes with tons of makeup for only $99.
4. I'll meet new people and have a great support group. (I knew this because my friend Jackie sells it.)
5. Parties are done through Facebook so I don't have to talk to people face to face! (See Cons #2)

The pros out weighed the cons in my book and I went for it.  Honeslty, you don't need a background in sales to do this.  The products speak for themself.  Just take a look at my eyes!
Younique has an extensive line of products and cosmetics are made from natural ingredients and hold up to the test of a long work day.  I have seriously loved every product that I've tried.  I have used the mascara, primer, eye pigments, cream foundation, pressed powder, eye liner, lip gloss, blush, moisturizer, and face wash and I stand behind each product.
Younique is truly unique in that it is the first direct sales compay to market and sale almost exclusively through social media sites.  I love this-no cleaning and buying snacks for home parties!

I had a lot of negative selftalk going through my head when I started this venture 1 month agon, but I'm proud to say that I am rockin' it! I just reached the second level of presenters- I am yellow!
As of this moment, I've sold $1389.30 in retail sales!  I don't say that to brag-I'm telling you to prove that anyone can do this!  All you have to do is love the products and have a passion to share them with others!  I am in love with the cosmetics and facial products and I want to share it with the world!
Enough talking! Take a look at some of my products-

If you'd like to host a virtual party and earn FREE products just let me know!
Please visit my Younique webpage and Younique by Dana Facebook page to see more beautiful pictures!  
Thanks for letting me share my new passion with you! If you'd like to have lashes that go on for days or any of our other products, just visit my webpage.  If you have any questions, I'm here- just ask!
 I'm also on Instagram at Younique_by_Dana.
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