Was it Monday today??

Today was a long, rather horrible day. I got to work at 8:30 and didn't leave until 6:45 tonight. I typed out a whole post about all the sucky situations my kiddos are dealing with, but I'm paranoid about posting too much info so I erased it all. Suffice it to say that DHS and the foster system and parents with belts all suck. Oh, and it really irks me when I get a new kid and see that all the interventions tried were directed at someone with ADHD when that is clearly not what the child has! Mountain Dew as an intervention for someone who is not hyperactive is just silly!

Anyways, one of the reasons I had such a late night was because I had to prepare for tomorrow morning. We're having a "Curriculum Morning" where we invite parents to come in before school to learn about something their child will be taught this quarter and some ways to help them at home. My teammate did the one for 2nd quarter so it was my turn this time. Last time we only had about 20 parents come from the entire school of 300+ kids so I'm really hoping that we have better attendance tomorrow!

The skill that I am focusing on is fluency via sight word acquisition.  I am hoping that once parents see how easy it is to help their kiddos practice their words that we will have more parental involvement in making sure the basic sight words are mastered. It would certainly help me out if they were practicing their sight words at home! So, after school and dealing with the aforementioned situations, I headed to our work room to cut out some hearts for a sight word game. Only, we don't have any hearts. We do have a tomahawk and some other random dies. I think our Ellison collection is made up of all the dies that no other school wanted! I finally found a doghouse die and a stash of brown construction paper. I am not sure where this paper came from, but we have reams of it and no one ever uses it because it's such a bland color. But it's perfect for a sight word game! Here's the baggy that every parent will get, along with a handout of the hundred sight words divided into ten lists:

I made up a set for my youngest as my example, because he needs to work on his sight words like everyone else! Here's what the doghouse game will look like:
The parent chooses the specific words that their child is having trouble with and prints them on the doghouses. I gave each parent 10 doghouses so they can practice 20 words by using both sides of the doghouses. The parent has the child cover their eyes and then hides the little bone under one of the houses. The child then guess which house the bone is hiding under by reading the word on the house. Simple, fun and free! It only cost me the time spent cutting out the houses with the Ellison! 

The second thing in the bag was almost free too! Remember the old system that libraries had where you used to have to look up the book in a card file? Well our librarian had a box full of blank cards that she was never going to use since everything is computerized now. She had brought it to me at the beginning of the year, knowing I'd find a use for it! I've been using them as quick book marks for my kiddos or to jot down notes when I can't find my Post-its, but really, this is a much better use of them:
Each baggy has ten cards on a ring and tomorrow the parents will personalize them with the 20 words their child is going to work on. This ring can then be stored in mom's purse or in the car so that the child can practice reading while driving to the grocery store or while waiting at the dr.'s office etc. If they flip through the cards and practice even once a day I know we will see the improvement at school too!

So anyways, there you have it - quick, almost free and helpful! I know the parents that do come tomorrow will be appreciative of having something simple that will enable them to work with their child. Oh, here's the lowdown on the binder rings - a set of 16 pretty metallic colored rings for $3 at Staples. I bought 2 sets so I'd have enough plus some left over. Since I used the construction paper we already had on hand, plus the cards and packaged it all in baggies we already had in the classroom, $6 was the sum total for this activity!

Tomorrow the parents will eat breakfast with their child while we demonstrate our activities, then I'm going to have each parent listen to their child read the sight words, writing down any words they miss on the cards. Once they get the cards filled up they can stop and then they have a customized set of notecards for their child to work on! For the kids whose parents don't come tomorrow, I plan on pulling each child aside one at a time and filling out their cards myself. It won't take but 5 minutes per child and hopefully they will all get some much needed sight word practice at home!

Oh, and I scored some other deals at Staples that I thought I would pass on too:
 Here are the pretty binder clips, on sale for $3 which makes them 99 cents cheaper than the plain silver ones!

Also, for $1 each I got a pack of 5 Bic highlighters, a mini stapler, a pencil sharpener with eraser, 15 colored pencils, and a pack of 5 pens

Don't forget to enter my giveaway before Sunday! There will be 3 winners and I think the prizes are pretty neat! Click here to enter!

5 Rustle Up A Response!:

laughinbrunette (Jennifer) said... Reply to comment

It is so difficult to be a teacher and see so many bad situations with your kids, who are completely helpless. I feel your pain =)
First Grade Blue SKies

rebecca sutton said... Reply to comment

I just "tagged" you on my blog! Come over and take a look and join the fun!

Teaching First

Laura Starnes said... Reply to comment

I've tagged you!
Come check it out!

Kinder Kraziness

Crayons and Curls said... Reply to comment

Tag your it! Come visit me to see your tag! :)
Crayons and Curls

Miss Squirrels said... Reply to comment

I tagged you!
Come on over and see what it's all about!

Going Nutty!


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