Sunday, October 6, 2013

Winner, Anchor Charts in a Departmentalized Classroom, and My Accomplishment!

I'm here!  And finally blogging!

First up...

The winner of the Snapshots! Critical Thinking Photo Cards from Learning Resources is the lovely Tattooed Teacher Mrs. Rachel Lamb!  Yay!!!!!  If you missed the giveaway or just want to learn more about the photo cards, click the pic below to check out my review and see some pics!

Second... anchor charts in a departmentalized classroom... 

I love making anchor charts and just creating charts together as a class.  But I teach ELA to two classes and don't like using twice the paper and feeling like I can't make the charts fun and interesting looking because I have to make two.

Crisis solved!

Here's what I do...

I create the charts and we use sticky notes to write responses!  Then I can peel off the sticky notes for the first class, add new ones for my class, take those off, and re-apply the ones for the other class when I see them the next day so we can review!

The top picture is my small group area.  The kids write on sticky notes for this chart.  The second chart is at my whole group instruction area and I do most of the writing.

Do you know the website  It's amazing.  I've been using the passages from this site for my small group instruction.  They are expertly leveled and I LOVE LOVE LOVE that you can search for passages that target specific comprehension skills.  The site is free and is seriously amazing.

The pic below is of one of my small group kiddos making a prediction (on a specially made Vistaprint sticky note!) so that we can stick the prediction on one of our anchor charts.

Sneaking in something that wasn't in the blog title...

Have you bought the 100 Days to CCSS *ELA* Success that I have for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grades?  I wanted to show you one of the new ways I used them this week...

I made a quick written response page with a large space at the top.  We were working on proving the lesson of a text so I searched the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade for the word "lesson" and printed out the pages from all of the packs that asked students to prove the lesson.  I cut them out, taped them in the black space on each response page, copied, and... voila!  A CCSS aligned, perfectly differentiated activity for students to write down the lesson from the story and then highlight the info in the story that led them to understand the lesson.

It went so well and gave me a great idea of who understood what... and my lower readers read the 1st grade passages which still assessed their understanding but allowed them to read independently!  Yay!

If you click the pic below, you can check them out on TpT.  I am adding a page similar to the one I used above to each packet as you read... so re-download if you have each pack to get the update!

Last... my accomplishment...

Yesterday my two best friends and I ran a 5K together.  BFF #1 and I started training about 8 weeks ago and we seriously could not run for one minute.  We did C25K three days a week.  We ran twice a week at 5:30am and on Saturdays at about 8:00am.  BFF #2 and I got together a few times after work to train but none of us could run 1 minute in the beginning.  I am so proud to say that yesterday we finished the Color Run in about 35 minutes... we walked a teeny tiny bit, but ran almost the whole thing and crossed the finish line arm in arm together!  I love these girls and had so much fun running the 5K with them!

Thanks to my #1 blog stalker for the inspiration and for coming to cheer us on!


  1. I'm so proud of you for taking on running! It is not for everyone and it IS grueling to do for some! Bless your brave soul! I also feel bad that I didn't say ANYTHING to you about your Birthday. What kind of friend am I? Geesh! But if it makes you feel any better, I was thinking of you and sending you some delightful thoughts! Happy Appy birthday Sweet friend!

  2. Question about the CCSS reviews: Are the review half sheets in order by standard? Also, can you upload onto your blog the sheet you created for the students' proof writing?

    1. The cards have the standard on them, but they aren't in order... it's in a "spiral review" order so the same skill is reviewed at different times in the packet. I am also adding an editable version of the page I blogged about to each packet right now! :)

  3. Congrats on your 5K! It is a great accomplishment. Loving your anchor charts and how you use them for two classes. I might have to borrow that trick.

    Apples and Papers

  4. Congrats on your 5K!! I love the idea for your anchor charts. I teach 3 different ELA classes, so I have the same problem and you've just given me the perfect solution! Thanks! I also love I've got passages all ready to go for my small groups this week!
    Polka Dot Lesson Plans

  5. Sticky notes - genius! I teach 3 classes of the same reading class, and it pains me to make 3 of the same chart. Thank you, thank you!

    The Brown-Bag Teacher

  6. I do the same thing with anchor charts, but use this poster tack stuff. I stick full sheets of a paper on it, or half sheets. The tack peals off and I can reuse the chart.

  7. Congrats on the 5K! Thank you for posting about the anchor charts. I teach math/science to two classes and found myself making 2 anchor charts for the same thing. Using sticky notes will really help!
    Teachin' First

  8. Where on earth do you find the time to be so amazing ;0) hahaha! Love that readworks website. Looks like it'll be just what I need!

    Teach on a Limb


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