Monday, March 16, 2020

Teaching Raptor

Please welcome guest author, Teaching Raptor from Georgia. 

I am a Georgia teacher who often brags to my colleagues that I teach the best grade ever – second grade! While I love this grade, I have found 3-digit subtraction to be a very challenging topic for students to master. Year by year I have been tailoring my lessons to help students tackle this topic.

The best thing I have done so far is develop this:

Think of the mistakes that your students make when subtracting with regrouping:

·        They cross out only one number.
·        They cross out all the numbers.
·        They make both numbers bigger.

They do things to those numbers you’ve never seen before. It is truly impressive, but none of those things are errors relating to subtraction. Those are all errors that relate to the core understanding of what regrouping is. If students are making these mistakes, what you need to provide support in is building their mental representations of how hundreds, tens, and ones are related.

This bundle offers you the opportunity to target the concept of regrouping. Students will not be subtracting. The activities have been developed so that students will interact with the place value concept of regrouping over and over. You know what they say: brains need repetition.

What is included:



-      All cards have answers on the back so students can check their work

-      Differentiate by choosing if you will have students work with manipulatives, the cards with visuals, or the cards with no visuals

-      When using the cards with no visuals, tell students to imagine what is happening before writing their answer down. This is an important bridge that encourages students to be creating mental representations.

  • Use in a small group with manipulatives  for reteaching
  • -      Use the cards with white boards to allow students to get extra practice
  • -      Play scoot with the included recording pages to get students moving around but still working with the same concept 
  • -      Have students complete the regrouping journals. Reading their writing will help you learn their true level of  understanding

-      Also, make sure to pull these cards back out when students start putting all the steps of subtraction together. My kids “warm up” with 2 or 3 regrouping cards before subtracting to get those regrouping juices flowin’. After using this bundle the only thing you’ll have left to teach is *WHEN* students should regroup.


 For more Teaching Raptor learning materials, go to Teachingraptor on TPT.

Monday, March 9, 2020

Benefits of Clip It Cards for Primary School

Most children just love creating with crafts.

With clip it cards, students can make clips with decorations and then use them in their reading practice. What fun!

So what are clip it cards? 

They are questions. Each clip it card has only one question to answer. The number of the questions students will answer depends on the teacher's lesson plan. There might be as many as 15, or as few as one or two. 

Students use clips on the cards to show their answers. 

Example of a clip it card question.

The benefits of clip it cards are numerous.
  •  students can put down their pencils and use clips to show their answers. Although writing is an important learning task, little hands can get tired of typing and printing.

Example of a clip it card question with an answer.

  •  making decorations out of clothes pins or clips can be fun for your students. A template can be made that the children follow, and each project can be individualized. In the example above, the clip can could be dipped in glitter, or a mini monkey could be glued onto the clip.
  •  materials for the clips, such as construction paper, glue, googly eyes, markers, pipe cleaners, pom- poms and glitter are low cost, especially when bought in bulk.
  •  teachers can easily monitor the students
  •  students can focus on one question at a time. Young learners might get confused with many problems to solve on a page.
  •  the scale of the font is large so that early readers can decipher the writing
  •  clip it cards can have different themes, making the task more enjoyable.
  •  ecofriendly, as clip it cards can be reused. Once they are printed, a teacher can laminate them and place them in a folder to be used in the following years.
  •  clip it cards can be used at a center, intervention, as a whole group or game.

Clip it cards can be created for multi subjects such as math, English Language Arts, and science. The fun theme style attracts more young students to learning, and maybe a few laughs!

Friday, February 14, 2020

Teacher Involvement and Playground Activities

   My former mentor who held her doctorate in early childhood stressed the importance of monitoring students on the playground. What, recess is not a teacher's break time? 

So, why is it important for a teacher to get involved with their students during recess? There are many reasons why. Here are just a few.

  •  prevent bullying behaviors
When a teacher is seen walking around the playground and getting involved in recess activities, it is less likely that bullying will occur. If bullying happens, swift action can and should be taken.

  •  social guidance
Some children might be shy, and find it difficult to gain friendships. A teacher can assist them in a variety of ways. It might be beneficial to bring in a game of interest that the child could enjoy with other students. A teacher's special attention for even a short while can help bring other children into the child's social circle.

  •  fun with students
During class time, there should be learning fun. But recess is an opportunity for teachers to get to know students in more of a social way. Playing a game of kickball, swinging on the swings, trying new indoor or outdoor games, and even looking at changes in the environment can add to the time of less structured student-teacher conversations.

  • safety concerns
Safety is the most important point for getting teachers involved on the playground. With many children being active on monkey bars, slides, swings, and even fighting over jump ropes, it is possible that accidents can happen. Luckily, safety doesn't have to be an issue with a better organized routine. Teachers can calculate the quantity of children who are able to use certain equipment. Student sign-up schedules for recess can be created. Scheduling activity on the playground may limit accidents.

During recess, my college mentor had me talking and listening to students, helping students to gain friendships, and trying group games. I was able to know my students better, and bring the class together where everyone was an accepted part of the group. Not being "left out" helps students to feel better about their role of going to school. Simple tasks that unite the class will also assists students to collaborate in everyday academic learning.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Task Card Activities in the Classroom

Why should a teacher use task cards in the classroom?

 Task cards have so many purposes, and can be used in a variety of ways. 

  • Engaging
    Instructional designers often implement visual effects to make the product more kids friendly and appealing.

  • Reusable and eco-friendly

   When task cards are printed out, cut and laminated, they can be used from year to year. This lessens the paper load of print-outs to only student recording sheets, if they are needed.

  •  Focus 

   Instead of having many questions on one page, students focus on one question that is printed out on the task card. For many students, this makes the learning process easier.

   This task card paper can be cut into 2 questions and with two awards cards for the teacher to give to students.

  • Individual work

   Let's say that a student needs more practice on a specific area. He or she can 
then work independently on a particular skill using task cards and a recording device.

  •  Conversations

  Students can talk about the topic at hand during a quiet conversation. Speaking about the subject matter helps to guide student understanding. A small group format makes it easier for those learners who might not normally speak in a large class environment.

  •  Cooperative group learning 

   Learners can work together in small cooperative groups of 4 to 5 members. A class of 25 learners could be studying in five task card groups.

   For example, small groups of five students could each be reading about a member of the animal kingdom. In The Fouke Monster, students examine the evidence of what is known from the science community to townspeople sightings of an "unknown creature".                                                            

                                                         Group One

Group Two

Group Three

Group Four

                                                         Group Five

  •    Monitoring 
   A teacher can easily walk around the room to monitor how learners are doing with recording device in hand. Do your students cooperate well in a group? Are they just socializing? Do they seem confused? Is one student dominating the conversation? This makes it easier for a teacher to find out who works well in a group, and what social skills might need to be achieved.

  •  Whole group learning or game 
   Task cards can be used in a whole group learning environment as an instructional tool or even as a game.

  •  Easy to Implement
    The passages and comprehension questions have all been created. Just print and go. Often, recording sheets are included in the packet.

   When setting up your classroom, try using a variety of task cards. Task cards are a wonderful tool that can be used for a multitude of  purposes. Most of all, task cards can be fun!

Monday, February 3, 2020

Flash Freebie February Winter Sight Word Bingo

   FLASH FREEBIE Winter Sight Word Bingo incorporates 48 words for the 3rd to 5th grade level. Winter Bingo can be used as a class game, an intervention, or in cooperative learning groups. Learners play the conventional bingo game with upper elementary sight words.

   Bingo Winter includes 25 student bingo game boards, directions for use, 48 words for study, word cards and 2 types of game board place holders.

Teach 100