Monday, February 27, 2012

Commutative Property of Addition

 Hi Everyone!

I have migrated to my new website

I hope you will join me there and follow me on Instagram and Facebook - @theinstructionhub

Thank you! We are working on the properties of addition as we explore strategies for problem solving.  I always like to teach the equal sign as a symbol, but also as a balance.  I have attached a practice sheet from my class.
You can download the practice sheet here!  Here are a couple of pics of how we worked on this topic in my class:

I also teach them that the prefix com- means that no matter how the addends are put together, they still have the same sum.

: ) Candi

Short Vowel Flag -tch

Hi Friends,

As I am planning for this week, I have decided we will review the short vowel flags including -tch.  I think short vowel flags are fun to teach because it gives your kiddos who want to know the why- the why we sometimes spell /ch/ as ch and sometimes as -tch.

So feel free to download my -tch practice sheet here!

The second page which has a chart for spelling words with -ch vs. -tch on page 2 you can download here!

Happy Teaching!  : )   Candi

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Math R & R

One of the things I love most about the structure of instructional time at The Key School, is that we spend the greatest part of our lesson in review and reinforcement.  Of course this is based on the Orton Principles, but the results are phenomenal.  Our kiddos need multiple presentations of material to bring it to the point of mastery. Our math team has worked together to create an "R & R" activity guide that we complete with our students in class. Some of the pieces of the R & R sheet are recall, and some use manipulatives.  They format looks the same, but material changes based on what you are covering in your classes.  Here is an example of one of my first grade R & R sheets. 

Hope you can use it!  : ) Candi

The "h" Brothers (digraphs)

 Hi Everyone!

I have migrated to my new website

I hope you will join me there and follow me on Instagram and Facebook - @theinstructionhub

Thank you! It has been a crazy, but fun week.   I am getting ready for NCIDA and the AOGPE conferences in a couple of weeks. My math co-chair and I are presenting at NCIDA and we are both excited but have a lot to do.
 In class this week we reviewed the "h" brothers this week aka- digraphs.  Get these new info sheets here!

Have a great week! : ) Candi

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I work with great people with great ideas....

In my five years of teaching I have worked with some wonderful people.  I have learned so much from watching them and working with them.  The picture below is from the current 3rd grade math teacher Amanda Smith at my school.  Our school focuses on instruction in math that starts with the concrete level (manipulatives), moves into the representational (connecting pictures/symbols with numbers) and then to the abstract level (working independently, working with numerals only, etc.) This is a picture from her class where she takes the concept of addition with larger numbers and regrouping to the concrete level, yet appropriate for the age group she teaches.

Soft G Rule

 Hi Everyone!

I have migrated to my new website

I hope you will join me there and follow me on Instagram and Facebook - @theinstructionhub

Thank you! Here is one of my new information sheets for the concept of soft g.  I introduce this concept as "Giant Cyrus" complete with pirate eye patch and bandana.  Hopefully I can get those pictures posted soon.  His friend "Gently Cindy" visits on the day we learn soft c.  She prefers a pink boa and sunglasses.  : )

One of the reasons I love first grade: They still think it's funny when you play dress up!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


We are working on graphing this week.  Here is a little activity I created to use on the basketball court to get brain juices flowing and have some data for our work.

Get your copy here!

I also introduce my students to the morphological piece in the word.  I have attached my new information sheet for the root graph here.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Math Oldies but Goodies!

This is a list that my wonderful math team created for our parents.  
Included in this list are some suggestions for family games and books that would be great for time away from school, but also be meaningful to our student’s education.   Although we live in an age of technology, we would encourage you to consider these activities that would help promote math skills, problem solving, visual perceptual organization, teamwork, and critical thinking.  Often these “old” games are not considered for their mathematical value.  Consider introducing or reintroducing your students and parents to these resources as tools for review and reinforcement.

Get the complete list here!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Language of Math

 Hi Everyone!

I have migrated to my new website

I hope you will join me there and follow me on Instagram and Facebook - @theinstructionhub

Thank you! Even if you are teaching the little ones, do not underestimate the power of the language of math.  A lot of times as teachers we are more focused on the process and less on the language involved in the process.  Sometimes the language is the "hang up" for some students understanding.  Teaching the "word part" (root) of a word, even to a first grader extends their learning! Here is one way I do this with my kiddos:

I teach the root -fract-/-frac-/-frag- meaning to break through the discovery method.  I show the students the pictures of fracture and fragment and ask them what they think happened.  We then look at the similar parts of the two words.  They then begin to connect that these mean to break, which is the perfect lead in to fraction- breaking a whole into parts.

Here is a sorting/review activity to go with this, you can download it here!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

First Official Post

So this is my first attempt at the blog scene.  I am excited to share the "happenings" in my first grade class and other education adventures that I am involved in.  I am also excited to share the many wonderful tools, strategies, and materials that I use here at The Key School.  Look for classroom freebies as I become more tech savvy in uploading documents, etc.  I love what I do and hope you find this blog to be a fun read and maybe even useful!  : )