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Monday, February 17, 2014

Long o: oa/ow Unit


                                    Long O Word Work
I am making these units for a few reasons and here are the things I needed them to address in my own classroom and where in the heck I use them. 
1)  Back Ground Knowledge:  First off, I realized sometime back my "littles" did NOT have a whole lot of background knowledge. We usually always have a kid or 2 that knows something about what we're reading or talking about, but this year - NADA.   I am not talking background knowledge with regard to science, social studies, and thematic units but just basic background knowledge of words in their books.  
2)  EL and RTI Students:  I have a few EL students in my class and one is from Spain.  Such a smart kiddo but he needed the basic vocabulary.  I love all the cute clip art out their but my "littles" need real pictures and that stuff is hard to find!
3) Vocabulary: I use the Reading A-Z Decodable books and a lot of times their decodable books have words that my "littles" just don't know like - Coast.  So most of the pictures I use in the unit work along side of the decodable to help them make meaning of the story, understand the words, and build a larger vocabulary base which has helped with their writing.
4)  Writing: I have included many ways to teach writing/grammar in the units so you can pick and choose which skill you want to address.  I also created the writing activities in a way that students learn the format, use the same booklets in stations, and simply change out the cards so students become independent and you can pull small group.  Like the word-work, students can rotate through 5 different writing activities a week once you train them, do the activities whole group, or pick a focus. I  always teach them the focus for the week until they understand the writing expectation then add them as choices in future units. This is separate from our Writer's Work-Shop time (I'll do a post at a later time on how the writing center looks and what my "littles" are doing).  Grab the Writing Headers HERE or they are included in the unit HERE.
5)  Word-Work:  I try to do the Daily 5 or 4 the best I can because it allows me to pull small groups.  I have had to adjust and tweak things as we all do to fit our own needs.  That's where this unit and the other same phonics focus mini-unit comes in.  In Word-Work I needed my "littles"working on the sound spelling for the week so here's what I do.  I have 5 activities in Word-Work and they must get through all 5 by Friday.

6)  Simplicity:
I have a hard time managing all the little pieces and prepping a zillion stations.  These units allowed me to create a balance and add variety for different learning styles with less prep and more independence on the students part. The unit enables students to learn to work together which they need more than the activities sometimes!

Here is a glance at what WORD-Work looks like:

1) Chart Words -Students use the decodable that came with our curriculum and the Reading  A-Z Decodable to chart the sound spelling on the white-board (I staple a folder next to my  white-board in the back of the room that holds the books). This group I will be adding added "test a friend." They will give each other words (spelling, sight, and focus skill) from the week and write the words on the board.  They LOVE it!  Grab the Labels for the File Folders HERE.

 2) Making Words:  Student's Use the Picture Cards with sound boxes to make the words and record the words they made.  I also have an organizer with ceramic letter tiles and stickers on them with letters where they can make the words from the list, spelling words or sight words from the week as a 2nd activity in the same station. I was having early finishers so I  needed 2 activities: a FIRST and THEN activity.

3) Sort Words:  From my mini-unit that matches the sound that goes along with this unit I use the sort words backed with flannel for kids to sort and they fill in a graphic organizer with the words.

4) Game boards:  I have 2 games in the mini-unit as well that I use for my "littles" to play.  I had early finishers so I needed 2 games (easy prep on those as well).
         
 5) Computers:  I have 2 phonics Programs on 2 computers and on the 3rd computer I put together picture links to games, on-line activities, and videos that go with the sound-spelling focus skill.

Each Day I do a mini-lesson between rotations.  1 of the lessons is always a phonics, decoding, or a phonemic awareness type activity that goes with word-work.  These activities are sometimes at their seat and are the printables I want them to do from this unit or the other mini-unit.  Those activities or mini-lessons usually consist of - whiteboards (students write the words I give them which will include phonics for the week grammar, and sight words for an informal assessment.  Listening for the sound and touching nose, jumping, etc. if they hear it.  Ex: If you hear the long o in the middle clap 2 times. If you hear the long o at the end - Jump!  Charting the words on the board and looking for word patterns. Decoding strategies /reading the new words (I use the Beanie-Baby strategies - AMAZING)!
Not all my mini-lessons take place on the carpet.  Sometimes after stations/they go to their seats and apply the phonics skill from the mini-lesson then they can pick their clip out of the basket and make their next Daily 5 or 4 Choice.  Let me tell you - I have learned it works wonders for speeding your "littles" up.  SOMETIMES, I direct students to an activity and sit with that group so I can work with them there on skills and strategies.

This long vowel unit focuses on: oa and ow sound spelling but has so much more.  Word work, grammar, writing, real pictures, and writing asking sentences and telling sentences are some skills/activities included.  The activities are simplified in that you can use the same cards for all the activities.  You can "centerize" the activities, use them as whole group, or in small group. I hope to get more pictures up on how I use the activities in my class with small groups and while using the Daily 5  4.  The unit has a lot of variety and choices to help meet student needs and teaching styles. Here are a few pictures but check back for a more detailed use of the activities in the class.  I AM OFF TO BED as it is way past my bed-time.
This was a REALLY LONG Post so I will add pictures of this in action later this week.  Also you can see how I do my rotations here in a diagram form ( I have since added a writing/grammar Rotation).
Long O Word Work Reading A-Z

The above writing activities the kids love! I loved it too!  They were so engaged!  I will walk you through the pictures below on how I use the writing.
Writing Station in Primary
Here, they chose to go to Work on Writing.  The circle cards in the little pockets go with the colored graphic organizers you see on the wall.  They choose the picture/word on the wall they want to write about and take the cards out of the pocket underneath it. Originally, I thought they could just choose 3 words but they showed me when they were done using the first 3 they placed the next 3 and continued to write -pleasant surprise (they place words on their own blank organizer and write the words in as well - I have copies in a tray in the station).  The headers, cards, and graphic organizers are all included in the unit.  The kids can go to work on writing  each day and choose a different picture and cards to write about.  The set-up stays the same, the organizers and cards just change.  The booklets, papers and organizers are made so they work with any cards or pictures so you can prep as many as you want ahead of time and place in trays, baskets, etc. in the center/station.  
*If you want me to post the tutorial for the little pockets leave me a comment.  They were fairly quick and easy.  I just used scraps of laminate and card stock left from prepping the unit.

Long O Word Work

Word Work Long o

Telling Sentences
Long O Writing

For now, I have found, I prefer to make black and white copies of the picture cards and give them to students with the telling/asking sentence book.  They can cut and paste the pictures of their choice in the booklets, label the picture then write a telling or asking sentence about the picture in their booklets depending on which book I give them. Please know that in NO WAY do I EVER do all the writing in 1 week.  I put them in the unit so you have choices/options.




Long O activities



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