Thursday, July 3, 2014

Tried and True Thursday

It's Tried and True Thursday! Yes. I made that up. Yes. It is going to be awesome! Every Thursday this summer, I am going to share a product I purchased from Teachers Pay Teachers that I just cannot live without! Feel free to comment with your favorites!

Over the last year, I have really worked hard to improve my literacy centers. So of course, I started looking at teaching blogs and Teachers Pay Teachers for some resources I could use.
 I had a few requirements for these centers.
1. They had to be cute. For those of you who know me personally, you are giggling at this. For those who don't know me personally, let me just help you out a bit. I have a really hard time putting things in my classroom if they are not cute. The administration at my school knows all about this. :)
2. They had to be a lasting center. I didn't want centers that would last a few weeks and then would retire to my filing cabinet. I was looking for something that would grow with my Kinders as they become more independent and confident.
3. They had to be meaningful. I obviously wanted them to be based on our teaching standards. I wanted them to be differentiated as much as possible to help meet my littles right where they were!
I have a great Teachers Pay Teachers resource to show you today! But first, a little ecard humor!
I swear my kids probably said this with some sarcasm this year!
Now don't you judge me on how much these resources cost. I utilize TPT sales and use my TPT credits to create more bang for my buck. Obviously I love these products and think they are 100% worth every penny!
First up, Rock Your Fluency from Cara Carroll. Cara Carroll is the blogger behind The First Grade Parade and if you ask me, she is a total Rock Star (pun intended)! She was the first teaching blog that I ever followed and has the cutest ideas and products. Rock Your Fluency meets all the requirements for my literacy centers. It is totally precious with awesome clipart and fonts. It is long lasting. I bought this packet in February and we didn't have time to do all that this packet had to offer! Fluency is such an important part of learning how to read in Kindergarten so it is definitely meaningful and you will be able to see how it is a differentiated resource as well!
I'm using a few of Cara's pictures that she put up on her blog post to show you all the amazing aspects of this packet since all of mine are tucked away in the classroom.
The core of the packet are these sight word rings. Cara created these using Pre-Primer and Primer sight word phrases. My kiddos LOVED these rings. There are seven levels of Pre-Primer word phrases and 7 levels of Primer word phrases.
There are even these precious certificates that can go home once the student passes a level. 
I introduced these cute voice cards after the kids had gotten comfortable with the sight word rings. Watching the kids use funny voices when reading their phrases was a hoot! They even giggled at themselves but they were seriously hooked and engaged!
 There are fluency passages that are Kindergarten appropriate where you can monitor how many words they read in a minute or how long it takes for them to read a passage. These were seriously an answer to prayer! When I student taught in higher grade levels these were so common. I couldn't find any that were appropriate for Kinders and was totally bummed. These are perfect and let me tell you, the kids loved seeing how quickly they could read!
  Then there are these jewels, Roll, Read, and Highlight. It's pretty self explanatory but they are definitely a class favorite.
I introduced the elements of this fluency center one at a time. I started with the rings and roll read and highlight. Then I introduced the voice cards and then the fluency passages.
At the end of the year, I always poll my kids to see which centers are the class favorites and this was definitely one of the beloved centers! The kids loved that they could do everything independently and literally begged to show me how fluently they could read their phrases. Happy Kids, Happy Teacher!
Does this seem like something you would be interested in? Don't teach Kindergarten? Well you are in luck! Cara has created this packet not only for Kindergarten but for First, Second, and Third Grade as well! She has also bundled all grade levels to really differentiate for your students! You can find the products by clicking on the grade levels.
What is your Tried and True Resource? Comment and share your favorites!

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