Monday, January 26, 2015


Every now and then, I'm pulled into a conference room and given the lowdown on a new program to implement with my students.  Sometimes the programs are useful; sometimes they are pretty bad. 
Recently, another one of those said programs came to me.  This time it came to me via an email.  The name of the program was MobyMax. 
What is MobyMax?
MobyMax is an online program/resource for K-8 students and teachers.  It covers Math, Reading, Writing, Vocabulary, and State Test Prep and is aligned to the Common Core Standards.  The program is designed to review skills, assess, and progress monitor.
Show Me!
Here's what your screen will look like upon logging in:
The "Subjects" section is what students will be able to work on.  Each section has a list of grades, and each grade covers the Common Core Standards.
When students first begin, you can have them complete a Placement Test.  It will give you an idea of which areas they need extra instruction in.  MobyMax will tailor each students' learning to their individual needs.  Teachers with Pro accounts can choose specific lessons for students and set goals for them as well. 
Motivating Students
Students love working with technology, and Moby Max is the perfect tool to help students.  MobyMax also offers incentives for students.  They can collect badges, earn game time, enter contests, and more.  I especially love the game time feature!  It really keeps kids motivated!
Teacher Tools
Where do I begin?  I absolutely love the tools MobyMax offers teachers!  Teaching in a state that uses Common Core, I love that MobyMax is correlated to these standards.  The program offers quick placement tests and gives me the information I need to differentiate learning.  I can't begin to explain how valuable this is as a teacher.
Another favorite component is the "Worksheets" section.  This section allows teachers to pull worksheets that address specific Common Core Standards, and the worksheets are GOOD! 
The Verdict
I'm completely sold on MobyMax!  It's easy to use and is a wonderful classroom resource.  Correlation to the Common Core Standards is a HUGE plus!  Soon, I will begin tutoring Third Grade students afterschool to help prepare them for the upcoming state test.  I am planning to incorporate MobyMax into my instruction.  Since I do not teach Third, MobyMax will give me a quick idea of where students need extra instruction as well as monitor their progress.  After assessing students, I plan to incorporate the worksheets into instruction.  As test prep nears, I'll make sure to post more in-depth posts on how I incorporate this program into Third Grade interventions.
What Does it Cost?
Nothing!  Any teacher can register her students for free.  A pro account (for one teacher) is also available for $99 a year.  It includes progress monitoring, placement tests, classroom tools, and student motivation features.  A school license is $599 per year. 
MobyMax also offers a tablet for $69.
For more pricing info, click here.

 Check MobyMax out here!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Pre-K Christmas Counting Activity

Here's a fun Christmas-themed activity for Preschool or Pre-K students.  Some Kindergarten students might also benefit from this activity.

Objective: Count to 12, identify numbers 1-12, and develop and strengthen fine motor skills

Materials: Christmas Trees with Stars (download here), Pom-poms, tweezers

Prep Instructions
1.Print six copies of the trees, along with one copy of the stars. 2. Cut out the trees and stars.
3. Glue each numbered star to its matching dotted star.
4. Then, glue the stars to the tops of the trees.
5. Laminate.
6. Place pom-poms in a bowl. Put a pair of tweezers in each bowl.

Center Instructions
1. Students will take turns getting a tree.
2. They will have to identify the number on each star. Then, count out that amount of pom-poms with the tweezers. They will place each pom-pom on the tree using tweezers.

3. To check their work, students can flip the tree over to count the dots. They number of pom-poms should match the number of dots.


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

First Grade Christmas Sight Word Game

 Here is a FREE Christmas-themed Four-in-a-Row Sight Word Game!  Four-in-a-Row plays just like Connect Four. Students must first read a word correctly to place one of their chips on the word. The first student to get four words in a row (diagonal, vertical, horizontal) wins. Students should work to block their opponent! For chips, I use either seasonal erasers, bingo chips, handmade chips (paper circles laminated), or plastic counting chips.
I use both the Dolch and Fry Sight Word Lists.  I find both lists to contain many of the same words.  In creating these board games, I had an end of First Grade learner in mind, so only the Dolch Pre-Primer – First Grade Sight Words and Fry First Two Hundred Sight Words are included. Words from both lists are mixed on the boards, and I tried to arrange them from least difficult to most difficult. I created these game boards with my students in mind but hope you might be able to use them with yours as well!

Download the game boards below.  The packet contains eight cards designed to cover multiple word lists.
DOWNLOAD HERE! *(Please click on "File" then "Download".)*