Main Idea Teaching Hack

April 22, 2015

As state testing nears, I've been tutoring a small group of Third Graders.  We've been working really hard on our reading skills.  Recently, one of our objectives was CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.3.2 - Determine the main idea of a text; recount the key details and explain how they support the main idea.

I've found main idea to be tricky skill to teach.  At first glimpse, it seems like an easy task, but students often focus on key details, and sometimes they focus on details that are not even relevant.  After much pondering, I FINALLY came up with a simple trick to get students to zoom in on those important words related to Main Idea.

Bouncy Bands Review

April 19, 2015

Do you have students in your classroom who struggle with hyperactivity and/or short attention spans?  I do and am constantly trying to find new ways to accommodate my students' needs.  Recently, I was asked to review Bouncy Bands and jumped at the opportunity.

What are Bouncy Bands?
Bouncy Bands are a device that help keep students' feet active.  Created by Scott Ertl, an elementary school counselor in Winston-Salem, NC, Bouncy Bands allow students to prop, bounce, and stretch their legs and feet. 

Free Titanic Reading Comprehension Packet

April 13, 2015

As a child, I was FASCINATED by the Titanic.  Sure, the movie came out during my childhood, but I loved to read books about it, too.  Fast-forward a few (ok, several) years, and I am still fascinated by Titanic.  I enjoy reading articles, visiting museums, and watching documentaries about the fated ship.  I secretly get really giddy whenever I encounter a student who shares my fascination, and, trust me, there is at least one kiddo who is a Titanic fanatic every. single. year.

Two years ago marked the 100th anniversary of the sinking of Titanic.  I created a free unit at the time to go along with the important occasion.  Since then, it has received a lot of wonderful attention and feedback.  This year, I wanted to spruce it up with some new graphics!

April 15 (Wednesday) marks the anniversary of the sinking, so this week would be a perfect opportunity to use this packet.  If you can't work it into your plans this week, this Titanic packet will fit into your plans at any point in the year!  Consider it an opportunity to discuss non-fiction or informational texts or a fun end-of-the-year activity!

Now, onto the packet!
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