Thursday, October 26, 2017

Differentiate your Literacy program!

As requested, I have bundled up the ESSENTIAL resources you need to help with:

planning
organizing
establishing routines
and implementing 

DIFFERENTIATED
WORD STUDY GROUPS!

Differentiate your Word Study program. 6 resources that will help make your planning, organization, routine and implementation of differentiated Word Study groups much easier using highly EFFECTIVE approaches to building phonemic awareness. Perfect for first grade and kindergarten Daily 5 centers.

You can find the complete bundle here at The K Files shop:
Differentiate Your Word Study Groups: 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

"You're a Smart Cookie" Jar Label: A Tasty Classroom Incentive


Show your students they are a "smart cookie" each and every day! This tasty incentive system will prove to be a a great motivational tool in your classroom.

Your students will rise to meet your expectations for ONE single "smart cookie". It's the little things...that motivate!

Simple, yet effective!


Included:
3 different "Smart Cookie" Labels to choose from:


You will also need one box of Cookie Crisp cereal. ;)

I utilize this incentive system for improving sight word fluency. You can learn more about it here: A Differentiated Sight Word Fluency System.

Or, you can see the Smart Cookie Jar in action during our Read To Self Share Time with this FREEBIE THINKmark available at Read to Self THINKmark.

I would love to hear how you utilize this tasty incentive system in your classroom.  Please share your ideas in the comments below!  

Sunday, October 15, 2017

The Read to Self THINKmark: A FREEBIE for you!

FREE! Mix a little Word Work in your Read to Self center during the Daily 5! Students hunt for the phonics rules they are studying in their differentiated Words Their Way group as they read from leveled readers. They love to add to their collection of words in this interactive Word Study Notebook. This Read to Self Thinkmark (bookmark) is perfect for peer teaching during Share time!

Are you looking for more opportunities to encourage your students to apply what they have learned from your phonics instruction while they read?
Let me share this strategy with you!




We all know that children LOVE to read and be read to! The method described below gives them an opportunity to do both.

When your students are reading independently, have them hunt for spelling patterns that they are currently studying and prepare a THINKmark to share with the class.

This will give each child in your class an opportunity to “teach” their peers, read to the class and learn from each other!

This is especially powerful if you are managing differentiated Word Study groups such as Words Their Way. Your students will be exposed to a variety of phonics rules as they listen for spelling patterns presented by their peers!

Right here, and now, I will share with you my tried and true method of how to disguise Read to Self as a little more: Word Study! Using what kids love:



You can find The Read to Self THINKmark FREEBIE at the shop by clicking HERE!

My Word Study Goal Is…

I have found it extremely beneficial to provide my students with a Word Study goal that changes each time we study a new spelling pattern. I assign these "I can" statements as individual reading goals to hold students accountable for their reading achievement. This set of 47 Phonics and Reading Goals Posters with “I can” statements provide the students with a visual reminder as to what their Word Study focus is. It works! I promise.

Use these reading goal posters as a display in the classroom. Assign these "I can" statements as individual reading and phonics goals to hold students accountable for their reading achievement. They work!! Perfect for Reader's Workshop, Guided Reading, Daily 5, Read to Self, Spelling and growth mindset.

My Gumball Is...

I use this Interactive Phonics Notebook as a supplement to our Read to Self, Guided Reading and Reader’s Workshop routines.

While reading, my students hunt for the spelling patterns that they are currently studying. They add each word to their collection of “gumballs”. After they have met the desired number of words on each page they earn a gumball for their gumball machine! The kids LOVE going on a word hunt!

Interactive Phonics Notebook: Mix a little Word Work in your Read to Self center during the Daily 5! Students hunt for the phonics rules they are studying in their differentiated Words Their Way group as they read from leveled readers. They love to add to their collection of words in this interactive Word Study Notebook. Great for Guided Reading lessons and independent Word Work Centers.

What are “Gumballs”?

Students enjoy this color-coded strategy to help them identify the various spelling patterns in the words they read and write. 

To help my students locate "word chunks" we use this coded system. They color code their sight words, articles, poems and word problems we read. They even love to "gumball up" their own writing! This visual and kinesthetic approach to phonics is a great strategy for Word Work, Spelling, Phonics Instruction to visually highlight word chunks and phonics rules using Words Their Way or with any Spelling program.

What do you do with the Sticky Notes?

After each child shares their “gumball” we display our sticky notes on our True Interactive Word Wall. Students and teacher interact with the Word Wall houses by writing words on a post-it and display it on the word family house. The windows measure to fit a 3x3 post-it!

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists.

You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Simply, display these Word Wall houses and let your students do all the work.

44 Word Family Houses are included that feature graphics to reinforce each phonogram:

Short Vowel Rd.
Blends Blvd.
Long Vowel Lane
Bossy R Way
Digraphs St.
Diphthongs Dr.

To read a full description of how it is utilized in the primary classroom visit: A True Interactive Word Wall.

What is a Smart Cookie?

Our smart cookie jar is filled with "smart cookies"...yes, Cookie Crisp cereal!  It's that simple.  My students will go out of their way to earn ONE "smart cookie" during Share Time.  It is truly a tasty incentive. 

You can find three options for the Smart Cookie Jar label HERE at the shop.

Show your students they are a "smart cookie" each and every day! This tasty incentive system will prove to be a a great motivational tool in your classroom. Your students will rise to meet your expectations for ONE single "smart cookie". It's the little things...that motivate! Great for Sight Word Fluency, Behavior and Classroom Management incentives.

I do hope you find the Gumballs Phonics strategy useful in your classroom!  
It has worked wonders in mine!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Independent Word Study Centers

Enhance your Word Study and Phonics/Spelling routine with these Independent center activities and task cards. Supplement your Daily 5, Working With Words, and Words Their Way centers with magnets, letter tiles, word family houses, rainbow write, story writing and hands on activities Each activity includes step-by-step VISUAL directions to help your students complete each task with accuracy. TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

If you run literacy centers or a Daily 5 framework in your classroom then you know the struggle of constantly planning and prepping engaging activities for your students to keep behavior problems at a minimum so you can meet with your small groups for Guided Reading and Word Study.

Through the years, I have developed a successful routine for managing a Daily 5 framework that includes differentiated Word Study groups. I have tweaked the D5 system so many times, I finally feel that it is just what we need!

I’m so excited to share the newest addition to our Daily 5 routine:

Independent Word Study Centers


My students love the choice of activities available to them. These activities enhance our Word Study and Spelling program. In fact, my students call it Word Work Fun!

Included are 6 independent center activities/task cards that include step-by-step VISUAL directions to help my students complete each task independently and with accuracy.

Each activity touches upon a variety multidisciplinary tasks to build on their strengths while reinforcing phonemic awareness:

COUNT: Students build their words and count the value of each letter
BUILD: Students build with magnets and count the # of vowels and consonants.
BEAD!: Students use beads to build their words and build fine motor skills.
WRITE: Students rainbow-write their words. Simple, but they LOVE it!
STAMP: Students stamp their words and color-code the spelling pattern.
STORY: Students write a story using words from their list.

…and 5 recording sheets to help your students document their learning.

These center activities are perfect for differentiated Spelling lists (I use Words Their Way). Differentiating your Spelling lists can be a daunting task. These activities will not only support your curriculum but they will make your life easier! To learn more about how to simplify your differentiated Word Study and Spelling program visit HERE.

Here is a closer look at the independent Word Study Centers:
Enhance your Word Study and Phonics/Spelling routine with these Independent center activities and task cards. Supplement your Daily 5, Working With Words, and Words Their Way centers with magnets, letter tiles, word family houses, rainbow write, story writing and hands on activities Each activity includes step-by-step VISUAL directions to help your students complete each task with accuracy. TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

You will notice that I am a huge fan of color-coding EVERYTHING. Doing so, makes our life just so much easier. My students can find materials to match each center independently and quickly clean up after themselves. I found these awesome colorful space-saving stacking trays and durable baskets at LEARN365. I placed the stacking trays right in the middle of the center so that children can grab the coordinating recording sheet for their activity of choice! It looks and works out beautifully! Classroom organization at its best.

You will also need alphabet magnets, beads, stamps, ink pads and scrabble tiles. I found all of these items at LEARN365.

Once you have the materials prepped, your students can visit each center and practice/reinforce ANY phonics pattern they are studying in your classroom. These activities are low-maintenance and support any spelling rule. It’s a win-win!

Let’s take a closer look at how independent my students are at their Word Work centers.

Enhance your Word Study and Phonics/Spelling routine with these Independent center activities and task cards. Supplement your Daily 5, Working With Words, and Words Their Way centers with magnets, letter tiles, word family houses, rainbow write, story writing and hands on activities Each activity includes step-by-step VISUAL directions to help your students complete each task with accuracy. TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

Enhance your Word Study and Phonics/Spelling routine with these Independent center activities and task cards. Supplement your Daily 5, Working With Words, and Words Their Way centers with magnets, letter tiles, word family houses, rainbow write, story writing and hands on activities Each activity includes step-by-step VISUAL directions to help your students complete each task with accuracy. TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

Enhance your Word Study and Phonics/Spelling routine with these Independent center activities and task cards. Supplement your Daily 5, Working With Words, and Words Their Way centers with magnets, letter tiles, word family houses, rainbow write, story writing and hands on activities Each activity includes step-by-step VISUAL directions to help your students complete each task with accuracy. TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

Enhance your Word Study and Phonics/Spelling routine with these Independent center activities and task cards. Supplement your Daily 5, Working With Words, and Words Their Way centers with magnets, letter tiles, word family houses, rainbow write, story writing and hands on activities Each activity includes step-by-step VISUAL directions to help your students complete each task with accuracy. TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

Enhance your Word Study and Phonics/Spelling routine with these Independent center activities and task cards. Supplement your Daily 5, Working With Words, and Words Their Way centers with magnets, letter tiles, word family houses, rainbow write, story writing and hands on activities Each activity includes step-by-step VISUAL directions to help your students complete each task with accuracy. TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

Enhance your Word Study and Phonics/Spelling routine with these Independent center activities and task cards. Supplement your Daily 5, Working With Words, and Words Their Way centers with magnets, letter tiles, word family houses, rainbow write, story writing and hands on activities Each activity includes step-by-step VISUAL directions to help your students complete each task with accuracy. TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

I am thrilled at how versatile these activities are. You can assign these activities as a daily routine or you can make them available to students who finish their center activities early.

You can also utilize this resource in your Substitute Teacher Plans to keep your curriculum going in your absence.

If you are in love with our Independent Word Work FUN centers as much as we are, you can find them here at my TpT shop:

Saturday, September 9, 2017

A True Interactive Word Wall

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

Many of us Super Teachers have had Word Walls in our classrooms for years and years now. I have had one since forever! However, I have never found the Word Wall to be truly interactive for my students. Have you?

Of course, we practiced our words daily, and reviewed most of the words on a weekly basis. I would smile proudly when I found my students referring to the Word Wall during Writer’s Workshop but I always had this niggling suspicion it truly was not benefiting my students. Until I switched things up a bit and now it is TRULY INTERACTIVE!

You’re going to LOVE it!

8 years ago…
When I taught kindergarten, I had a traditional word wall. Later, I was sure that I included my students’ names and their pictures (adorbs! -not pictured, of course). Shortly after, I began to include Word Family Houses. This was a HUGE stepping stone for me. The FIRST step toward an interactive Word Wall. Here is a photo of my first Word Wall:

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

I thought I was so clever including the Word Family houses for short vowel sounds above our Word Wall! I mean, I was, right? It was great practice for my kinders. But was it truly interactive? Not really. We placed our sight words and our word family houses on display and simply looked at them on occasion. That’s it. A pretty bulletin board that took up A LOT of valuable wall space. So, the desire to create a TRULY interactive Word Wall was born.

3 years later…
Now, being a first grade teacher and since having begun my journey with differentiated Spelling lists with the help of Words Their Way (learn more about this journey HERE), I found the need to focus more on phonograms rather than letter sounds. So, I switched up my Word Wall. It then evolved into this:

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

Notice the post-its around each Long Vowel house! Yes! Those are words written by my students as they hunt for words in their decodable books that contain the current Spelling pattern they are studying! A bit more interactive, right? Yes, I was getting closer to having a truly interactive Word Wall.

But I still was not satisfied. So, the pursuit for a truly interactive Word Wall continued.

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

I spent a huge amount of time this summer working on individual Word Family houses for EACH phonogram. For example, there is not just ONE word family house for each long vowel sound but, FIFTEEN long vowel houses-one for EACH phonogram! Here is a glimpse of “Long Vowel Lane”:

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

I must ask you to take a closer look at one of the houses. Notice the windows are the exact same size as a 3x3 post it. Notice how the graphics all contain that ONE long vowel sound for ONE phonogram. In fact, you might even tell a story about the words that live in that house together. Here is a closeup for you to take a better look (click to enlarge):

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

Now it gets exciting! Since I differentiate the spelling lists for my students using Words Their Way, we mainly focus on one phonogram a week. If I am working with 4-5 different Word Study groups, that involves 4-5 different Word Family houses!

Just WAIT! …it’s coming…

First let me explain our Read to Self routine.

When I am working with my small guided reading groups, the remaining students are assigned differentiated Word Study assignments for Word Work AND Read to Self.

As a Read to Self assignment, I provide my students with decodable readers so they can practice reading words according to that specific spelling pattern. They hunt for words, record them in their “Gumballs Collection” (a notebook that contains a page for each phonogram -we call them "gumballs"-I’ll explain this further in a bit) and they prepare a post-it to share their learning with the class during “Share”.

You are going to LOVE this…

After our Daily 5 center rotations, I provide my students with the opportunity to share their learning from their Read to Self assignment with the whole class. This provides the whole group with the opportunity to learn from each other. Which will expose them to 4-5 different phonograms!

My above-level students will have an opportunity to review what they have previously learned when an “on-level” or “below-level” Word Study group presents their learning.

On the flip-side, my “on-level” and “below-level” students will be exposed to new phonograms that the above-level groups present (a bit of frontloading!)

It’s a win-win!

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.


After the children share their “gumball”, we display their learning by adding their post-it to our Word Wall. We place them on the house windows or below the house for all to see and learn from. The children feel so proud to see their work displayed on the “Wall”.

To learn more about how I manage our Read to Self assignments and Share Time, please visit this blog post:


Would you take one more peak at a house? I want you to notice one more thing about our Word Wall:

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

They are color coded! Be still my teacher heart! What teacher and student doesn’t enjoy color-coding?

You are going to LOVE this too…

My students benefit from using a color-coded system for our spelling patterns that we like to call "gumballs". The color of the houses matches the color-coded system!

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

This simple color-coding strategy has proven to be a HUGE help to my students when identifying phonograms in their reading AND applying these spelling rules in their own writing! I cannot begin to explain how well this works for my students and how much they enjoy it. I urge you to try it!

There are SIX different Word Wall sets available at my TpT shop.
You can find them HERE or by clicking on the image below.

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.
The complete set is also bundled up for your savings:
The Interactive word Wall BIG Bundle

This interactive Word Wall includes word family houses for all phonograms appropriate for the primary grades. This method aligns with Words Their Way, any Spelling program AND differentiated spelling lists. You will no longer worry that your Word Wall is just taking up valuable space in your classroom. I have included a 6-page guide to help you EASILY facilitate and manage your Interactive Word Wall. Perfect for Daily 5, literacy centers, Reader's Workshop, Writer's workshop & Spelling program.

I truly hope you have found this information helpful. Be sure to try the color-coded system to help your young readers identify spelling patterns in their reading and their writing! It helps tremendously!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Reader's Workshop: The Reading Mat

The Reading Mat will provide your students with a visual reminder of how to keep track of what they are reading and build stamina! This system will also encourage your students to reread and build their fluency during Reader's Workshop and Read to Self (Daily 5)! TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

The Reading Mat will provide your students with a visual reminder of how to keep track of what they are reading and build stamina! This system will also encourage your students to reread and build their fluency!  Oh, yes!

Begin by adhering the “My Reading Mat” cover page to the top of a file folder. The “Stop” and “Go” mats are adhered to the inside of the file folder.

Students begin by placing their stack of books on the “GO” side of their mat. They place the harder texts at the bottom and the easiest on top (to be read first).
The Reading Mat will provide your students with a visual reminder of how to keep track of what they are reading and build stamina! This system will also encourage your students to reread and build their fluency during Reader's Workshop and Read to Self (Daily 5)! TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

When they finish a book it gets placed on the “STOP” side of the reading mat.
The Reading Mat will provide your students with a visual reminder of how to keep track of what they are reading and build stamina! This system will also encourage your students to reread and build their fluency during Reader's Workshop and Read to Self (Daily 5)! TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

When all the books are read, students then “make their way back” as they reread their books, each time placing in on the “Go” side of the mat. This will encourage your young readers to stay on task and avoid returning to the classroom library to peruse for additional books. This will encourage them to reread to build their fluency.
The Reading Mat will provide your students with a visual reminder of how to keep track of what they are reading and build stamina! This system will also encourage your students to reread and build their fluency during Reader's Workshop and Read to Self (Daily 5)! TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

Here is a closer look at The Reading Mat in action:


It is also helpful to provide your students with a post-it so they can tally how many books they have read during independent reading to keep track of their growth. This will help them set goals and take ownership of their reading growth!

The Reading Mat will provide your students with a visual reminder of how to keep track of what they are reading and build stamina! This system will also encourage your students to reread and build their fluency during Reader's Workshop and Read to Self (Daily 5)! TheKausFiles.blogspot.com

If you would like your own copy of The Reading Mat, you will find it here:

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

A Back to School Freebie for YOU!

It's that time of year again!
We're Back to School!

It's bittersweet isn't it?  Everything is fresh and brand new, new faces, new friends, new beginnings...and new school supplies! 

WooHoo!

Yet, no more lazy mornings, late nights, planning your days on a whim.  

BooHoo!

Here is a little freebie to cheer you up, my teeps!


You can find it here at my TpT shop:

Enjoy!

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Bookshelf Makeover for my Readers Today, Leaders Tomorrow!


A few years back, one of my favorite "teeps" passed down her tiered bookshelves when she retired. They were in good shape but just needed a bit of lovin'. I finally got around to giving them a little TLC. Here they are with a little spray paint and some polka dot decor and voila!


If you would like a copy of the "Reader's Today" and "Leaders Tomorrow" letters, head on over to my TpT shop for this FREEBIE:

I also used these same letters to spruce up our classroom door. We are only allowed to cover up 20% of our door due to the Fire Code, so this will have to do. A lil' fringe from the Target Dollar Spot and a few inspirational words:



Sunday, August 13, 2017

Differentiate Your Writing Instruction with Writing Goals

 Writing Goal Posters and Brag Tag Set

In my personal experience using the Reading and Phonics Goals in my primary classroom, I have found that not only are they a great visual reminder for my students of what good readers do, it also holds them accountable for their learning and achievement. I can not begin to tell you what a tremendous change had occurred when I started using them.

So, I just had to take the time to create this set of 32 Writing Goal Posters with “I can” statements. I also took it a step further and created matching brag tags to keep my young authors on the “write track”.

Why Writing Goals?


One of the biggest questions I am asked is if you should display all the goal posters at once. Yes! Definitely display them all at once. There is no need to display one poster at a time as you introduce each skill.

Your students develop their writing skills at a different pace. You have students at varying stages in their writing development. One of your students may still be drawing their stories and building phonemic awareness. You will want to encourage them to label their pictures with beginning sounds.

While in another instance, you may have a group of students who are ready to write complete paragraphs and will benefit from using time order words in their writing to help them add more detailed sentences in a logical order.

Displaying all the posters at once will also make all your students aware of the many strategies that good writers use. You will find that many of your students will inform you that even though they are focusing on labeling their stories with words, they are also using capital letters when they label character names! This is when I praise them for going above and beyond!

How do I differentiate writing for each child?


You will find that using Writing Goals in your classroom is an effective way to differentiate your instruction. As you hold writing conferences with your students, you are able to discern exactly what your young author's strengths and weaknesses are. During these conferences, assign them a writing goal to help improve their writing based on a specific personalized need.


Please keep in mind, that in the Writer's Workshop model, I do present a whole group mini lesson to expose my writer's to skills and strategies for all writers. After the class is sent off to write independently after the mini-lesson, I then pull a small group of children who share the same writing goal and provide them with explicit instruction that focuses on their writing goal. A differentiated mini-lesson! 

Once you confer with each student again, evaluate their writing. Are they consistently working on their writing goal?  Have they achieved their goal? If so, you can celebrate by providing them with a brag tag. If you do not use brag tags in your classroom, simple provide them with the brag tag as a certificate of achievement and watch them beam with pride! Now...assign them a new goal!

You can find the Writing Goals Posters and Brag Tag Set HERE.


This is what is included:

32 Writing Goal posters
32 Brag Tags (or individualized writing goal cards)
6 EDITABLE name tags (separate pdf file)
One blank template to create your own Writing Goal
One blank brag tag template

Writing Posters:
I can draw pictures to tell my story.
I can write stories with a setting.
I can write stories with a problem and solution.
I can label my pictures with beginning sounds.
I can label my pictures with words.
I can fancy-up my writing.
I can write a sentence that tells a complete thought.
I can add details to my story.
I can write Word Wall words correctly.
I can print my letters correctly.
I can print my letters without reversals.
I can use the correct pencil grip.
I can write my letters neatly so others can read my story.
I can stay focused on my writing and build my stamina.
I can write a sentence that matches my picture.
I can write capital letters at the beginning of my sentence.
I can use capital letters at the right time.
I can use an ending mark at the end of a sentence.
I can use finger spaces between words.
I can think of ideas to describe the main idea of my story.
I can indent the first word in my story using two finger spaces.
I can write a topic sentence to introduce the main idea of my story.
I can use time order words to help my story move along.
I can write a closing sentence to remind my reader of the main idea.
I can write a proper paragraph.
I can write a story that sticks to one topic or main idea.
I can reread my story and look for missing words and correct mistakes.
I can stretch out each word and write down each sound I hear.
I can write longer words by breaking them up into chunks.
I can write longer words by listening for a base word inside.

You might also like to learn more about:

The theme of this resource is an addition to the On the Road to Proper Paragraph Writing and the Writing Portfolio Set available at The K Files Shop. If your students need a unique visual reminder of the paragraph structure, you can learn more by finding them here:
Writing Portfolio Road Map Set

I have also bundled up all three resources for your savings:
The Road Map to Writing Complete BUNDLE

I do hope that you find this information helpful.  Incorporating Writing Goals in your Writing program is so very beneficial.  Students become accountable for their growth and thrive on celebrating their success!  

Friday, August 11, 2017

Showcase Your Young Author's Writing in a Writing Portfolio

The On the Road to a Proper Paragraph system works so well in my classroom, I decided to give our Writing Portfolios a makeover to match our writing theme: A Road Map for Writing.  And I am thrilled with the results!


My students have had great success in writing proper paragraphs we needed something extra special to showcase our writing throughout the year! This is the result!

You can find it here at my TpT shop:



Included:
6 EDITABLE portfolio covers (red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple)
1 black and white portfolio cover
6 EDITABLE portfolio spines
1 Table of Contents
10 monthly Table of Contents (September-June)
10 monthly tabs to cut, paste and glue

The theme of this resource is an extension to the “On the Road to Proper Paragraph Writing” resource available at The K Files. If your students need a unique visual reminder of the paragraph structure, you can learn more by finding it here: