Sunday, January 23, 2022

Top Ten Digital Resources for Distance Learning

Happy January! It has been COLD this week! It is so hard right now with kids out sick, quarantining, and trying to keep up with who is home distance learning or eLearning. This week I wanted to highlight some things that are super easy for distance learning. Are these all the resources I have? NO. Are all of them going to be right for you? OF COURSE NOT! 

Everyone is at a different place right now and what works for me, may not work for you or your classroom. I am always trying to make things easier, so hopefully some of these may be what you need!

Here's my Top 10 (at least for this month) for Digital Learning:


Getting kids to write is hard, but this is SO easy and the students love it. I promise you your students will write with this and have fun doing it. They get to choose objects, scenes, and different characters. They will have a blast!




If you haven't had a chance to use this, I think you will find these are super easy to use. They are narrated for those learners that cannot read well or need extra support. I have several of these for different seasons. 



Use this digital version to get to know your classmates! Great for any time of year because things change for students or maybe you have new students added to your classroom. 




This is by far the best! Kids LOVE these word ladders. This bundle has them both paper and digital so you can use them for students no matter where they are!

Great for a research project at home or school. Students at home can work on this without being in the classroom, but still create a product like the rest of the class. 



Great for a social students activity learning about your location in the world! Students look at where they live and then at the bigger picture on the map in state and country. 

4. Mini Escape Rooms

I have some NEW mini rooms for February! Chinese New Year, Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks and Frederick Douglass! These are short reading passages about the topic or person with a video, facts, and a short puzzle at the end. These are great as a distance learning option if you need!



Everyone loves the print version of this, BUT the digital version may be what you need! You can always print the My First Journal and send it home with students. Lots of prompts and cues for young writers. 




These are longer than the mini versions above. This one has inferences, homophones, synonyms, and contractions in this escape. 

I do have escape rooms for other topics such as Immigration, Civil Rights, Oregon Trail, Parts of Speech and Earth Day! These are just a few! Usually you are solving 4-6 puzzles in these longer escapes. 






Great resource for this time of year as poetry begins! Doing the steps to Haiku on this eLearning lesson makes it do easy for students to do this from anywhere. It goes step by step and is a great beginning lesson for types of poetry. 



I hope this list gives you some ideas to use for your students and your digital classroom!

Sunday, January 16, 2022

Immigration Resources in Digital and Print!


Happy weekend! Most of you like me have MLK Day off tomorrow, so I was thinking about resources that I am using right now that might helpful to you during this time of year! I am usually teaching Immigration during this time or gearing up to teach it. 

I have two texts that I recommend for teaching Immigration, but I have included a few other texts below I have used as well. There are SO many great books and resources out there on this topic. I have also linked a couple great websites I have used, as well as a digital escape room that your kids will love!

I do an Immigration Simulation with my students as a big culmination to this unit, but I think I will do a separate post about that. There is just too much to include!

This text is awesome because it is a question/answer format with short sections that can easily be read as a whole group, independent, or partner. 

The If Your Name Was Changed at Ellis Island Book Study Workbook below has activities to support comprehension while reading this text. This book is an introduction to the journey immigrants made  when America was young. It guides students through the book as they get a better understanding of just what it would be like to be an immigrant coming to America. This can be printed OR it can be a DIGITAL Easel activity. 



This text is a novel and would be great to use in Book Clubs. I had my class reading this text as a choice for a small groups. It would be awesome if you had a class set of this book and could have the kids read along with you. I have provided the link above so you can view this text. 

Dominic Cantori is touring Ellis Island with his class on a field trip. Dominic gets separated from the group and hides in the museum. Suddenly the voice of an Italian immigrant comes to life and begins to speak to him through one of the exhibits. Before he knows it, he is transported back in time to Italy 1908. He unlocks the door to his past and discovers the history of his own family. 


The Comprehension Workbook for The Orphan of Ellis Island is a great companion to the text by having students answer questions, make predictions, draw conclusions and analyze the text. There is a character study, as well as comprehension questions for the chapters. It is one of my favorite books to use for studying Immigration. 




Other books that I have used for Immigration either whole group or Book Study groups that you may like:

  

 



An AMAZING resource is this Immigration Walk-Through provided by Scholastic. It has great PICTURES and AUDIO clips which are sometimes harder to find in other resources. There is A LOT of things in this resource so you will need to pick and choose what you have students complete/read. I have used this just as a side resource on my webpage for kids to explore on their own. 

If you do only ONE thing with this resource I really like the stories of REAL kids who are immigrants on the 2nd tab. You could easily assign students to read one of these and summarize the information as a station activity or homework. 



Also a great website is this Choose Your Own Adventure type digital experience. You can choose from several people as they take their journey and you make decisions along the way!


To wrap up Immigration or to get a great overview if this is all you have time for, I recommend this Coming to America Digital Escape Room. This would be for older kids that can read independently and also use clues and critical thinking to solve puzzles. You can easily break this Escape Room into different parts for various days if needed. Great for those distance learning options or assigning to students easily as a NO PREP option. 




If you want to try a resource here is a FREE sample of If Your Name Was Changed At Ellis Island Workbook. That way you can see the resources and if it will work for your classroom. This is a PRINT and Digital Easel Resource for you!



I love this unit so much! I have SO many things we do. I would love to hear any ideas or resources you use! Happy MLK!

Sunday, January 9, 2022

All About Martin Luther King, Jr. with a NEW Resource!

It's 2022 and I'm already swamped! I can't believe MLK Day is already upon us. This week I am putting all the MLK resources in this post. I am also trying as I said in my last post to keep things SIMPLE. The take-away for me this year is to implement a few ideas, but also try some NEW ones!

How do you celebrate and give information about Martin Luther King in your classroom? I think this depends on what age kids you teach. The most important thing is the message about Martin Luther King and acceptance of everyone. 

For older kids I want to have them read a little more information about Martin Luther King, Jr. For me it is about half me presenting information, but also having students dig a little more into some of their own research and reading. Remember each year students are presented with information on this SAME topic, so trying to give them a little more each year as they get older. 

Check out this NEW Martin Luther King, Jr. Mini Escape I just made that may help you present the information in a fun and informative way. There is a video, reading, fun facts, quotes, and a short puzzle. Best of all this is a NO Prep that students can do at home or school. 

Also a digital resource for you if you have more time is the Digital Escape Room Lost in the Museum Civil Rights Leaders. It will take you through more than Martin Luther King so if you have the time to dive in more with Black History. 




Something easy and more printable is this Martin Luther King, Jr. Biography Puzzle. These are going to be for upper elementary because of the reading and writing for your students. These are also super SIMPLE and NO PREP for your students. 


Here is a list of books I like about MLK. Some are picture, some are just good information reads or resources. 







Who Was Martin Luther King, Jr.?- This is an awesome book/series for research or just reading. It presents the information in a great way! For grades 2-5









I know you don't want to leave out your littles on this important day so I am linking a few FREE Resources for you with Martin Luther King, Jr. 




Have a great day celebrating and remembering the MESSAGE of this day! 

Sunday, January 2, 2022

Get Started Early! Happy NEW Year!

Happy New Year! I am still on break and relaxing one more day before we head back tomorrow. We have a teacher work day and then the tiny humans are back on Tuesday. Like most of the human race I always have great intentions for the New Year. I am a person who likes to implement too many new things, so I am here to tell you choose 1-2 new things to implement in your classroom for the New Year. 

I am always thinking ahead and NOW is the time for you to be thinking about February and Black History Month. Why?! February is such a short month that if you start thinking about it now, I promise it will seem less stressful later. So this post is all about prep for February and making your life easier. 

Ok here's some ideas for you and what I will be doing, but I am going to start NOW so that I am ready. 

So if you are overwhelmed, stick to my advice and choose ONE of these activities!

1. Biography Puzzles: These are printable and you have FOUR people to research and learn about. There are 4 weeks in February... coincidence?! Study one person per week by reading aloud a picture book (yes older kids still like these) and working through the reading, writing, and puzzles as a class, partner, or individual. This is a super LOW prep option. This can also be an independent study. Have students choose maybe 2 people and then they have 2 weeks to work on them. 



2. Biography Lapbook: The great thing about this is that it can be used for ANY  person to research, so if you don't get around to this for February, you can have in your back pocket for any person! 

Tip: If you have younger kids and any parent help, have a parent cut out the shapes and help you assemble OR send this home for a project that will be ongoing. Parents can pick-up and do the prep at home for you! 

First I have students choose from a list 3-4 people they are interested in. I did NOT have them choose MLK. We do so much with him that he wasn't a choice. Once they narrow down their person, we start with the timeline. 

I use Pebble Go for my students because it is super easy to navigate. It's a research site that our school subscribes to. Most schools or libraries have a kid friendly database which is easy to use for Biography research. I would check with your Media Specialist or look online for an option that is user friendly. Your media specialist may even have some books he/she can pull for you OR ask your local library to pull them now for you! 

After students chose their person; they took notes about the character traits (I did a separate lesson on this) and chose a few vocabulary words. I used this dictionary and some picture books. Check out my other blog on Character Traits. 





Here's a picture of one of the finished products. 



I also gave my students scrapbook paper that I had laying around to use to glam this up! Don't be afraid to send home some portions of this as homework! There are a lot of parts so maybe you don't have time to do them all. You could easily pair this down to make it more manageable for you!


Check out this also for Biography Projects for Research. You have templates to assist your students in their Biography Project to present. This would be a great alternative if you don't have time for the lapbook and you are able to give students CHOICE!




3. Last is a NO PREP Digital Escape Room on Civil Rights. It has some of the same people as the above #1, so you could do both or just stick to this one. 

This has video, reading passages, and puzzles to solve. So if you are short on time- I would highly recommend using this as your resource. 




Remember this is YOUR year. I will be making a plan and trying my best to stick to it. 

Cheers for the New Year!

Sunday, December 19, 2021

Some NO PREP Digital Resources to Use in Writing in the New Year

It's Winter Break for us officially! It's time to relax, BUT before I check out mentally for this holiday season, I am thinking ahead to the New Year. I like to have some things planned out or in my back pocket for when I change my mind, which is OFTEN when I go back to school. 

Here are some popular and NO PREP Digital Resources to use for the New Year, as well as some EASY printable resources to prep.  Don't worry, if it's printable it is an EASY activity that you can print and go. I am not into using a lot of brain power after a break so I need something that is easy. 

Writing Resources for the New Year

Teach your students to write better sentences with this Digital Google Assignment. Graphic organizers, short example sentences for students to change into longer ones, rubric, and Author at Work poster are just some of the things included. Great for expanding a lesson in your classroom in the New Year!



I love this Writing Bundle for Minecraft. If you don't want the bundle I have both of these in print and digital. This is an EASY and NO PREP station activity or whole group/partner writing fun. Background scenes, characters to drag, and digital editing checklist. Perfect for ANY grade for getting even those reluctant writers a chance to explore something new. 




This journal is perfect for a EASY prep for your classroom. I LOVE the editable prompts to tailor needs. Think about editing the prompt for something specific from a field trip, guest speaker, a unit you've just completed in science or social studies, or even a class read aloud! I love have these as a station activity or a take home for working on writing. 



This last writing activity is just something that is super FUN for a great creative writing activity. This is not digital, but very low prep to get your students writing creatively. Don't let the Holiday thing deter you. This pack has a TON of winter characters, not just holiday. Students choose what they want to write about after the creation whether it's a poem, short story, letter, or jokes! 




Free Writing Resources





Have a great holiday and I'll be back in the New Year!

Sunday, December 12, 2021

50% off Resources to Use Now and in the New Year!

Only 1 WEEK left?! Well, you may be going past the 17th, but we get out on Winter Break in just five shorts days! I wanted to highlight a lot of resources in this post for right now and in the New Year!

Here are some great resources if you find yourself wanting to do some FUN things this week! I am going to highlight FIVE of the top holiday resources for this week since I have FIVE days left. If you are moving onto the New Year, scroll down for Inferences and New Year!


These are BRAND NEW and your kids will love these winter ones. They are both digital AND printable for this week ahead!




This super fun activity can be used MANY ways. It can be a fun writing for a winter poem, a first person narrative, letter writing pretending the recipient is real/imagined, or a made-up story! Your students will love to create their character and then write about it!




You can choose this information digital escape room on Holidays Around the World OR a fun escape room helping Stan the Snowman find his way home! 




These are Digital OR Printable Math Mysteries so you choose what you may have time for! If you can't fit this in for this week, then make sure to scroll down to the New Year's Math Mystery!



5. Math Mystery: Free Resource Jogging Gingerbread Boy

This is in BOTH digital and print for multiple grade levels. This is NO PREP and you can see how your students like the math mysteries. The students like reading, solving, and knowing if their answer is correct with the self-correcting digital version. 



Think ahead for 2022 and the New Year with something that will be easy to come back to. Inference activities are easy to use and a skill you can reteach or introduce easily in the New Year. These are 50% off for 2 DAYS ONLY!

Check out inferences using pictures and short stories! Students can write their own after you model using the pictures. There are also clue cards to use during station time or with a partner. This is a great introduction to teach inferences. 

Don't have the time for printing?! Use the elearning option and have everything online! It's NO PREP and you can have students type in answers, play games to help them learn inferences, and match pictures to clue on their computer or device. 

         


Maybe you are already moving onto the New Year or your students have already done the other math mysteries. Check out ALL of the New Year's Products HERE! There is a New Year's Math Mystery,  and New Year Stationary for writing goals!


Want some FREE Resources to help teach inferences? Check out these fun ones below:





Hope some of these resources create a stress free week! Relax ~ You got this!
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