All posts in 3) Grade K-2

March Madness reading competition, school wide reading competition, school reading competition,

Our School’s March Madness Reading Competition

School Wide Reading Competition: March Madness

I blogged a lot about our elementary school’s March Madness reading competition and have tried to answer emails about the rules of engagement. The rules have changed over the last 8 years since we’ve first started. Also, my recollection is hazy at best.  All I know is that my kids read like crazy to win that extra P.E. session and we all win in the end, no matter what place their class ends up in.

getting kids reading, kids and reading, reading strategies, reading competitions, school reading competition

This year, the competition has started again and I am posting the rules in hopes that it inspires your school to pick up the torch and try this reading competition next year. It’s a lot of fun and I do really notice a marked improvement in my kids’ reading abilities after just one month of reading madness!

march madness reading competition scoreboard

MARCH MADNESS  READING CELEBRATION

  • The Peirce School March Madness Reading Celebration will begin on Friday, March 1 and run through Thursday, April 4.
  • The kickoff will take place at our town meeting on March 1 and each classroom will be randomly assigned the name of an actual NCAA basketball team.
  • Students will earn points for their team based on the number of minutes read daily at home during March Madness.
  • Each student will log their daily reading onto the paper reading log and enter their WEEKLY MINUTES read into an online database AT HOME every Thursday evening. 
  • Students will hand in the paper copy of their reading log to their classroom teacher every Friday morning and should begin to log their weekly minutes read into the online database on Thursday, March 7.  Students should continue to log their weekly minutes read every Thursday evening up until Thursday, April 4.
  • Team points earned will be tallied and recorded every week onto a large graph in the main hallway.
  • Books read in school are not eligible for points.
  • Books read as part of nightly reading can be counted.  (March Madness reading does not have to be in addition to regular home reading, although we hope students will be more inclined to read).
  • There will be a separate point system for grades K-1 and for grades 2-5. 
March Madness reading competition

My mom friend Melissa says, “Quietest play date ever! Everyone is reading for the March Madness reading competition.”

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reading and writing, Kindergarten, invented spelling, making book crafts for kids

Connecting Reading with Writing in Kindergarten

Reading and Writing in Kindergarten

I am thrilled to be joining Share a Story, Shape a Future 2013 blog tour with other great literacy, children’s book and education bloggers!

  • Monday (Infants): Maria Burel at Once Upon A Story.
  • Tuesday (Toddlers): Carol Rasco at Quietly
  • Wednesday (pre-Preschool): Debbie Alvarez at The Styling Librarian
  • Thursday (Preschool): Tif at Tif Talks Books
  • Friday (Kindergarten): Terry at Family Bookshelf

My contribution is the connection between reading independently and writing for Kindergarteners … more specifically the idea of invented spelling as a necessary step that marries writing with reading.

Share a Story, Shape a Future, literacy, Kindergarten reading and writing

The Importance of Invented Spelling: The Writing Connection to Reading!

We had the most amazing Kindergarten teacher — Ms. C —  for all three of my kids. As rookie parents, she held our hand and guided us gently through the academic rigors of Kindergarten. Seriously, Kindergarten is the new First Grade. Ms. C’s goal was and is to get the kids reading by the end of Kindergarten.

She stressed the importance of writing as an important literacy step towards reading independently. In fact, invented spelling — you know that fabulous and funny spelling kids use when they first start sounding out words — is CRITICAL to teaching kids how to read independently.

“Froshus dobrmn pensr” is an example of invented spelling. What do you think the child is trying to communicate? Yes, ferocious Doberman Pinscher!

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bedtime books for kid, best picture books, best board books, best bedtime books for kids, best read aloud books for kids

Best Bedtime Books to Read Aloud

Best Bedtime Picture Books for Kids

Thank you to Susan Marx for emailing me this lovely poem full of some of my favorite children’s books for young children. Reading aloud is a passion for her and Barbara and they have penned a book about it.

Her lovely poem took me down memory lane at bedtime with my kids. We didn’t read all these great picture books and board books, but we enjoyed many of them over and over through the years!!

Thanks for this trip! What bedtime books or read aloud books are your favorites? Did you spot any in the poem?

 

Bedtime Rhyme

by Susan Marx
Let’s read a book Together to settle you down,
Time for Bed in your cozy jammies or nightgown.
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YA graphic novels, Young Adult graphic novels, graphic novels for young adults, graphic novels for teens, gritty graphic novels for kids

ABCs of Graphic Novels, U through Z

Graphic Novels from A to Z

Many teachers are turning to comic books as a tool to develop reading skills as well as a deeper love for reading. 

Authentic Education

This final collection has some Young Adult (YA) graphic novels that are not Manga (I didn’t cover Manga simply because I haven’t read any. My son is not old enough yet). From gritty to fantasy, YA graphic novels cover the gamut.

Thank you for reading my collection of posts covering the ABCs of graphic novels. You must love graphic novels too!

Day 1ABCs of Graphic Novels, A-E

Day 2ABCs of Graphic Novels, F-J

Day 3ABCs of Graphic Novels, K-O

Day 4ABCs of Graphic Novels: P-T

Day 5ABCs of Graphic Novels: U-Z

 

U is for Underpants. Captain Underpants that is! And now there is Super Diaper Baby too! Read more…

best graphic novels for girls, girls graphic novels, girls and graphic novels, graphic novels and girls

ABCs of Graphic Novels, P through T

Graphic Novels Get Kids Reading!

Graphic novels are great to kids to realize that reading is fun. While most graphic novels seem geared for boys, I’ve found a few great ones for girls. Check out the trailer at the bottom for Smile, our very favorite graphic novel for girls!

Day 1ABCs of Graphic Novels, A-E

Day 2ABCs of Graphic Novels, F-J

Day 3ABCs of Graphic Novels, K-O

Day 4ABCs of Graphic Novels: P-T

Day 5ABCs of Graphic Novels: U-Z

Read more…

ABC of graphic novels, best graphic novels for preschool, best graphic novels for boys, best graphic novels for kids

ABCs of Graphic Novels, K through O

Graphic Novels Get Boys to Love Reading

Research has found that graphic novels address the needs of multiple learning styles, and that the visualizations help readers to understand the story first and the text after. 

Journal of Classroom Research in Literacy

My son is an example of how graphic novels help to solidify the concept that reading is fun! This collection of graphic novels are all books he loves.

My favorite graphic novel is the mystery series Max Finder. You have to use both the words and images to solve the short mysteries — about 5 pages each and they’re hard! What are your favorite graphic novels? Please share! Read more…

graphic novels, ABCs of graphic novels, graphic novels for kids, kids graphic novels, best graphic novels

ABCs of Graphic Novels, A through E

Why Graphic Novels are Great for Reading!

KBN ABCs button, kid blogger network, ABCs series

Graphic novels give the brain more of a workout per sentence than any other type of media, including conventional books. 

School Library Journal

I recently discovered graphic novels from my 8-year-old son who loves them. Together, we’ve been haunting the graphic novel section of the library. I had no idea there were so many great graphic novels for young readers, including books for girls! I’m excited to be joining a group of great educational bloggers on an ABC series of posts. Mine will be on graphic novels but everyone has a different topic. Please check out the great posts. I have the list below. Read more…

flower snowflake craft stick ornament craft for kids, snowflake ornament craft for kids, Christmas tree ornament crafts for kids

Open Ended Christmas Ornament Crafts for Kids

Homemade One-of-A-Kind Christmas Ornaments

When it comes to crafts, my kids and I are bad at cranking out duplicates of anything. We are easily bored and not good an creating a manufacturing process to maximize uniformity or quantity.

I think that is ok. Our first homemade Christmas ornament came out of serendipity. Someone (his sister?) tried to play my eight-year-old son’s guitar using a pencil as a bow. As a result, the strings were damaged and his guitar teacher has to replace them.

Guitar String Wreath Ornament. The old strings with their slightly springy action seemed to beg to become a wreath.  My son added a tag and voila! Our first homemade DIY Christmas tree ornament. Wire would work as well.

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Christmas math trivia, math advent calendar for kids, count down to xmas,

25 CHRISTmaths True/False Questions for Kids

A Christmas Math-y Advent Calendar for Kids

My Pinterest friend MathPlus from Singapore came up with this fun true/false question count down to Christmas. Think of this as a math-y Advent calendar. The answers are below.  Read more…