Friday, October 24, 2014

Five for Friday: Halloween activities and Comprehension goodies

I'm linking up again with Doodle Bugs Teaching for another Five for Friday! I had a wonderful week. One of those weeks where the kids were so engaged and we just had fun together. I love my job! Here are just a few of the things I did with my first, second, or third grader groups. I tried to pick one activity from each grade level to keep it interesting.  :) 

1.  Sight Word Practice

For my first graders who are trying to learn new sight words, this is a favorite! They build simple sentences with sight words and one card that has a picture cue. Each time they build a sentence, they have to figure out if the sentence makes sense and sounds right. They also end up reading the sight words over and over as they work on building their sentence. Repetition? Check. Using picture cues? Check. Using syntax and meaning? check. One to one correspondence? Check. 

You can find this in my Build a Sentence pack. 

We also did more from this sight word spin. I have one that works for 1st graders and also one for my 2nd graders. 

2. Halloween Phonics: 
I love making CVC word building extra fun by making it seasonal. :) We talked about how the web should remind us what sound e makes.  

The next day, we did this CVC word building activity:

I store these two centers together like this:

These can be found in my Hands on Halloween Pack. 

On Thursday, we did this activity: 

My third graders are working on bossy r. They had fun with this activity. 

My first graders and some second graders are using these story cards. They look forward to them every day! They love using the white board markers on them. They are so interactive! Click on the picture to see more about these.

After reading several times, they get to read their card to the group. They are now experts at using a "character voice" and a "narrator voice". We often go through and highlight punctuation too, which helps them to pause at all the right places. I need to start working on a  winter set! When I run out of the fall ones (which will be soon), we will work on our super hero set!  

4. Comprehension Activities:
I've talked about my beloved before. I love these books! This week one of my groups read this book: 

We made this anchor chart to organize the important details in the book. 

To make sure everyone was engaged, I had them use these highlighter strips to find the answer. In some cases, the author came out and told us. In other cases, we needed to infer. 

I read this cute little story with my 3rd grade group:

We are mostly working on comprehension, so I try to think of questions that really make them think. Sometimes it's the question itself that stumps them. I've learned that helping our students develop tools to understand the question is a comprehension strategy in itself. 
For the 1st chapter, we did this:

The following chapters all had great comprehension opportunities too! 
For chapter 2, we practiced sequencing. We sequenced the events in that chapter (which were basically the steps he took to plant the pumpkin).
For chapter 3, we identified the problem and solution. We also did some visualizing for a tricky part in the chapter. 

After reading, we did a character analysis for Landon. There are a few different words you could pick to describe him. Of course you have to find evidence in the text to back it up though! In case you missed my post about character analysis, you can find it here. It's one of my favorite posts so far!

I have a treat for you today! 

5. A Fun Wedding
I love weddings. Well, truly I love receptions. Ha! I went to the most beautiful wedding at Lake Tahoe last weekend. It was perfect. John and I got away for the weekend and my kids got showered with treats during a weekend my dad. Win, win for everyone.  Here's a picture from the wedding:

I hope you all had a great week too!

Head over to Doodle Bugs Teaching to see some other Five for Friday posts.


  1. I love the activities you did with your kiddos!! Thanks for sharing! I'm going to use your super hero story cards next week! I think my first graders will love them!! Have a wonderful weekend! :)

  2. Sarah - you look beautiful!!! I love your week and I know your kiddos did too. Full of fun and engaging rigorous Fall activities. They are so lucky to have you!
    Teaching and Much Moore

  3. Many great ideas! How do we complete them all-so many valuable resources! Smiles and stop by anytime!

  4. I was just thinking how wonderful plastic slip sheets are and it made me smile to see you using them too ;) Way better than laminating in the long run! Great ideas Sarah