Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Teacher Tips Tuesday!

Hey everyone!  I am thrilled to have Patti here from Primary Pizzazz!  She has a great blog that is growing and growing!  Please stop by and say hi!

Hi!  My name is Patti and I am thrilled to be a guest blogger for Tori on Teacher Tips Tuesday!  I’ve been teaching in Indiana for 35 years mostly in first grade but now in second.  Finally, got promoted after 30 years!  Slow learner, I guess! J

Well, onto my Tuesday tips for you!  Guided reading seems to be the buzz word (words?) this summer!  Lots of book studies around the Daily 5, CAFE, etc.  I’ve done the Daily 5 in my room for the last 6 years and have dabbled in CAFE.  Love the strategies, just can’t let go of my guided reading groups! 

In my literacy training, I was taught that each guided reading lesson should begin with a short 2-3 minutes of word work.  Here are some of the tools I use.
This is my absolute favorite!  My teaching buddy, Amy, introduced me to it after a workshop she attended. It’s hard to see in the picture but the shape of the letter is under the magnet.  Pass out the sheets and voila!  Easy word building!  If double letters are needed, I have a box handy in a nearby crate.

I’m not sure why it took me 30 years to figure out the next tip—must be that slow learner thing!  Put these handy-dandy tools in a seat sack on each chair at the table.  Soooo easy for kiddos to get quickly.  Aren’t those little Lakeshore erasers the cutest things!

Speaking of cute—how about these mini word whackers from Crystal Springs Books??  These are by far the kids’ favorites.  Perfect to play a game of Whack a Sight Word, a vowel sound, a (you fill in the blank!)

Castanets from the Dollar Store can be used to count sounds, syllables or words in sentences.  Another kid fav!

Now after the word work, of course, there’s reading to do!  My last tip is probably not a new one  but if it helps one…

The whisper phone!  I keep a set of six of these at my table.  I don’t use them for all groups but you always have the group that CANNOT read quietly.  Pull out the phones and enjoy!

Thanks so much for letting me share today!  I hope you found a new idea or two!  If you have any questions, feel free to email me at pattib203@yahoo.com Please come visit me at my new blog, Primary Pizzazz.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE these ideas!  Thanks so much for sharing Patti!  Please stop by her cuteness blog and follow along! :) 


  1. I'm intrigued with your magnet idea but I'm feeling a bit dense today. Why are the letters traced? Is this for a matching activity? Or just to keep the letters organized for easy finding?
    Did you make your seat sacks or buy them? I think I need some of those :)
    Great post!

    Grade ONEderful
    Ruby Slippers Blog Designs

    1. Hi, Barbara!
      Thanks for reading my post! I think the purpose of tracing the letters is to just keep them in order and make them easy to find and replace. As for the seat sacks, I didn't make them. I bought a class set from someone on the Internet and then some ladies in the community made some nicer ones for our classrooms that have more pockets. So I use my extras for lots of things!
      I'm off to check out your blog!

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