December 2015 - Ideas By Jivey: For the Classroom
Hey, my tired, worn-out, ready-for-Winter-Break teacher friends!

Several of my bloggy buddies have teamed up to bring you some relief! We know you're ready for the break, so we are bringing you some merry tips AND some presents to make the last few days bright and help you get to the end! :)
Merry and Bright with Ideas By Jivey
My Merry Tip is a fun way to help manage behavior. We all know the natives tend to get restless this time of year... the excitement of the holidays, the breaks in routines with programs, and FINALS (blech!) tend to make some students go, well... crazy!

I think the best way for students to really understand science and social studies concepts is to also integrate it into reading and writing. I have many articles and passages that you can use to integrate your science and social studies skills into your language arts time.
Interactive Notes Left Brain - Right Brain With Ideas by Jivey.


Interactive notetaking is really just another form of close reading and annotating. It is a genius way of helping science and social studies content "sink in" and the kids really enjoy it! (Anything is better than reading the textbook, anyway!)

If you googled "interactive notes," you would find that there are all different types of strategies. I am going to share the one that has worked for me in my classroom. In my room, we use colored pencils to key our paragraphs, then we use those same colors to write phrases and draw pictures that represent the important information learned in a passage. Colored pencils work best- no bleeding markers, and no fat, dull crayons.

I love this graphic to help explain the next part of interactive notes. 
Interactive Notes Left Brain - Right Brain With Ideas by Jivey.
Because the left brain is in charge of the right side, and the right brain is in charge of the left side, any passage you give them will be glued on the right side of the notebook (the accurate control) and all of their interpretations of the passage will be done on the left side of the notebook (creative). 
Interactive Notes Left Brain - Right Brain With Ideas by Jivey.
As you can see, each paragraph gets its own color, and then all of the work that is done for that paragraph will be done in that color- this helps them connect to each paragraph, and it's also a great study tool!

Once students have finished their notes, they should be able to read back what they have learned. Allow the students to sit with a partner and talk in complete sentences to summarize the notes they have drawn and written on the left side of their notebook.
Interactive Notes Left Brain - Right Brain With Ideas by Jivey.
At home, they can do the same! They can fold their notebook in half so that they can see their notes and a parent or older sibling can see the article. As the student summarizes their notes- the person on the other side of the notebook should be able to follow along in the article, so they know if the child is not understanding.
Today's Planning Present is a passage and questions about Sacagawea:
Interactive Notes Planning Present With Ideas by Jivey.
Interactive Notes Planning Present With Ideas by Jivey

I hope this planning present will help you effectively integrate social studies into reading! Don't forget to head over to Teaching to Inspire with Jennifer Findley for another planning present!

For more Social Studies Resources and ideas, follow my Pinterest board!

Math Workshop truly changed the way I reach students for the BETTER. Being able to work with students on their level in a small group helps me not only see their thinking, but it also prevents students from sitting through an entire lesson "lost."

While you are working with a small group, the rest of the class is working in stations. I despise mindless busy work stations. I don't want my students doing "hush activities." I want them to truly be reviewing skills and learning from each other through games and partner activities. (You can find all of my math stations here!) That requires a lot of training in the beginning of the school year (or whenever you decide to start a workshop) because, of course, what do students want to do when they get together? TALK! 
Establishing the routine is so important, and I can't stress this word enough: MODEL MODEL MODEL! You have to really show students what it is you expect from them. That means when you first start Math Workshop, you can't start groups right away. It might even be three weeks before you pull a group. You have to be a part of the stations, and of course, walk around and make sure students are on task. But you also want to set a routine for when you aren't able to monitor every minute... you want to teach students to be accountable for their learning. Which leads me to today's planning present!
Today's Planning Present is a student accountability report:
Math Workshop Student Accountability Report With Ideas by Jivey
This page is from the complete Launching Math Workshop Guide.

I first got this idea a few years ago from a fellow 4th grade teammate, and it changed the way my stations ran- truly! Copy this sheet front and back to have room for all your stations and even a small group slot if you'd like. Provide 5-10 minutes at the end of each workshop to allow them to write, and then also share out. Students must describe their learning using math language. I think it is important for students to reflect on what they learned each day. Not only does it help me see what they did or did not understand, but they also know I expect them to tell me about what they have done and learned, so they can’t just mess around the entire station time. Often times, this is when their group will tattle on another member too- ha!!

Students must be trained with this part of workshop, too. When you are part of the stations as you set up Math Workshop, point out some things they might want to reflect on at the end. And then of course, have your own reflection page on a poster or on the SMART Board and show the students what you expect to be written each day (complete sentences, math language, etc.). This simple task will allow your students to become such great math thinkers, and it will help hold students accountable for their learning!
Math Workshop Student Accountability Report With Ideas by Jivey
I hope this planning present will help you implement Math Workshop effectively in your classroom. Don't forget to head over to Jennifer's blog, Teaching to Inspire, for another planning present!

For more Math Resources and ideas, follow my Pinterest board!
Do you loathe grammar? I bet I know why. You are tired of drill and kill style grammar teaching. Or you wish students would quit guessing what the error MIGHT be in your DOL or DGP (or any other acronym that might represent your grammar program) sentence of the day, because it doesn't carry over into their writing anyway.

Have no fear! Jivey is here! :) Stop showing students sentences full of mistakes. Start using mentor sentences from your favorite mentor texts that you already use to teach other skills, and your students will actually be EXCITED for grammar and writing instruction!

The idea of mentor sentences across all grades is for students to notice what makes it a great sentence, and then carry those great things over into their writing. You can read about where this idea originated in Jeff Anderson's books. I am going to share how I've adapted these ideas to make it into a routine that fits elementary classrooms!

Most teachers will agree, style and conventions are the two areas that are the most difficult to teach and the two areas that usually suffer in student writing. Mentor sentences help you teach these two domains in a way that is fun for the students AND you! Each day, students will do something a little different with the sentence. Each week, students will focus on one or two skills, but they will still be exposed to several skills, many of which they have already learned from previous mentor sentences, so the spiral learning really makes an impact. 
 
Today's Planning Present is a mentor sentence lesson from the mentor text, Owl Moon by Jane Yolen. 
Owl Moon Mentor Sentence Lesson With Ideas by Jivey.
**disclaimer** Today, I am going to give you the "CliffsNotes" version of implementing mentor sentences. I have a TON of resources, including videos, that you can read and watch here, and detailed instructions are also provided in Unit 1 of all of my mentor sentence packs. You will be able to implement the lesson I'm including using just this blog post, but please note, consistency of using mentor sentences is what truly makes a difference in your students' writing and understanding of grammar. The routine and repetition produces fabulous student authors!**

Day One: After reading the text, show the students the mentor sentence. 
Owl Moon Mentor Sentence Lesson With Ideas by Jivey.
Ask students what they notice about the sentence that makes it a great one. If this is your first mentor sentence lesson with your students, you may need to prompt them more with questions like, "What type of sentence is this? What interesting words did the author use? Is there any figurative language? What did the owl do?" 
Owl Moon Mentor Sentence Lesson With Ideas by Jivey.
Students can make a list in their notebook of things they notice, and you should also make a list of things they noticed on chart paper. The focus skills are: simple sentence with compound predicate and possessive pronouns. You'll want to make sure students recognize these two things if they didn't already "notice" them. The simile is also a great thing to point out. Anything they missed on their own, they can add to their list as you write them on your chart. 

Day Two: Students should rewrite the sentence, skipping lines in between, and label the parts of speech they know. The idea behind this is to help them notice how words work together to make effective sentences. It is NOT necessary to label every word, especially in the beginning. If this is your first time doing mentor sentences, you might only want to label nouns, verbs, and the possessive pronoun to cover the focus skills. 
Owl Moon Mentor Sentence Lesson With Ideas by Jivey. 
If you feel the students are ready to label more, go for it!  
Owl Moon Mentor Sentence Lesson With Ideas by Jivey.
You will also want to take some time to focus on the skills of the week. This would be a great time to pull out a writing piece the students have been working on and have them practice using compound predicates. Point out the way the mentor sentence was formed and ask them to try it. You can also have students look for possessive pronouns in their own reading and write the sentence they found it in on a sticky note to share later. (I also have supplemental interactive notebook activities in my store that you can use as mini-lessons, which are aligned with the mentor sentence lessons.)

Day Three: Students will revise the sentence. YES- even published sentences can be revised! This not only helps students' revision skills, but it also shows them they are never "done." I always show students my own revision of the mentor sentence so students can identify what was changed. It also gives them an idea of what they can do.
Owl Moon Mentor Sentence Lesson With Ideas by Jivey.

Here are some great revisions done by @MissBishopHP's class! You can also see the great things they noticed and how they labeled their sentence:


Day Four: Students will imitate the sentence. It's not often students are allowed to write about any topic, so they get very excited about imitating. The only thing they MUST do as part of their imitation is to keep the structure of the sentence the same. For this sentence, students should definitely have a compound predicate and a simile. 
Owl Moon Mentor Sentence Lesson With Ideas by Jivey.
Choose a few sentences to celebrate- give the students sentence strips to write their sentence and hang in the classroom. You'll be amazed at the style that comes out of your students! Students should also continue practicing the structure of the mentor sentence. After several weeks of showing them that you expect them to use their mentor sentences to help them with their own writing pieces, you'll find that students pull out their mentor sentence notebook without you even asking them!

Day Five: Assess the students' understanding of the focus skills. A weekly quiz is included with the mentor sentence lessons. You might choose to take it for a grade, or you might use it as a formative assessment to see who still needs help. The mentor sentence DOES have errors because students still need to be able to recognize when there are mistakes... but they have seen and worked with the sentence all week so they SHOULD recognize the mistakes! It isn't like DOL, where they have never seen the sentence before and often don't know what would be wrong. 

Owl Moon Mentor Sentence Lesson With Ideas by Jivey.
I hope this planning present will help you teach grammar and writing style effectively in your classroom. Don't forget to head over to Jennifer's blog, Teaching to Inspire, for another planning present!

For more Mentor Sentences Resources and ideas, follow my Pinterest board!

Math Stations should not be intimidating or a burden, and sadly, I know many teachers feel that way. The purpose of stations (or centers, if that's what you call them) is for students to review and practice what you have already taught them. You should not feel like you have to put out brand new centers every week (which is usually where the burden sets in). Use open stations (not worksheets) that you can recycle throughout the year!
Open Activities in Math Stations With Ideas by Jivey
Big skills, such as multiplication and division to name just two, shouldn't be done "only when you're teaching it." Students need to practice these skills all year. Provide the same laminated open activity with dice at various times of the year and students won't get tired of it- because each roll of the dice provides a different problem! Differentiate with different sized dice, and you'll be able to use the same open activity with different learners all year long! You can find all of my math stations here!
Today's Planning Present is a set of differentiated multiplication stations. These open activities use dice so students can do it over and over (and over) and always get different problems. 
Open Activities in Math Stations With Ideas by Jivey
This station is from the complete Multiplication Differentiated Stations!

There are two versions of the activity. Depending on your learners, you may want students drawing groups to solve their multiplication problem, or you may want students drawing arrays with larger numbers. Both of these are included. 
Open Activities in Math Stations With Ideas by Jivey

The great thing about open activities is you can vary the difficulty just by providing different dice! They are also NEVER ENDING activities, so whether students have 10 minutes or 20, they just erase and start over (laminate the activities and provide dry erase or vis-a-vis markers).

Open Activities in Math Stations With Ideas by Jivey
I hope this planning present will help you use math stations effectively in your classroom. Don't forget to head over to Jennifer's blog, Teaching to Inspire, for another planning present!

For more Math Resources and ideas, follow my Pinterest board!
Reading comprehension isn't limited to one text anymore. As the rigor has amped up, students now must be able to "analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take." (CCSS, R.9) In other words, students must be able to read and comprehend TWO texts on the same topic (a pair) and then compare them. They also must still be able to return to each text individually to answer questions.  And finally, although there are still multiple choice questions about the texts, students must also be able to write constructed responses to text dependent questions.


Just like with other reading strategies, students must be taught how to comprehend and analyze a pair of texts. It's important to do close reading of each text individually first before comparing them or integrating the information in both. This means it could actually take a week or more to walk students through close reading and annotating each text individually AND the pair of texts (read more about that here)...then answer the questions about the texts. You might use small group time, or you might do it through your mini-lessons, but no matter when you do it, the rigor of paired texts will require you to carve out time over the course of the YEAR (it can't be saved for the month before the state test).
Paired Texts in the Classroom With Ideas by Jivey.
Knowing that you will need to use paired texts all year, why not integrate your texts with other content your students need to learn? Reading and writing across the curriculum really helps to ingrain the content! Plus, we know that students need to be exposed to more nonfiction. You can find all of my sets of paired texts here.
Today's Planning Present is a set of science paired texts about snow and the water cycle!
Paired Texts in the Classroom With Ideas by Jivey.
This passage is from Winter and Snow Paired Texts.

When it's time to answer questions about the texts, I like for students to mark exactly where they found the evidence for that answer. If you are taking "THE TEST" online, you are probably aware they have a highlighting function. Teaching students to highlight key words in the question and evidence in the text can help differentiate evidence from annotations as well as take away the novelty of it when it comes time to "play" on the computer. Ha! Here are some examples:
Paired Texts in the Classroom With Ideas by Jivey.
Students highlight particles knowing this is the word they will look for in paragraph 1. 
Paired Texts in the Classroom With Ideas by Jivey.
Students have already annotated this text, so highlighting helps show what evidence they found for the question. Here, they used context clues to determine particles are pieces and specks. They know dust is small, so the answer must be "small pieces."

Paired Texts in the Classroom With Ideas by Jivey.
The evidence for this question is actually found in BOTH texts, but here is evidence in "Bentley's Snow Crystals" that shows choice b is actually false. You can also see the evidence that proves choice c is true, and can't be the answer. 
Paired Texts in the Classroom With Ideas by Jivey.
I hope this planning present will help you use paired texts effectively in your classroom. Don't forget to head over to Jennifer's blog, Teaching to Inspire, for another planning present!

This time of year is my FAVORITE when it comes to a lot of things... but especially mentor texts! There are so many fun, seasonal books to read to students.

One of my favorites is Bear Stays Up For Christmas by Karma Wilson. I included this book in Seasonal Mentor Sentences for K-1 Emergent Readers.
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.
One way to liven up a sentence, yes even in kindergarten and first grade, is to add some prepositional phrases. Whether you want to call them by their "real name" or just call them "position words," students should be able to use them even at this age.

THE MENTOR SENTENCE LESSON

After reading the book, show your students the mentor sentence from the book:
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.
The idea of mentor sentences across all grades is for students to notice what makes this a great sentence, and then carry those great things over into their writing. Read the sentence together several times, and then begin asking questions. First, you might ask questions to ensure understanding. "What is the sentence about? Who is 'he?' Where did he pile presents?" Then start asking questions to guide them to see what makes this a good sentence: "What is the verb in the sentence? What are the nouns? What is the position word? What does the sentence start/end with?" After several weeks, once students realize what questions you might be asking, they will start looking for these things in sentences on their own.

Many teachers have said they LOVE my sets of mentor sentences because it doesn't just cater to their writing needs, but it also helps students with word recognition and reading! This is an activity students would do after comprehending and noticing the important parts of the sentence.
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.

The next day, revisit that position word, "under." Talk about why it was important in the sentence and why we would want to use position words in our sentences. Create an anchor chart with a Christmas tree. Place some gifts in different places around the tree and ask students to name the preposition that tells where the gift is, labeling as they tell you.
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.
(If you have Seasonal Mentor Sentences for K-1 Emergent Readers, these pictures of gifts are included for you to use on your chart.)

Students will also have the opportunity to complete an activity on their own (or with your guidance) with some prepositions.
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.
On the third day, you will revisit the sentence again. Read the complete sentence together, and then use the sentence frame to discuss what other prepositions we could use in the sentence.
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.
At this point, students will be eager to try this out on their own! Depending on the writing level of your students, you might provide them with the sentence ready for them to trace, or you might give them the page that enables them to copy the sentence independently.
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.
Either way, students will be excited to put their own preposition in the sentence, and then illustrate the sentence, too! This might take two days to complete, depending on how much time you have for writing. The best part will be when you turn all of these pages into a class book that they can read during reading time (book cover included in the pack)!
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.
On the last day, students will have the opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of prepositions with a fun drawing activity.
Seasonal Mentor Sentences With Ideas by Jivey.
Students LOVE doing mentor sentences, and so will you! Students will make connections and remember the sentences from week to week- and you will be amazed at the growth you see!

Want to try out this lesson for free? CLICK HERE for an exclusive blog freebie!

Check out other Kindergarten and First Grade Mentor Sentences in my store!

For more Mentor Sentences Resources and ideas, follow my Pinterest board!

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