More Than ABC is a informative, fun, creative blog dedicated to share what is going in in our classroom. Using technology, creativity, and quality materials keeps us busy! If your in my class or just a visitor, I'm glad you stopped in!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Summer Reading Tips III

Keep it special
1 on 1 time. Spend time with your child individually as a special part of the day.

Family book. Read a book together as a family and enjoy the exciting plot and adventure that many children's books have to offer.

Location. Reading is much more enjoyable when you are comfortable. Find cozy places to encourage your child to read.

Praise. Reading can be tough work. Giving your child verbal praise for their accomplishments.

Rewards. Our goal is to have reading be a reward in itself. To help kids get there, library summer reading programs, lunch with the teacher, or rewards set up at home can help guide the way.

Tracking progress. Keep a list of books read, hours read, minutes read, or something to help chart the progress your child is making. Get those sticker charts ready!

Ownership. Owning a book can be a meaningful connection to the characters, plot, and information in a book. Inexpensive ideas include thrift stores, garage sales, Paperback Swap, used book stores, or trading books with friends.
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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Summer Reading Tips II

When will we get all this summer reading done?

While on the go. How much time is spent on a commute, running errands, driving to practice? Keep books in the car to always have one available. A milk crate or extra backpack of books will keep them safe.

While waiting. Waiting for sister's soccer practice to be over, waiting at an appointment, waiting for dinner to be done. Reading while waiting fills in a wasted empty time and has a clear end mark - when dinner is ready!

Evening routine. Every night after dinner set the timer for 30 minutes, read 30 minutes before bed time, 30 minutes before any TV time, 30 minutes while dinner is prepared. Have your child agree on a time and stick to it!

When it's too hot. I know on these warm afternoons I don't want to go run around, bake, or go somewhere in the car. So I find the coolest spot I can and plop down with a book!
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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Summer Reading Tips I

Follow along as we look at ideas to keep kids reading all summer long!

Make sure the book is on their level. Too easy is boring and they will quit, too hard and they're frustrated. AR levels, lexile levels, or just the 5 finger rule when looking at a book.
Interesting books. Know what interests your child and encourage them to find books in that genre.

Owning favorite books. Repetition is helpful to improve fluency and comprehension. Reread that favorite book again.

Keep a supply on hand. Our school library paired with a home or public library selection should give your child several options when it comes to reading time.

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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Summer Postcards

Writing postcards is a great way to practice some letter writing skills without too much effort.

To write a post card, kids need a few sentences and an address.  Even with so much technology knowing how to write an address doesn't look like it will be going away anytime soon.

What's so great about a postcard?
  • Fast to write
  • Good address writing practice
  • Cheaper to send (twenty-nine cents)
  • Can make your own postcard and decorate it yourself! (Check postage guidelines for sizes)
I'm taking a Creativity class this summer and we're doing some art projects. These are 2 of my postcards.

(Gasp! Students who have seen me try to draw should be amazed that I'm making just a little bit of progress, it might look like something next year instead of scribbles!!!)

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Monday, June 6, 2011

Swimming is Healthy Exercise

Don't love going for a run?  Too hot to go across the monkey bars?  Swim!

Swimming is a great life lesson and amazingly healthy exercise.  We love taking kids on field trips to the pool for that exact reason!  Ever notice how hungry you are after swimming?  It is because you were ...shhh!....EXERCISING!

Check out the local pools (indoor or outdoor) for their schedules and price fees. 

Here is a great article about why swimming safety is so important!  Keep kids safe, teach before it's too late!
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Friday, June 3, 2011

Picasa Photo Edit and Picnik

As all those great summer photo's are taken, give kids an opportunity to play with some photo editing.

Free software like Google's Picasa can be downloaded for free and includes many ways to crop, change, highlight, and otherwise edit pictures.

Hiking in Branson, MO May 2011

As another part of the wonderful free-goodness that Google is...they also have a link to use Picnik photo editing website for free too.
Here, you can add clip art, reverse colors in a photo, crop, add borders and much much more.

Same picture after some fun editing!

Don't just take pictures, play with them!

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