Monday, November 23, 2015

What I'm Thankful for + FREE Context Clues Minilesson

I have so much to be thankful for.  I have a loving family, a house, plenty of clothes and food, and jobs that I love.  Most of all, I am so thankful for my sweet Naomi.  We celebrated the third birthday of our baby girl on the 14th.  It's hard to believe it's been three years since her miraculous birth! I can't help but give God the glory for bringing us through that difficult time. My precious love is spunky and full of life.  She surely brings joy to those around her.

Just thinking...

A sip of juice during quiet time

Enjoying the first snowfall

Now on to the free stuff!  I was sure my students and I would breeze right through what should have been a review of context clues.  I was thrilled to retrieve this outstanding context clue resource from fellow educator and TpT'er Erin Cobb at I'm Lovin' Lit, along with this video and corresponding materials from Flocabulary (subscription required, but well worth it).   As I sat down with my students during our small group sessions, it became painfully obvious that they were struggling with understanding the different types of context clues, therefore, they couldn't explain what clues they used to figure out the meaning of a word.  They also had a difficult time selecting the correct definition from the dictionary when defining a word, even after making an educated guess about the word's meaning.  They truly wanted to understand the concept but needed a little more instruction and practice.  Therefore, I created an Interactive PowerPoint that contains a minilesson and practice for the students. 

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This minilesson explains four types of context clues and shows how the different clues are used.
It also contains printables so that students can record their answers during the lesson.   
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Furthermore, I like to make corresponding posters so that students have a visual reminder of the types of clues.
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After going through the minilesson, I took students to the computer lab so that they could apply the concept.  They went through the minilesson again, this time on their own, and then completed the additional practice items. After two days of intense practice, they had a much better grasp on the types of context clues.   The full, 2-day lesson is available here.  This will be a concept that we continue to work on throughout the year, but this gives them the foundation they need to understand context clues.

Teacher Spotlight

 Amy Sandler 

TpT Store:  Skool Aid Products
Grades/Subjects: 6th Grade English & Ancient History

About: Amy has taught in inner city schools for over 20 years. Amy creates engaging materials to meet the diverse needs of all of her students, many of whom are bilingual and/or working several years below grade level.  She has experienced tremendous success with her students. Most of them go on to graduate from high school, and several are within the top 10% of their graduating class! 

Before becoming a teacher in the schools, Amy taught Sunday school for elementary aged children.  She ended up creating a lot of materials to supplement what was available, so it was natural for Amy to continue creating educational materials when she started teaching middle school. 

Amy works hard to help her students love history and develop a solid foundation in writing. Thanks for all you do, Amy! 

Amy creates colorful PowerPoint Slideshows to help her students grasp difficult concepts.  Check out some of Amy's free products. (Click the image to go to each product in Amy's TpT store.)

YOU can enter to be featured on my blog as well!  If selected, you will win a $5 gift card to Teachers Pay Teachers.  Simply fill out this form. That's it! No gimmicks or tricks.  I believe very strongly in highlighting and honoring the achievements of others.  We are all stronger when we learn from others. Winners will be notified via e-mail before the post goes live.  

Here are last month's freebies!  Enjoy!