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Literacy Station LOVE - Part Two!

Welcome back, Peeps!

Can you say LIME GREEN?  Seems to be our color this year :)  I keep all of the literacy station materials we will be using for the week in these lime green tubs.  I get them down at the end of the day and place them in their location so they are all ready to go in the morning when we start our rotation:

And, as promised:  here are some pictures of my students in action during our literacy station rotation:

These students are rolling Play-Doh to practice correct letter formation using letter formation mats that are specific to the letters in their names (this is great fine motor practice):

The station you see below is the letter sound matching station; station teams work together to find pictures of objects that start with the given letter(s) (I bought these Learning Journey stations at Home Goods this summer; check out The Learning Journey website - the games are inexpensive, visual, and effective):

At the SMART Board, station teams are dragging pictures of the given letter to the barrel you see in the picture - we are focusing on the different toolbar options and practicing "page reset" to reset the SMART Notebook for our teammates; they love learning about "troubleshooting!"

Below, you see one of my Kinders practicing penmanship on the "Write and Wipe" mat (purchased these "Write and Wipe" mats from Lakeshore Learning):

We have our word work/name work station on the carpet this week (see below) as we have a lot to choose from and seem to add more each day :) The giant, transparent letters you see in this picture come in the Letter Construction Activity Set I purchased. The students read the picture card that "tells" them how to construct each letter, gather the parts needed to make each one, and construct it. They LOVE "constructing" with the giant letters and I love it because it really helps them focus on letter formation and directionality. We will also be using them to "construct" sight words…and then sentences!

This student is lacing a classmate's name using the letter necklaces. I also have name puzzles in this station.  Lots of FUN, relevant activities!

And…our library station for read to self or read to a partner; I have a variety of familiar fiction and non-fiction out right now while we are building stamina and becoming familiar with our literacy station rotation:

And…our writing station!  They are encouraged to make cards, letters, stories, lists, recipes…and the list goes on!  The "Write the Room" chart/clipboards "live" here, as well as the magazines they can find/cut pictures out of and label by "stretching" their words using their letter sounds (we will eventually make this into a GIANT alphabet book):

Stay tuned for more pics and MORE stations!

Have a great week!

Literacy Station LOVE - Part One!

Hi, Peeps!

We had Jet's FIRST birthday party and my Granny's 93rd birthday on Labor Day weekend (weekend after the first week of Kindergarten - whoa!) at my mom and dad's lake house in Marble Falls and it was so much fun!  I still can't believe he is ONE!  What?  When did this happen?!

Here is a picture from his birthday party!  This is my sweet, beautiful friend, Lindsay, who I went to college with at Texas Tech and lived with when we both taught in Houston/Katy! She just had her little boy in March and he is PRECIOUS!

I am so glad I stayed at home with him last year and decided to work part-time at UT this spring as he stayed so incredibly healthy and we really bonded!  My pediatrician told me he is the healthiest little boy he has ever seen. I don't think he ever really got sick ONCE!  Such a blessing! 

So...I have gotten several e-mails and messages on Kinder Peeps' Facebook page asking how I start work stations/how I set them up…so, here it goes:

I like to have a lot of choices/several stations so that the station groups are smaller.  This year, I have 9 stations (the SMART Board is a station and the Chromebooks/computer table are a station) and 18 students…so, I have two students in each group.  This has worked out nicely!  Before I introduce the actual stations and how the rotation works, I observe my students' interactions/personalities/strengths throughout the first week and make anecdotal records based on these observations.  I then assign my students to a partner based on these observations and put them in their station groups on paper:

I then have these partner teams spread out around the room and brainstorm/come up with a team name.  They LOVE this!  They then share their team name with the class and I record it and add their team names to the station charts.  I am going to change their station partners each nine weeks (we have four nine week grading periods so they will have the chance to be with 4 different people in literacy stations).  See our team names below (hehe):

We then practice our rotation by role playing and listening for start/stop/clean up signals. My station rotation is clockwise and makes a big circle around my classroom. I print station signs and hang them accordingly. During our morning meeting on Monday, I introduce all literacy stations in whole group and what they will be doing in each one (I schedule my literacy work stations for first thing in the morning after morning message/morning meeting; I set their station tubs out before I go home the day before…this way, their station tubs are ready to go in the morning). I revisit the station activities during morning meeting the rest of the week if I feel like they need any reminders of what they will be doing in certain stations, etc.  

My students go to three stations each day.  Each station lasts roughly 12-15 minutes depending on the time my guided reading groups need that day. You will notice on the chart below that the station rotation doesn't repeat until Thursday…this keeps these stations "fresh" and fun! I try to change them each week based on what my students need more practice with, etc.  I read from the chart during the first two weeks and tell the teams where they will start. Once they become familiar with the process, I have a station helper come up and announce daily station starts.

Tomorrow evening, I will post pictures of different stations I have in the rotation this week.  We are doing a lot of work with names and beginning letters/sounds right now! You may have seen the name puzzles I posted on Kinder Peeps' Facebook last week.  My students really like those and I plan to do them with sight words, too.

Among the blank books, cards, and letters I have out for my students in the writing station, I have clipboards with copies of the Write the Room chart (see below) on it. I print them on colored paper and put 10-15 on each clipboard for the week.  Students are encouraged to walk around our classroom and find words that start with each letter. This not only increases print awareness, but also helps them practice tracking words from the wall, etc. to their paper. You can download this for FREE from my TPT store:

Be sure to check back tomorrow evening for pictures of my literacy work stations!

Have a Marvelous Monday!