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Friday, October 5, 2012

21 "Fix-Them-to-Fit-You" Centers

Can I just say...again... how much I L.O.V.E Dr. Faber? No students for a whole day, and I get to bask in Faber's glow. Perfection.

(Was that laying it on too thick? Cause I'm not using sarcasm at all. I really loved today.)

The focus of today was how to make easy-to-adapt centers using what you already have on hand.Or, using things you can talk your administration into getting for you; file folders, manilla envelopes, card stock, sandwich baggies....

To prove how easy this is, she spent one night making 21 literacy and math centers. It took a few hours, but 21 CENTERS PEOPLE! She didn't get to laminate anything, but the ideas were there.

** Dr. Faber promised to email us the Word Docs she used for these centers. When I get the email, I will update this post with everything.**

Special Shout-Out to my Third Grade Team for being models in my pictures! :)

#1 Sound and Spelling Sorts

 Long and short "a" sort

 Consonant blends

 Long and short "i" words

A great place to get some activities like this, is the Florida Center for Reading Research. Pick your grade level and there you go!

#2 Anticipation Guides- Whole Group
Dr. Faber included a Signal Word Sort, a Vocabulary Sort, and a Summarizing activity. All the activities revolved around the same story. Center #3 was centered on the story as well, thus proving one can do many, many things with a great story.

 Signal Word Sort
Students take parts of the story and separate them into the correlating question.

 Vocabulary Sort
Students match words and definitions

Using an easy fold, students retell the story

#3 Three more stations on the same story
Before/ During/ After questions, Making Connections, Vocabulary flip-books

 Before/ During/ After questions
It's a matching game and a comprehension tool!

 Vocabulary Flip-books
I think everyone and their brother understands that I love flip-books. And lapbooks, And awesomeness. 
The teacher includes a list of words from the text and the definition. Students are to write words and definitions on each page of the flip-book, along with a sentence and possibly an illustration. 

Making Connections
The teacher makes a list of possible connections from the text and students have to choose which connection the teacher was making.

#4 Fluency- Emotions
By far one of the favorites of the day. The only thing missing was a chart with pictures of the emotions. So, I decided to make one. You may find it {HERE}.

#5 Consonant and Vowel Sorts
Not only sorting vowels, but deciding if the word begins or ends with a vowel and using syllables.

Have students who aren't sure of their vowels? No problem! Dr. Faber has a handy-dandy vowel song!

#6 Math Sorts- Vocabulary
 Done in 3 parts- vocabulary sort, math prefixes, picture vocabulary and definitions

Not going to lie, the vocabulary words were hard. Of course they could be modified to different grade levels and students would be able to use the math word wall.

#7 Fraction Dominoes

Dominoes are color coded and can be used for all sorts of skills- multiplication/ division, geometric shapes, sight words and pictures, nouns/verbs/adjectives... you name it!
The activity would need to be modeled first. I made an assumption that my students knew about dominoes, and I got a long 'train' instead of a 'branched tree'. Never assume.

#8 Prefix + Word + Suffix
Color coded, use sight words. Dr. Faber only used the top 4 prefixes and suffixes. Students can practice making words, creating sentences, inventing easy definitions, etc.

#9 Guided Reading Book Clubs
If you've ever joined a book club, you know how they work. Chapter by chapter students will discuss characters, plot, setting, find new vocabulary, etc. Dr. Faber shared {THIS} website. 

#10 Expository Text Patterns

We decided that we wouldn't put all 8 on a page. We would only look at maybe 3 at a time. We also talked about choosing different passages to differentiate the center for our students.

#11 Paragraph Puzzles
Take a paragraph from a text you've read before and cut it up. Students have to put it back together. This would be good for poetry, songs, chants... anything students need to learn with fluency.

 Add the passage so students can check their work. 

 #12 Reading & Writing Station
RAFT, Tic-Tac-Toe, Top 10

#13 Synonym, Antonym, Homonym
Self explanatory, really. Make sure they are color coded!

#14 Reader's Theater/ Choral Reading
Differentiate the reading for the different reading levels in the class

#15 How Can This Be Used?
Dr. Faber used those picture cards that you find at the Dollar Store and Walmart to prove that we teachers assume a lot. We assume that students will see a picture of a Jack-o-Lantern and not think "pumpkin". That's asking a lot from student who might not have ever seen a pumpkin in real life. So, instead of using them as the creators might have intended, we were asked to create new purposes.

#16 5W's & H- Basic Signal Words

Fun way to choose which question to answer first- roll the die!

#17 Open Sort Review
Students sort different techniques used in the 5 Elements of Reading.

#18- Newspaper Search
Students use the newspaper to find sight words, vocabulary, word families, etc.

#19 Fact & Opinion
Students decide is statements are facts or opinions.

We decided that we would make statements based on science or social studies lessons for extra practice. We would also use card stock and laminate the statements instead of using so many copies.

#20 Creating Sentences
Sentences can be logical or silly. Color coded, of course.

#21 Puzzle Review
Make puzzles using vocabulary from across curriculum, add definitions, pictures, and examples. Students put the puzzle back together while explaining to a partner what each word means.

Here are some that Ms. Roach made during a break

Poetry 1

Poetry 2

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