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Friday, July 31, 2015

Freebie Friday - Back to school poem

For your freebie this week, I thought I would give you something for your first day of school.

This is such a cute poem and all you have to do is add hand prints.

This year, I changed the frame and added a page for kindergarten, pre-school and grade one.


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Work Station Wednesday - Calendar book printables

Work Station Wednesday is here and I wanted to highlight the printable portion of my calendar book. Last week was the interactive calendar book for my students that don't have the ability to print on these pages. 
I will often mix and match the pages between the two, depending on the skills of my students.

This is the calendar page.  At the beginning of the month we trace the month name. 

Each day we trace the number of the day.  I also have a calendar that just has the first and last number on it.  The rest is blank so that my printers can have practice printing the numbers without the dots.

We then do one row of tracing.  At the beginning of the year we start with simple lines.

And then move on to uppercase letters, lowercase letters and then numbers. 

We check the weather and fill in our weather graph.  At the end of the month we analyze it.

At the beginning of the year we colour in one square for each day we are in school.  When we get to 100 we have a party.

After our 100th day, we change to tally's and put one line for each day until the end of the year.  As we fill in each box, we count by 5's.

The kids love the domino page.  I usually add this page later in the year.  I pull a domino out of a bag and hide one side.  I have the children count the dots and copy them on their page.  We repeat for the other side.  I then have them put the matching numbers for the equation on the right.  They then add them up.

This is another page I add later in the year, once the children are better at printing.

I have a large pocket chart clock on the wall.  I put a time on it and the children find the matching clock and colour it in.  As the children get better, I have a page that is missing the hands and the children have to print them in.  I also have one with the missing digital time and they have to print it in.  When they are good at that, we move on the 1/2 hour.

Subitizing is also something we work on.  I show the children a card with dots and have them colour in the matching number. 

I pick a shape each day and have the children colour in the one I call.  Once they are good at that, I add more shapes of different sizes.  I then have them colour in the "big circle", etc.  Once they have mastered 2D shapes, we move on to 3D shapes.

Patterns are the last thing we work on .  At the beginning of the year we work on AB patterns and then work on more complicated ones as the year progresses.

Testing Tuesday - low vision

Testing Tuesday - Low vision

Today I wanted to give you some tips for working with children with low vision.  Here are some simple things you can do when assessing children with vision problem by using items you probably already have.

The first one is to use the pattern blocks that we talked about yesterday.
These are perfect for working on size, shape, counting and thickness.

Have the child feel the shapes.  Are some shapes thicker than others?  What about size?  Can they find two shapes that are the same?  Even if they are a different size or thickness?

Why are these shapes triangles?  Because they have three points.  Have the child feel the points by keeping one hand/finger on one point and moving the other hand to feel the other points while counting.

Now try this with other shapes.

When you are testing shape knowledge give the children shape manipulatives of various sizes, thickness and texture.  Can they find shapes within other things such as puzzles or toys.  Once the child has mastered 2D shapes, move on to 3D shapes.

Dominoes are great for counting because the dots are easy to feel.  Practice counting and adding.

Use pattern blocks to make patterns.  As long as the child can physically feel the difference between the shapes, you can use them.  When starting out, use shapes that are really different like a circle and a square.  As the child is able to make the given pattern, try adding more shapes or have the shapes be more similar to each other.

This is a stylus and brailler.  They are very inexpensive and easy to use.  There are lots of instructions online on how to use one.  For children who are learning Braille, it's important to label everything.  Do you have alphabet cards? Add the letter in Braille.  The same with sight word cards.  Blind children need to be exposed to as much "print" as sighted children.

 I added Velcro to a set of subitizing cards.  The children can easily "feel" the dots.  They are perfect for testing numbers.

Adding Braille and Velcro to activities can help the child with low vision participate in activities along with their classmates.

Using snap cubes make it easy for low vision children to "feel" the difference between them and count how many they have easily.

Snap cubes can also be put together to make shapes, letters and words.

If you are not sure about a certain activity or testing method with a child with low vision, try closing your eyes and doing the activity yourself.  Ask yourself if you will get the information you are looking for.

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you picked up a few tips.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Math Manipulative Monday - Pattern Blocks

This week I'm trying to get back to our regularly scheduled program so it's time for 
Math Manipulative Monday.

This week, it's pattern blocks.
I love pattern blocks because they are nice and chunky for children with poor fine motor skills and bright enough for my low vision kids.

You can also do so many things with them.

You can make patterns.

Start with a sample that they can cover.

Move on to extending the pattern.

Mirror images can be tricky.  Start with some filled in to help.

Then see if they can copy a shape.

The shapes can also be put together to make other shapes.  This activity is perfect for that type of exploration.

You can also play games.  
The children spin the spinner (dice are better for children with severe fine motor issues).

And cover that shape on their mat.

I hope I've given you some ideas about what you do with your pattern blocks.  Leave me a comment if you have another great idea for their use.