Are there classroom supplies you simply cannot imagine having to survive without? Whether you're a brand new teacher or a veteran with thirty-some years of experience, you've surely got a list of teaching must-haves. My fellow bloggers and I at Upper Elementary Snapshots are going to share our favorites with you! (Amazon affiliate links follow.)
Must Have Supply
I could not live without reusable dry erase pockets!
They are soooo versatile! They are similar to individual white boards... but so much better! I have found multiple uses for these little gems!
Slip a colored sheet of cardstock inside the sleeve, and you have an individual "white" board! I use this feature on a daily basis to promote student engagement. Just like with individual white boards, each student can practice a math problem, define terms, or write responses (like the two words within a given contraction).
Here's the best part about the dry-erase pockets, though. You can slip any sheet of paper inside the pocket! Are your students learning to tell time? Slip an analog clock image inside, and students can draw the hands of the clock so that they display a given time. Slip a map of the United States inside and ask them to write the abbreviations you've learned on each state. Slip a Venn diagram inside and ask them to compare and contrast two characters! The possibilities are endless!
A final use for dry erase pockets I found on a whim. One day I decided to print a partner play at the last minute to use at a reading center. Normally, I would laminate my partner plays for added durability. However, on this day, I didn't have time to do that. I spotted a dry erase pocket out of the corner of my eye and realized hey! I'll just slip this pair of scripts inside two pockets until I have a chance to laminate them later!
Must Have Book
What Do You Do with a Problem? by Kobi Yabana was just published in 2016. It is by the same author as the New York Times best-seller What Do You Do with an Idea? Both of these books caught my eye recently during a trip through a local bookstore. I ran across it right after I had finished creating my Growth Mindset PowerPoint, and I knew I had to have it... it fits so perfectly with the growth mindset approach!
This book is about a boy who encounters a problem. At first, he tries to escape from the problem, but he realizes that it keeps following him from place to place. After much worry, he decides to confront his problem.
The following image shows my favorite page of the entire book:
|"My problem held an opportunity! It was an opportunity for me to learn and to grow. To be brave. To do something."|
I think a perfect followup discussion after you read this book aloud to students is to brainstorm problems, and some of the opportunities that might be found within.
Must Have Resource
Of all of my resources, the one I simply couldn't live without is my Nonfiction Text Structure Bundle! It contains a plethora of activities- possibly more than you could use in one school year! An interactive PowerPoint (with a companion handout), a flipbook, TWO craftivities, 24 task cards, graphic organizers, posters, worksheets, an assessment... this resource containing more than 100 practice passages has it all!
FREE FOR YOU!
If you were to ask my students what their favorite classroom activity is, I bet more than half would respond "PARTNER PLAYS!" without hesitation! Cheers erupt when a new set of partner plays is introduced! If you are not familiar with partner plays, they are scripts that students read with a partner. They are great reading center options that allow students to work to improve their reading fluency! Plus, all of my 4th and 5th grade sets now contain some sort of follow-up worksheet that accompanies each script. Click on the image below to try one out in your classroom!
|2nd and 3rd grade teachers, CLICK HERE to check out the partner play freebie I wrote for your grade levels!|
After you've downloaded my freebie be sure to visit each of the blogs below to add 12 more FREE RESOURCES to your own collection of things you can't picture yourself teaching without. Afterwards swing by our collaborative blog, Upper Elementary Snapshots for lots of great content and ideas you can put into practice in your own classrooms as well as a chance to win gift cards to Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Teachers Pay Teachers so you can stock up on your own Classroom Must Haves.