Saturday, June 6, 2015

Spotlight Saturday

I was planning on blogging some this summer about many of the awesome products that I used during my school year.  And...I found the perfect way to do that.  I recently came across an awesome linky hosted by Kindergarten Dragons called Spotlight Saturday.

I wanted to start with my absolute favorite classroom addition this year! {Warning: It's actually a lot of products that work together.}

I started using Interactive Reading Notebooks this year for the first time.  I was extremely nervous about it, but I was probably 98% sure that it was going to be perfect for my classes.  And I wasn't wrong.  

So once I had made up my mind, I starting searching for the exact products I would need.  I knew what I wanted/needed to cover during the year so I was looking for a product that would cover all those skills.  {I hadn't started creating on TpT yet, so there was no way I was going to make my own IRN pieces.}
It wasn't hard to decide what I wanted to buy - anything and everything from Erin at I'm Lovin Lit.

At first, I limited myself to just buying her actually reading notebook packages.

I started doing short {10-15 min.} reading lessons and letting my students do much more independent, self-selected reading during class.  

 Of course, despite how easy Erin's products made my first year of IRNs, there were things that I had to figure out.  For example, I had no idea how long some of my students were going to take with the cutting and coloring part.  I finally started sending some of the more complicated pieces home for homework the night before I was going to teach the skill.  It took less time the next day, and the students loved having easy and fun homework to do.

Of course, I also took advantage of the many free IRN lessons that Erin also offers in her TpT store.  

 I think my favorite unit this year was the figurative language lessons.  We started by defining and giving example of the types of figurative language in a foldable.

{And yes, this student glued the foldable in wrong so it almost didn't fit into his notebook!}

 I didn't want to stop with just definitions though.  So I decided to download the free sample week of Erin's Figurative Language Stories for Close Reading.  You can see the free story in the picture above.  Each story has examples of figurative language to find and identify, questions to answer about the figurative language, and a writing exercise where the student replaces the language in the story with their own figurative language.

I liked the sample passage so much that I immediately went back and bought the rest of the Figurative Language Stories.{Which is exactly why we put free sample products on TpT, right?}

That's not even all the products that I have bought from I'm Lovin Lit either.  I love everything I have gotten from her.  I have all the pages printed out and organized in my file cabinet, and I can't wait to use them again this year. 

 Make sure you head over to Kindergarten Dragons to read about some more amazing products that teachers loved this year!


  1. Love your Spotlight Saturday! :)

  2. Great post! I used Erin's Figurative Language Stories as well and the students enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Thank you so much for linking up for Spotlight Saturday! I LOVED reading about how you use Interactive Notebooks in your classroom, and it seems like your kiddos really enjoy using them and learning from them! I'm hoping to start IN in my classroom this year, and your post has definitely given me motivation to get started! I had a great time reading your Spotlight, thanks so much for linking up and sharing!!

    Warmest Wishes,