Monday, June 23, 2014

Happy Summer Sale!

In my part of the world the school is coming to an end this week. In celebration of all things summer, I'm having a 20% off sale that runs now through 6/26.  I hope you'll stop by and stock up on your Really Reading favorites.  Here's a few things you may want to check out:

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Friday Freebie: Math Testing Treat Labels

I still can't believe my son is a week away from the end of third grade!  This was the first year he had to take our state ELA and math tests.  I had already made two different versions of my testing treat labels that worked for any test, but I thought it would be fun to make a math themed set as well.  Today only you can get my math themed treat labels free in my TpT store.  Click the picture to download.  While you're there you may want to check out my latest product: Road Readers Phoneme Segmentation of Short E CVC Words.  Remember the labels are only free today, so stop by and pick them up.  Have a great Friday!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Free App Friday and Road Readers Update

I can't believe it's Friday! It's been a tiring week, but we made it through.  Our students still have nine more days of school!  For them, it seems it will never end.

Since it's Friday, I thought I'd remind you to stop over at to see what apps you can get for free today for your iOS devices.  There are quite of few free book apps as well.  I see several alphabet apps highlighted this week, so if you have preschoolers at home or school you may want to check them out.

As I look over the list, there is one that jumps right out at me: Pocket Charts: Compound Words.  That's a skill I work on with my struggling readers and it's always fun to have a game for review or practice.  I hope it's a good one!

Remember to visit to see what over apps are available for free today!

As for me, I've been working on a short e version of Road Readers.  It's almost ready to be uploaded to TpT.  It just needs the cover and then the packet is ready.  I hope to get it finished this weekend or early in the week.  Until then you can check out my freebie for the short a version or the full version on TpT.  Click the pictures below to be taken directly to the products. 

Have a great weekend!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Attitude of Gratitude Giveaway

I'm proud to join many other TpT authors in participating in Differentiation Station Creations Attitude of Gratitude giveaway. Laura is celebrating her one year TpT anniversary with this great giveaway.   I have contributed my polka dot alphabet pennants to the preschool kindergarten giveaway.  Over 80 products  have been donated to these giveaways!

Visit Laura's blog for complete details, meet some great TpT authors, and learn more about their products and stores.  You can enter the drawing that includes my product below.  Find all the giveaways at Differentiation Station Creations.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, June 6, 2014

Friday Freebie and Phoneme Segmentation

Phoneme segmentation is breaking a word into its individual sounds.  That sounds easy, but roughly 25% of first grade readers struggle to master phonemic awareness skills, especially phoneme segmentation.  This lack of mastery can lead to other reading and writing difficulties.

Why is phoneme awareness so challenging?  This happens in part because people do not focus on sounds of phonemes when producing or listening to speech.  Instead we focus on the meaning of what is being said, processing the phonemes automatically.

As a reading specialist, I always have students that need additional practice with phoneme segmentation. The challenge is to find ways to engage students in activities that will get them to notice phonemes and learn how to manipulate them to separate words into phonemes and blend phonemes to make words.  This year I was inspired by my kindergarten students love of die cast cars.  I knew if I could incorporate cars into my lessons I'd have a captive audience.  That's how the product Road Readers was born.

My Friday Freebie this week is a sample pack of pages for my Road Readers short a pack.  You get the following pages and suggestions for use:

I hope you'll stop by my TpT store and check it out.  The full pack is also available in my store that has 33 pages of phonemic awareness activities.  Click the pictures below to download the freebie and checkout the full product.  Other short vowel packs will be available soon.

 Road Readers Freebie

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

We Love it When Someone Reads to Us

I think it's true that no matter how old we get most of us still love it when someone reads to us.  Whether it's at book club, a book signing, or a listening to an audio book, we love the feeling of being read to.   For some of us, it brings us back to our childhood.  For others, it gives us a whole new way to be lost in a book.  For my fifth graders, it gives them a chance to hear different authors and genres.  It gives them a chance to hear what good readers sound like and an opportunity to practice their visualization skills.  

Now that the end of the year is almost here, we're done with our Journeys intervention materials.  I took this opportunity to pick a book to read to my students.  The students and I have enjoyed this time together so much.  We can't wait for the next real aloud session to find out what happens next.  Now I'm just hoping we have time to get most of the book finished before the end of the year.  (They'll have a chance to finish the book on their own, as I bought them each a copy as an end of the year gift.)

Knowing that my fifth grade boys love Gary Paulsen, I was very excited to find his book, Masters of Disaster at a great price from Scholastic Reading Clubs.  Just looking at the cover, it seemed to be a departure from Hatchet and other titles I knew.  I thought it would be fun to see just how different it really was.  So far the book hasn't disappointed.  Even my girls have begged to hear more!

I highly recommend you pick a great book to end your year with too.  It's an experience I'm sure you'll all enjoy.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Friday Freebie: My Favorite Book Banner

Every day we inch that much closer to the last day of school.  We are just 20 days away now.  Next week the reading teachers are helping administer our state science test, field tests for our state ELA and math tests, and our end of the year Fountas and Pinnell Benchmark Assessments.  Go team assessment!

Knowing that I wouldn't see my kiddos for a while due to testing, we took a break for our usual routine yesterday to make a pennant/banner of their favorite books.  It was a great because I was able to use the same activity for all my students in grades 1-5.  I especially enjoyed seeing what my fifth graders did for their favorite books.  For my boys it was Gary Paulsen's Mr. Tucket and my girls picked some of the books they had gotten from me as incentives like Chocolate Touch.  All in all, it was a great activity. The best part was it was a low prep activity: just print and go!

Here are a few of the end products:

Since it's Friday, I wanted to share this activity with you as my Friday Freebie.  You can download the pages from my TpT store by clicking the photo below.  If you like this product you may be interested in the full product that is also available in my store.  You can click the second picture to be taken to the full product.  Happy Friday!

 Friday Freebie

 All About Me Memory Banners

Friday, May 23, 2014

Friday Freebie and a Memorial Day Sale

I hope you will stop by my TpT store this weekend.  Everything will be 20% off 5/23-5/26.  Stock up on all your favorite Really Reading products including kindergarten, first grade, and fifth grade Journeys supplements, phonics activities for K-2, fun end of the year products, and testing treats.  You can find them all at Really Reading at TpT.


Thanks for visiting today.  In celebration of Memorial day, I have a graphic organizer and writing paper freebie for you.  You can find it here.


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

NYS School Budget Vote Day...Please Remember to Vote

It's school budget vote day here in New York State, and I'd like to remind you how important it is to vote.  Investment in education shows our commitment to the future and to the vitality of our communities.  Please take the time today to vote on your district's budget.  Your vote matters.

Saturday, May 17, 2014


Even though my kiddos are not the kind of kids that are involved in everything, it gets to be spring and life gets extremely hectic. Both boys are playing baseball this year. Our five year old is tearing up the field playing tee ball, (and I do mean that literally!) and our oldest is playing "real" little league where kids pitch the ball. Now I find myself out four nights a week. This is a big change for all of us and messes with our sleep schedule. Let's just say we all get a bit cranky when we're not in bed by 8 o'clock. 

So here's a Friday flash freebie a day late. I picked out my Lady Bug Alphabet pennants. If you're like me or my teacher friends, you are already are thinking about your classroom for next year. Pennants are a fun way to decorate your classroom.  I have several different styles of pennants and alphabets in my TpT store.  

Since I'm a day late, I'm planning on leaving this up until tonight. You can find the pennants here in my Teachers Pay Teachers store. Feedback is appreciated, and I hope you'll consider following the store while you're there. Thanks! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

It's not just a boy thing: Learning to blend and segment with cars

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This year more than any other it seems I have a group of kindergarten students that love to play with toy cars.  I go to pick them up for reading class and they're playing with their cars.  We walk down the hall and suddenly they're pulling them out of their pockets.  I knew I had to find ways to incorporate cars and capitalize on their beloved possessions.

We've done a few different things like using our cars as game pieces to drive around the track as we practice our sight words, letters, and sounds.  We've parked our cars in our sight word parking lots.  Then it came time to work on blending and segmenting.  The kids enjoyed the different themes I have for segmenting and blending.They dutifully moved their chips into sound boxes, but they really missed the cars.  That's when my Road Readers set was born.

I created task cards with little roads with cvc words segmented above them.  We started with cards with pictures, so the kiddos saw that when they put the sounds back together they made words.  These were a huge hit and really helped keep my busiest ones focused on the task at hand.  The pictures helped my students that had the most trouble.  Once they had the hang of it, we moved to cards without pictures.  

My Road Readers for Short A are now available in my TpT store.  It includes 
-15 full color segmenting/blending roads with pictures
-15 black and white segmenting/blending roads with pictures
-15 full color segmenting/blending roads without pictures
-30 black and white segmenting/blending roads without pictures
-3 center worksheets where students segment, read, then cut and glue a picture to match the word read.
-3 center worksheets segment the sounds in a picture and record the sounds they hear to write the word.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

FLASH FREEBIE Get Word Work Task Cards Free!

I have put my basketball word work task cards out as a flash freebie today.  You can grab them in my TpT store for free today only.  So hurry on over and grab them!  Feedback is always appreciated and don't forget to follow my store while you're there!

 Flash Freebie

Saturday, May 10, 2014

New End of the Year Product

Now that our ELA and Math state tests are over, it's time to start thinking about the end of the year.  Even though our school calendar ends a week later this year, the last day will be here before we know it.  Both our boys are now playing Little League, so our days and nights are extra busy.  June 26th will be here in a flash!

Since I've had the end of the year on my mind, I decided to work on a new product: All About Me Memory Banners.  If you've visited my TpT store, you know I have small love affair with banners.  I really love how this new product turned out too.  It's low prep; you just print and go.  You can use one page or every page depending on how you want to use it.  You can make a class banner or have each student make a memory banner as a end of the year keepsake.  It's up to you!  You can find this product in my TpT store.

Friday, May 9, 2014

33 Fun and Educational Apps on Free App Friday

I love getting new apps for my own children and my school kiddos.  Free App Friday is a great way for both teachers and parents to get new educational apps for their kids.  You can head over to Smart Apps for Kids to see today's 33 free apps for iOS devices.  I picked up Second Grade Fiction Reading Comprehension.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Hooked on Phonics Learn to Read Classroom App Free Today

In honor of Teacher Appreciation Day, Hooked on Phonics has the classroom version of their Learn to Read app for free.  It's normally $49.99, so this is a great deal.  I urge you to check it out in the App Store.  I can't wait to try it out.

Happy Teacher Appreciation Day, A Giveaway, and Sale!

Yes, it's Teacher Appreciation Day!  I want to thank all my wonderful teachers I had growing up, as well as my current colleagues, and my sons' teachers.  I appreciate all that you do each day for children.  Thank you for giving so unselfishly to help our students learn, grow, and prosper.

I wanted to give back today to my fellow teachers, so I've decided to run a new giveaway.  This time I'm offering the winner a choice of any product in my TpT store.  You have three ways to enter using the entries below: leave a blog comment letting me know what product you would like to win, leave a blog comment letting me know you are following my TpT store, and enter by becoming a fan of Really Reading on Facebook.  Make sure you go through Rafflecopter so your entries are logged into the system.

Don't forget that today and tomorrow is the TpT teacher apprecation sale.  You get 28% off all my products when you use the promo code TPTXO.  I hope your stop by!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Brand New Freebie and Teacher Appreciation Sale at TpT

Tuesday May 6th is teacher appreciation day and Teachers Pay Teachers is celebrating with a two day sale May 6th and 7th.  Many stores, including mine, will be having 20% off sales.  Combine that with the TpT code: TPTXO and get an additional 10% off for a total of 28% off your purchases.  I know my wishlist is filling up fast.  I can't wait to do some shopping of my own.

As a thank you, I'm also offering a new freebie in my TpT store.  It's a printable emergent reader called The Beach.  I also have a second freebie on my Facebook page that has coordinating center activities for this book.  You can find the book here and the center activities here.

I hope you'll stop by my store and my Facebook page.  Happy Teacher Appreciation Day to all my fellow teachers!