Sunday, 15 December 2019

Free Christmas Multiplication Activities's%20Teaching%20Treasures&utm_campaign=TTT%20Free%20Christmas%20Multiplication%20ActivitiesThose crazy weeks before the Christmas break are upon us and if you are like me you are trying to find activities that will hold your students interest. 

Multiplication facts are a skill that students will need to practice over and over again. I try to bring practice pages into all my seasonal activities to help with engagement. These Christmas themed multiplication pages are perfect for engaging your students the weeks before Christmas.

What will you get in your FREE download?

Included in this FREE multiplication product are 3 different activities. Activities 1 & 2 are multiplication riddles where students answer multiplication facts to solve the riddle. The 3rd activity has students sorting multiplication facts and putting them on the naughty or nice list!'s%20Teaching%20Treasures&utm_campaign=TTT%20Free%20Christmas%20Multiplication%20Activities
I promise you that your students will love these activities.

Ways to use the pages:

  1. Put them in math centers and have students rotate through the activities for 3 days worth of prep.
  2. Use as whole class activities which will also cover 3 days worth of prep!
  3. Have a class challenge. Have students work individually or in a small group to see who can complete the pages first.

Teacher tip:

If you are putting the pages in  your math centers and do not want to keep photocopying pages, just copy one page and put it in a sheet protector. Students can write on them using whiteboard markers and then erase when they are done! Of course this will only work with the riddle pages. Include a copy of the answer sheet and students will be able to mark their own work!

For the multiplication sort, you can photocopy on card stock and pre-cut the facts. They can go in a math center where students will not glue the facts onto the page but rather just lay them on top. If you include the answer key in the center, students will be able to check their own answers.

How to get a FREE copy

All you have to do to get your FREE copy today is click on any of the pictures or right here!'s%20Teaching%20Treasures&utm_campaign=TTT%20Free%20Christmas%20Multiplication%20Activities

Are you looking for more Christmas activities?

If you teach 1-3rd grade here is a link to a FREE Christmas Syllable Sort Activity.
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Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Name Tags for Older Students

Are your students too old for the traditional desk plate name tags? 

I want my students to have name tags but they feel that the ones with the number lines and other reference items are too young for them. Because of this I have my students design their own name tag.
Desk name tags for older students Terri's Teaching Treasures

By having them design their own, they take ownership of it and take pride in displaying it all year long. 

There is very little prep involved to have them ready for your students to design. All you have to do is cut a 8.5 x 11 inch piece of card stock in half and write your students' names on them.
example of how to cut paper for name tags Terri's Teaching Treasures
I usually draw a bubble around the name but you can be creative in your design. Do you want a straight lined box? Go for it. Do you want pointed star bursts? Go for it. 
Name tag template Terri's Teaching Treasures

I only have 4 criteria for the students to follow. 

  1. Only use light or bright colors around their name.
  2. Fill the entire paper.
  3. Use only markers or pencil crayons. Regular crayons will make a mess when you laminate the name tags.
  4. And lastly, color and draw neatly. Who wants a messy name tag.
criteria for name tags Terri's Teaching Treasures
I put this criteria on the Smartboard to reference as I go over the criteria and so that as students are working they can have a reminder. If you would like a FREE copy of my criteria page you can get it here

I always emphasize that they should take their time and do a neat job because they will be on their desk for the ENTIRE year. It is always great if I have students in my class who where there last year (this usually happens because I always teach split grades) who can confirm that the name tags will indeed be used ALL year. 
student examples of name tags Terri's Teaching Treasures
I love seeing how each student works on their name tag. It tells me a lot about them at the beginning of the year.
  • Do they rush through their work?
  • Do they plan things out or jump right in?
  • Do they like to draw or do they prefer color designs?
  • How thoughtful are they when they are choosing their color combinations?
  • Do they copy someone else's design? I don't care if they do. I just take note of this. 
  • If they make a mistake, do they ask to start over or try and make it work first?
  • Do they like to work with others or by themselves? I let them choose when we do art projects. 
It is amazing how much information about your students you can get from just simply having them make name tags. 

Once the name tags are complete and I have laminated them they go on the front of the desks. 
name tag desk placement Terri's Teaching Treasures

If students are in groups where the front of the desks are not showing, then the name tags go on the side or the top.

The name tags come in handy when students are handing out work, when hot lunch is being delivered and the students aren't in the class yet, or when we have a guest teacher. 

Just because your students are not in primary grades, it doesn't mean they can't have a name tag on their desk. It is all in how you frame the activity in their minds. 

Talk to them about showing their creativity and they will be happy to display their name proudly.

Are you looking for some more Back to School ideas and tips?

Click right here to instantly see all my Back to School ideas, tips, and freebies! 


Monday, 1 July 2019

Free School Year Calendar 2019-2020

How do I start getting ready for Back to School?

The summer is the time that I start getting organized for the upcoming school year. The very first thing I do is print off a school year calendar and start planning when I will teach what, based on the school year events/holidays.

There are definitely some concepts I don't want to cover (like division or anything with regrouping) when it is a busy time in the school and my students are not completely focused. 
Free School Year Calendar 2019-2020 Terri's Teaching Treasures

Where do I find my calendar templates?

I've got you covered! Every year I update my calendar to print off and I am giving it to you all for FREE! Yup, FREE! Check it out now. 
Free School Year Calendar 2019-2020 Terri's Teaching Treasures

Each page has a full month and the spaces are large enough to add lots of text! The calendars go from August 2019 to July 2020.

Each page also has a clip art image that is small enough not to use all your computer ink, but big enough to add some jazz to your month.

Other ways to use the calendar:

  • Use it for yourself to take to staff  or team meetings and schedule all your events and meetings.
  • Attach it to your classroom newsletter with important events filled in.
  • Fill it out with daily homework tasks for students.
  • Students can use it to record their daily home reading.
  • Display it in the hallway as a place for parents to sign up to volunteer in the classroom.
  • Use as a student behavior chart.
Free School Year Calendar 2019-2020 Terri's Teaching Treasures

There are many ways to use a calendar in a classroom. Let me know in the comments if you use them in any other way.

How do I get a copy?

Click on any picture or here to get your FREE copy. Just print them out and you are ready to go. 
Free School Year Calendar 2019-2020 Terri's Teaching Treasures

Happy planning! 
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Thursday, 28 March 2019

Free Shark Themed Multiplication Activities

Are you looking for an engaging way for your students to practice multiplication facts? 

Do your students love sharks as much as mine do?

I have combined sharks and multiplication to create a fun, FREE way for my students to practice their multiplication facts and I am sharing it with you. 

Students learn multiplication facts quicker when they have hands on, interactive activities to do. I get my students' minds working with these fun multiplication activities.
All they will need is a pencil, scissors, glue, and a curiosity for riddles!'s%20Teaching%20Treasures&utm_campaign=Shark%20multiplication%20TTT%20post

Here are the details!

The first activity, will have your students solving a shark themed riddle. They will answer multiplication facts to get the answer to the riddle.
The second activity is more hands on. Students will sort multiplication facts, identifying if they are true or false. This is where the scissors and glue come in.'s%20Teaching%20Treasures&utm_campaign=Shark%20multiplication%20TTT%20post

Different Uses

  • Put the cut and paste multiplication activity in a math center. Photocopy one page for each student. Another option is to cut out and laminate the sorting multiplication facts. Place the True and False page in a protector sheet and have students sort on the mat. They will put the pieces away (mixed up) for the next student.
  • Use the worksheets as a whole class activity after your students have learned the multiplication concept. These multiplication activities make great practice activities.
Answer keys are provided so you can easily mark the pages. The answer keys are easy to read for student use so you can have them mark their own work if that is better for you. 

Will the multiplication activities work for your students?

These printables are great for any student who is beginning to learn their multiplication facts. Ideal for 2nd grade and 3rd grade students. If you have 4th grade and 5th grade students who need extra practice with multiplication facts, they will enjoy these activities also.

How do you get a FREE copy?

To get your FREE copy today just click on any of the pictures or right here.'s%20Teaching%20Treasures&utm_campaign=Shark%20multiplication%20TTT%20post
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Tuesday, 26 March 2019

The Importance of Teaching Students About Syllables

I have read a lot of research articles about the importance of teaching students the ins and outs of syllables and I could bore you with all the technical mumbo jumbo, but I won't. I will let you know the highlights of my research (and 14 years of teaching) and do so in easy to read language. No one (well not me at least) has time for the crazy talk of research when they are looking for new teaching tips and ideas.
If you want to read some of the research for yourself, I will leave a list of some of the articles I read, at the end of this post.

What are Syllables:
Syllables are part of phonological awareness and is a strategy we teach to students after they have mastered decoding by sounding out individual letter sounds and rhyming skills. Or to put it another way --- Syllables are the building blocks of words!

Teaching students syllable awareness (how to identify the number of syllables in a word and how to break a word up into syllables) is an important part of reading and writing.

Why Teach Syllables:
1) It helps students decode words quicker because they will be chunking sounds rather than sounding out individual letters.
2) It can help students read more fluently and accurately.
3) There are positive benefits to oral language because it helps with the pronunciation of words.
4) Helps students spell during writing times because they are breaking the word into smaller parts.

What is the difference between syllable blending and segmenting?
Syllable blending is when a student is given the syllables (usually orally) of a word and he or she has to blend them together to identify the word. For instance, if the teacher were to say "pen - cil" the student would blend them together and say "pencil".

Syllable segmenting goes the other way. The student is given the word in its entirety and they are required to break it up (segment) it into its syllables. For example, the teacher says "butterfly" and the students would say "but - ter - fly".

Ways students can identify the syllables
1) Students can put their hand under their chin. While they are saying a word, they count the number of times their chin pushes their hand down. When the hand is being pushed down, this is where the word is segmented by a syllable.
2) Students can clap the "rhythm" of a word. Each clap is a syllable. If students have a difficult time clapping while they are saying the word, they can put up a finger for each part or us a block or counter to place on the table for each part.
If you use GoNoodle with your class, check out this fun song!

It is important to remind students that each syllable segment must have a vowel in it.

When to teach syllables?
Almost all of the research I read said that teaching syllables should not be just a quick lesson or mini-unit but that we should be giving our students repeated exposure to syllables throughout their time in school. We are still teaching our students new vocabulary that they have to read and write all through elementary (and beyond) school and looking at the syllables of these words will help them just as much as it helps first graders decode and write beginning words.

This is one of the reasons that I still have my 4th graders identify the number of syllables in a word and to segment new words into their syllables. I do this as part of spelling/grammar, Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies lessons.

During Language Arts blocks students work on syllables for many of their spelling units and I also incorporate it into my literacy centers. I find that students enjoy practicing literacy skills far better when they are put into a literacy center or game.

Engage your students with these fun syllable sort literacy centers.

I currently have 14 different themed syllable sorts that I incorporate into my literacy centers. Sometimes students will work on them with a partner (especially if they feel less confident in reading the words) but they mostly work on them independently.
After I have taught them how to complete one of the centers, they quickly become familiar with the task and need very little (sometimes just a quick reminder) to no instructions on how to do the others because the task is the same for all of the themes. 

What themes are currently available?

  • school / back to school
  • Halloween
  • Thanksgiving
  • Christmas (FREE) 
  • Valentine's Day
  • Easter
  • Earth Day
  • Winter (great for January/February)
  • Summer
  • Camping
  • Ocean
  • Space
  • Canada (great for provinces and symbols)
  • Food
You can check out any of these (and bundling options) by clicking any of the photos or right HERE

Want to try out a FREE literacy center?
I have made my Christmas syllable sort center free so that you can check out what it is like before you purchase the other themes.

You can find the Christmas literacy center here.

Want to read more about syllables? Here are some links to some of the articles I found interesting and informing:
The Effects of Syllable Awareness Skills on the Word-Reading Performances of Students Reading in a Transparent Orthography by Birkan Guldenoglu

Threads of Reading by Karen Tankersley (affiliate link)

Effects of Syllable-Based Reading Intervention in Poor-Reading Fourth Graders by Muller, Richter, Karageorgos, Krawietz & Ennemoser


Saturday, 9 March 2019

Free St. Patrick's Day Alphabetical Order

Do you have a class that needs differentiated St. Patrick's Day activities?

All your students can be working on alphabetical order with these St. Patrick's Day alphabetical order pages. They are differentiated to help with students who need extra time to complete an activity. The pages look similar, one just has fewer words. There are 15 or 10 words for your students to order.
free st. patrick's day alphabetical order worksheets terri's teaching treasures

These St. Patrick's Day alphabetical order pages are perfect for literacy centers, morning work, or working with words.
If students finish early they can color the leprechaun themed pictures.
free st. patrick's day alphabetical order worksheets terri's teaching treasures

Paper Saving Tip:

If you want to save paper and use these in a literacy center all you have to do is place the pages in page protectors and have students use whiteboard markers to complete the activities. Once students are done and the page has been checked, all they have to do is wipe it clean and the next student can use it!

Another way to save on paper is to print 2 pages on 1 sheet of paper. This will make each page half the size but they will still be readable and have plenty of room to record answers on. 

Low prep for you, differentiated for your students!

Get your FREE copy by clicking on any picture or right here!
free st. patrick's day alphabetical order worksheets terri's teaching treasures
Are you looking for some St, Patrick's Day Math ideas? Here is a blog post I wrote about my St. Patrick's Day multiplication centers.

If you have a smartboard in your classroom, I have created a fun way to complete your attendance during March. Check out these FREE St. Patrick's Day smartboard attendance slides. 


Saturday, 9 February 2019

Teaching Growth Mindset

This year I noticed that many of my students were using a lot of negative self talk and that they were giving up on a task before they even started. Something needed to be done about this so I did some research on Growth Mind Set and decided that this is exactly what my students needed.

We begin by watching the story The Dot and talk about how the Vashti changes over the story. This story makes it VERY clear that she goes from having a fixed mindset to a growth mindset. This story leads to introducing the terms "growth" and "fixed" mindset. 

We then created our first classroom bulletin board together. I showed them the fixed mind set message and together they decided on what the growth mind set message went with it. You can get the posters for this bulletin board from The Blessed Teacher.

We went over a lot of different scenerios and partner talks and then we completed Jennifer Runde's (All her stuff is AMAZING!) Growth MindSet Stick-It Together activity.

Here are some examples of what my students came up with.

Throughout our study I use many video and these are 2 of the ones my students get the most information from.


One Two of the BIG takeaways from our lessons were that they are still learning and that mistakes are part of learning. Also the power of the word "YET". I still here them using the word now and it makes me smile. I have a giant Yet sign on the wall by our classroom door and students see it when they come in/leave the room, as well as when they are doing their work because it is at the front of the room. 

We listen to The Power of Yet song during our lessons and it is so catchy that the kids can't stop singing it. 

Growth mindset is not something that should be touched on for a couple of lessons and then left. We refer back to it often and I even hear students reminding their peers when things get tough. I was shocked when they noticed that the main character in Abel's Island (class read aloud) was showing a growth mindset because he never gave up. I was a proud teacher when they brought this up :) 

I am sure I will write more posts or update this one throughout the remainder of the year because growth mind set has become the norm in my classroom now. 



Saturday, 20 October 2018

Midnight Pumpkins Art Project

Have you been wanting to do a Halloween (or fall) art project with your class but still want to incorporate some art elements? Are you wanting a Halloween bulletin board that is not just a cut and paste craft? I've got you covered.
We have been working on blending colors during art. We've blended different types of paints, pencil crayons, and oil pastels.

This project has students blending oil pastels (which was a review) and chalk pastels (the new part). It was messy but so worth it to see how engaged my students were.
Materials Needed (per student):
  • 1 or 2 sheets of white paper
  • 1 sheet of black construction paper
  • black permanent (sharpie) marker
  • oil pastels
  • chalk pastels
  • scissors
  • glue
  • lots of paper towel
Because this project has 2 distinct stages, we completed them over 2 art periods.

Day 1:
On the first day we completed the pumpkins.
On the white paper, guide students how to draw a simple pumpkin. They will need to draw 2 that are different sizes. 

We have done quite a few guided drawings, so my students drew directly with their sharpie markers. They kept drawing pumpkins until they had 2 that they liked.

The next step is coloring the pumpkins by blending different oil pastels. The colors used were white, yellow, and 2-3 (depending on your available colors) oranges. 
I always tell my students that it is better to use less oil pastel to start and add more later if needed. It is really hard to make the colors lighter if there is too much but it is easy to make them darker if there is not enough. 

Have students put a small section on white oil pastels at the top of the pumpkins and then about double the width of yellow. Using a straight line blending technique, students blend the colors. It is ok if the pastel goes out of the lines because the pumpkins will be cut out.
Next, we put a very small section of the darkest orange on the very bottom of the pumpkins and then divided the remainder of the pumpkin in half for each of the remaining orange shades. 

Students again blend, using straight line blending, the rest of the pumpkin. If the pumpkin turns out to have too much of one color, students can layer the oil pastels to blend more. 
Once students have the pumpkins completed to their liking, it is time to cut them out. I have students write their name on the back of each pumpkin WITH A PENCIL. They will likely want to use the oil pastels for this but trust me when I say....STOP them. This will make a huge mess if they stack their pumpkins. 
Day 2:
It's now time to create the background. This is the real messy part!!!! 
Hand out the black construction paper and the chalk pastels. Don't forget to give students paper towel to wipe their hands on. 

TIP: If you do not have a sink in your room where students can wash their hands between colors, have then blend each color with a different finger(s). 

Start by having students create the moon on one side of the paper. We started by putting a small white circle surrounded by a yellow ring. blend in a circular motion. Then add a SMALL orange ring on the outer edge of the moon and blend in a circular motion. 
When the moon is done, it is time to create the midnight sky. Using dark blue chalk pastels students will LIGHTLY draw the bottom edge of the horizon. Tell them not to draw a strong line as they will want to blend this out with the land later.

Using the blue, have students spread chalk pastel over the sky area, being careful when they get to the moon area. They will then blend, pushing hard in a circular motion, the sky. 

If the sky turns out to be too bright, add a very small amount of black to it and blend away. I usually add the black for them because black can easily wreck any pastel project and students tend to go overboard with it. 

Once students have the sky how they like it is time for the land. We follow the same process as the sky but with green colors. 
After students have the chalk pastel on the land blended, have them use oil pastels to add grass blades to give some texture. We used 2 shades of green and a yellow. I tell them, the lighter the color the fewer blades of grass to have. 
Now it is time to glue the pumpkins on. The smaller pumpkins go closest to the moon. If they were furthest from the moon in real life, the bigger pumpkin would block out all light shining on the little pumpkin and you wouldn't be able to see it at night. 

The final touch was, signing the art with a white pencil crayon.
Embrace the mess and have fun !

To help set the stage and to look at the shape of pumpkins, the day before the art lesson I read my students Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman (affil. link) and we looked at a real pumpkin.
This helped with my students being able to visualize the shape when drawing.


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