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December 08, 2015

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Reading Lessons and Blogs About the Winter Season

Winter Lessons GraphicWe recently posted a blog using the SGM® Setting Map with the four seasons:

With the official first day of the winter season right around the corner, check out some of these blogs and lessons that you may want to use with your students!

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August 26, 2015

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Foldables and Stamps Activity

STAMPede SetCreating foldables is one way to make reinforcing the SGM icons an enjoyable experience. Using a flipbook and our Icon STAMPede Stamp Activity Set is a versatile way to engage students. There are a variety of flip book ideas online which may be adapted to this activity and the stamps make it easy for students themselves to create their own booklets during centers.

The Basic Flip Book/STAMPede activity…
  1. Decide which icons you would like students to work on… this will vary by what you want to reinforce with your students
  2. Place as many sheets of paper as needed, one on top of the other...

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August 08, 2015

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Braidy’s Bag

Braidy Bags (2) Photo Do you travel from classroom to classroom teaching Braidy the StoryBraid lessons? Canvas tote bags are very helpful! You can fit Braidy and all the accessories plus the books/activities needed for your lessons in the bag. One teacher used large plastic envelopes and put the book and activity for each class in separate envelopes. Everything fits nicely into the bag. Shown are two of my “Braidy Bags.” The bag shown at the right was made by my kindergarten students. Each child had a part in the “creation” of this bag using his/her thumbprint and paint as part of the design...

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July 29, 2015

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Character and Setting, Fun Activities

SGM Character Map

Are you looking for a quick lesson to reinforce the SGM or Braidy Character Map? Have students each fill out a character map or work with a partner to fill out the map in an interview format: • How old are you? • What best describes how you look? • What are you like as a person? • Are you friendly? • Are you curious? • What do you like (to eat, to do, etc.)? • What don’t you like?...

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June 16, 2015

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Character and Setting Collages for End-of-Year and Summer School!!

A fun end-of-year activity or summer school activity is making a Character or Setting Collage! You can use old magazines to cut out “Characters.” They may be pictures of celebrities, political figures, community leaders, animals, cartoons or advertisements with people who remind you of characters from children’s literature. Collages can be done individually by using Maps from the Story Grammar Marker® Manual or Braidy the StoryBraid® manual (below) and pasting the magazine clippings right on to the Map...

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May 28, 2015

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Looking at Expository Discourse Across the Grade Levels

In each of our summer studies posts, we have been looking at recent research articles that may inform your use of Mindwing’s narrative and expository tools as you ease into a new school year. This post will look at a study that examined the expository language of typically developing 5th-9th graders along with their performance on a language elicitation protocol. In this way, the article provided key information about assessment, but also has supportive points for the use of the language structures of ThemeMaker® both in assessment and intervention.

The Rules of the Game: Properties of a Database of Expository Language Samples (Heilmann and Malone, 2014) was written by two researchers working at the university and school district levels, respectively, in order to summarize their efforts at constructing a database to illuminate language skills for this older age group and serve as a clinical basis of comparison. The full article is available via ASHAWire (ASHA’s electronic publications portal) if you are a member.

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May 16, 2015

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Story Grammar and the Classroom Curriculum: The Five Senses

Over the years I have developed a special interest in collecting and using picture books that are tangential to the classroom curriculum. It’s wonderful to find books that contain touches of our content areas but aren’t “in your face” about it! These books can engage students in a story (and thus help them develop narrative language) while also providing a context to access abstract curriculum areas.

Although many schools cover this topic at different times of year, Spring is a great time for a science unit on the five senses. For younger students, this is a basic overview on how we experience the world though hearing, sight, smell, taste and touch. For older students, these simpler concepts can serve as an entry point to the more difficult intricacies of how the sensory system works. Additionally, May is Better Hearing and Speech Month in the USA and May Month in Canada, so what better time to talk about the sense of hearing, and maybe sync with some lessons about hearing and speech?...

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