Category: Fun Stuff

Using Animated Shorts to Teach Problems and Solutions

Teaching Reading and Writing  Skills with Animated Short FilmsProblems and Solutions

If you are looking to add some high interest activities to your lessons, try using animated shorts to teach reading skills. 

This post contains the animated short “Taking the Plunge” found on Vimeo and inserted in this post. In this animated short, the main character has a problem he must solve. Handouts, leveled for upper elementary students, with graphic organizers encourage students to think about the problem and solution. You can download the handout here. Continue reading

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Using Animated Shorts to Teach Compare and Contrast

Teaching Reading and Writing Skills with Animated Short FilmsCompare and Contrast

The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore is a beautiful award winning film. After winning 14 smaller awards, it won the Best Animated Short Film at the Academy Awards in 2012. A picture book was created based on the film which makes it ‘fantastic’ as a compare and contrast activity.

In this free sample from Using Animated Shorts to Teach Reading and Writing Skills, students compare The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore to the movie version of The Wizard of Oz which inspired the film. Continue reading

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Helping Readers Bloom Spring Link-up

Using the Novel Wishtree by Katherine Applegate to Promote ReadingWelcome to the Helping Readers Bloom Spring Link-up.

The Reading Crew is a group of primary through middle school reading specialists. About three to four times a year, we share materials and ideas through a blog link up. Enjoy reading through our posts and collecting free materials to use in your classroom this spring. Links to all the posts are found at the end of this post. Before you leave, enter the rafflecopter also found at end of this post. The raffle will be open from 4/6/18 (6:00 AM EST) to 4/11/18 at (6:00 AM EST). We are giving away over $600.00 in prizes including an Apple iPad mini WiFi + gift cards for a total of 8 winners. Have a great time exploring our blog posts, and I wish you luck in the raffle!
Continue reading

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Using Animated Shorts to Teach Cause and Effect

Teaching Reading and Writing Skills with Animated Short FilmsIf you are looking to add some high interest activities to your lessons, try using animated shorts to teach the reading skill cause and effect. 

This post contains the animated short film “Feast” found on Vimeo and inserted in this post. Download the handout, leveled for upper elementary students. Students create a cause and effect chain to summarize the film. Continue reading

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Using Animated Shorts to Teach Characters and Settings

Teaching Reading and Writing Skills with Animated Short FilmsCharacters and Settings

Free Printables to Use with Animated Shorts (Characters and Setting)

If you are looking to add some high interest activities to your lessons, try using animated shorts to teach reading skills. 

This post contains animated short film “Geri’s Game” found on Vimeo and inserted in this post. Download this handout, leveled for upper elementary students here.

Great Animated Short for Characters and Setting

Geri’s Game [4:52]

Geri is an elderly man who plays a game of chess against himself. After each turn, he walks around the table to play the other side of the chessboard. Geri’s personality changes as he moves making this a great film for teaching character traits.

Film Information – Geri’s Game was released in 1997 by Pixar. The producers paired it with the movie A Bug’s Life. Geri’s Game won an Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film in 1998.

Geri’s Game from Elliott Peltzman on Vimeo.

 

Handout

This post is a sample of my new product Using Animated Short Films to Teach Reading Skills Part 2. Each month one additional post from this series will go live. You can find the links and post dates listed below.

Each post will contain one animated short with a printable handout. You can collect all ten by coming back each month. The full products, divided into two parts, contain over 50 student printables each for a total of 100+. 

The printables contain organizers with guiding questions to help students evaluate the short film and learn valuable reading skills. All short films will be added to a webpage on Book Units Teacher for easy access. The link to this webpage will be included in the purchased product.

Check out the products on Teachers Pay Teachers:

Part 1 – 52 Organizers

Teaching Reading and Writing Skills with Animated Shorts Pt 1 [Digital + Printable]

Teaching Reading and Writing Skills with Animated Shorts Pt 1 [Printable]

Part 2 – An Additional 52 Organizers

Teaching Reading and Writing Skills with Animated Shorts Pt 2 [Digital + Printable]

Teaching Reading and Writing Skills with Animated Shorts Pt 2  [Printable]

Blog Post Links and Publication Dates

 

Gay Miller

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Quick and Easy to Make Pocket Chart

Pocket Charts

 

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.Creating pocket charts from wrapping paper and cardboard is quick and easy. Make individual pocket charts for students, a series of matching charts for a bulletin board, or even a large one to hang on the wall. Be sure to check out the bottom of this post to see some ideas for using these pocket charts. 

Instructions for Making the Pocket Charts

Pocket charts can be made in many sizes depending on how you plan to use them. These instructions show how to create a small pocket chart that holds twelve index cards. I used a department store shirt box that has the lid connected to the bottom along one side. When the box is closed flat, it is double in thickness making it sturdy. The flattened box is 11 ½ by 15 inches. This is the perfect size to wrap in standard sized wrapping paper. Corrugated cardboard also works well. Cut it to whatever size you need.

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.Step #1 – Cut the wrapping paper approximately twice as long as the cardboard and several inches wider. For the 11 ½ by 15 inch box, I cut the wrapping paper 30 inches tall by 15 inches wide.

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.

Step #2 – On the back of the wrapping paper, draw folding lines using a pencil. Note: Some wrapping paper is lined on the back making this step easy. Begin approximately four inches from the top of the wrapping paper and draw a horizontal line. Measure down one inch and draw a second horizontal second. Continue to draw horizontal lines alternating between intervals of three inches and one inch. For a 30-inch piece of wrapping paper, you should have twelve horizontal lines.

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.Step #3 – Accordion fold the paper on the lines you have drawn. 

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.Step #4 – Place your cardboard in the center of the wrapping paper. You may wish to flip the cardboard and wrapping paper over to make sure you have the paper aligned. This example has a 2 ½ inch margin from the top of the first pocket to the top of the pocket chart and a 1 ½ margin from the top of the last pocket to the bottom of the pocket chart. Wrap the paper around to the back of the cardboard and tape it into place as if you were wrapping a present.

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.Step #5 – Staple a ribbon to the center top of the pocket chart so you can hang it up.

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.

Ideas for Using the Pocket Charts

Quick and Easy Pocket Chart - Read how to make this simple pocket chart from materials you have around the house.

  • Sorting Activities

Example #1 – Create eight matching pocket charts and place them on a bulletin board. Write labels above each chart for the eight parts of speech. On index cards write words that can easily be classified by their parts of speech. Have students sort the cards onto the correct pocket chart.

Example #2 – This sorting activity is free in my The One and Only Ivan blog post. Cards can be sorted into four pocket charts in place of the four interactive notebook pockets. This would allow students to be able to read the cards after they have been sorted.

Sorting Activity

  • Matching Activities

Example – To receive the maximum score for teacher evaluations, teachers in our school must create word walls that change from unit to unit. Using pocket charts makes this a super easy process. Create a bulletin like the one illustrated above. Title the board by the name of the book your class is reading. Label the pockets by chapters instead of parts of speech. Write vocabulary words on index cards and place them in the pockets. Assign each student a vocabulary word. The student must create a definition card. Early finishers can match words to definitions.

Gay Miller

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Using Animated Shorts to Teach Theme

Teaching Reading and Writing Skills with Animated Short FilmsTheme

If you are looking for some high interest activities to enhance your lessons, try using animated shorts to teach reading skills. 

This post contains the animated short film “Mater and the Ghostlight” found on Youtube and inserted in this post. Download the accompanying handout leveled for upper elementary students here. Continue reading

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