Thursday, July 5, 2012

Welcome Guest Blogger Lisa from Learning is Something to Treasure

Hello Sweet Friends,
Thanks for joining me for my 1st ever guest blogging post! I am so excited to be here on Stephanie's blog!!

My name is Lisa from Learning Is Something to Treasure.

Today I wanted to talk to you about my take home literacy bag program. I work in a Title 1 School with around 75% of the children on free or reduced lunch. There have been several times that students have told me that they have few to no books at home. As a teacher, you know the importance of providing each child with a literacy rich environment. That is where the take home literacy bag program comes into play.
 I started this program in my classroom a few years ago. Each month, I have a themed literacy bag for students to bring home. This is an example of my monthly themed bags:

September- Apples
October- Pumpkins
November- Friendship
January- Penguins
February- Dental Health
March- Space
April- Bugs
May- Oceans
Inside each literacy bag, I provide 2 books (I try to make it 1 fiction and 1 non fiction), a literacy journal, a math themed game, a literacy themed game, manipulatives, a microphone to read into, and a whiteboard to record facts on. Teachers Pay Teachers have a lot of themed freebies that you can download for free! Target has microphones in the party section for $1.00, and you can find whiteboards in the Dollar Tree or sometimes in the Target Dollar Spot for $1.00. Here is an example of my Going Buggy literacy bag:

 I give my literacy bags out to 5 students a week so we can get through all of the students within the month. They are given to them on a Monday and asked to return them that Friday.  I bought most of my books for this program from Scholastic's annual warehouse sale for a few dollars a piece. I also received money from my PTA to help support this program. I always make a black and white copy of each book just in case my students lose it. So far I have been very fortunate in not having any lost books. 
There are also other places where you can find books for take home bags. If you belong to Reading A-Z, you can use a lot of their books. You can also use black and white decodable books from your reading series if you have access to those. This book is an excellent resource if you need guidance in setting up the literacy bag program in your classroom: 

My students have been extremely responsible with their materials throughout the years. This has been a very successful program in my classroom! My students are very enthusiastic about being able to take these books home. I have definitely witnessed an increasingly positive attitude when it comes to reading, because this helps make it more enjoyable for them without feeling like they are being "forced" to read.

I couldn't come visit without giving you a freebie today! Here is my literacy bag journal pack!! Before I begin this program in my classroom, I print out a journal pack for the year for each child. I put it in a 3 prong folder & put their journal in their literacy bag when it's their turn to have it. I like to see how my students are thinking about and comprehending what they are reading in their literacy bags. It also provides them with much needed practice in writing. I left a blank journal page in this pack just in case you want to use your own themes.


Click on the picture to grab it from my TPT store! :)

I hope this has been helpful in giving you some ideas about take home literacy bags in your classroom. I would love to have you come and visit me at my blog, Learning is Something to Treasure! Thank you so much Stephanie for having me guest blog for you today!

1 comment:

  1. Always a pleasure to read your posts, Lisa! Thanks for telling us about your take home literacy packs AND for including it as a freebie!

    Ѽ Lori
    Teaching With Love and Laughter