Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Dollar Spot Finds for Spring Centers!

Last weekend it happened...
I got sucked right into the deep red hole...otherwise known as Target Dollar Spot!

I went in to get a child's birthday gift and came out with a cart LOADED with goodies from the famous 'Dollar Spot!' 

With Easter in March this year, I wanted to grab some things I could use in the next two weeks, but also some 'spring'-ish goodies that could last into April.

If you too went from hand-held basket to fully loaded cart, here are some ideas on how I am going to use what I found!

First Up...
Real/Nonsense CVC Word Sort!

I got a bunny pouch in both white and pink to use for holding the butterfly die cuts.
Bunnies and butterflies are spring icons, so this center can easily go into April..and May..if need be!

The die-cuts came in a pack of 16 and I used a little over 2 packs to make the set you see here.
I chose to write the words with a sharpie directly onto the butterflies, but if you don't like your handwriting, simply type the words on address labels and peel/stick them onto the butterflies!  You can even buy clear labels so you don't see any white!

I printed up 2 signs 'Real' (thumbs up!) and 'Nonsense' (thumbs down) and used the C-U-T-E bunny clothespins I found in 'the spot' to hold the signs onto the pouch.
No clothespins- no problem- put a bit of velcro (scratchy side) on the back of the card and it will stick to the felt pouch- or tape them!  You can even write right on the pouch, but I wanted to be able to use the pouches for different things, so this gives me an easy way of changing them out!
[We used a 'thumbs up' and 'thumbs down' in our class when we read CVC words during word work to determine if they are a real or not real word.] 
 I also made a recording sheet so that they can list the words they worked with (it also gives us a bit of handwriting and letter formation practice (wink, wink!))

Because I chose to write out so many words, I also made a back for the recording sheet for my fast finishers!  It also allows them to use one of the 'real' words in a sentence!

 Start to finish this center probably took me TOPS an hour to prep- but that is including making the label pockets and recording sheet (which you can download for free at the end of this post!)!

Now onto some math!
Addition/Subtraction Bunny Sort

Again I used those C-U-T-E bunny clothespins to label my pockets!
I simply wrote numbers 0-5 on them because we are working on fact fluency, but no matter what numbers you are working with, you can program your bunnies to match...and if you decide to focus on different numbers, no biggie!  Just erase and re-write!
If you don't like your handwriting, you can opt for number stickers too!  They would easily peel off to change numbers, as well!

I purchased the bunny die-cuts (if you have an Ellison machine, you could use die-cuts from there, but with 16 to a pack for only $1, I felt my dollar was well worth the time it would take to cut them out!)

We just finished addition and are working in subtraction now, so I did a set of both.
I clipped the bunnies to the pouches and they are ready for sorting!

No matter which you choose the pouches work the same!  You can even combine addition and subtraction facts or focus only on one!

I made a recording sheet that can be used 2 different ways- they could simply write the answer or they could write out the whole number sentence from the bunny die-cut with their answer!
For those students that need to use manipulatives, I picked up a few packages of the famous Dollar Spot erasers!  I will have them out at the table and they can use them to help answer the problems.

We might also use the erasers/bunny die-cuts/recording sheets without the pouches!
Pick a bunny, show how to solve using the erasers, write your problem/answer on the sheet!

You can also use the bunnies are 'flashcards' for fact fluency during 'down times' throughout spring!  This might make waiting for buses a bit 'hoppier!'

Again- this took me all of 40 minutes to prep- including creating the recording sheets (which are free for you to download at the end of the post).

Last but not least...
Medial Sound Egg Sort

For this one I am using the felt egg pouches and egg die-cuts, as well as egg clothespins!
Same as bunnies, I programmed the eggs with vowel letters

and clipped each one to an egg

I printed a bunch of CVC pictures on 2x4 mailing labels and then cut them in half (I was able to fit 2 pictures per label) and stuck each one to a die-cut egg

The kids will look at the picture, determine the medial (vowel) sound and then place the egg in that pouch.  I made a recording sheet for them to practice writing the CVC word, as well!

An alternate way to do this would be to stick a picture on each clothespin egg and then put CVC words on the egg die-cuts.  They would read the word and determine which egg it goes to.  

This one took a bit longer to prep because the of the peel/stick, but I don't think I spent even an hour doing it!  

The egg picture cards can also be used as flashcards (like the bunnies) during downtime for determining vowel sound, or 'tapping' out the word.  You can also use them during guided reading/small group instruction with magnetic letters!  

OR put magnetic letters in a plastic egg...have them 'crack' it open, build the word and then find the matching egg picture card!

Since I know teachers LOVE the dollar spot, I am sure many of you picked up a lot of the same goodies, so I put all of my recording sheets, labels for pouches and the CVC picture labels into this free download!
(The labels were created in Word to be printed on 2x4 mailing labels but I had to convert them to a PDF to adhere to the clip artist's terms of use.  If they don't print aligned to the labels, you can try using a full sheet label and cutting them from that.)

If you are looking for more Easter/Spring CVC and/or math resources, be sure to check out my Spring/Spring Holidays custom category in my TpT Store (there are some freebies too!)

Happy Shopping and Spring Center Prepping!

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