Halloween Contests for the Classroom - Free Printables

Looking for some Halloween fun in the classroom? Halloween is my favorite holiday and I love that there are so many great activities to do with students this time of year! I put together a few printables for you to use in your classroom, including a language arts, math and art contest.

  1. Language Arts: Short Story Writing- My students are learning story elements and plot this month. We are reading short stories, but not writing them. So why not have them write a scary short story for Halloween? To get them excited and thinking, we go over possible characters: a witch, a zombie, a vampire, etc. Spooky settings are fun, too! Graveyards, haunted houses. You could even give them a story starter, "It was a dark and stormy night."

 2.  Art: Since it is a little difficult (and dangerous!) to have a pumpkin carving contest, why not have a pumpkin decorating contest with paper? I love any art projects with my ELL kids because I am always amazed at their talent.

3. Math: How Many Candy Corn Are In the Jar? - This is a lot of fun in math class. Of course, you can use any candy for this contest. (I like fall colored M&Ms!)

To download these printables, click here!

Thanks for looking!

ESL Classroom Expressions and Commands for Your Classroom

Create a word wall with these classroom expressions and commands for your ESL classroom! I know that getting my students to speak English aloud is a real challenge for me, especially when most of their classmates speak the same home language. I set up words and expressions around the classroom for them to refer to so there are no excuses for not trying English first. These are great for those beginner ESL students who are still learning classroom English. 

Each card has a visual to help students understand what you are saying to them or what they may want to ask you.

Which expressions/questions are included?
  • I have a question.
  • I don't understand the directions.
  • How do you say that word?
  • May I use the dictionary?
  • May I borrow a pencil?
  • Do we have homework?
  • May I work with a partner?
  • May I go to the bathroom?
  • May I sharpen my pencil?
  • May I use my phone?
Teacher commands:
  • Sit down, please.
  • Stand up.
  • Go to the board, please.
  • Write on the board.
  • Put away your books.
  • You may work with a partner.
  • Open you book.
  • Close your book.
  • You may work in groups.
Download this free resource from my TpT store here!

P.S. In case you haven't downloaded our free ESL classroom vocabulary cards, check them out here!



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Getting to Know Know Activity for High School ESL

I am heading back to the classroom next week and I just wanted to share a quick Getting-to-Know-You Activity that I made for my own high school ESL students.

I included a color copy for the teacher since you probably don't have the time to color it yourself!

Here is the copy for the students.

Download it here!


Free Classroom Vocabulary Cards for Your ESL Students

Do you use Word Walls in your ESL classroom? Having a Word Wall is an easy way to display common vocabulary words that your students need to master. Word Walls serve as a reference when writing or speaking in the classroom. By including a picture with the word, the cards provide even more support in expanding a student's vocabulary. Word Walls should be displayed where all the students can see the cards. Additionally, the teacher should frequently reference the cards and model when and how to use them.

In addition to simply displaying the words in a classroom, there are a number of fun activities you can do to practice the vocabulary.

1. Head's upHave one student hold a card on his/her forehead while a partner describes the action until he/she guesses the word.

2. Matching Game: Match the word with the picture. This is a great center or early finisher activity.

3.  Pictionary: One student will draw a picture of the word while the others try to guess it.

4.  Fly Swatter Game: Have 2 students stand to the sides of your word wall each armed with a fly swatter. The teacher (or student) gives a definition of the word. The first student to "swat" the correct word wall card wins.

I have include these free word wall cards for your ESL classroom. They include common classroom vocabulary that is essential those first weeks of school. (The cards come in black and white as well as color.) There is also a sheet included to see what your students already know. See below.

To download your free Classroom Vocabulary Word Wall Cards, click here!
Thanks for looking!

Summer Themed Freebies

With the school year coming to a close, I wanted to let you know of a few summer themed freebies that you can use now in your classroom, during summer school or even with your own kids this summer!

Summer Reading Passages with Comprehension Questions: This free resource includes 4 non-fiction summer themed reading passages (Buzzing Bees, Great White Sharks, Popsicles, Flag Day), plus 3 comprehension questions each. These are great for warm ups, reading centers, early finishers and even homework. 

Proofreading and Editing: Summer Reading Passages: These are the same reading passages as above but require students to proofread and edit them. In addition, there are 4 comprehension questions for each passage.

My friend Michelle from Teaching Superkids created this awesome Summer Rules for Screen Time  download to make the summer a little easier on parents! With this poster, kids know EXACTLY what they need to do before getting on those tablets, computers or any other screen. This is a super handout for your parents or maybe for you and your own kiddos!

Meghan from Keeping Up With Mrs. Harris has a great freebie for those entering kindergarten in the fall.  Students can practice using technology AND identifying letters with this Letter Hunt QR Activity.

Thank you for looking! I wish you a smooth and enjoyable end of the year!

Shark Week Activities!

Are you finished with testing? Or maybe just getting started like we are here? I know it is hard to keep kids engaged until the end of the year, so I decided to go with a theme that all kids enjoy: SHARKS! Having SHARK WEEK at school is a great way to keep kids learning even if they don't know it.
Below I have some ideas, plus 3 free resources I created that you can use for SHARK WEEK or any time of the year. (Great for emergency sub plans, too!)

1.  Sharks Fact and Opinion Sort: Cut and laminate these cards and place in a center/station or use with early finishers. There are 20 fact and opinion statements plus 1 "Fact" and 1 "Opinion" header.

Download Shark Fact and Opinion Sort here.

2. I found this great blog post on Pinterest: Shark STEM Activities. One experiment explores buoyancy. Fun Fact: Did you know sharks will sink if they stop swimming? Some sharks including the great white will die if it stops swimming.

3.  Sharks True or False: Test your shark knowledge with these 12 true or false statements. Don't worry, there is an answer key included!

4.  Did you know the word Galeophobia means an extreme fear of sharks? This activity asks kids to write as many words as possible from the word GALEOPHOBIA.

Download Galeophobia Activity and Sharks: True or False here.

5. Books! Place some shark books in your reading center. You could add some extension activities, such as research questions, KWL charts, etc.

6. Finally, you may enjoy this Shark Booklet and Reading Activities.  Your students will learn all about sharks, their anatomy, diet and more. It comes with lots of activities to use throughout the week, such as close reading activities, comprehension questions, compare and contrast, graphic organizers, vocabulary and more! Students can easily assemble the booklet and then keep it forever!

Thank you for looking! I hope you are able to enjoy some of the activities!

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