1. Finding the reading level of your classroom library books-
Do you need help finding the reading levels for your classroom library. I did! I don't know how many hours I spent last summer trying to look up the levels through different websites. It was very frustrating, but I knew it had to be done. Well I found the answer that I had been wishing for. I don't recall which wonderful blog that I found this on, but in case you haven't seen it, here it is.
It is an app that will literally scan the ISBN bar code and give you the Lexile, Guided Reading Level, Grade Equivalent level and the DRA levels for over 150,000 books. They are constantly updating their data base. This little app does even so much more. You can create a digital roster to track beginning and current reading level. Also you can keep track of who borrowed which book from your classroom! There is even more that it does. For only $2.99 it is a must have. Check it out here- http://levelitbooks.com
2. Easy Bar Graphing-
Recently I was on TeacherTipster.com which if you haven't checked into it, has amazing ideas for the classroom which are FUN and inexpensive. The latest idea that I will definitely try next year is sponge bar graphing. You need to get some thick multi-colored sponges from a Dollar Store. Each morning, you put up a Poll on the board. For example, which pet is your favorite? The students come up, take a sponge and lay it on the tray above the type of pet.
So easy, quick and fun. The children can easily see the bar graph and since they had a part in it, they want to be involved in your discussion. Now you can ask the graphing questions. I love it and have put sponges on my shopping list.