Dear Parents, Get Ready For Ball Words

Hey remember me?  I really am still around.  Soccer with my boys is taking a ton of my time this fall (and I love it…really I do), but I promise, I am still checking in and trying to keep up.  Oh know all you teacher moms out there get where I’m coming from . . .

So anyway, I’m starting in on my third week of school, and Monday will finally mark the start of Top Bananas Letter Fluency Fun.  This is where I put the challenge out to my little ones to build their letter fluency by becoming ‘Top Bananas.’  And hot on the heals of my Top Bananas . . . you guessed it . . .  Ball Word Champs.  I already have kids in my class who have had older siblings in my room asking  . . . “are we starting ball words today?”  Unbelievable!  What kind of kid wants to learn sight words? Ummm my kinders that’s who.

I love the excitement that comes with watching them set goals for themselves, work with each other to meet their goals. I love celebrating those successes with them. Even better is when they finally figure out that with those words they are starting to really read . . . It’s like a big ol’ light bulb.  It makes me   anxious, excited and eager to get going.

I gave my own kindergartener a practice run this week with Banana Splits . . .

This is the pure joy of a 5 year old who has discovered a banana split in his bowl as a celebration for being a Top Banana.  (He still has to perform for his own teacher, but it was fun practicing and having him meet that goal at home with his brothers. Plus it was a great excuse to break out some banana splits for the family.)  

Some of you are a few weeks farther ahead in your year than I am and have been asking about Ball Words and how I introduce them to parents. Having used ball words for several years now, there are quite a few parents that already know about the infamous cheering and celebrating that takes place when students meet their goals, but I actually do have a little parent note that I send home as well.

It’s nothing fancy, but it does give an idea of how I explain all the hoop-la to parents.  If you’d like to grab an editable version of this note, just click on the picture.

And on my list of to-do this week, get my Banana Tree up and ready to start hosting all those Top Bananas I just know are going to be up there in the next couple of weeks.  I can’t wait!

Oh and for those of you that were asking about my Autumn Harvest Word Work Galore pack . . . I finally finished it—12 and 1/2 Stations —96 pages of fall fun.  You can check it out by clicking the picture below (or any of the pictures above to get more information).

Marsha Moffit McGuire

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