Morning Work Binders
It’s summer here. I should be relaxing by a pool somewhere…instead I’m working ESY and already planning stuff for next year. But I enjoy it so I can’t really complain.
I have been thinking about what worked this year and what I need to improve on for next year.
One thing that I think worked really well and that I want to share with you guys today are the morning work binders we used this year. They are a serious sanity saver during our always hectic mornings. They took a little effort setting up but once they were assembled there was very little maintenance and they guaranteed me about 15-20 minutes in the morning of independent student work while my team and I took care of our morning tasks. Read all the way through for a freebie at the end!
Here’s how they worked.
We used some old binders and I bought some pencil pouches from the dollar store to store their extra pieces in. Students completed the binder in the morning and had to show a para or myself when they were done. At the end day one of my para’s would erase and reset the binders so they were ready for the kids in the morning. We have two levels of the binders: a higher and lower binder. First up the binders my older students used.
My students trace their address and practice their birthday. The pencil pouch has the days and months pieces used for the calendar page.
* I purposely left this page blank and wrote their phone numbers using a sharpie. That way I can erase the numbers and fade out the prompts as they start to memorize their numbers. It also means that I can easily change the number if I need too and then this sheet can be reused if a student moves. (because Velcro is not cheap!)
*Next should be the calendar page but I can’t find my pictures of it. I’ll add them later. The set up is simple. We have a calendar up on our wall and students have to make their calendar match our. The template and cut out pieces are included in the download.
After the calendar is a sheet protector with different work in it depending on the students level. This allows us change up the skills they are working on as needed. I only include work that they have been assessed on and that I know can do independently.
Last, and sorry it’s such a bad picture, is the number of the day page. I don’t remember who I got it from but I know it was free on TPT. I write the number on the board and my students do as much as they can by themselves before they ask for help.
For any of students who couldn’t use the first binder setup we made a simple binder that’s designed to reinforce basic skills like their name and counting. Here what it looked like.
First up is a they name page. They traced it twice (the gray and the dot font) and then used cut up letter to spell out their name.
*The picture doesn’t show it but there’s a strip of Velcro on the left. This is the letter for their name get placed before the students work on it.
*If you have students who can’t do each letter in their name right away you can still have them practice placing their name in the right spot. Print out there name in the blocks but don’t cut out each letter. Leave their whole name uncut and have them start by taking it from its resting spot in the left and placing it in the correct spot on the right side.
Then came our alphabet practice page. I place Velcro under each letter and students matched the corresponding the corresponding letters.
At the end of the day a para moved the letter back to the strips on the left page so the binders were ready for students in the morning.
* Notice that letters A-F are cut up individually but the others are still strips of letters. That so we can slowly build up to putting the whole alphabet together as this students is ready.
Also, S-X were apparently on vacation when this photo was taken!
And last…for now
Numbers match. This page is just like the alphabet but with numbers. This kiddos is still doing the whole number page by strips.
You could add a sheet protector page for extra work if you wanted too. This setup is plenty of work for my students just beginning though.
Wooo That was long. Since you made it all the way here you might as well get something to show for your hard work. Here’s the completely editable templates to make your own morning binders for your kiddos.
*These are completely editable PowerPoint documents. I did use some specific fonts in the documents that may affect the layout if you don’t have it downloaded.
Here’s the fonts it used. (click the name to take you to the download)
KG Second Chances
KG Primary Dots
KG Primary Penmanship
Janda Closer to Free
Let me know if you have any questions or you try them with your class.
Special Education Station