Stress Free homework, Seat work, or morning work & free sample!

Update: All of my Homework Helpers featured in this post are now available in a bundle. Click HERE!

So, it's spring break in Florida and it's COLD! Well, cold by Florida standards. We're on vacation in Orlando and have a poolside cabana booked and everything...and it's pretty much just sitting there. Sixty degrees is way too cold for this girl to get in the pool. Sadsville. But we're making the best of it and just enjoying some downtime. Of course, I'm never far from my laptop, but I actually really love having uninterrupted time to create and blog. Today's post is about my newest obsession, different ways to use my monthly Homework Helpers pack.

One of the best things you can do for classroom management is have a consistent routine. That's why I like having something my kids can handle independently but is still a bit challenging and fun for them. This year, it's been my Homework Helper packs. I started out making them with first grade in mind, so I was surprised when I tried them with my own class and they really enjoyed them and actually needed the practice with the skills on each page.

Almost immediately after I posted the first pack for sale back in November, someone asked me to post a copy with the word homework removed so they could use it in class - brilliant idea! In the November through March packs I included two separate files, but for April I just removed the word homework altogether so that you can use the pages however you choose - homework, morning work, seat work, or even enrichment activities! Or mix them up - I've made them progressively harder to include new skills we learn as the year goes on so even though the format is familiar, you won't hear your kids claim that it's too easy, boring, or repetitive.

Each set has seasonal graphics and activities to keep the kids interested and teach them something new. I researched all kinds of different holidays and celebrations for each month so that besides the obvious, there are pages with topics like Golfer's Day, the first space shuttle launch, Children's Book Week, Poetry Month, and Scrabble Day. Making the Scrabble Day page was a serious nightmare labor of love, starting with making my own little baby Scrabble-like tiles. In fact, I have to share that page with you because after all that work I want it to be used by as many people as possible! Just click here to download that page along with my Poetry Month page for free. {Wait till you read my poem about parrots and carrots. I have no idea where this stuff comes from...}

One of the things I always, always, always think about when I'm creating is "Is this worth the copy?" I know that copy budgets are limited and I often find myself at Kinkos paying for copies myself. So I want to be sure that I pack each page with so much relevant, rigorous, meaningful work that the answer is always - yes. So with these sets the kids will spend time searching a book they're currently reading to find certain parts of speech, they'll read clues and use phonics and critical thinking to determine a word, they'll practice editing and grammar skills, they'll get some review and practice on a math concept or two and they'll write a sentence or explanation on a given topic. To me, that's definitely worthy of a copy. And removing the stress of finding appropriate homework, morning work, or seat work that will keep the kids engaged and excited is a huge weight lifted. I've been asked if I have a bundle of these for sale - not yet. But as soon as I create the sets for May, June, September and October I definitely will. However that's not likely to happen until the summer.

So be sure to download and try out the freebies here and let me know what you think! 

And just a couple of little updates - Ashley B was the winner of the Kindle Fire giveaway. Yay! I hope you all really loved the free resources as much as I did. I'll definitely be using more of them with my kids.

And finally, the printable companions have now been added to all of the writing task card sets for December, January, February, March, April, May, and June as well as
Bundle 2. Now I'm working on the rest to complete Bundle 1, which will be done way before we need them for next year.

Well, I'm going to get bundled up and find something fun to do today. Shouldn't be too hard - after all this is the happiest place on Earth, right?


  1. These are awesome! Is there a way to make the bottom part (where they find out the value of the word) editable, so I can change out our weekly words we use at our school? I'd love that!

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