Can, We, Work, On, Commas, Please!?

One of my school’s key standards for the month of November is commas.  It’s one of my favorite skills to teach because there are just so many different and fun activities to do with it.  My favorite activity is making “Commapillars”.  I usually make these when I’m on my 2nd grade part of the loop so I didn’t do them this year.  I can try to take a pic of the one in my file if anyone is interested.

This month I did a few activities which I’d love to share with you – one of which I was observed doing.  I don’t have any pictures of that one.  Obviously, I was being watched!  LOL  But I do have the materials and I’d love for you to have them!

Around the room hunts are some of my favorite things to do with the little ones.  But I like to give them a twist.  I posted a while back about a hunt I did with Pronouns – You can read about it here.  Basically, I take sentence strips and lay them around the room.  Then each student is given a card which they then have to match to a sentence strip.  This activity is a neat twist on the “Around the Room’ type activities that we all love to do.  To make it more fun, I try to make sure that the students get to switch cards and we play many times to make sure whatever the concept is, we truly get to practice.  Here are some photos of us doing this activity with commas.





For this activity I took the 6 comma rules we were working on:
*After Yes/No
*After a name
On index cards I wrote each rule 4 different times – which gave me 24 cards in all.  Then I made 4 sentence strips for each comma rule.  On then was a sentence that needed the comma.  Therefore each index card could potentially be matched to 4 different sentence strips and each student had a match, no one left out.  After switching cards a few times all of my students got to practice each rule at least once. They had a blast.  Once they found their sentence strip, they would sit next to it and place their finger(s) where the commas should go.  It took 45 seconds or so to walk around the room to check everyone’s and then we continued to play.  🙂  This activity can be adapted with lots of different skills.  Let me know if you try it!
The lesson I did for my observation was more of a sorting lesson.  I modeled reading cards with sentences on them and inserted the comma in its place and then sorted the cards based on their rules. I warn you – this is not ‘pretty’ but it did the job!  You can click on the photo below to grab the modeling activity and cards.
For practice, the students were given a larger version of the above chart.  I drew them on large poster paper.  Students were given index cards, on them were sentence again with missing commas.  In groups, the students drew in the commas and then sorted the cards on the mats.  To help differentiate the lesson, I had my lower ability students only focus on a few rules, and then higher students did all 6 rules.  Below are the index cards.  They make index cards that can go through the printer, or you can just print and cut out the cards.  Snag them below!
Can’t have a lesson without a quick You Do/Assessment.  I differentiated these to match what the student’s practiced.  There are three – one for each level!  Click the photo to download them as well 🙂
Whew!  Dont you just LOVE commas now!?  Like I said – I do!  Since we’ve now learned all about them we’ll be ready to review during spiral learning in the upcoming months.  So I created a fun Christmas Commas activity just in case I missed my dear commas in December.  We actually used part of it already – 🙂  This activity pack has 4 printable worksheets and a sorting activity that can be used as a small group intervention or a center.  I hope you’ll check it out!
What are YOUR favorite comma activities?  I’d love to hear from you!  The 1st three people to comment will get the Christmas Comma pack for free!  Make sure you leave your e-mail!

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I’m a wife, a mommy of 3, blogger, and a full time teacher author and presenter. I love to read, shop, and spend time with my family! My hands are always busy, but my heart is so full!

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