Blog Archive

How to Solve Addition Fraction Problems Visual FREE Printable

We continue our journey with fractions now that the three kiddos have memorized all of their math facts and feel comfortable utilizing those skills in multiple ways.

Princess and Dinomite are grasping fraction concepts quite easily, but Bulldozer is REALLY struggling with how to solve addition fraction problems.

The parts he has the most difficulties with are deciding how to make denominators equal and then what to do with the numerators. He often confuses which number to multiply them by.

I was hoping that with continued practice Bulldozer would learn the steps, but he hasn't.  Even the use of Montessori fraction materials isn't doing it for him.

A couple of weeks ago he asked for a control chart to help.  

This FREE visual printable is the result!

How to Solve Addition Fraction Problems

How to Solve Addition Fraction Problems

There are many ways to solve addition fraction problems.  

I want to make it clear that the techniques used in this printable are not the only ways to do so. 

The techniques in this printable best follow the Montessori approach presented in the elementary math albums and meet Bulldozer's need for simple, concise, step-by-step directions. 

If your student is struggling, we hope that you find it beneficial as well.

There are four simple steps for each and every addition fraction problem. 

In some cases, Bulldozer will only have to work through step one and he's done.

In other problems he'll need to work through step two. 

When steps one and two don't work, he moves on to steps three and four.

Fractions: Addition Clip Cards Printable Pack

Fractions: Addition Clip Cards Printable Pack

The FREE How to Solve Addition Fractions Problem Visual is designed for use with the Fractions: Addition Clip Cards Printable Pack. The freebie covers all concepts introduced within this wonderful set of clip cards your students are sure to enjoy!

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7. Find the printable pack you are looking for listed in alphabetical order, click on it, and viola!

We hope you enjoy your free printable.

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If you enjoyed this post, you may also enjoy the resources below.
Introduction to Fractions How to Reduce Fractions How to Change an Improper Fraction into a Mixed Number Fraction Reduction Chart Montessori-inspired Intro to Fractions Printable Pack Fractions: Equivalence Clip Cards Printable Pack Fractions: Reduction Clip Cards Printable Pack Improper Fractions & Mixed Numbers Clip Cards Printable Pack Fractions: Subtraction Clip Cards Printable Pack Fractions: Multiplication Clip Cards Printable Pack Fractions: Division Clip Cards Printable Pack
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Reactive Attachment Disorder and Puberty

Puberty can be a very hard and scary time to navigate for caregivers of children with Reactive Attachment Disorder.

Due to hormone changes, growth spurts and brain development, the brain and body revert back to what they were like as a newborn and infant, needing to relearn basic skills all over again.

With that reset comes the need for the brain to work through past trauma all over again. 

The longer it took for the trauma to end, the longer this difficult time period can last.

Behaviors can become quite scary. 

What a caregiver thought the child had worked through and moved past, may come back in full force or worse.

Reactive Attachment Disorder and Puberty

This has occurred with Princess and was scariest earlier this year when she wanted to take her own life.

It has also occurred with Sunshine as she goes through precocious puberty. She became homicidal with a significant increase in aggressions and assaults towards others

This is why she is currently in residential treatment.

How do you navigate Reactive Attachment Disorder during puberty?

Navigating Physical Health during Puberty with Kids Who Have Reactive Attachment Disorder

Physical Health

Whether a child has Reactive Attachment Disorder or not, puberty is extremely hard on the body. There are so many changes that take place. So much growth occurs at an extremely fast pace.

We often hear the word “awkward” as a description of the body during puberty, and it’s true! The body is literally learning how to work all over again.

With all of our children who have diverse needs, we’ve observed that during puberty, all of the same struggles they had as infants and toddlers have returned.

When Princess came to our home she did not know how to use her body correctly. She spent a long time in physical therapy.

Over the last year we’ve seen her gross motor skills deteriorate in significant ways. Princess is no longer able to do so many things that she was able to do correctly before.

The biggest red flag was when we gave her rollerblades for Christmas and she couldn’t stand up straight in them.

She has also developed Sever’s disease which complicates things further.

Due to Reactive Attachment Disorder, Princess was not communicating that she was pushing through pain and making accommodations with her body to compensate for lost skills. These accommodations caused more harm than good.

She has been in physical therapy for a few months now and will continue until her body is working correctly again. Progress is slow but steady.

If you notice regression of skills and especially if your preteen/teen with Reactive Attachment Disorder complains of unexplained pain, make an appointment with her pediatrician immediately.

Don’t hesitate to request physical therapy or at least an evaluation done by a physical therapist to determine what’s going on.

If your child worked with a physical therapist as an infant or toddler, there’s a good chance they’ll need to do it again.

Please also know that injuries like broken bones are completely normal during puberty. As the body changes rapidly, the bones have a part to play too, which makes them extremely vulnerable.

Diet during Puberty with Reactive Attachment Disorder

Diet

When Princess came to us as an infant, she had some significant issues related to food. These issues resulted in her needing an endoscopy and allergy testing. Eosinophils were discovered during the endoscopy. Further blood work and allergy testing confirmed allergies and intolerances.

Over time Princess’ gut healed and she grew out of her food sensitivities and allergies.

Fast forward to now, during puberty, and gut issues have returned. We are thankful to say that allergies have not reared their ugly head again, but intolerances and sensitivities have definitely made themselves known.

Princess has now returned to a gluten free diet which has made a tremendous difference with her body functions and her moods.

She tried gluten again over this past weekend, just to see what would happen. Sure enough she became ill AND crashed emotionally.

If you notice significant irritability, mood swings, and rapid, unexpected changes in eating habits, do not hesitate to consult your child’s pediatrician or discuss dietary changes with your child in an effort to help.

If your child is resistant to recommendations, let the pediatrician take the lead and document, document, document!


Amen Clinic identified a part of Sunshine’s brain that was being affected by her diet during her brain scans last summer.

The psychiatrist prescribed her a gluten free, corn free, soy free, dairy free, sugar free diet, because the impact of her diet was so significant.

We could not believe the changes in behaviors when we implemented their recommendations. It didn’t change everything, but helped significantly with her overall health and wellness, which led to an improvement in behaviors.

We often think about diet as one of the last reasons for changes in behavior, but during puberty, it’s definitely one of the first things you want to consider.

Mental Health during Puberty with Reactive Attachment Disorder

Mental Health

It would be absolutely wonderful to see consistent progress with attachment and behaviors through puberty with children who have Reactive Attachment Disorder.

Unfortunately, no matter how much progress has been made, there will be regression during this time.

If a family hasn’t experienced a mental health crisis before puberty, it’s very common for the first one to occur around that time.

If things have been consistently rough, be prepared for things to get worse.

For how long you ask?

That depends on how long your child endured trauma during those early years. 

It may also depend on how long it takes to find the correct medication regime if required.

When the brain resets at puberty, it has to work through past trauma in an entirely new way that matches how the newly developed brain works.

If you’re struggling to understand this, just think about the end of the movie Inside Out when the old control panel is replaced with the new one. There are so many new buttons for the emotions to learn how to use. Not to mention, Riley’s whole view on life has changed.

How do you navigate this time of regression?

Expect it.

Plan on it.

Have resources in place and ready to go!

At home, make sure you have all of the necessary safety protocols in place and working efficiently. You will need them.

If you don’t have a mental health therapist already, do your research and find one that can help.

In areas where that may not be possible, or isn’t the right fit (mental health therapy equals trauma for Princess), now may be the perfect time for the caregiver to start therapy. I can’t tell you how beneficial it has been for both my husband and me during this time.

In our home, Sunshine had in-home emergency mental health services leading up to her residential stay.

When Princess became suicidal, we contacted her pediatrician who met regularly with her to determine a need for medications and/or other services.

We attempted to obtain in-home emergency mental health services but it took forever due to insurance complications and COVID-19. Instead we found a program through our church that we did as a family that helped significantly.

When things hit the fan during puberty with your child who has Reactive Attachment Disorder, please remember nothing is your fault. You are not going crazy. This is tough stuff!

As abnormal as it feels, it’s completely normal.

It’s to be expected.

Even if you’ve done everything right up to this point, things are going to fall apart.

DO NOT BLAME YOURSELF.

Have faith and confidence. You will make it through this.

At the same time be realistic. This is not something that you can do by yourself.

The best case scenario is that your child with Reactive Attachment Disorder and you will need some great therapy.

Worst case scenario, your child may become so unsafe that she is unable to live in the home for a while for safety reasons.

I’ve experienced both scenarios and have lived to tell the tale. You can too!

If you enjoyed this post, you may also enjoy the posts below.
What Is Reactive Attachment Disorder Our Pediatric Mental Health Crisis What NOT to Do with a RAD Child How to Discipline a Child with Reactive Attachment Disorder A Safety Plan for Mental Health 4 Steps to Managing Aggressive Behaviors One Sure Way to Help Your Child Work Through Emotions


Reactive Attachment Disorder and Puberty


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Memorial Day Bundle Sale

Memorial Day has always marked the end of the school year for our family and the start of summer learning.  

It also marks the beginning of my planning for the next school year.

With those two ideas in mind, I'm throwing a Memorial Day Bundle Sale.

Our best, biggest, and most popular bundles are available on sale for 50% OFF!

Purchasing these products in May provides you plenty of time to download, print, cut, and laminate (if needed) everything in time for the new school year to begin. I just love spending the summer preparing everything for the next school year.

And boy oh boy are you going to love the products!

Memorial Day Bundle Sale

The following bundles are staples in our classroom. We have used them for years and continue to do so. 

All of our students have enjoyed them.

What I love most about them is that there is something for everyone, no matter their skill or ability, included in each and every bundle.

Memorial Day Bundle Sale

To purchase your copy of one or more of these bundles, click on the image, scroll down the information page, and click the "add to cart button" at the bottom.

If you are from the EU, please purchase the bundles through Teachers pay Teachers.
Back-to-School Bundle 

Montessori-inspired Back-to-School Bundle

If you are preparing for Montessori preschool in the home or at school, this is a perfect resource to start with at the beginning of the year.  You can't go wrong teachers letters, numbers, continents, and more. The best part is that this resource will be one you use all year long!

The Montessori-inspired Back to School Bundle includes resources for every subject and is designed to be used with Montessori materials.  If you don't have materials yet, that's okay too.  The resources can be used without them.
  The Ultimate Montessori Math Bundle

The Ultimate Montessori Math Bundle

This bundle is HUGE and includes EVERYTHING you could possibly need to teach numbers, counting, addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.  

Contents of the bundle work in both preschool and elementary classrooms at home and at school.

In the addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division sections, each step of learning is broken down. You are provided with 50 problem cards for each step to ensure mastery.  I love that I don't have to come up with my own practice problems!

All printables are designed to be used with Montessori materials, but know the materials aren't required.  

I split up each set of 50 practice cards using 25 for use with Montessori materials, and then the other 25 for when students transition to paper and pencil work.

I can't say enough about the Ultimate Montessori Math Bundle. We have used it for YEARS and continue to do so each and every day.
Montessori-inspired Language Bundle

Montessori-inspired Language Bundle

This bundle is how I teach my students to read, write, and spell.  It is absolutely incredible!  What I love most about it is that it provides multiple ways for students to learn concepts and generalize them to multiple situations.  

No student will be left behind while using this resource!

The Montessori-inspired Language Bundle is divided into four parts. It includes resources about 
  • Letters and sounds
  • Beginning language concepts like CVC words
  • Intermediate language concepts including consonant blends
  • Advanced language concepts including long vowels and phonograms

This resource is great for both Montessori preschool and elementary settings.  It is designed to be used with Montessori matierals, but if you don't have the materials, they can be used without them.

Cursive Montessori-inspired Language Bundle

Montessori-inspired Language Bundle in Cursive

This bundle is the same exact bundle as the Montessori-inspired Language Bundle mentioned above, but in cursive.

Maria Montessori was a big fan of cursive and felt that children should learn cursive before they learned print.  

Today that isn't always the case in classrooms, but for those who want to follow the cursive recommendation from the beginning, this is for you!

In our classroom, we introduced these cursive resources after students are proficient writing letters in print.

Whichever way you decide to do things, the Montessori-inspired Language Bundle in Cursive is the ultimate resource for writing and reading in cursive.

Montessori Grammar Bundle

Montessori Grammar Bundle

If you are planning to teach grammar, whether in a Montessori preschool or elementary setting, this bundle is for you!  It follows the Montessori Grammar curriculum and provides so many beautiful printables, some with true-to-life images for those who need extra visuals.

It's no secret that I'm absolutely in love with the Montessori Grammar Symbols, so it should come as no surprise that I've created an entire bundle dedicated to them.  

Like all of our bundles, the Montessori Grammar Bundle is designed for use with Montessori materials, but if you don't have them available to you, that's okay too.

Montessori-inspired Vertebrates Bundle

Montessori-inspired Vertebrates Bundle

Studying animals can be so much fun with this fantastic animal resource.  It includes great resources for your science shelves, but also provides animal themed printables for use in other areas of the classroom such as language and math.

The entire bundle is filled with true-to-life images that are absolutely stunning.  All contents are designed with Montessori preschool and elementary students in mind. No matter their abilities or skill level, there's something for everyone.

Whether students love animals or they aren't that interested, the Montessori-inspired Vertebrates Bundle is sure to draw them in and bring about excitement in learning.

Montessori Skip Counting and Multiplication Bundle

Montessori Skip Counting & Multiplication Bundle

This bundle is the ultimate resource for kids who are trying to learn their multiplicaiton tables. There are so many ways to use the printables included.  The results of using the bundle are incredible!

The Montessori Skip Counting & Multiplication Bundle is designed for use in Montessori preschool and elementary classrooms at home or at school. All printables are designed for use with the Montessori Math Bead Bars, but can be used without them.

I can't say enough about how beneficial this bundle is while students are learning multiplication facts. It has made all of the difference in our classroom for everyone!

Diversity and Inclusion Bundle

Montessori-inspired Diversity and Inclusion Bundle

This bundle is a must have in every classroom. There are so many wonderful grace and courtesy resouces included.  What I love most about this bundle is all of the activities about emotional regulation.

More than any other bundle, the Montessori-inspired Diversity and Inclusion Bundle focuses on learning about and loving those who are different. 

Whether a child has a visible or invisible disability, the color of their skin is different, or they have two mommies or two daddies, they are included in these resources.  

No matter the circumstances in your classroom, there are resources to address questions children may have.

With all that's going on in the world right now, this is a resource you don't want to be without!

This will be the last time during 2021 that these bundles will be available and on sale. 

Don't miss out on an opportunity to grab these resources while you can.

I promise you'll love these bundles in your classrooms!

Happy Memorial Day!!!
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How to Write a Short Story Chart FREE Printable

 The kids are big into writing stories right now.  In their spare time I find them sitting in their rooms, on their beds, writing for fun.

At times they even attempt to join story worlds and work together to create the ultimate story.  I can't say that always works out too well, but at least they try.

Needless to say, through the process of observation, I realized it was time to introduce how to write a short story with a handy dandy free printable for the kids to use as their guide. 

And so I did!

FREE How to Write a Short Story Chart

How We Teach our Kids to Write

Many of you know that we developed our own way of practicing writing each day in the classroom to meet the diverse needs of our kiddos and co-op friends.  

There is a very specific time set aside for writing, which is short and sweet, and then we move on to other work that does not require the skill.  

We've found the less required writing each day, the happier the kids are and the more they learn.

You can read more details about how we started this journey in our post called Rainbow Writing Prompts.


The Joys of Observation and Following the Child

I wasn't sure how long we'd follow our original writing path but it ended up lasting seven years!  

Then came this year.  

Our daily writing assignments, which usually take Bulldozer 15 to 20 minutes, started taking hours.  At first I was concerned wondering what in the world was going on, but then I observed his process. 

Bulldozer was happy and content while writing.
 
He took the time to research each topic and even asked questions.
 
Instead of writing the minimum six sentences, he wrote an entire page. His writing was beautiful and so full of detail.

Bulldozer was loving the process of writing. It had become an art to him.

And all this from the kid who was extremely delayed in fine motor skills!

Bulldozer developed a hand preference at 8 years of age and slowly started his writing journey from there.

He's the reason that the majority of our work doesn't include writing.

But now... It seemed that the sky was the limit.  

This has been the start of an incredibly writing journey!  
 
When Kids Write for Fun!

How We've Used this Resource

I introduced the process of how to write a story by asking the kids to think of their favorite movie.  We then went step by step through the prompts in the printable and analyzed the movies.  

The kids had a blast once they understood what they were looking for.

Now they've gone through the steps of outlining their own short story and have started writing a little each day, until they're ready to move on to their next task.

There are bumps along the way for sure, but this chart, as Bulldozer calls it, makes all the difference with it's colors and question prompts.

I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

This is a subscriber's only freebie. Be sure to follow the directions below to grab your copy!

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4. Click the confirmation link in the thank you message.

5. Once the confirmation is complete, you will receive another message with the Subscriber Only Freebies Link and Password.

6. Click on link and type in password. (The password is cap sensitive.)

7. Find the printable pack you are looking for listed in alphabetical order, click on it, and viola!

We hope you enjoy your free printable.

Note: If you are already a newsletter subscriber, open your most recent newsletter. At the bottom you will find a link to the Subscriber Only Freebies page, along with the password in case you forgot it.

 If you enjoyed this post, you may also enjoy the posts below.


How to Write a Newspaper Article Learning the Montessori Way: Writing Montessori-inspired Beginning Language Bundle (Pink Series/CVC Words) Cursive Montessori-inspired Beginning Language Bundle (Pink Series/CVC Words) Montessori-inspired Intermediate Language Bundle (Blue Series/Consonant Blends) Cursive Montessori-inspired Intermediate Language Bundle (Blue Series/Consonant Blends) Montessori-inspired Advanced Language Bundle (Green Series/Long Vowel Sounds/Phonograms) Cursive Montessori-inspired Advanced Language Bundle (Green Series/Long Vowel Sounds/Phonograms) Beginner Montessori-inspired Sentence Challenges Beginner Montessori-inspired Sentence Challenges in Cursive Intermediate Montessori-inspired Sentence Challenges Intermediate Montessori-inspired Sentence Challenges in Cursive Advanced Montessori-inspired Sentence Challenges Advanced Montessori-inspired Sentence Challenges in Cursive

FREE How to Write a Short Story Chart


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