Saturday, December 31, 2011

100 Technology websites to visit's been a while since my last post.  I am not sure where the year has gone!  I have a fantastic class this year and have done so many fun things with them!  A week before Christmas break...I had bunion surgery...worst pain ever...the recovery...that is!!!!  I have been laying around for the past few weeks and will be posting some stuff soon...until are some links you might want to check out!  Happy New Year!!!

100 Technology websites to visit.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Fall Activities

I cannot believe it is fall already.  The first month of school has gone by so fast and we have had so much fun.  We are now starting to do many activities related to fall.  Our first big project was our DOWN, DOWN poem that we did.  We located OW words in the poem and then ripped pieces of paper to look like falling leaves.  We glued these around the poem.  The steps of what we did are listed below.
I have uploaded many other activities that we are going to be doing during our fall unit to my TPT store.  I hope you are having a great fall!

In this unit we will be learning about graphing, concepts about print, sentences, OW words, ABC order, punctuation marks, and syllables.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Watch Me As I Grow: A Collection of Self Portraits/Writing Samples Throughout the Year

Watch Me As I Grow
First Grade is a huge year of growth for first graders.  Each year I do a scrapbook for my kids with lots of pictures throughout the year.  In this packet I am including the “main pages” that I put into my scrapbook.  Each month we do a number of different things that I hold onto to share with my first grade parents at the end of the year.  I start with the cover.  Each month I have the kids do their self portrait.  This is the first page of their monthly collection.  I then have them do a name writing sample and they write as many words as they know how to spell.  I then include a class picture and a couple snapshots that I have taken throughout the month.  I put this book together month by month so that the first grade parents can see the progression that their child has made throughout the year.  I sometime add random journal entries in these books, or whatever else I have collected throughout the year.  Have fun!
Clip Art From:  Creative Keepsakes & Scrappin Doodles

You can purchase all 40 pages at my TPT store by clicking on the link:

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Parent Information Night: Guided Reading Idea

It's been a busy beginning of the school year and I am loving my class.  We have been sooo busy learning about each other and how to work well together in our classroom.  We have learned rules, routines and we have been learning each other's names.  To top all lf that off...we had our Parent Information Night last night.  One of the areas that I talk about is Guided Reading.  We play a game (from Mad Gab) where I give each person a card.  I have them try to read the words and make sense out of them.  Most people cannot figure out what is on their card or what the words mean.  I tell them that this is what kids sometimes feel like when we hand them a book to read.  For most of our kids, the words are foreign and really don't mean anything.  I then tell them that we need to teach kids strategies to figure out what the words mean.  I have them try to say the words slowly and think about what makes sense.  After reading the cards, some parents are able to figure out what their words mean.  This is so much what like reading is like for our first graders.  They need to learn to use strategies, such as looking at picture clues, re-reading the words, asking what makes sense, etc.  Finally, I have leveled books (a 3, 8 and 16) to show what the different levels of books look like.  I am downloading the cards that I put out at PIN for the parents to read. 

                                                                Click here for picture cards

Monday, August 29, 2011

Writer's Workshop Bin Labels

Today was officially my first day back at school.  After sitting through four hours of meetings this morning and working another four in my classroom, I still feel like I have a lot to do.  Today I spent some time creating some labels for different parts of my room.

Throughout the year my first graders write different kinds of books during Writer's Workshop.  I have them put completed books in a bin with their name on them.  At the end of the year, we celebrate our writing accomplishments during Author's Tea...where we read our best story.  Let's face it...most kiddos coming into first grade are barely writing.  By the end of the year they are creating books.  That's a lot to be proud of!!!

                                                          Click HERE to download labels

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Reality Finally Set In...

 I packed up my car...

 It was full!

 View as I entered my room...

 Everything in the corner...

Minor heart attack....

Looking to the right of my room...

My boys came and brought me McDonald's for lunch!  This really made me smile!!!

And a GIANT COOKIE.  I ate it all!!!!  The chocolate chips were the size of quarters!

All my laminating on the floor...

Another view....

Love my new sign!  Thanks to was free!

Labels on individual book bins for reading...

I had to take this picture of my trash.  It was proof to me...even though it didn't seem like it, I actually did get stuff done!

I couldn't avoid it any longer.  I finally went back to school to start setting up my classroom today.  We have workshops starting on Monday with time set aside to work in our classrooms...but let's face it, with me being a social person and with team meetings scheduled, I knew I would not get ANYTHING done in my room with other people in the morning. I packed up my car (with all the stuff I have been collecting and working on at home) and headed into school.  I was there from 9:30 - 6:15 p.m. or so.  I feel like I got nothing done and one of the reasons is because I have discovered the blogging world.  I feel like a brand new teacher because of all the ideas I have found on blogs that I follow.  I am soooo excited to start the new year!  I took some pictures of my room I started and as I walked out the door. I have sooo much left to do!  I'll post pictures later of my walls and areas of my class.  Monday is coming WAY to soon!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Summer Fun

So...this isn't really a school post...well maybe a little bit...but not really. After being out of school since June 5th, I have spent every day with my 2 kids and I LOVE it. BUT...out of the 19 or so days we've been out of school, it's rained almost EVERY single day of them. We had maybe 2 really NICE days where we sat out at the pool and I fried myself because I didn't wear sunscreen. Odd that I lather it on my own kids...and lecture my kids at school about it...but I didn't do it myself. So for 1 1/2 weeks I was in pain and learned my lesson. Anyway this past week has been rainy, and I have blog stalked a lot and have gotten most of my lesson planning done for September and 1/2 of October. My husband and I also sat and bailed water out of our sump pump for 2 hours early one morning this week because we lost the power and because of all the rain...we didn't want our basement to flood. I have also have my 2 kids attached at my hips because at almost 4 feet tall they can't let me go out of their sight because of the 1 inch centipede we saw crawling in our bathroom the other morning...and crazy...but they think it is going to find them and eat them up. We have researched centipedes and found they are pretty harmless, but that still isn't preventing them from sleeping in my bed at night. I think I am going to pretend lie and say I found it and vacuumed it up! After this week, and the constant begging of my friend to come with her to Country Fest, and the week I have had...I decided at last minute I was going to go. SOOO...tomorrow morning I leave my babies (yes they are 7 and 9 and I still call them my babies) with my hubby. I was running around and doing last minute things and had to clean all the school pictures off my camera (which I was sad about...but there were over 500 of them since April). I had to do it because I am so convinced Josh Turner is going to find me out of 10,000+ people and sing..."Why Don't We Just Dance" to just me! :) I found this one picture on my camera that I wanted to share before I go because I know many teachers were probably feeling this way during their last weeks of school...and it's how I feel now! I took it during our chick unit at school in April...and is NOT dead!  Hopefully the rain will clear up for the next 4 days because I am taking mini vacation from my vacation! :)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Getting To Know Your Students

I start every year with a book about us (each child in our class).  I sent home the templates during our Open House in the fall.  As each kid brings them back, I insert them into sheet protectors in a 3 ring binder.  I have a cute cover on the top of the binder,  The first pages are of me and my family.  The kids absolutely LOVE this book.  In the past, I took the pages out and sent them home with the kids, but 2 years ago I did not.  My kids LOVED looking at this bookand loved reading about kids that I have had in my class in the past.  Some of the kids they played sports with, some were neighbors and some they went to daycare with. 

Ending Sounds in Words

In beginning of the year we work a lot on hearing sounds in words.  We listen for beginning sounds and ending sounds.  When doing free journal writing time I will not tell my kids how to spell words.  I will either refer them to their word walls on their desks, the word walls in the room or I will tell them to sound out their words as best as they can.  At first they ask a lot...but they know that I won't tell them...I will only encourage them to use their strategies.  Soon they are hearing beginning middle and ending sounds in their words.  This activity that I am posting works with ending sounds in words.  Students will look at the picture card, say the word and say the ending sound that they hear.  They will then place it on the correct mat that ends with the same sound.  Finally they will record it onto the recording paper.  Enjoy!  If you like this activity leave me a note! :)  Tell me what else you would like to see.

                      Click here for ending sounds in words activity

Fire Safety

I have just completed my fire safety unit.   I will be adding some freebies to my page soon.  Head on over to my TpT store if you want my complete unit.  Here are some samples of my unit.  Included in it is:  ABC order activity, syllable sorting, puncuation posters and worksheets where kids have to finish the sentences, a stop, drop and roll activity and a form to fill out with one question kids have and one thing they already know. 

Hop on over to my store by clicking here-->Fire Safety Unit

Monday, June 20, 2011

Bus Safety

Every year I worry that my first graders will get on the correct bus at the end of the day.  BUT I worry more that they will get home safely.  During the first weeks of school we discuss how to wait for the bus safely, ride the bus safely and get off the bus safely.  I worry that they won't look both ways before crossing the street, or that they will get hit by a car.  When I was younger, I had a cousin that was killed because he was hit by a I want to teach each and every one of my kids the safest way to get to school.  You can check out the mini unit that I created on bus safety at my TpT store.

Click here to go to my Bus Safety Unit

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Syllable Sort

I am slowly learning about the Teachers Pay Teachers store and finally loaded my first activity.  I had hoped to upload a whole unit...but learned the hard way that I should have done all the activities in one document, so for now I am going to be uploading a few activities separate from each other.  Go to the link to check out my first syllable activity.  Each card has an apple word that has one or two syllables on it.  First graders will look at the word and decide if it has one or two syllables.  They will then place it on the correct mat and record the word on the recording sheet. 

                                                 Click here to check out my first activity