Sunday, October 27, 2013

Red Ribbion Week & Random

Hey blog friends! 

I've been slacking on my blog a bit! I want to share with you some of our Red Ribbon Week doors from this past week. These are all of my first grade teammates doors.
Be Drug Free Anything Less is Despicable! 

This is my door. :) I got the idea via Pinterest! The kids made the iPods and wrote on them iPledge to be drug free! and signed their names.

On the left side she posted all of her kids putting fake bugs in their mouth. Super silly and fun!

We promise to "leaf" drugs alone! 

We don't fall for drugs! She had the kids all sign a leaf.

The small sign on the tree says "Drugs make you batty!" All her kids made bats and sign their names in white crayon. 

I think they are all pretty awesome, cute, and creative! We had a contest where admin voted on doors. I won for my grade level. I was kinda floored because I never win anything. My class got some rocking guitars keychains and Twizzlers as a prize. FUN! 

I just discovered this great site...check out this awesome FREE math resource: 

Online Math Games by DreamBox Learning

There are several math games for K-7 using interactive boards. I will be using this for warming up their brains for sure! My kids love anything to do with our Smart Board!

In other news, I have parent-teacher conferences this week! I had 17 out of 18 parents sign up! So I have many meetings before and after school. I have also started AAA tutoring to help 3-5 graders build their reading comprehension and raise their test scores for the FCAT (our state standardized test). It is an hour each morning. I tutor one group for thirty minutes and then they go on the computer for Reading Plus and I tutor another group that was just on the computer. 

I'm enjoying this "chilly" front on the east coast and looking forward to Halloween this week! I'll post back here on Friday with all the fun that happens during our week.
Have a wonderful week! 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

I heart school shopping!

Our school district gave us a debit card to use for classroom supplies this year. We just got it a few weeks ago and I've been looking for deals before I purchase anything. I got a 50% of coupon for Lakeshore tonight so I decided to go ahead and spend the card!

I love Lakeshore Learning materials because the stand the test of time and last.

Here are a few things I got: 

Word Building Blocks: I thought these would be super for word work. The kids will use these to make their spelling and sight words.

Lakeshore Word Building Blocks

Wipe and write number strips: These are perfect for math centers! My kids use their number lines on their desk all the time so this will be great for them to use on the floor or even at the computer.

Write & Wipe Student Number Lines - Set of 30

Lowercase magnetic letters: I have a mix of letters I've collected over the years but I don't have enough vowels and I'm missing some. This will be a good addition to the collection of letters. The kids use these during word work to make their spelling and sight words. 

Magnetic Letters -...

I also picked up some new exemplar text for Common Core and easy readers. Some of the titles include books with the titles: How People Learned to Fly, Frog and Toad, Zin! Zin! Zin! a Violin, and  Hi! Fly Guy. I picked read aloud stories, poetry books, and informational text for a healthy balance. 

I also stopped by Joann's this afternoon for these awesome Native American headbands. Our first grade is doing a Thanksgiving program in November. Half of our kids will be Native Americans and half will be Pilgrims. We can't wait to tell the true story of Thanksgiving. Our program is based off the alphabet book "T is for Turkey." 

Have a wonderful evening! 

Friday, October 4, 2013

1st week of October {Five for Friday}

I can't believe it is already October! This school year is just flying by! Time to link up for another Friday to show you all about my week!


We have a furry friend in our classroom! I just adopted a guinea pig from a teacher who could no longer have two. Our principal made a rule that teachers could only have one pet per classroom so this teacher had to split her guinea pigs up. I took over the little guy. My kids could not be happier! 

I  LOVE having a classroom pet. He is an inspiration for writing, keeps them quiet when he is napping, teaches them about healthy fruits and veggies, and taking responsibility. A special thanks goes out to the Critters in the Classroom blog! It helped me to get things going with our guinea pig.

My kids named him Shadow. We love our little friend!


We have been learning our doubles facts this week. My kids love this doubles video.
They also love to use these Halloween erasers as counters.


Fall is all around our classroom now. I put up fall decorations this week and the kids wrote about the season.


We had our Boosterthon Fun Run this week. This is a great fundraiser that promotes health and raising money for a good cause. The kids had so much fun running their laps! (think 5k kid style)  I think the program helps character building and is a positive way to raise money.You can read more the Fun Run here: Boosterthon Fun Run  Our school has used this fundraiser for the past three years to raise money for technology. Now every classroom has a SmartBoard! 


Not the greatest picture but this is our brag box! Let me explain...our staff morale has been low and we need a way to pump it up! Our old principal used to write us sweet, encouraging e-mails or leave notes in our mailboxes. We thought we could continue doing that with each other by writing positive things on a little note and putting in this brag box. At the end of our team meetings our team leader will read the notes. Hopefully everyone will feel more encourage, uplifted, and ready to take on anything! At least that is my thought. I'll let you know next week how it goes! We want to stay positive and continue to lift each other up through changes that are happening. I hope this helps foster our love for each other even more!

Hope you all have a beautiful and restful weekend! 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Five for Friday {Open House Week}

Hey lovelies!


This was such a busy week! I had Open House on Monday, had Progress Reports due Tuesday, was out for a training on Wednesday, stayed super late at school on Thursday finishing work, and unfortunately attended a funeral of a co-worker on Friday. Thank goodness for the weekend!

1. Here is a little snapshot of my Open House.

You can check out how my Open House from this post.

2. I can't believe I already did Progress Reports!! Eek! I've already had my kids for six weeks! 
Parents just signed up for Report Card conferences! This year is just flying by!

Check out their amazing writing from this week! They are already growing so much!

3. I just went to a training for an intervention program called Voyager Passport. It is scripted so there isn't much leeway in things I can do. I understand the program wants to make it predictable for the struggling students. It contains the 5 components of reading and we start using the program at the end of the month for our tier 3 students. The program does have a lot of progress monitoring so there is tons of information for RTI.

4. Here is my beautiful new Common Board.
For each subject we have a standard, essential question, goal, scale, and tracking for students understanding of all that! Whew! It is so much information but here it all is on this board!

Huge props to my teacher friends who helped/did the board while I supervised!! I LOVE my team! They are the most wonderful and supportive team a teacher could ask for! We share everything, encourage each other, help each other, and motivate each other to do our very best! I honestly don't know what I would do without these ladies this year!

5. Sadly I went to a co-workers funeral this afternoon with my team. This was a wonderful co-worker who had been battling cancer for a year. He was such a great man who always had a smile and a Gator hat on. He helped our team so much! He always made sure we had copies....this seems silly but in a school full of 1,275 students copies can be hard to come by in a timely manner. He always just took care of our team and looked after us. His family was comforted by the support of our school and I'm glad I went. He'll be missed!

On a happier note next week we are getting a surprise in my class. I must be a crazy person to take this on or else really LOVE my class this year. I think it must be a bit of both. I can't tell you just what it is just yet but you'll see next week. Leave a comment and guess what "it' is.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Open House

I just had my Open House this Monday! Here is what I did to prepare for Open House.

I sent out several reminders by putting it in the weekly plan (sent home each Friday) and e-mails.
I copied lots of important handouts for the parents to help their child succeed in school focusing on reading and math. I gave the parents a bookmark to encourage chapter book read alouds together at home and some popcorn for popping in our room.

The kids made these adorable pennants for their parents with their goals for the year.

I made a powerpoint which you can download here in a PDF. I presented this to my parents so they could know all about our class. After the presentation I e-mailed this to the parents.

I made these magnets for the parents to hold their kids work up on the refrigerator.

It was a successful Open House! I didn't have the best attendance only 10 out of 18 parents came. But all the parents got most of the information from the e-mail and paperwork. I know it is going to be a great year!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Wrapping up the Week

Just reflecting on my past week with my kiddos! My students are getting into their routine and meeting my expectations! They are really doing a fabulous job with everything I put in front of them and I'm super happy with my class this year! I am still being very strict with them but I think they are really starting to know me and the lighter/silly side of me. I'm still feeling like this multi-tasking teacher though: 

This past week we had three birthdays in our class: Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Parents must have been busy in January of that year! I have five kids with birthdays in September. The kids were super excited to take home the birthday bag and eat cupcakes in class.

This week I had my kids bring in family photos. I sent home this letter explaining that I wanted the our classroom to represent their families and feel more like home for my students.

This is how I am displaying their family photos. All of them aren't up just yet but I think they look really nice! Each picture is above that students' cubby.

I also attached these boy/girl signs I've had for a long time above their notebooks. I separated their notebooks into cubbies and wanted to make it easier for them to get them quickly. This was my solution! These notebooks are not kept in their desk because they are used for centers not desk work. I have a readers response journal, poetry journal, and spelling journal. I also have a science journal in their right now because we haven't used those just yet....eventually those will be in their desks.

Speaking of science....I have tons of little scientist who love exploring! This week we have been talking about making observations and sorting objects. We made a anchor chart about what making a good observation looks like and sounds like. We also made another anchor chart about sorting objects by color, size, shape, and texture. I didn't take pictures because we make them together on the SmartBoard and their is too much glare. I'll have to try and figure that out. Anyway I made these observation trays for my kids to observe and sort. They loved this and were so excited when they got to switch trays. They all had magnifying glasses which are totally not necessary but a fun tool to use.

This week I also took some time to catch up on things I like! I started working out with some co-workers and we're doing the T25 workout. It's great because it is only 25 minutes but it's pretty intense. My legs were sore! I also read the Divergent series this week. Yes, I finished two books in one week. These books are amazing! It was such a fast read! I started last Sunday and finished the first one on Friday night. Then I immediately downloaded the next book Insurgent and finished it today. Yes, I am fully aware I'm a book nerd. I love it! Now I'm waiting for the third book to come out October 22. I already pre-order it!

Through all of that I'm getting ready for Open House tomorrow night! Stayed tuned this week  to find out all about how I do Open House! Have a great week!

Monday, September 9, 2013

September Style {Monday Made It}

Whoa it is Monday...the weekend went fast! Today was a crazy day filled with lots of kiddos (a teacher had to leave unexpectedly so the other teachers absorbed her kids) but also full of fun because I threw those lesson plans out the window. Only for today...I wish I could for the week lol. We read a funny Curious George book, practiced Daily 5, did math centers, wrote about our weekend, explore and observed nature in science. 

Here is what I have been making so far for the month of September: 

1. Take home bags:

I decorate these bags with paint pens. As you can see I have a birthday bag, student of the week bag, and estimation bag. The kids love taking home these bags! The bags are fun but encourage reading, writing, estimating, individualism, and creativity!

I just added this to my TPT store last night.
You can use this product as an assessment for addition fact fluency, in small groups to learn facts fast, or in math centers. I use this product as practice for learning math facts fast with a sand timer. The student write down their answers on whiteboards or say them aloud. This would be a great tool to use for student who struggle seeing the pattern in addition and need extra support. If you laminate the cards students can write and wipe answers. 

Hope you have a lovely evening!