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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Welcome to 1st grade!

After a rough start to the week, things are finally calming down...marginally. Welcome to the world of first graders! Thank goodness for the helpful (and patient) teachers at my school showing me the ropes. I have owls all over the room from a set I bought from DK Coleman at TpT, so my kiddos keep bringing me drawings of owls to hang up. I thought I'd make my first bulletin board match the theme.

Monday, August 26, 2013

1st day of school!

It was a Murphy's Law kind of start with, I woke up at 2:30 this morning...and just stayed up, went running about 5:30, thinking it might give me a little energy to get through the rest of the day. I was wrong! Got my senior off to school okay, my 7th-grader missed the bus (or, the bus missed him)! They changed the bus routes without letting us know! So I drove him to the middle school while my husband attempted our daughter's hair (yikes)! Got back just in time to put on a little mascara and go, hair still wet, bags half-packed. (needless to say, I cried most of the mascara back off before the end of the day). Unsure of the procedures at my new school, half my firsties came right to my classroom, the other half wandered around the playground, making us about 5 minutes late to P.E. Thankfully, the P.E. teacher was about 5 minutes late also! A surprise assembly forced me to cancel my back-to-school read-aloud, and I only got halfway through my school required class meeting lesson. It took us 4 trips back and forth down the hallway to learn how to walk down a hallway without pulling papers off bulletin boards, tackling each other, or someone getting lost. My oh-so-cute owl bulletin board project that was supposed to take 30 minutes took and hour and a half, and my first sight-word lesson was completely cut, pushing the rest of them back a day. By the time all the kiddos found their bus or their parents, it was time to go, so no chance of regrouping and getting ready for the 2nd day of school. Oh's to another exciting, exasperating, exhausting, and completely fulfilling school year!
3rd grader

12th grader

7th grader

Friday, August 23, 2013

One of My Favorites

I just finished my school's open house. I had 20 firsties enrolled, and gained another two before the evening was over! Since I've moved back to 1st grade I dug out some of my favorite units and revamped them a bit. To celebrate back to school, I decided to upload my thematic unit on apples. It's on sale at my TpT store from now until the first day of school--August 26. I hope you have as much fun with it as I do! You may also like my letters and sounds assessment FREEBIE...

Click on the picture for the link to my TpT store.

Monday, August 19, 2013

I love surprises...but not this kind!

All summer long I believed I'd be teaching 3rd or 5th grade this year. A few weeks ago it was 3rd grade for sure. Just last Wednesday, I was switched to 1st! Talk about a change! Of  course, this is after my room was all set up for 3rd grade. It only took 3 days to take down everything and start over. All I'm waiting for is a reading group table, then I'm ready for the kiddos!

Here are some before and afters:
My room as I first got it. Yikes!
All ready for 3rd grade!
Calendar math wall

Carpet area--my wonderful principal bought the carpet at Home Depot for me, vacuumed the rug underneath, arranged the carpet, and then vacuumed the stray fibers! 

job chart


Something new for my reading strategy display. I've tried the CAFE in the past, and it just didn't work for me. I saw positive results with some kids, but not all. So I'm picking and choosing the pieces that work best for me. We'll see how it goes!

cute little tables instead of those big, bulky desks

another view of my tables

word wall

And I'm through!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Back to School Survival Kits

My official start of school is next Wednesday, when I get to go to meetings, and trainings, and more meetings before the kiddos come back on August 26. I've always made "survival kits" for my students to take home on the first day. This year I updated them with a super cute border from, but the first time I printed them off they were way too small! So I updated them once again. You can find them at my TpT store by clicking on the link:  See what you think...

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Number of the Day

At a 2nd grade teacher friend's request, I've made Number of the Day activity sheets. All activities meet math CCSS for the Numbers and Operations in Base Ten domain. The 3rd grade version also includes a few standards in the Operations and Alegbra domain. Best of all, they're completely free! Click on the link for the grade level you want.

Number of the Day 1st Grade

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Back to School Menus

It's time to celebrate setting up a classroom, writing welcome letters, getting new class lists, and revised class lists, and more revised class lists, hunting down enough desks, decorating bulletin board, and all the other stuff we never have time to do. August just isn't long enough! To help you out a little, I have created a spelling and writing menu freebie for back-to-school fun. Click on the link to get a copy.

Back to School Menu Freebie          Back to School Menu Freebie