Wednesday, May 23, 2012

End of the School Year and New Beginnings!

I cannot believe this school year is over! The last day of school is always bittersweet. With the end of this school year comes some very excited days for our little family. My husband just graduated with a degree in forestry and started his big boy job today! YAY!! The Lord has continually provided for us through his journey back to school and now blessed him with a great job. My theme verse during this season of our marriage has been Philippians 4:19. Thank you Jesus!

Don't you love new beginnings? Found this surprise in our yard yesterday! So fitting for this new phase of life!

The end of the school year means planning has begun for next year! Our school district is going into a pilot year for Common Core. We have been asked to use our old basal readers and any trade books we can find in the library to plan for next year. I'm excited and concerned all at the same time. We have seven first grade classes, which means LOTS of book/resource sharing! I know many of you bloggers out there are already implementing Common Core in your classrooms, and I will be stopping by frequently to get ideas and ask questions!

To add to the celebration at our house, we are T-minus 15 days until our family Disney World Trip! I cannot begin to tell you how excited we are... or maybe just me! This will be Randy's first trip to Disney, and I would love suggestions on what to do! Please help!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

I'm a Big Kid Now Part 2

I can't believe this year is almost over! Do you ever have nightmares that you have forgotten to teach something and the kids are already out for summer? I DO! I always worry that I have forgotten something! Ready or not they are moving on!! Maybe the longer I teach, the more confident I will become. I'm hoping the more experience I get in first grade the better I will be able to prepare my kiddos for second grade. :)

The kids are LOVING "Second Grade Math"! We have worked on double digit addition and now double digit subtraction. Here are samples of our matching game.

If you would like this download click here.

Leave a comment and let me know how you feel this time of the school year? Any advice?

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

I'm a Big Kid Now!

My babies are getting ready to leave me and move on to the BIG SCARY SECOND GRADE!! I have been trying to pump them up by showing them "2nd Grade Work". The past two weeks we have worked on double digit addition and just introduced subtraction. So far they love it! I haven't gotten into regrouping yet, just focusing one adding the ones place first and the tens place last. We have worked problems on the big board and their favorite, the "little boards." To mix it up I decided to make it into a fun and colorful activity.

First you cut apart the problem cards and laminate. The kids start with card #1 and use the little answer cards to show their answer.

Once they solve the problem, there is an answer sheet included for them to record the answer. My goal is to make similar activities for subtraction and regrouping. If you would like to purchase this activity click here. Let me know what you think!

Giveaway Winners!

And the winners are....

Congratulations ladies! Originally I was only giving away free downloads to 5 people, but since there were only 6 to tell me what they wanted everyone is a winner! Yay! Hope you enjoy your FREE downloads!!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Giving Tree Unit

School is winding down quickly! Last week we finished up our basal reader, and I knew I wanted to do something special these last couple of weeks. My kids and I LOVE Shel Silverstein's poetry and have read his work all year. So this week I decided to do a unit on his book The Giving Tree.

I'm thinking next week we may focus on the poetry, but for this week just a focus on giving. On Monday when we first talked about giving, all the kids wanted to share what Santa brought at Christmas. BUT by today we were sharing ways we could give such as: helping Mom clean, picking up sticks in the yard for Dad, donating old clothes to those in need, etc. I really want my kids to have a heart for others!

We have really focused a lot on writing this week, which has been great considering how quiet we have had to be on the testing hallway!! YAY for Spring Fling tomorrow! My kids are dying to run around and actually TALK!

We put all of our writing together to create a "Stories of Giving" book.

This little girl wrote about someone she knew that was a giver. I thought this was so sweet with Mother's Day just around the corner!

For this topic the kids had to write about a time they gave something to someone else.

Here is another book we made called "My Giving Book". They had to think of four gifts they could give to other people.

I really hope my kids leave my classroom with a simple understanding of being selfless and taking time to help and give to others. AMEN?!

This unit also includes a long e sort and story element graphic organizers. If you would like to purchase this unit click here.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Teacher Appreciation Week GIVEAWAY!

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week! I find it ironic that Mississippi has state testing during teacher appreciation week this year. I have spent the week trying to keep my firsties as quiet as possible, because our class is actually located in the 3rd grade hallway. Shh!!!

To celebrate teachers, I have decided to do my very first GIVEAWAY! I only have 12 followers as of today, but I have LOTS of visitors each day. My goal is to share my ideas with other teachers through blogging. Blog hopping has been a great resource for me during my transition to first grade, and I LOVE all the great ideas I see other teachers posting. I hope this blog can do the same for you! Yay for teacher blogs!

The rules are simple and the deadline is Sunday! May the odds be ever in your favor!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

It's Raining Adjectives!

Ok so the year is winding down and I'm trying to review and really work on our writing skills. So last week for language we did an adjective unit. We started with an outdoor reading of Eric Carle's Little Cloud. The kids actually gave me a round of applause when I finished the book. It's funny how they think the lesson is so different when we are in a different atmosphere! We spread out in the school yard and watched the clouds for various shapes. They drew what they saw on their papers. One little girl said this was her favorite lesson of the year! Guess I should teach in an outdoor classroom more often! :)

The next day in small groups we worked on writing sentences using adjectives to describe the clouds we saw outside. Here are some finished products!

We also did some adjective brainstorming to help us write about rainy days and rainbows.

One day we used our senses to help us brainstorm more adjectives. In whole group I used an apple as an example, and the kids helped me put adjectives on the board to describe how the apple looked, smelled, tasted, felt, and sounded. Then they got to pick their own object and use their senses to describe it. Here are a few!

We also did and adjective sort and adjective search. Here is the adjective sort! The boots have adjectives that describe the noun on the umbrella.

As a culminating activity, we made "Adjective Art". The kids used watercolor to paint a rainy day scene. Here are a few that were drying!

Later, the kids made a list of adjective to describe their art. So much fun with adjectives this week!

To get this complete unit click here!

Perfect Saturday...

Don't you love this time of the year? I love my job, but I'm SO looking forward to summer! Today definitely gave me the itch! Every year our town has an art fesitival called "Day in the Park." It begins with a 5k run through historic downtown Laurel. My sister-in-law and mother-in-law ran with me this morning, and we had a sweaty blast! I'm so happy I didn't pass out on the side of the road!

(My favorite sis-in-law Michelle, "THE QUEEN" Elaine, and Me!)

After the run we went home to clean up and headed back for lunch and a fun "Day in the Park". We took our dog Jack and ran into a few of my firsties! We rode around in the Jeep with the doors off all day. (We are those people!) And then found ourselves buying crawfish for dinner! A fabulous day in the south always revolves around food!

Perfect ending to a perfect Saturday! Hope y'all enjoy your weekend!!