May 25, 2016

I Know Your Team is Ready for Summer!

Orange" you glad it's almost the end of the year!?
No really...aren't you???

There's still so much going on in our first grade classroom but I know my firsties, myself, and my teammates are all ready for a much needed break after a long hard year.
So I picked up this cute freebie from A Cupcake for the Teacher's blog and slapped it on an orange pack of gum for my lovely team members.
Click on the picture below to snag this freebie for your EOY gifts!

Did you catch my post yesterday with parent volunteer freebies?
Show some appreciation for them too! 

May 23, 2016

That's Just Part of My Character!

One of my favorite reasons to teach first grade is because I can be a bit OVERLY silly sometimes and they get a kick out of it!

One of my favorite lessons this year was one I knew I had to do when I saw Michelle post on her blog about it. And of course I'm almost positive the kids loved it as much as I did!

During our character trait unit, one skill we worked on was labeling how characters felt on the inside and looked or appeared on the outside. 

We started out by pretending if I was a character. Little did they know I'm truly acting most of the time, HA! They each got either a purple or pink sticky note.

Purple was for outside appearance.
Pink was for inside traits.

Each student got to label me with their trait and then we turned around and did the same thing to a partner. 

We also practiced this skill with a few cute books throughout the week.

And my sweet friend Michelle put together a freebie that goes along with No David!
Find it HERE.

If it's too late in the year for you to do this lesson, I definitely recommend you putting it in your teacher "vault" for the years to come!

May 19, 2016

Need a Quick Gift for Volunteers?

My teammates are always amazed by how much I delegate to my parents.
I am always sending things home for parents to help out with.
Whether it's tracing, cutting, labeling, etc. I like for them to feel like they are a part of our work.
AND it makes things easier on this teacher right here!!!
For those moms who are willing to lend a helping hand, I like to get them a little gift of appreciation at the end of the school year.
I head to Bath & Body Works to pick up some smell good hand soap.
With those in check, some baggies, ribbon, and my free printable......

Here is what I turn them into...

"Thank you for your helping hands!"


Check out the FREE printable below for your EOY parent gifts!

May 18, 2016

Reviewing Math Skills:Fractions

In our district we have standards based report cards which means students show progression throughout the entirety of the year. In order for their report card to reflect their progressions, we have to re-assess skills taught each nine weeks. 

So at the end of the year, we review ALL math skills and re-assess for mastery. 
We definitely have to review differently than we previously taught to activate that prior knowledge and get the wheels turning again, especially with only days left.

When thinking about reviewing fractions, I decided to pull out my gobs of sticky notes and almost dried out playdough!

First we reviewed equal and unequal.
Each student got one pink and one blue sticky note.
They were to cut up the pink into equal parts and the blue into unequal parts.

We stuck them to the SmartBoard.

Then we did a similar activity with two more sticky notes. 
This time I had them divide one into halves and the other into fourths. 

The most fun part was cutting playdough according to my instructions.
We took shapes and imprinted them into the playdough.
Each student got a popsicle stick as their "knife".

Some were cut into halves, fourths and equal parts. 
Then came the assessment...and now for the grading. Sigh.

Onto the next review topic tomorrow!

May 17, 2016

End of Year Keepsake

I can't guarantee this is an easy end of the year project BUT I can guarantee that your kids will love it
Hands down!
{Pun intended}

It's our first grade tradition to make an end of the year pillowcase keepsake.
I start off by sending home a note for each student to bring back a white, new, clean pillowcase.
(The clean part is most important!)
{Click picture to download}

Just in case, I take load them up (literally) into my washer to make sure they are all clean.

If you have parents who love to volunteer their time to help, this is definitely a helping activity!
I purchase these transfers. I found them at Wal-Mart.
On these, I print the poem below.
{Click on the words to download the printable poem}

Talk about precious.

I honestly have not ever ironed on a transfer to a pillowcase.
(This is where mom help comes in)
I send them home for a mom to iron on and she returns them.

Next step, painting day.

***IMPORTANT: You must mix the paint with a textile medium in order for the paint to stick and not wash off. We mix the two together in bowls.

We lay out each pillowcase and put wax paper inside.
This prevents the paint from bleeding through.

19 kids.
19 hand print on each pillowcase.
You do the math.
(See why you need moms?)

After drying, students walk around and sign their names with a sharpie.

That evening I take the pillowcases home:
Roll them up

Tie with ribbon and add a cute nametag.
{Click picture to download}

During our awards ceremony, I pass them out as they take on the look of a wrapped up diploma.

So long first grade!

April 27, 2016

Momma's Day is Coming Up----need ideas???

Momma's are VERY special people in our lives.
We love to celebrate them and make them feel oh so special.
Here are a few ideas I've done in the class in the past for my firsties' momma's. 

--Circa 2013--
This year, we dyed carnations and tied a cute little poem to go with them.
We also drew a self portrait of our moms.

--Circa 2014--
We drew our best portrait of our moms and put filled out a hilarious questionnaire.
 Let me just tell you, first graders have no true reality of weight/height/etc. 
These are guaranteed to make some mommas laugh! 
We also made an ice cream cone with adjectives that described our moms. 

--Circa 2015--
Last year, we brainstormed reasons why we loved our moms.
During writing, each student picked their favorite reason and wrote it on a white board.

I had prepared a backdrop with the words "I love you because" and students held their whiteboard for their perfect picture opp.

This year, I will be combining a little of all past ideas.
What does your class do to celebrate all of the wonderful moms?

April 21, 2016

Adverbs, Anchor Charts and a Giveaway!

Adverbs in first grade.
Enough said.
So we simplify them according to our state standards: adverbs that tell when.

We started learning about adverbs through writing. 
I had students write a sentence with a noun, an adjective, verb and then we would tell when with the adverb. We practiced stretching sentences out quite a few times.

Then I remembered this freebie I saw over at Smitten with First's blog.
So I adapted it to fit our adverb lessons.

We started the craft by writing two sentences together (that is after completing 5 whole group).

They had to write the last 3 sentences themselves and assemble.

Most of the students took their adverbs from our anchor chart, but some came up with their own words that told "when". 

This chart, along with all my others, led me to create this printable anchor chart resource.
I use them all.year.long. 
 I introduce each new type of grammar with them, carry them with me to our small group table, put them on our chart stand during our whole group writing lessons and then refer back to them.

I'd love to giveaway a set of my printable anchor charts!

Leave a comment below with your guess of how many school days I have left. 
The 2 closest people will both win a set of the charts for FREE!