Sunday, September 2, 2012

Back To School Freebie

Let the fun begin!  I start back to school on Tuesday and I am very excited to meet my new students.  I have been busy making some new things for my classroom.  I created birthday certificates to help my students celebrate their special day.  Click on the link to get a copy of this freebie.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Product Recommendations for Teachers

I was thinking it would be great if we could share our favorite products with each other and learn from each other.  I definitely have found a lot of useful products created for teachers on Teachers pay Teachers, but I also have two other products that I use every day in my classroom that I find very beneficial.  Let me state that I don't get any commission for the shout outs for these products.  I just find them so useful that I thought I would share with you.

The first product I love is Nicky's Folders

I use these two ways in my classroom. 
The first use I have for them is for the student's home folders.  I have NEVER had to replace a folder for a student due to it falling apart.  These folders are built to last.  I can also personalize them because you can put sheets in the front and back of the folder.  Here is an example of what I put on the back of the folder.  You can see I put all of the word wall words we cover in first grade, a chart to 110 and a numberline so the students can use these as a resource at school or at home.  On the front, I put a page with their name, my name and a Bulldog (our school Mascot).

The 2nd way I use the Nicky's Folders are at my Work on Writing area and my Word Work area for Daily 5.  I put a copy of the activity on the outside of the folder.  My students can look at the front of the folders to see the choices and then once they have made a choice they can go in that folder to get the corresponding paper.

The second product I recommend is planners from School Mate.
When I taught 2nd and 3rd grade we used these more as a traditional planner and we would write the dates of the class activities as we became aware of the dates.

In first grade, my students write in them daily.  This helps me cut down on having to type notes to the parents all the time to keep them updated.  Examples of things we might write are:
1.  Test over coins on Wednesday.
2.  We had a fire drill today.
3.  Tell your parents 3 things you learned about the monarch today.
4.  Reminder - 1/2 day on Friday.
5.  Math homework due on Thursday.  (I don't have set days for homework.)
Parents are required to initial the planner each night.  This helps me know that they are reading the communication from school instead of throwing it away. 

I also keep track of the student's behavior in their planner and write all communication with parents in the planner so I have a record.

I will post some picture this week to give you better visuals.

What is your favorite product?

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Correct Letter Formation in Handwriting

Looking for a way to help your students form their letters correctly?

After trying handwriting practice sheets from several different sources, I decided to create my own.  The practice sheets I have created have a dot on each letter.  The students place their pencil on the dot to start their letters.  This is to get them to learn that all letters start at the top.  This product is available in my Teachers pay Teachers store by clicking on the picture.

My Summer Reading Plan

Every teacher dreams that their students will read all summer and that they have instilled a love of reading.  Unfortunately the truth is many of our students don't read all summer long and they return to school reading at a lower level than when they left.  Parents get busy and may not make reading a priority.

Why not doing a lesson on keeping their brains smart over the summer? 
Talk to your students about what they can do over the summer to keep themselves reading.  Help them brainstorm ideas as to where they can get books, magazines, etc.

Ideas: Go to the library, swap books with a friend, shop at garage sales, download on a Kindle or other device . . .

Have your students write a reading plan.  Have them include when they will read, where they will read and how long they will read.

Ask your students to display their poster in a place where they can see it all summer long.  Hopefully, the visual will help them remember their plan.

Here is a FREEBIE poster that you can use with your students.  Just click on the picture.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Father's Day Book/Project

For those of us who are still in school in June, I created this Father's Day Book. I am going to have my students and my own kids make it.  It is available in my TpT store by clicking here.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

3 Addends Freebie

I saw a poster like the one on the right on pinterest. What a great visual to show the students ways to make 10.  So I decided to make a poster too and then I created the 3 digit addend freebie to use with it.

My students and I did this yesterday when we were adding three numbers.  I teach the students to look for two numbers that they can add up quickly, like two numbers that equal 10 or a double.  On day one of this lesson, I had the kids circle the two numbers that equaled 10 in the corresponding color or the double.  Some of the students were still having trouble, so I created the freebie on the left to help them.  I had them color the rainbow and then they colored the numbers in each problem that made 10 with the corresponding color.  Yeah!  Everyone got it today!  Click on the picture on the left to download this freebie.  The rainbow prints a tiny bit blurry, but it is fine after they color it.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Mother's Day Freebie

I love Mother's Day!  The kids are so cute with all the sweet things they have to say about their moms and sometimes they are just flat out funny with the things they say.  My own kids give me the royal treatment on Mother's Day.  I am so blessed to be a mom to four wonderful kids.

 Here is a Mother's Day Card Freebie that I make with my students every year.  Click on the picture and you will be able to download the poem and questions for free.

My students and I are also going to make a book for their moms for Mother's Day. This is a picture of the cover of the book. It is black and white for the kids to color.  It has  a cover and 4 pages of questions for the kids to answer.  It is available in my Teacher's Pay Teachers store by clicking on the link below. With the download also comes the coupon book. My own children saw me working on this and they each made me print one out for them.  They are already excited for Mother's Day!Mother's Day Book and Coupon Book

Sunday, April 15, 2012

I Got Tagged

It is my last night of Spring Break!  Where did the time go?  I am looking forward to seeing my students and I am really looking forward to not being able to get into my kid's Easter candy all day long.  The Rolos and Reese Cups keep calling my name. 

I am not looking forward to going to bed early.  I really enjoy being able to stay up late, but back to my 10:00 bedtime.  Here is my final Spring Break post before I hit the sack.

I am a newbie to the blogging and today I discovered the game of tag.  I was tagged by Tonya Dwyer. She asked me these questions.  What a fun way to get to know each other. 

1.  Coffee or tea I so wish I liked coffee, but try as I might I just can't drink it.  I am just starting to like tea.
2.  Teachers Pay Teachers or Teacher's Notebook?  Teachers Pay Teachers for sure.
3.  Dog or cats?  I have 2 dachshunds, Gus and Oscar.
4.  Summer or winter?  Hands down summer!!!  I live in Michigan and our winters can get pretty cold and snowy.  However, this year we had the mildest winter that I can remember.  Yeah!!
5.  Backpack vacation or beach?  A backpack vacation sounds fun, but my family and I always vacation at Sanibel Beach.  I love to walk the beach and feel the sand between my toes.
6.  Book reading or blog stalking?  I love to read!!  I am always looking for book recommendations if you have any.
7.  Meat or veggies?  I am not big on veggies.  I could eat chicken every day of the week.
8.  Married, single, engaged or other?  I am married to a great guy for 11 years and we have 4 beautiful children.
9.  Giveaway or freebies?  Freebies
10.  Nightlight or darkness?  Definitely darkness. 

I am suppose to tag 10 more people, but off to bed I go.  I have 30 little ones counting on me to be rested and ready to go!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Listening to Reading

Have you read the book Betty Bunny Loves Chocolate Cake?  What a cute book about a bunny who needs to learn to have some patience.   I just got this book from my book order last week so I am sure it is still available if you are interested.  I created a Listening to Reading extension for this book. Here is a freebie of the listening activity I created for it. Just click on the picture and you will be able to download and print it.

If you like this activity and are looking for more Listening to Reading extension activities, check out my product in my TpT store. It has activites for 52 books. I purchased all of these books and CDs through my school book order. Just click on the picture and you will be directed to the link for this product.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Read to Someone

This year my school started doing the Daily 5.  My students love this part of our day.  To keep my kids talking about what they are reading I made these bookmarks for them to use during Read to Someone.  On the back of the bookmark, I put reading strategies they can use to help them coach their partner if they get stuck on a word.  Click on the link below to download this freebie from my TPT store.  If you use it, please take the time to rate my product.  I appreciate it!
Read to Someone Bookmark and Coaching Strategies

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Word Wall Clue Hunt

Ahhh! Spring Break is finally here. As much as I enjoy being with the kiddos at school, I have been looking forward to a break and spending some time with my family. Hopefully, we have a few nice days to get outside. It is still cold in Michigan. I also thought Spring Break would be a perfect time to explore blogging about my first grade classroom.

Word Wall Clue Hunt
Like most first grade teachers, I am always trying to think of fun ways to practice and review our word wall words. My students love to cheer and chant them. They also enjoy doing a Word Wall Clue Hunt.

When we do a hunt,  I give my students clues for 10 review words that are already on the word wall. I will describe the clues that I would give for the word "ate."

1. The word that I'm thinking of is a verb - an action word. (I give the students time to read the words and see what verbs they can find.)
2. This word has a long "A" vowel sound. (I give the students time to look at the words again.)
3. The word that I'm looking at is on pink.  (The words on my word wall are 8 different colors to help the students find words.)

By now the students would have guessed that the word is "ate." Then I have the students turn to their learning partner and put the word in a sentence to match the picture or I would say, "Yes, the word I was thinking of is "ate", The boy ate the hamburger." The words on the word wall all have pictures to help the students make connections visually.

After we find 10 words, the students choose 2 of the words and make new words with the same spelling pattern.
If I can spell "ate", then I can spell; mate, rate, late and date.
Click on the picture to download this freebie!

Visual Word Wall Words
My Visual Word Wall Words are available through my Teachers Pay Teachers Store.