Thursday, October 3, 2013

Some Crab Fun with Sight Words!

Hello there!

We just finished up a unit focusing on sight words where we wrote our sight words on index cards and practiced them daily.  I love doing cooperative learning in my classroom and getting students up out of their seats.  As a result, I thought of a fun game that was easy to organize and fun for the students.  First, I had the students take five of their new sight word cards they just learned and put their name on the back.  Then they placed them on the floor (name side up) around the room making sure they were spread out.  Students went back to their seats and when I said "Go!," students had to crab walk to a sight word card.  They could only pick up the card if they knew the word.  Then they collected the cards on their belly.  Having the students crab walk prevented them from going too fast or hurting anyone.  The students laughed and had a lot of fun.  Once all the cards were picked up, students went back to their seats to read them with a partner.  Then we placed them around the room and played again!

There could be many variations to the game.  You could have students collect only five cards and then help a friend to collect five, so everyone gets five cards.  Once you are done with the game, students simply walk around and place the cards back on the students' desks since the students names are on the back. I hope you have fun with this game.  This could be used with spelling words and more!  Comment if you have tried different variations.  We love ideas!!


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Math Fact HELP!

Hello Everyone,

I just wanted to share today two resources that I make available to parents to help with the dreaded math facts :) First off is Xtra Math. If you go to Xtra Math as a parent or a teacher, it is a very valuable resource. As a teacher, you simply log in and sign up all of your students. All you are giving out is their first name and then you print a sheet that is sent home for the parents. They can choose to sign up their child at home, but regardless you can use it in your classroom. It only takes 5-10 minutest to complete and gives feedback to both the parents and teacher to the child's progress. The website is very user friendly. I receive weekly emails that tell me who has done it and how they are improving. All the children start out with addition and move to subtraction once they pass addition. It's great way to incorporate flash cards into practicing those math facts.

Make sure to check out the Xtra Math Website.

Secondly, I want to talk about the app Math Fact Master. I currently have it on my Iphone and I use it will all my tutoring kids. The app does cost $0.99, but it is completely worth it. I recommend it because it allows you to select what your child needs to work on. You also can choose to do just flash cards or a challenge portion where they have to type in the answer. At the end of the session, you can email the results to yourself or the teacher to see your child's progress. It's great because if you know your child struggles with adding numbers +6, +7, +8, you can choose to just focus on those. Check it out!!

Overall, I feel like these are two great resources for you to offer to your students. Enjoy your day!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Hello everyone,

So outside my busy life of teaching, I have begun painting more in my free time. I now have created an Etsy store where I am selling some artwork.  I hope to get more artwork on there soon.  You can click on my banner to check it out!



Monday, September 16, 2013

Family Trees

Hello Monday!
We are having a great time in first grade!  Last week, we learned about when God created the first family with Adam.  To go along with the Bible lesson, the student created their own family trees!  It was so cute.  The students got a leaf for each member of their family.  The students had a fun time and they look really cute hanging on their clips in the hallway.
One of my students needed 13 leaves for their tree! Click here to get the Family Tree printable.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Daily 5

Happy Sunday! Wow I can't believe how fast the weekend has gone. In first grade, Lindsay and I are introducing Daily 5. We are both excited. I did it last year when I taught second grade and loved every minute of it. I love how independent it makes the kids, while allowing you to work with students.
I created three documents to go along with my Word Work station. Above is my "Write your Word Wall" worksheet. I printed it on card stock and laminated it. Now my students can practice writing their word wall words. I love having them use their dry erase boards, but sometimes they tend to start drawing, instead of writing. This worksheet will be a guide to help them when doing word work. I also have a similar document where students get to stamp their word wall words. 

Above I have a sample of my worksheet that allows students to practice writing their Months of the Year and Days of the Week. You can either have students stamp the words or laminate the pages and write with dry erase markers. I'm sure you could utilize magnets with this sheet too! Enjoy your day! - Jenny 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Welcome to my Classroom!!

 Hey Everyone,

 I am having a great start to the year!  I love my little firsties!  So I am pretty much done tweaking my classroom (maybe....) and thought I would send a few pictures of how it turned out!

Here is my classroom library.  I have my books arranged by various topics and genres.  I made some of the labels myself and got the rest from Beth Newingham's Web Site.  The book bins I bought (hoarded really) from Target. A bit pricey at $3 a bin, but they are sturdy, and I can't imagine that I would ever have to replace them. I used colored sticker dots (from Staples) that match the color of the bins to help with making sure the books were placed back in the proper book bin.  I also assigned each bin a letter and put each sticker on the labels and books in that bin. I laminated and used Velcro dots to attach the labels to the bins.

I got the shaggy rug at Ikea for $60 and animal print pillow shams/ pillows from Walmart.

Here is where I keep my students' Daily 5 book bins.  You may get the zebra print number labels for free at my TPT store.  Check out the Daily 5 Zebra labels as well that I use to label my Daily Five posters.

Listening Center

Word Work Center (Click here to get my zebra center signs at my TPT store.)

We participate in the Bucket Filler program in my classroom.  I made this class bucket and students fill out bucket slips to place in it.  Every other Friday, I read a few of the slips and pass out the rest to the students.  I always make sure that every student receives at least one slip.

I also use a Clip Chart system in my classroom.  Students can clip up or down depending on their behavior.  If a student gets on Blue (Outstanding), they get to wear a D.O.G. tag necklace (stands for Disciple of God- I work at a Christian school). I tell them that wearing the D.O.G. tag (I ordered and personalized them at Oriental Trading, breakaway lanyards from Staples) is a huge honor and that students all over the school know that it means they must have been really good.  The students love the recognition, and they get to wear the necklace as long as they stay on Blue.  If a student clips higher than Blue, they are on "Rainbow" and get to "Clip on the Teacher."  The student gets to clip his/her clothes pin onto my lanyard, and I wear it around all day. Click here to get my animal print Clip Chart!

Kagan Cooperative Learning is huge in my classroom.  However, the cooperative learning mats that Kagan sells did not work with my students' desks that not only lift up, but are slanted so everything rolls/ slides off.  As a result, I created my own version of Kagan's Cooperative Learning Mats.  I print them on cardstock, laminate them, and Velcro them to each desk.   Click here to find my jungle themed cooperative learning mats. I offer many different themed mats to choose from on my TPT store to match your themed classroom.  I love using them for Whole Brain teaching as well! 

Here is my Word Wall so far! We add words to it every day.  I love how it turned out.  Click here to get the First Grade Word Wall words.

I hope you enjoy the pictures.  I will post some more later!


A lit bit more of my classroom

Hi again! I can't seem to stay away. I can't help but want to share more of my classroom. First off, if you haven't noticed, my classroom theme is ANIMAL PRINT! I love it! It's so fun and inviting and the kids really enjoy it. 
My first picture is my Welcome sign. I feel like it really sets the tone and is inviting to all those who come to my classroom. Each letter is separate, so I am able to use it vertically or horizontally.
The second picture is my word wall. I have over 100 words that will eventually be on our wall. (I think there are currently 40 on there). The alphabet is animal print (of course!) and the words are all surrounded by a bright green, blue, pink, yellow, or purple border. I laminated them so they will last for many years. I also have a stamp activity that I will use for Word Work that goes along with my word wall.
Finally, my pride and joy, my schedule cards! Every morning I discuss what the events of our day will be. Having a visible schedule helps me avoid the constant.. WHAT ARE WE DOING NEXT?? AND.. WHEN IS LUNCH??