Saturday, August 13, 2011

Morning Work

For our schedule, my students come in at 7:30- we have announcements at 7:55 and we leave for our specials/ pull outs at 8:10, so we have time to do nice morning work. This year, I am going to do something a little different on Friday. In our morning meeting, we will cover a sight word a day. I will put it up on the word wall and we will have different activities for it. At the end of the week, I am going to give them a sheet called “sight words of the week” where students will have to write their sight words of the week with their name and the date. Then it will get sent home that evening so parents can keep up with what sight words we are learning. I hope they will use this time to work with their children on their sight words and spelling but you never know! If you would live a copy of the sheet, visit my TPT store. Its free :)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

My first Pinterest DIY

My teacher friend and I decided to do a DIY project today! We LOVED the crates with the seats and thought, why not give it a go? Now, of course, I probably would have never made them without Jenna cause I wouldn’t have know where to start but 2 heads are better than one, right????

First, we took the advice of going to the grocery stores to see if we could get milk cartons for free. That would be a big NOPE. Apparently they only use cardboard or recycle the milk crates so that was a bust. We decided to go to Target to get our crates. We each got 4 which were about 3.48 or so a piece.

Then it was off to Home Depot! We took the advice of some others and took our crates in. The best idea we had all day. We didn’t have a clue where to go or what we needed. A nice older man found and us and whisked us off to the Wooden Wonderland. Then we met the magician in our wonderland. He knew exactly what we needed, did it and kept a smile on his face the entire time! WOW! We left home depot and had our wood part all complete!

Then we went to Hobby Lobby. We looked at several options for the fabric: table clothes, vinyl table clothes, curtains, sheets etc. It was much cheaper to do the regular fabric. Now, Jenna and I may or may not be terrible at measurement and bought lots of extra batting for the cushion. Anyways, we got really cute fabric, lots of batting and ribbons!

All that was from 11:00-3:00 (lunch was included). Then from 3:00-6:00 we made eight fantastic crates. The first one was the hardest because we had NO idea what we were doing but we got them done!

After a long day, with an awesome teacher friend, I’m exhausted but have 4 really really cute crate! YAY!!!

Mine are the red Mickey Mouse ones- Jenna has the state ones :)

DSC06837 DSC06834 DSC06835 DSC06836

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Math Vocabulary

In my morning message/ calendar/ smart board lesson, I am going to introduce a math vocabulary word each day. I will have a math word wall in which these will go up on. I will not put any vocabulary cards up that have not been discussed. I took Debbie Diller’s math vocabulary on page 105 of her workstation book and made my own math vocabulary. This way, I can show the student the word and place it on the board when we talk about it. These vocabulary words are addition and subtraction. They are on my TPT! add and sub screen

What’s in a name?

If you know me, you know that I LOVE Kevin Henkes books and love to do an author study! This year, I am going to spread out the books instead of do one large author study to help students keep them apart. They also fit with out curriculum much better this way.

To start the school year, I read Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes. If you have never read it, it is about a little “girl” mouse that loves her name until she gets to Kindergarten and the other students make fun of her for it. This is always a great way to help students understand that we are all different.

I did an all about me project last year which was great but since its a new year, I decided to  change it.

This project goes with the book. It has students make a web about themselves. I got the idea Babbling Abby and her web.

It’s on my TPT account for free :)

Monday, August 1, 2011

Roll the Dice

One of my beginning math stations is to practice numbers. I created a sheet for the students to work with and turn in. Students will roll the dice. They will write the number, then they will stamp the number (from the REALLY cute stamps I got from Target), then they will illustrate the number however they want. This is a quick and easy workstation but will help students.

For differentiated learning, you can place two dice in their and have students write the 2 digit numbers, stamp and illustrate.

It will be on the TPT account (for free) once they having posting up.

If you want it before then, leave your email and I will send it!


First week of math

Like I said, I was very busy on vacation and planned several weeks of math. I created my first week of math plans. I think it is very important for students to learn how to use manipulatives which is the basis of the first week of plans. It also has students really review numbers 0-10 and how to write each number correctly. The first week, I do start with splitting them into small groups, but I do not introduce math workstations. I want them to get used to how math will run and my expectations. Here is my first week of math:

First week of Math

Morning Meeting

I just got back from a wonderful week long vacation at the beach where I had no internet and no computer! On top of that there was NO target. I really had a great time though. I took my Math Workstations book and did a lot of planning and creating! I also decided it was time to redo my morning meeting!

I was lucky enough to get a smartboard last year and started doing my morning meeting on it. HOWEVER, it was NEVER exactly what I wanted. So, I created my own but cutting and pasting the slides on others that I liked.

I will not be posting this, because I did not create it all and can’t even begin to give credit since they all came from Smart Exchange. I will list the new parts I have added:

1. Morning Message to the kids. This will become a grammar activity but for the start its just sweet messages for us to read.

2. Calendar- Usual stuff- today is, tomorrow will be, yesterday was. It also included the season.

3. Weather Graph- it includes a bar graph for the variety of weather and a temp. gauge!

4. Math Number of the day- which will be the school day number. I have it represented in numerical form, tallies, place value and money! The place value is very interactive and so is the piggy bank!

5. Math Mind- This is where I will introduce a new math word wall a day and place it on the math word wall. For the first few days they will be the number words. So day one will be the number “one”.

6. Sight word of the day- We do 5 sight words a week, which is one a day. We will place it on the board and they will have white boards to practice writing our words. :) I also included line paper on a slide to show how students would write the word!

If you have anymore neat ideas to add, please share! If you want to see my Smartboard lesson, please leave a comment with your e-mail. I will be happy to share but I DO NOT take credit for creating all the slides.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Flipping over Dominoes!

First, I LOVE Debbie Diller and her books! I’m no where close to being done with Chapter 4 and already have so many brilliant ideas! I can’t even make it through a paragraph without getting an idea for a fun game!

So here is the next game, “Flipping Over Dominoes”- it really is what it says- the partners flip over the dominoes. Best used if you have a set of dominoes up to 6, not the 9. Students flip over all the dominoes so they are unable to see the dots. They each get a domino mat to place in front of them. Each partner flips over a domino. The person with the greatest number on their domino gets both dominoes and gets to place them on their domino mat! When all dominoes are flipped over, the game is over! Great for number recognition and the first steps of adding!

Flipping over dominoes screen

How do you use dominos?

Up until now, I have used dominos mainly as a indoor recess center. Students love to play with them, stack them and make them fall. Why didn’t I use them in math? Well, because I had not seen all these awesome blogs! So, here is how I will be using Dominos as a math workstation.

I created “Domino Dock Up” which is a math mat where students can count- or add the domino dots up! What number they will get is where they will “dock” their dominos! Students can turn all the dominos over- and flip one over. Add it up and place it into their space. Later in the year, students can write the actual equation for an assessment-accountability piece. I plan on using this center for number recognition 1-12, which is in the first two weeks of school.

Where can you find it- TPT store- but PLEASE rate if you take it! Thanks!

Domino dock up screen

We don’t use fancy glasses for shapes

My students thought we would get “those fancy glasses” when we were discussing 3D shapes. I laughed but in fact, it was a great use of their schema! We teach both 2D and 3D shapes but pretty far apart in the school year. I made these in word, they are just the shapes with names. In my classroom, I have a long radiator with lots of empty space. I am going to take these, print them and laminate them. Then I am going to stick magnets to the pack of these so we have an interactive shape wall. I also plan on having math workstations for geometry that will be near the radiator. You gotta use the space you have!

2d screen shot

Number Recognition vocabulary

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I know that I always use my word wall and play lots of games with it. This year, I have decided that I will really use my math word wall and let students see it and know the words. I have made them in the past but they were never really used. My curriculum, the first part we will teach is number recognition and being able to understand basic vocabulary. I have made these vocabulary cards for the math word wall. They are all the same size so they can be printed on card stock and cut out for the wall! Check them out at the TPT store! The numbers are Hawaiian numbers and I think they are super cute! :)

number screen

Mrs. Tabb says “Your a shoe in”

If you have not visited Mrs. Tabb at Just another day in first grade, you should! I love all of her ideas and she is currently doing a really cool give away! She made the comment first graders are obsessed with shoes and they are! They always want to show you their really cool shoes or ask if you have noticed them! She made a really neat unit on shoes! Go visit and look at for you yourself!!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Roll and Build continued

Why not continue the last post and use it with graphing like Debbie Miller suggest? Exactly, I couldn’t come up with a reason either! I made a  graph for students to graph the colors they roll. You can put it in the same workstation later in the year and give them colored pencils/markers or crayons to color it. I know that first grade we aren’t responsible for bar graphs but it will never hurt them! It’s a simple sheet- I made it in black and white for easy copies! Check it out on my TPT and download it with the other game- but don’t forget to rate!

Roll and Build

This is for a math center for number recognition. It’s a quick activity that partners can play. The materials are two different cubes, one number and one with colors, unifix cubes and a mat to roll the cubes on. I was thinking about making paper cubes instead of actual hard cubes, then I can change it and it won’t make a loud noise.

The directions are pretty simple: Students roll both cubes and build the corresponding unifix cubes. If the students already have that number built, they lose a turn. The first person to build all 6 numbers off the dice wins!

Think this will be a great beginning of the year math workstation!

Roll and Build screen shot

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

First Grade Writing

This is just a quick sheet for “First, next, then, last”. I think this is a great planning sheet. The students can draw their pictures for their stages and then write about it. Then students can use this to help develop a better picture and story for the final draft. You know where you can find it! If you have something similar or some more idea, please comment and let me know!


First next then last screen shot

Target strikes again….

I definitely  have a love/hate relationship with Target. I love the dollar section, the clearance, the school supplies and clothes. I hate how much I “need” to go to Target and how much my wallet hurts after I go!

Yesterday, I visited my local Target early to get a netbook on sale. it just so happened the netbook came with a $50 dollar gift card. So I went to visit the lovely dollar section and here are some things I got:

Picture one: Four hard plastic baskets that I’m going to use as their new guided reading baskets. They are super cute and I am working on making tags. It has an example of a tag but I haven’t made the others. Baskets were 2.50 a piece, the stars came in a packet for 1.00 and the ribbon for the tags game in 6 for 1.00

Picture two: I love cute paper! This is 8 sheets of scrap book paper which are beach themed which is perfect for my fish themed room! YAY! Packet of paper 1.00

Picture 3: The green boxes are the flashcards I got which I wrote about in another post. Each box was 1.00 and they will be used for my game boards! In the back in “Great work” stickers for 1.00. I love giving stickers!

Picture 4 &5: THE BEST FIND! These are Addition Learning mats for 1.00 a piece. They are dry erase and easy to check. Each spinner goes up to 12. They spin the first spinner and write the number down in the first box. Same with the second and then they have to figure out the equations! The 5th picture is the back where they will have some practice. These will be a great little center for students to use. I got 3 for the class. I plan on putting it with counters for those students who might not be able to count on using their hand.

OTHER FUN FINDS: I got 2 star pointers for the reading center, 2 packs of 300 beads to use as manipulatives, a pack of construction paper for .99 and some glue!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Out of the Mouths Of Babes Linky Party

Go visit Mrs. Dillard to see her post and the others who have linked up with her!

In my first year, we were walking around a memorial for a previous principal. The conversation went like this:

Makenzie: “Mrs. Todd, what is that?”

Mrs. Todd: “It is a memorial for a principal we had a long time ago.”

Makenzie: “But Mr. Thomas is our principal.”

Mrs. Todd: “Yes, he sure is.”

Makenzie: “That must that man (pointing at the memorial) Mr. Thomas’ great great principal.

Mrs. Todd: “It sure does.”

And these two come from last year:

When learning about 3D shapes: “Will we got those glasses to look at the shapes?”

“Are there a billion people in the world” students asked. “Around that, there are lots of people” Mrs. Todd answered. “I think there are more than a billion” student answered. “What is more than a billion?” Mrs. Todd asked. “A thousand” answered student.

What do animals and spaceships have in common?

They both became a subject of my new game boards!

I went to Target today in search of a sale. I got addition and subtraction flashcards for 1.00! YAY! So, the next logical step was for me to create a game board to use with those awesome flashcards.

I created “Animal Addition” which is a basic game board with lovely giraffe clipart. If they land on a giraffe, their partner will hold up an addition flash card. They can also land on “move ahead” or “go back”. Check out the game below: (TPT for free!)

animal Addition screen

Then, I created “Spaceship Subtraction” which is exactly like the addition game but with cute spaceship clipart. The same rules apply for this game. You can use a spinner or dice. I got 10 dice for 1.00 at the Dollar Store and I got 4 spinners for 1.00 at the Dollar Store!


spaceship subtraction screen shot


Classroom management Linking Party!

YAY for my first linking party! LINK UP and share ideas about your classroom management!

Going into my third year, a lot has changed in terms of my classroom management. The first year, I did a simple three step system. You got silent lunch, laps in recess or a parent phone call. I had some who ended on parent phone call almost everyday to the point where I had to change my punishments. Not the best system.

Last year, I did the card system, I had five colors- Green, yellow, blue, orange, red. If you ended on red, I had a phone call home. It worked much better and I believe only 1-3 students went home on red in the whole school year. I thought that is what I would be using this up coming year, but then I found a LOVELY system.

Thanks to Mrs. Bainbridge, I have adapted this lovely system. (THIS IS HER PICTURE FROM HER CLASSROOM, I have not made mine so please don’t think it’s mine! It is all her and she is genius!) clipchart

I’m pretty excited about using this for the next year. I have even typed the entire behavior letter that will go home in the open house packet. My favorite part is the outstanding. I have had a sticker chart in my classroom both years and my students have been obsessed with doing great behaviors to get a sticker! This year, if you end up on outstanding at the end of the day, you get a bonus sticker!

Link up and share your classroom management techniques that work amazing or the not so good techniques. We can always learn from each other!

Monster Mansion Measurement

I love the idea of using monsters with measurement! I have created a cute monster measurement game that is on TPT.

For first grade we teach non-standard measurement. I created Monster Mansion which is a partner game that requires students to predict and measure how many teddy bears, unifix cubes or paper clips it will take for the monster to get home. 

monster mansion screen shot

Above is a picture of the game. I have also made a prediction sheet for the game. I would suggest playing this in partners because of the math talk associated. It is available at the TPT store for free.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Ladybug’s Teacher Files

A big congrats to Ladybug for reaching over 1000 followers! If you have not checked out her site, you are missing out! It is amazing with wonderful ideas and cute graphics!

She is also doing a giveaway for reaching 1000 followers!!!!

Ladybug's Teacher files!

Fishy Workstations

I am currently in Chapter Three of Debbie Diller’s Math Workstations. If you don’t own it or haven’t read it, it is a must! I can’t wait to teach math this year!!!

While reading Chapter three, which is chalk full of fun information, I decided to take a 5 minute break and create center cards. Of course, my room has a lot of fish themes so I have made these cards for that! I have made two separate sets. One is for the management station, if you choose to use a pocket chart. It includes cards 1-10 in written form with that amount of fish. It also includes 2 meet with the teacher cards. The second set  is for you to label the math centers. They are in standard form (I have been asked to use that word) and have the same fish. The children can learn to match and also they need to learn how to recognize it in both ways!

It is posted on the TPT account (for free). If you download it, please rate is so I know what you all think! My previews don’t work on the TPT so I included a screen shot! :)

math workstation cards for fish screen shot


Cloudy with a chance of……a great book sale!

YAY BOOK SALES! I got an email about a wonderful book sale where all books were .25 with no limit! Yep, you heard me right and it was amazing! It was a little unorganized and you had to search for a good book but it was worth it! I’m so excited about the books I have to put in the classroom library!

 Picture 007 Picture 006

I got a total of 42 picture books for 10.50! Amazing! I did buy lots of Clifford books because my kids really enjoy those! I also got some great finds like “Cloudy with a chance of meatballs”, “The Crayon Box that Talked”, and “Click, Clack Moo…Cows that type.”

Target Finds

I know you love Target as much as I do, otherwise you wouldn’t be excited about reading this! I shop at Target more than I ever should and I love it! I am recently trying to move to the Dollar Store and see what I can buy but I feel like I am cheating on Target! I feel like I can make it up to Target through their dollar section!

I recently saw some of the ABC stamps on another blog and thought to myself, I HAD TO HAVE THEM! I searched my local Target but no luck. I decided I wouldn’t stop so I went to another Target and searched and searched. I finally spotted them because some “grandma” had picked one out of two packs up! I quickly grabbed the other pack along with 2 packs of number stamps. The “grandma” seemed very startled by my move but held her ground. I watched her for a few moments to see if she was going to put them back. No luck, so I only got one back. ** Why do I call her “grandma”, because no teacher could possibly go into the dollar target sections and only pick that one package up.**

Anyways, here is some of my finds:


The first picture is of puzzles. I love these cute, easy puzzles and Target always has them for $1! I put them as a center for the kids. I buy like 10 a year. They fit really nicely in the large plastic crates!

The second is storage. The 4 small pencils trays I got for my math corner (Debbie Diller) and I can’t wait to use them. I got the larger ones last year for each table which worked nicely. This year, they were 2.50 instead of 1.00. I also got a purple paper tray for 2.50. The pink and the blue are actually from the dollar store and I love them!

The third picture is my random things. Of course you can see the stamps up front. I also bought mini expo markers and erasers! WAY CUTE! I’m really excited about the spinners on the left side for my math games I have been creating! Last, who doesn’t need super cute die cut letters for 1.00!

The fourth is another picture of the puzzles.

The last are oven grippers! They are SUPER CUTE and I am going to put them in the big book center. That way students can read with them and/ or act things out with them! WAY CUTE!

I have, Who has: Hour and Half Hour

I know that my students enjoy playing games and I LOVE games that are great fillers! I have been making a lot of “I have, who has” games for all the different math strands. I am working with one for word wall words! I created this one for time. In first grade we only teach hour and 1/2 hour so the game is only based on those times. It is available at the teacher pay teacher store, and it is free. It is with the place value, which will only be free for a few more days!

i have screen shot

1st Grade Social Studies

I have read "Me on the Map" by Joan Sweeney to my first graders and it is a hard concept for them to get! I have tried over and over for them to understand where they live, what the state is called and where we live in the state. Whew! That is all I can say to describe it! (It's almost as hard as looking at the world on a flat map and telling them they can't walk off the world!) I decided that I have to take a new approach! I was on who has a brilliant book idea I borrowed :). Thanks Keep Calm and Teach on!

So, I live in the state of NC which is a wonderful state with lots of fun things to teach about! I adapted her idea to the state of NC. It goes with the theme "North Carolina, North Carolina, What do you see?" It was pretty fun to make and I can't wait to use it in Social Studies! The best part: They can keep the book for their library! I am going to post it on TPT for Free (of course) feel free to download it! Also, if you have a state book that you use or make, link it up for other teachers!!!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

My Classroom!

After reading the Math Workstations Book, I decided I needed to determine where to place a math corner. I am not totally excited about it, but I think it will work pretty good. I also can't figure out where to place my teacher desk??? I know that I am not ready to get rid of it but where does it go?
Here is a picture of my classroom: (I did it in word so I could move furniture around). If you have any ideas or comments, please tell me! I'm looking for as many ideas as I can get!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Math Workstations Chapter 2

Loved Chapter 2! Can't wait to see what the other chapters have in store! :)

Based on her reflection and dialogue....

1. I loved the idea of organizing it all by math strand. I feel like that is the best way to utilize all the manipulatives. I also agree with placing items in a small bag for easy access and being able to use them. I know working with first graders, I have to let them play and I think if I could limit the playing, it would be the very best!

2. Create a plan! I am going to take all my math things out and sort them. Then place them in containers with easy labels. I know what I will teach in the first nine weeks so I will make that accessible. My goal is to be able to use all the manipulatives instead of watching them sit in a box.

3. What do I want to organize first? My 2 math shelves. They are pretty well organized but not labeled so I am not sure what is in them! She suggest taking pictures before and after. I will try that but I am the WORLDS WORST about remembering my camera!

4. What do you have to much of? I know I have tons of unifix cubes! Someone gave me some and I have kept them! I'm not sure what I don't have enough of. I know 3d shapes and measuring!

5. I'm really excited about the math corner but I know that I will need to create it somewhere easy for the students. I love my reading center! I'm going to work on drawing out my classroom! If anyone has pictures of a math corner in your room, please link it to me! I would LOVE to see it!

A lesson that didn't go well with manipulatives would have been time. The kids loved to play with the clocks and just looked at each others. I am going to use the clocks in small groups much more and hold students accountable.

7. I will let students use the manipulatives more. I know they learn so much better with these and I always have let them use them for a "hot second" and then put them away. I will no longer do that. They will be for all students at any time they need to use them!

Can't wait to read Chapter 3!!!!

Math Work Station Chapter 1

So, I FINALLY got my book! I'm more than excited! I opened the package, sat down with a highlighter and a notebook and started to read! I love her ideas and can't wait to use them!!!

My notes about chapter one:
I know that she said model, model model and I learned my first year teaching that not to model over and over was much harder in the end. I know I will be lucky to have a teacher assistant in my classroom for math. I had the idea that I would introduce the work station with the materials. Then she could pull some kids and work with them to reinforce and model the game. I'm really excited to change math this year!

I also LOVED her idea of the clipboard (pg.13). I know that it's an important tool for informal assessment but why I never thought about it is beyond me. I will be using this idea. In fact, I really wish I already had my roster to make this! :) I do have a clipboard with storage so I will be ready with extra index cards, pens and of course stickers and post it notes! I will also keep in the students files so at conferences I can bring up some concerns I saw with their child.

Help me out and give me some ideas that you had about chapter one!!!! If you posted about it, link it to mine so we can discuss.

Seahorse Skip counting cards

I have posted the Seahorse Counting Cards to go with the Seahorse game. The game boards cost 1.50 for 4 pre-made boards. The cards are free! Hope this helps with a quick math center to reinforce skip counting.

For skip counting, I also have students trace their hands holding up a 5 three times. The first 2 times are on the same color, I glue them together and that is our "10". The second one is on another color and that is the "5". Then i have students trace their hands in "2". That is the hard one but that way I have them for their "2" counting. I take their hands (some you can't always use!) and post them on the wall. That way they can always see their skip counting! I will take a picture when I make this year with the students! I got this idea from my wonderful mentor and fellow first grade teacher!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Why not take part in the linking party for schedule. This is my schedule from last year:

7:30-8:10: Arrival/ Morning Work

8:15-8:45: Pull outs/ Specials

8:45-9:15: Morning Meeting and Calendar

9:15-10:20: Whole Group reading (switched kids)

10:25-10:34: MIRP (Monitored, Independent Reading Practice)

10:42-11:15: Lunch/ Bathroom

11:15-12:40: Small Group Centers

12:40-1:10: Recess/ Writing

1:10-1:20: Snack/ Show and Share

1:25-2:20: Math (whole group or small group)

2:25- Pack Up

2:30- Dismissal

This schedule was set for us. I wish I had longer to teach math but it is what it is. I'm hoping this next year we either don't have first lunch and/or first specials. If you have any good suggestions about how to do math in that small of a time, please let me know!

Here is the original linking party. Not sure how to link yet....

Skip Counting

For first grade, we teach skip counting. I decided to make skip counting sea horse game. I love making game boards, printing them on card stock, a quick trip to laminater and you have a game! :) I am working so hard on math centers and would love some ideas! I only had time today to make the game boards not the cards. I made a game cards for counting by 2's, 5's, 10's and 3's. I will make the cards as soon as I can. This is on my teacher pay teachers account for 1.50 for all 4 game boards! And don't forget to rate my products please!

10 things about me

10. I start the count down to Christmas in July. I start listening to Christmas Music in October and last year, Target started putting out Christmas Decorations at my birthday (which is 9/27). I try to get away with putting Christmas thing out at the beginning of November!

9. I love to read! I read mostly romance books or education books. I love reading a series of books. I have plenty of favorites and most of them are fantasy.

8. My first choice in grades was not first grade. I student taught in Kindergarten and loved it! I had never set foot in a first grade classroom until I got hired! Now I love first grade and love the age!

7. My husband and I have been together since November 2000. We met when I was 14 and he was 16. We now have been together 11 years and married 3 years! He is my best friend!

6. I love to eat cheese and like to have it with every meal. I enjoy everything cheese flavored and 99 % of the time will order something if it comes with cheese.

5. I didn't want to be a teacher and didn't decide until I was a sophomore in college. I wanted to be a criminal prosecutor but feel in love with working for kids at an after school program. Now, I don't know how I ever would have been a lawyer.

4. My husband and I are HUGE NC state fans, especially football. We always watch the games together or go to the games. I also am a UGA fan because of my dad. Lucky for me, they have the same colors!

3. I love most things Disney. I collect all the movies and would be pleased to have Mickey Mouse dishes. I do collect Mickey Mouse ornaments and each year I get a new one to add to the tree. I even insisted that our honeymoon be in Disney World (It was :D!).

2. I'm originally from the mountains of North Carolina but have relocated to the middle of the state. I might move back when I get older but currently am happy in the area.

1. I could go to Target everyday and still have things to buy. I buy everything I can from Target and LOVE the dollar section. I am a true impulse buyer and it is the worst in the dollar section.

Flamingo Facts

I came up with this file folder because it would be easy to complete without a teacher and can be used for all levels.

Flamingo Facts:
You take the flamingo fact sheet and paste it to the front of the file folder.
Make two copies of the flamingo sheet and paste it on the inside of the file folder.
There are more than just the blue cards but you can print them out on card stock, cute and laminate. I have included basic addition (1-10), subtraction (1-10) and teen addition (11-20).
I will post it on teacher pay teachers for FREE :) whenever they are done with maintenance! If you want it before then, leave a comment and I can get it to you!

Monday, July 11, 2011


My biggest goal this summer was to create games and math centers/station for next year. Last summer, my main goal was to create literacy centers which I did, but still think they can be altered. Since all my post have been math based, I decided to post about what I am doing for literacy.

I have an amazing team that I work with in first grade. We work together and share students in literacy. We switch students for our whole group reading time and we teach them word study. It is much easier to teach to a class of "long vowels" then it is to teach 10 different groups! For our whole group, we also switch plans.

For this year, we will each write a 2 week lesson plan on a skill (from start to finish). Every two weeks, we will rotate the box with all the read alouds, writing, PA, Phonics and Fluency. We have 5 teachers currently so that is a total of 10 weeks of plans. It's kind of confusing but works wonderfully!!! (comment if you want more information about how we do this)
So anyways, I will write a 2 week lesson plan on Making Connections (one of my favorite units). I will start with text to self and I LOVE using Kevin Henkes books! Then I will move to text-to text and finally text to world. It takes a bit of planning and time to prepare but I ONLY have to make a 2 week plan and can focus on everything else for 10 weeks!

Below are two pictures of connection ideas. They are both posted on my Teachers pay Teachers account for FREE! As I work on my plan, I will be posting more and more ideas!

Making Patterns

Part of the what we teach in first grade is Patterns, pattern unit and being able to extend the pattern to the "x" number.
I created this file folder game which gives them cards to create patterns and challenge cards.

I love the idea of these games because they can do it as a quick center or review! Check this game out at my teachers pay teacher store! It is free!!!

Money Match

I ordered "Math Work Stations" by Debbie Diller but have not gotten it yet! I couldn't tell you how excited I am to get this book! My husband is pretty tired of me telling him all about this book and how I can use it! :)
Before I heard about this book, I have been trying to make some math games of my own. One of them being a money file folder game.

You can find this on my teachers pay teacher (FOR FREE). It is designed as a two person game. The first sheet goes on the outside of the file folder and the second sheet will be placed in the middle. The cards need to be cut out and laminated. The object in the game is to get as many matches as possible. You can match in different ways. There are two money word cards (ten cents), one amount card (.10) and one picture card. As long as the cards are the same money, they have a match! It is a simple game that can be used in centers, independent time or when students have finished their work early!

Will be sharing more soon!


Let's Get This Started!

This summer, I have looked at thousands (or it feels like it) of first grade blogs! I can honestly say I look for resources everywhere and am always a little disappointed when I can't find what I want. These blogs have given be wonderful tips, activities, ideas etc! It really has been my favorite resource! So saying this, I am going to start my own first grade blog to help out others and HOPEFULLY inspire them as much as they have inspired me!


Work Smarter, NOT harder!