Tuesday, August 27, 2013

All About Me!

We have just started our third week of school and I have SO many things that I have planned that keep getting pushed to another day. We have Back to School Night in two days and I really wanted/needed to get our All About Me glyphs completed for our math board. It has been in my plan book since the first week of school. Today, I FINALLY found the time to have the kids make their adorable faces. They were 
THRILLED! 

I love this activity because it incorporates math, art and social studies all in one itty bitty project! What more can you ask for? We started off the activity with the kids answering questions about themselves and writing their answers on their whiteboards. Then, we used the answers to put together our All About Me faces. Here the kids are gluing their hair and hats onto the heads. Every color, shape etc represents something about the child. For example, the color hat is determined by the first letter of the child's last name. 

We worked through the project very systematically. Things could go very wrong if you just let them loose. It was also a great activity to test listening skills. Here are a few of the finish projects:

I displayed them on our math board along with the glyph key so people could see why each child made their faces they way they did. 
After we completed the glyphs, we worked together to complete data sheets about the information on their glyphs. We graphed our birthdays, how we got to school, our siblings etc. They kids loved sharing their projects too! Now we are all set for Back to School night and we can show off all we have been learning these last few weeks!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Five for Friday Wrap Up! & a FREEBIE!

This was a whirl wind of a week! I feel like I was barely keeping my head above water. I have so much on my "to do" list that I am not able to check off yet! The first few weeks are always nutty and this year is no exception. I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to share my week. If you make it to the end of this post, there is a little surprise for you! Here are a few random pictures:
1. We finished up Our Favorite Things cameras from the Bubbly Blond. The kids had so much fun sharing them with each other. They will also look great hanging up for Back to School Night next week. 

2. I finished making my class name tags for our specials classes. 

3. I spent 4 days this week testing all of the second grade students with the beginning of the year Dibels. I am happy to say everyone has completed it and I survived the process!
4. I created tabs and dividers for all my students' interactive math notebooks and got them set up for the year! I am thrilled with how they turned out!

5. I redesigned and updated my Author's Purpose posters. I have created a set of whole and half sheet posters to use for whole group and small group instruction. I also post mine on our class Concept Board and we refer to them daily. Grab your set here for FREE or click on the picture above! I hope you enjoy them!

Happy weekend, my friends!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Today's the Day to Shop Away! What's On Your Wishlist?

It has S-T-A-R-T-E-D.... TpT's most anticipated sale of the year as begun my friends! I can't wait to get my shopping on!

I have spent the last few days "window shopping" and adding items to my wishlist to get during the "Big Sale"! I am linking up with some blogging buddies to share 2 of the most wish listed items in my store as well as items on my own wish list!


The top wishlisted item in my store is My Future Is So Bright Writing Craftivity. This is a great activity for the beginning and/or end of the school year. It makes an adorable bulletin board and the kids love writing about their successes!

My second most wish listed item is my grade level Common Core Standards Checklist for ELA and Math. They are available for grades Kindergarten through Fifth Grade. They are an excellent tool to help keep track of when you teach and/or assess each of common core standards in your class. They are perfect to put in your planning binder or data notebook. I am constantly referring to mine to make sure I have hit all those key standards and they are all in one handy spot!


There are 2 items on my wish list that I am so excited about getting during the TpT sale. Both items are from the Lesson Plan Diva. I have decided to start interactive notebooks with my students this year. I have never used them before, but I think they can only enhance my teaching. I can't wait to purchase her Interactive Math Notebook Problem Solving Packet for 1st and 2nd grade.
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I also can't wait to start using her Interactive ELA Notebook.
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Head on over to the TpT sale and getting your shopping on, my friends!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

First Week Back: Saturday Snapshots!

It's hard to believe that my first week of school is complete! We were so busy this week getting to know one another with tons of fun activites. We still have several to complete next week too! 


Everyone took their first day of school pictures and we put them in these frames to give to the parents at Back To School Night!

We made our classroom banner. Each student drew and colored a picture of themselves and then we hung the banner in our classroom. The banner templates and other getting to know you activities are from my All About YOU! packet.

We completed our first week of second grade books thanks to the Bubbly Blond's Savvy in Second pack! We have several more activites from this packet to complete next week too!

I am so in LOVE with my new classroom library sticks. This all came together thanks to my mom! I was telling her how I wanted to make libary sticks for my own classroom to hopefully help the kids keep my books organized through the year. She walked through my classroom door on Friday afternoon with these in her hand! Just looking at them makes me smile. I can't wait to show the kids how to use them next week.

Thanks Aimee for the adorable B2S button!
If you haven't heard yet... TpT's HUGE Back To School Sale is this weekend! My store is on sale starting today (Saturday 8/17)! Everything is 20% off! I hope you all load up your wish lists and get some great deals to start your school year off with a bang!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Jump On the B2S Sale Train!

My first week back to school is complete! I have 23 little darlings who are eager to learn and I need some more things for my classroom. Thank goodness it is "that time of year". No, it's not Black Friday, yet. But it might as well be in the teacher world. This weekend is Teachers Pay Teachers most anticipated sale of the year! 

Starting tomorrow (Aug.17), everything in my TpT store will be 20% off! I don't know about you, but I am ready to clear my wishlist with tons of things I have been eyeing for my classroom! Here are a few items you might be interested in for the start of your school year. All you have to do, is click on the image to take you directly to each one on TpT.

All About YOU! is a great packet to use when getting to know your new students. I have used all the activites in my classroom this last week and they were a HUGE hit with the kids! We made a classroom banner, "all about me" posters and wrote clues about ourselves for our friends to learn a little more about us. We will continue using the activities in this packet, next week as well.

Most of us are new to using the Common Core Standards. I have created grade level Common Core Standards checklists for the ELA and Math standards for all grades kindergarten through fifth grade. I printed my second grade standards and put them in my lesson plan binder so I can monitor when I teach and assess each standard. I started using it last year and find it to be a great visual for me to know what I have taught and still need to teach.

I have also created CCSS ELA Vocabulary Cards and CCSS Math Vocabulary Cards for kindergarten through fifth grade. They are color coded by strand to make them easy to organize and use. These are great to help reinforce academic vocabulary and serve as visual cues for your students. Below are examples of the second grade cards.




My new Back To School Writing Prompts packet is sure to get your kids writing using the Common Core standards right away! There are two writing prompts for each writing form: narrative, informative and opinion writing. The packet also includes graphic organizers, writing pages, rubrics, student checklists and a craftivity!

The next two items I updated this summer with new graphics and lesson enhancements.

The first is my All About Me Glyph! This is always one of my favorite activities at the beginning of the year because it makes for the cutest bulletin board display. Also, the kids are learning about one another all while using their graphing and data collecting skills. There are ideas to connect the activities to writing and how to display the finished glyphs, as well. 

Finally, I updated my Oh, Boy! It's Apple Time Glyph! This is great to use during your apple unit, fall activites and/or farm unit. These apple glyphs can be two or three dimentional! Math and writing activities/ideas are included as well.

I hope you guys are able to load up on some amazing items! Head on over to my TpT store to see what else will be on sale! Happy shopping!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

My Classroom Digs Revealed!

I am happy to say that I survived my first day of school today! I have a great bunch of kiddos and I can't wait to learn more about each one of them as the year progresses.

I am excited to be linking up with Blog Hoppin', Courtney from Swimming Into Second and Jessica from Tales of a First Grade Teacher to share my classroom digs with you! Be sure to check out their links at the bottom of this post.


This is a view of the main entrance to my classroom. It shows my classroom rules, student work cubbies, lunch and snack baskets etc.

This picture is a view of my room from my team partner's doorway.

This is our class birthday board which is on the door connecting to the room next to ours. I grouped the kids together and took pictures of them today.

This is our ELA Concept board to go along with our reading series! It features the Big Idea for the Unit, weekly theme connection, essential question for our weekly story, author's purpose, story genre poster, and a graphic organizer used to access information from the story.

This is our classroom banner that we just completed today. If you follow me on Instagram, you already got a sneak peek of this. All the templates for the banner are in my All About YOU unit along with several other getting to know you activities. I think the kids did an incredible job!
Our behavior clip chart and classroom helper board. The job description is written on each of the job pockets so students know the expectations of them.

This is a very new addition to my classroom-like TODAY new. I have always used hand signals in my room but I have never had visual reminder cues. I found these EDITABLE hand signals from Keeping It Captivating and I have fallen in love because I can make them work for me! I placed these in the front of my classroom above my alphabet cards.

This is my area to display student writing. I do NOT have very much bulletin board space so I made individual cork boards for each student and mounted them to my cupboards. Now I can hang a piece of writing from every student at the same time. The kids wrote clues about themselves and drew self portraits. Tomorrow we are going to read them and guess who each student is. This activity is also in my All About YOU packet.

Well, there you have it- an inside look into my home away from home! 

Now, head on over to Swimming Into Second and link up with Courtney to see some more incredible classrooms. Just click the link below to take you there.

I am also linking up with Jessica from Tales of a First Grade Teacher to share my classroom digs! After you check out her adorable classroom, link up and share yours too!
 I can't wait to see them all!