Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Throwback Thursday and a Classroom Tour! :)

Annnnnd....We're Off.....!!! Another school year is underway.  What a fun week I have had with my new little third graders! Here is a quick tour of my classroom!  :)

My little "Tissue Paper Pom Chandelier" adds a bright pop of color in my reading corner. 

This is the view from my desk....This is sort of the calm after the storm....4:00 in the afternoon!! Just 20 minutes earlier, this classroom was buzzing with activity.  :)

Classroom Jobs chart is ready to be put into action tomorrow!  

I can't wait to begin our study of different literary genres.  It is definitely one of my favorite unit to teach in Reader's Workshop!

Click below to pick up your copy! 


And Now... Throwback Thursday!! Today, I am linking up with Cara from The First Grade.  This little post is from February 2010 from when I was teaching first grade!! Each year we have "B.E.A.R." {Be Excited About Reading} Week.  It is a fun way to celebrate books, and we also used this week to teach a mini unit on bears.  On Friday, we had a read-a-thon and students brought in sheets or blankets to build caves and "hibernate" with a good book.  :)  


Curl Up and "Hibernate" with a Good Book!

Today, we built "caves" in our classroom out of blankets and sheets. We pretended to hibernate like the bears that we have been learning about this week. All of the first grade students cuddled up with their favorite books in one of the caves that they "built". It was a fun morning!!

The caves in our classroom.


Friday, August 9, 2013

Throwback Thursday...on Friday...Ha!

Wow!! This is such a busy time of year!!! I have been getting my classroom together, buying school supplies {for both my classroom and the little sweeties}, and not sleeping very much!! There are so many things to think about this time of year!! I just keeping making "To-Do" lists left and right....unfortunately, posting for Throwback Thursday did not make the list, so this is my Friday edition of Throwback Thursday.  :)  Make sure to pop on over to Cara's blog, The First Grade Parade, to join in all of the fun!! :)


This Throwback post is from March of 2012.  It is a sneak peek at some of the fun things that we do
to prepare the kiddos for the standardized tests we take in the spring.  I love my awesome team! These ladies come up with the best ideas!! Do you do anything fun to prepare for "Testing Season"?  I would love to hear any of your ideas!! Have a great weekend!! :)


This year, our class has worked so hard and we have learned SO MUCH!!  I am very proud of each and every student in my class this year.  We have had lots of fun learning together and during the month of March we will get to prove our learning by showing what we know on the ISTEP test! Of course, we decided to throw in a little bit of fun to go with our serious preparation..... :)

Right before the big day, we had "Rock Star Day" !! Of my goodness!! Was it a hit!  The students {and teachers} got to dress as Rock Stars for the day.  It was so fun! The students wrote poems about a topic that we had learned this year, and then performed the poems at our Rock Star Concert.  Of course, Pop Rocks were served at this event.  :)  It was a really fun way to get everyone pumped up and excited to "Show What They Know"!  :)  Here are some pictures:

My awesome third grade team....I was probably a little too excited about busting out my hair extensions from my wedding!! Ha! :)

And here are the awesome third grade "Rock Stars"!!!!

The kids had so much fun, and I think it really helped ease some test taking jitters!! Below is a fun activity for preparing for the written portion of the standardized test!! :)

This little lady, whose real identity will remain anonymous, is who our class deemed as "Mrs. ISTEP", the lady who grades the ISTEP test. We thought this is how she might look like before she had the chance to read about all of OUR AWESOME ISTEP answers.  We printed her picture and the students have been brainstorming ways that we can "charm"  Mrs. ISTEP and make her our new friend.  

We created this chart together.  For number four, we have talked a lot about using  SMART answers.  We have an awesome Reading Coach who came into our room and taught us the following about using SMART answers:


 We have been practicing this all year.  The students are doing a great job!  

This was a fun adjective activity.  First, we thought of adjectives that described Mrs. ISTEP BEFORE she read our ISTEP test, and then words that described her AFTER she had read our test.  We also drew before and after pictures.  :)
BEFORE picture 

AFTER picture

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Researcher of the Week and a Freebie!!! :)

I am working away in my classroom!! Somehow, I seem to always leave with a bigger mess than what I started with?  Does anyone else feel that way? This time of the year is so fun, but also so exhausting at the same time.  :)  I thought I would take a second to share a fun little idea I started in my classroom last year- "THE RESEARCHER OF THE WEEK!" Last year, my school became a STEM school, so I am always looking for ways to make my classroom a "little more STEMMY"!!  Haha!


My Students LOVED this program.  They had so much fun wearing their lab coats in the STEM lab and watching the presentation.  It was also a way for me to incorporate Speaking and Listening Standards, and add a little more parent involvement in my classroom!!

Below is the Schedule that I use for this program.  It is very similar to my "Student of the Week" program!  

I used to use an "All About Me" poster for my "Student of the Week".  However, I could not find a poster for the "Researcher of the Week", so I made my own components and I send home a piece of chart paper for each student before his/her week as the Researcher.  The students simply cut out the components below and then paste them onto the chart paper.  It is fun to allow them a little more creativity this way! 

For the experiments, I purchased several different books from Amazon, and I also found that I was able to use my AMAZING science experiment packets from Deanna Jump!  I used her packet as a whole group activity when I taught first grade. However, now it is PERFECT for students in third grade to read on their own and present to the class!! 

If this is something you are interested in, you may want to hop on over to my Tpt shop and download my Researcher of the Week Freebie!!  This is Freebie is editable so that you can modify the schedule and parent letters for your own classroom! 

Happy Researching!! 
Click below to download!! 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Five for Friday!!!


Oh my....I feel as though my poor little blog has been neglected as of late!!  I am thankful for Linky Parties to to help keep me on track and update this blog a bit!!:)  Today I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching's Five for Friday Linky!! :) Here is a little look at what I have been up to as of late:



The girls had a basketball tournament in South Haven, MI...Right on the BEACH!! This was literally the view from their court!! Beautiful!! :) 

We loved celebrating the wedding of one of my darling teacher friends!! Congrats to Courtney and Will!! :)

3.  Learning to do BACK FLIPS! :)

AND.....I have been relaxing with my sweet friends and watching LOTS of back flips!!  :)

4.  Setting up my classroom!!!  

Miss Kennedy sewed this cute Chevron curtain for me!!! She is so talented!! :)

             5.  TpT- Classroom Kit!!

I finally finished this little kit!! This one is dedicated to my husband, who BLESS his heart, thought that all teachers were given pre made classroom kits to set up a classroom.  He thought that teachers probably spent an hour or two getting their classrooms ready......ummmmmmm....NO!! :)  Hahaha!!  This little kit has some cheery chevron decor ready for you! check out my tpt shop for more details.  :)

Happy Friday!! Have a great weekend!!
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