Monday, November 7, 2011

Peek At My Week! And FREEBIE!

It is hard to believe that Halloween was just Monday! I feel like it was ages ago already. But we have been doing fun Halloween activities all week :)

We decided to call them our Halloween Fun Stations! One of my little sweetie pies said, "We should call them Halloween Fun Stations, because we're learning and having fun! This is building our stamina like crazy." It's one of the craziest days of the year and I get cute little comments like this.

We had 10 stations that the students all rotated to and from. Most of the ideas I borrowed from all the blogs I stalk, but some are my own and I will gradly share everything that I made!

Station #1: Odd/Even Candy Bags
I got this activity FREE from The Bubbly Blonde Teacher. My first graders are constantly having trouble remembering how to tell odd numbers from even numbers and this was great practice and they got to use "candy!" We put out candy in our odd and even candy bags and then filled out a response form for all the numbers we found!

The response sheet we used is at the end of the free packet!

Station #2: Eyeball Shaker
This was a favorite! This was an activity I made myself. All you need are "eyeballs" and an egg carton. I bought little plastic eyeballs from the Dollar Tree (literally my favorite store ever) and then stole an egg carton from my fridge (thanks mom!). If I wouldn't have thought about this the night before I needed it, I would have painted it black to look more Halloweeny. Anywho, I wrote the numbers 0-11 in each slot on the inside of the carton with a permanent marker. Then I put two eyeballs in the carton. Shake away and you have yourself an addition game! (Make sure you use a foamy carton as they have more room than the cardboard ones) I also created a response sheet that is FREE here, where they write their number sentence each time they have a turn.

Station #3: Fill Your Candy Bag!
This station worked on so many different math skills: number sense, addition and subtraction, reasoning, etc. I got this game from a TPT store and I really like it! We used pennies as our counters and the students had to record each roll they made (so I knew they were being honest).

I made this response sheet to go with it and it is FREE!

Station #4: Boo Bump!
This was a game that I combined from two different games I saw in my blog stalking :) We took the "game" from the rules of Boo Bump (which was a way more exciting name!) Most of my kiddos are not ready to all 3 addends yet, so we used a different game board for two dice instead. We used the same rules of bumping and locking and all that fun stuff! Some of my kids were able to play with three dice however, so it was nice to have both options.

Station #5: Halloween Web
This activity was a little bit more creative for the kids. I had my tub of Halloween books out in my library and the students were to choose one just right book to read. After they read their book, they filled out a Halloween web that I found FREE here, with words that describe or remind them of Halloween. At this point in the year, we use our best guess spelling, and I think my favorite one was "vmpyyr." Vampire! Why the double y? Beats me.

Station #6: Candy Tasting
What could be more fun than candy tasting? This was definitely the favorite station of the day! When the students entered this station, they "taste-tested" a piece of candy of their choice. They then had to fill out a tree map about candy, "Candy: tastes, looks, is...." If they wrote 4 answers under each branch, they got to eat ANOTHER piece of candy. Talk about movtivation!

Station #7: Halloween Scrambled Sentences
We are forever trying to learn correct sentence structure in our class. I cannot even count how many times I have sent my friends back to their desk for forgetting to use capital letters at the beginning of their sentence and using punctuation. At this station, I found these wonderful Halloween scrambled sentences from Doodle Bugs Teaching. I love that there was a picture included to help the students out!

Station #8: Pumpkin Glyph
This was the first glyph that we did in our class, and we did pretty good! The only issue we had was that the students were not happy with the shapes they were assigned based on their answers haha! But the pumpkins looked really cute afterwards!

Station #9: Spooky Words ABC Order
We have been working on ABC order for the last few weeks and we are awesome at it! Initially, we were only going to alphabetize to the first letter, but my kiddos were not having that. They wanted to do it completely correctly. So this activity could be done alphabetizing to the first letter, or to the second or third. So I made these Spooky Words ABC Order cards and a response sheet that you can have as a freebie :)

Station #10: M and N Ending Sound Sort
This game is so cute and it works with the m and n sound (which we confuse sometimes) and ending sounds. I am so sad because I cannot find this file ANYWHERE. Ahh! I must have printed it and forgot to save it! If I find it, I will add it in! So not that there is anything to go with it, but here is the repsonse sheet that I made.

I hope that you liked our stations! If you have any questions about them, ask away. We had SO much fun doing them and the kids ask me all the time when we can play them again!

Enjoy the rest of your week :)

Friday, November 4, 2011

Halfway to 100 and Freebie!

We had our 50th day of school this week and it was very exciting!! I have already gotten the kids so hyped up about the 100th day that we had to do something to keep them on the hook :)

We started our afternoon completing our "All About 50!" work page together. We explored all of the different ways that we can see the number 50. We wrote the number word, representation, filled in a hundred chart (to 50) and used that chart to answer questions about numbers that come before and after 50.

Best of all, I created 3 different differentiated worksheets that I am giving away as a FREEBIE! I have a REALLY diverse class so I have to do this for basically anything I create for them. A lot of work for me in the process, but it makes doing work as a class easier for me, as I don't have to stand over certain students basically doing the work for them and watch other students rolling their eyes because they finished 5 minutes ago. You know the drill haha!

So here they are:
All About 50 Worksheet
All About 50 Challenge Worksheet
All About 50 Easy Worksheet

I hope someone can use them! My kiddos loved them and it was wonderful practice writing our numbers!

I am new to blogging, so if these links don't work, please feel free to e-mail me ( and I will gladly e-mail them to you!

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

An AWESOME giveaway!!

I am writing to tell you about a phenomenal giveaway over at Kreative in Kinder! They are giving away a ton of wonderful thanksgiving/winter resources and I mean a TON. I would be so lucky to win something like this and so would you! See below for how to enter! Good luck :)

It’s a Gobble, Gobble GIVEAWAY ya’ll!  My favorite part of blogging is being able to interact and learn from such wonderful teachers around the world and I have teamed up with a few of them for this fantastic giveaway.  To embrace the season of Thankfulness, we are going BIG for this giveaway because we are SO THANKFUL for each and every one of you!  All you have to do to win all of the units shown below is follow each blog! That’s SEVEN chances to win. Here’s even better news
TWO winners will be chosen!!


Write a comment for each blog you follow and get a BONUS entry if you blog about this giveaway on your blog or facebook page!


Giveaway ends Sunday, November 6th, 2011 at midnight central standard time. The winners will be announced on Monday!!

Click on each picture to take you to each blog!



Giveaway Terms 
This giveaway is free to enter. All giveaways are opened to U.S. residents ages 18 and up unless otherwise stated. Giveaways are one entry per person per blog following. I do not and never will collect or sell your information. Nothing from this blog can be copied, edited, or sold for personal use. Thanks for playing by the rules. (Leave it to a teacher to follow giveaway rules, lol!)

Please post entries on Kreative in Kinder. GOOD LUCK! Gobble Gobble!!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Science Week Favorite Video/Website

And it's almost hump day! I don't know about anyone else, but it seems to take my kids until about the middle of the day on Tuesday for their classroom behavior to kick in. Mondays are always the worst! But today, they did a really good job getting their work done quietly and quickly!

So anywho, today for Science Week, we are posting our favorite science video/website! Mine is kind of a double-whammy. My school has a subscription to Discovery Education and I L-O-V-E it!

Any topic I could possibly choose (and not just science either) has some kind of video or multimedia to go with it! Matter, animals, bubbles, you name it! You can find anything and they are completely safe and educational! Awesome right?

Right! Have a nice night :)

Monday, September 26, 2011

It's Science Week!

Hello all! I have not blogged in so long I just thought I would do a bunch in one day :) I am linking up with Teaching Blog Addict this week for Science Week!

Considering I have been a teacher for a whole 4 weeks now (haha), I would have to say my favorite science books to teach with are the Magic School Bus series. My students just always have so many questions and it creates such a wonderful discussion among the students

I especially love these two and plan on using them during my space and weather units later this year!

I will give updates when I actually use them with my students :)


PS: I am new to blogging and am slightly confused on how a few things work. How do you grab buttons and put them on your page? How do I create an automatic signature? How do I add my favorite blogs and labels to the side bar? Help!

Our Five Senses

Hello everyone!

I was really nervous about teaching science and social studies when I started this year! So I decided the best unit to start my year with for science is to review the five senses. The kids have been having so much fun! We started our with reading The Magic School Bus: Explores the Senses by Joanna Cole. This just introduced us to the five senses and gave us a little more detail as to how each of our senses work within our body. It was a little over their heads, but they were very interested!

First, we studied our sense of sight, and what it is like not to have it anymore! I blindfolded each of the kids and gave them a classroom item that they had to identify using other senses. They flew through this so fast I had to scramble to find random items for them to try to identify!

Next, we explored our sense of touch. We made an anchor chart of all the "describing" words that we could think of. We came up with words like: fuzzy, hard, soft, flat, bumpy, ect. The next day, I made up a chart for the students to go on a scavenger hunt around the room. Their scavenger hunt was to find different items in the room that felt the same as their describing word. I think my favorite response was "round" for the doorknob. How creative!

Then, we did our sense of hearing. I went on Youtube and found a bunch of different random sounds...some easy and some hard. They were things like a baby crying, door slamming, a sneeze, the ocean, a helicopter, a motorcycle, ect. I played each sound a few times and the kids had too draw a picture and write what it is they saw. They LOVED this! They were so excited to hear the answers at the end. None of them got the door slamming though. However for that sound I got a rock falling, a car crash, a toilet lid slamming down, and a dog barking? What were they hearing?

All of these activities were awesome for my really academically diverse class, because it was so easy to differentiate. Some of my kids could absolutely do words and pictures, but the students that could only do pictures were still expected to provide a clear answer.

Next, we worked on our sense of smell. This one was probably the funniest one to watch. I made "smelling jars" aka cups with different foods and such in them covered with tissues (really high tech, I know) and gave each of the students a response sheet in which they had to match the given smell to the number on the cup. I did toothpaste, garlic powder, peanut butter, vanilla, etc. I was realy surprised how fast and how accurate they were! Way to go firsties!

Last, of course, is our sense of taste. I will update on this at the end of the week when we use our sense of taste when making our own applesauce :)

Yay for our five senses!

Crazy for Apples!

This week we are doing all kinds of apple activities! And I don't know what I would have done if I did not have the wonderful ideas that I found out in blogworld.

First, I found some AWESOME activities for my math tubs at The First Grade Parade.

I printed out her 3-Way Apple Math and Odds and Evens Apple Trees on cadstock and laminated them. I put them in the math tubs with "I CAN" instructions and I cannot wait for the kids to see these when we do math tubs on Wednesday! How did you know this is exactly what my students are working on :)

In addition to these activities, I also found the cutest Counting by 5's apple activity, where the students order the numbers counting by 5's to 100. Thanks to Mrs. Kacey at Doodle Bugs Teaching for this one!

I also created an activity using apples as a nonstandard unit of measurement for length and width and a graphing activity in which the students use an apple spinner and graph their color results.

I have really fun Language Arts, Science and Social Studies activities we are doing later this week, so I will be sure to update!

Happy almost Tuesday :)

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Creating Our School Community with a School Map!

Hello everyone :)

So as a first year teacher, I barely have time to shower, much less blog about the wonderful things I am doing in my classroom! But today my little first graders and I worked on something so fun!

In my social studies curriculum, my students are supposed to learn about our school community and what their role is in making our school a great place to be. So I decided it would be fun to make a topigraphical map of our school. Sounds complicated....but I didn't exactly use correct measurements haha.

I drew a basic outline of our school on my Smartboard, and then the students told me where to fill in all of the rooms. I was so impressed that they knew where all of the middle school rooms were too! And after we completed our map, the students had to create "routes" based on my directions.

This part was SO fun for them. I would make up funny stories like: "Oh my goodness. Miss Moellering forgot to pick her students up from gym class. Cody decides he is in charge of getting our class from the gym back to our classroom." Then the students would use our pointer finger and go along our map and show us the correct way to go.

I also used this as a good review of left and right. The students had to tell me what direction they were turning if they came to a corner!

I will try to post more of what I am doing! It is just hard to find the time!
Happy Friday eve! I have a half day tomorrow!


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Teacher Talk Tuesday: I'M A FIRST YEAR TEACHER!

Yay Tuesday!

Oh my god. I have never been so tired in my life. My first two days of school were half days and I am exhausted. I have my first full day of school tomorrow and I know I am going to need a GIANT coffee to be able to make it. My excitement can only give me so much energy....

Today, Blog Hoppin' has us writing for Teacher Talk Tuesday. Being an expert after teaching for a two days, I have a plethora of information to share....NOT. Help me! I cannot wait until tomorrow night when I can read all of the tips that everyone gives.

Hopefully I'll get some questions answered! But I can't write them all now. I need to sleep to be able to function for my kids tomorrow!

Three days till the weekend :)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Meet the Teacher Link Up!

Happy Monday!

I'm linking up with Blog Hoppin' for Meet the Teacher Monday!

My name is Sarah and I am a first year teacher.  I am 22 years old, and just graduated from the University of Dayton in May with a degree in Early Childhood Education and a focus in Urban Education. I got my first job this year and I have 15 wonderful first graders that I just met today. Wow!

I am super organized! I had almost a month in my classroom before school started and I am still freaking out that it is not organized the way I like it. I have a slight addiction to Diet Coke, and I love nothing more than a new set of Sharpies and a colorful pack of Post-Its.

I'm keeping this short because I feel like my head is spinning in 100 different directions trying to get everything done. If anyone has any advice of what to do with first graders in the first week of school, I'm all ears. They still have so much summer energy!

See you tomorrow for Teacher Talk Tuesday!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

My first classroom!

I just had a very exciting day! I got to go to my classroom for the first time and oh my gosh do I have a lot of work to do! I am one of the luckiest girls in the world because the old first grade teacher left me everything! (She moved to a principal position) However, it looks like when they waxed the floors, they just shoved everything into the closet and on the shelves for me to deal with later!

Well, later is now and I need help! I don't want to spend a ton of money on storage bins/boxes, but I would also rather spend the money to get good stuff that will last me a while. I went to Target today and got some awesome, colorful, crates that I am going to use to store some of my math manipulatives and my student's readers.

But I am looking to get book bins for my classroom library to organize my books, and I can't seem to find bins/crates/boxes that are strong enough to withstand a first grade class and the right size and height. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Here are some before pictures of my classroom. It is a completely blank slate, so I can pretty much do anything with it!

As soon as I have made any progress, I'll be sure to share! I have A LOT of work to do though :) Thanks for reading!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Time Capsules

Hello fellow educators!

I have been racking my brain to think of cute ideas for the beginning of the year, and I think I thought of a really cute idea! We are going to make time capsules!

I have seen a lot of different ideas on how to make time capsules, but I wanted to make it as easy as possible since it is going to be completed in the first few days of school. So to make it, you will need:
  • A paper towel roll for each child
  • Construction paper, markers/crayons/colored pencils, and tape
  • A time capsule memory sheet
  • Yarn (enough to measure each child)
  • A picture of each child
  • Washable paint
The students will each get a paper towel roll that they will cover with construction paper and color. I am going to pre-cover the rolls and let the students choose the colors they want to save time.

Here is the link to the time capsule memory sheet:

I will have the students fill out the questions whole group, and will call each student over individually to measure them with the yarn, take their picture, and do their handprint, while the others are drawing their self-portrait. I will trust the students to tell me how high they can count!

At the end of the day, we will put our time capsules together. This gives the handprints time to dry, and time to develop their pictures. My students will roll up their memory sheet, and place their picture and yarn inside of the tube. The ends will be covered by fabric swatches and rubber bands. After they are closed, we will all write together: DO NOT OPEN UNTIL THE LAST DAY OF FIRST GRADE!

This gives us something fun to do on the last day of school that hopefully the students will have forgotten about! It will be an exciting present!

Enjoy the rest of your Monday,

Monday, July 11, 2011

Welcome to the Pizza Place!

Hey everyone,

Since I got my teaching job, all I have been doing is researching ways to make my classroom great. I have been reading articles, lesson plans, and of course tons of blogs! Recently, I have found a ton of information on dramatic play centers that I love! Grocery stores, costume shops, shoe stores, and pizza hut's are just a few of the ideas I've found.

For the last few days I have been working on materials for what I call "The Pizza Place." I got the start of my idea from Shari Sloane ( I love the idea of a pizza place for my students to practice not only academic skills such as addition, subtraction, money concepts, reading and writing, but also social skills such as taking turns, following directions, and manners.

I have created a restaurant sign, a menu for the "customers," ingredients labels for the "cooks," step by step directions for the "cooks," an order pad for the "servers," and the pizza place wall words for our dramatic play center word wall. I have not quite figured out how to attach documents to my posts yet, but as soon as I do, I will give everyone a preview!

I hope everyone is enjoying their summer as much as I am! It is so hot here, the heat index was 115 today! Whew, so glad I have a pool!

Stay cool,

Sunday, July 10, 2011

I am a first grade teacher!

I can't believe it already happened so fast. I just got my very first teaching job right out of college and I could not be more excited! I absolutely love being a first-year teacher already and I have yet to step foot in my classroom :)

I wanted to start this blog so that I could share my ideas and activities, teaching strategies, and professional resources with fellow teachers and hopefully get the same in return. I am a big believer in collaboration! Why wouldn't I want to share something that could engage someone else's students?

I will try to blog as often as I can, but organizing my first classroom is going to keep me plenty busy! Please follow my blog and hopefully you will enjoy it!
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