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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