Thursday, July 28, 2016

Back to school gifts

Another school year is upon us and it's time for B2S frenzy. This summer my family has been just spending lots of QT time and resting up for the upcoming school year.  Our schedules are about to get busy between back to school, parent nights, Aubree starting Pre-K (yes, my baby will be in Pre-K) and 2 a days for my husbands football team start Monday. Whew!! Knowing all of that I wanted to get a jump start on a few things for some sweet teacher friends in my life. 

First up: Aubree's suuuuper sweet Pre-K teacher.  Aubree has gone to her "school" since she was 6 weeks old.  All of the teachers have just loved her and cared for her. Her teacher for this school year is so sweet and so patient and we are so excited Aubree is in her class.  For a small token of appreciation and a "welcome back" gift I put together a cute little gift.  The idea came from one of my sweet first graders this past year.  It was one of my faves. 

I purchased a plastic, easy open canister from Walmart, put some candy in the bottom and then arranged some Sharpie fine point markers on top. (Which Walmart has a 21 pk for 8.98 right now)  

I tied some tulle around it and attache THIS cute little tag to the top.  Aubree can't wait to give it to her.  I hope her teacher knows how much we appreciate her. :) 

Next up is my sweet student teacher.  I am soooo excited to be getting another student teacher, but this one y'all I know will just be a blessing to me and my students.  Her mom is a friend of mine and old teacher partner.  I knew I wanted to show her how excited I was that she was going to be in my room this fall.  

I made her a cute little "tickled pink" basket full of all things pink. 

Teacher tag can be found HERE

Inside the basket is: erasers, tape dispenser, scissors, pens, markers, post its, stapler, journal and candy.  

And for some of my most favorite people.. my sweet teammates!! They are so wonderful and I just wanted to give them a little something as well to "start the year off write". 

I'm so excited about another school year! I can't believe I've already been teaching 8 years! 

And for fun, I'll leave you with a picture of my mini me...Aubree. Boy does she love going to mommy's school! 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Pumpkin Projects

just wanted to stop by super quick for a fun little fall idea to bring a little excitement to your reading time. I have several kiddos in my class that need to be challenge and pushed to the next level in reading. They are reading above level and are just naturally good readers who are fast learners. They necessarily don't need me day to day listen to their reading, model breaking apart words, etc. I really like to do book clubs with them and really make them accountable for their reading. 

 All over Pinterest there are TONS of projects for kids involving pumpkins. My higher readers have been focusing on character traits and retelling stories they have read so I wanted to incorporate that somehow. I came across "pumpkin book character" projects that were just precious! So creative and so fun! 

I had my kids pick a book and Read the book. 
At school we:
Read the book
Discussed the main character 
Sequenced the story
Wrote a small synopsis about the book

At home they:
Bought a pumpkin 
Decorated the pumpkin to look like the main character. 

I did not give them any parameters on what book they chose. I didn't care the level, just something they like was good with me. 

Here are a few of our awesome pumpkins! So proud of them! 

Monday, October 12, 2015

Going Batty and Stelluna

For the past 2 weeks we jumped right into bats. We started off with Stellaluna. One of my all time favorite books! Love it! 

We read the book, sequenced it, discussed Stellaluna as a character and worked on our comprehension by asking AND answering questions about it. 

(From Deanna Jumps interactive reading notebook) 

I always like to do a little craft/project at the end of the unit or book to wrap it up. 

They loved their paper bag bats. 

After a week of Stellaluna we dove into non-fiction bat books. We started off by talking about our schema about bats.  We talked about features of non-fiction, verbs and adjectives to describe bats  

We did several journal responses that I forgot to take a picture of. At the end of the week we did a little directed drawing of a bat and some non-fiction writing. 

(One of the books we read had a picture of Itty bitty baby bats and she loved it!) 

Next we are learning about pumpkins to get us ready for our annual pumpkin patch field trip!!! 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Apples! Oh my!

We have been knee deep in everything apples for the past 2 weeks. Apples are one of my favorite themes. It's our first theme of the school year, and I feel it just jump starts our year for learning and kind of sets the tone for what's to come. 

We started the unit off by writing down our schema- what we already knew about apples. 

"Apples can knock your teeth out!! Haha! Too funny! 

After we recorded what we already knew about apples we dove right in to learning new things. 
We have been talking about adjectives for a short time and describing apples are a great way to have them practice using adjective. I like to start their sentence by saying "apples ARE....." so that they are going to telling me about apples and not what they have. That's helps them say an adjective instead of a noun. 

After using our adjective words we came up with, I had the students make a directed drawing of an apple. Step by step with me, they drew an apple. I let them pick what color they wanted to color it (red, yellow or green) so we would have some variety. Then they wrote simple sentences describing their Apple. 

(Idea from @firstgradeparade) 

For a fun craft on a Friday we painted paper plate apples. 

We paint using cotton balls a lot. 1. Less mess and 2.  No brushes to wash. Win. Win. 

In the second week of our Apple into we started learning about the parts of an apple. 

And to wrap up our unit we of course had to make homemade applesauce. Which was a HIT!! 

They absolutely loved it! (Recipe from @firstgradeparade) 

We've had a fun filled 2 weeks! Now on to all things fall! Now, let just hope this east Texas weather would just cooperate. Hard to teach fall when it's almost 100 outside. 

Thursday, September 10, 2015


My title about sums it up. Tired. PTL tomorrow is Friday. We even had Monday off!! Always seems to me that the short weeks feel like the longest. Anyone with me on that??  This week marks the 3rd week of school for us. We are getting our procedures and routines down, diving into curriculum and starting daily 5 and guided math! 

I have done Daily 5 for several years. I left my centers behind and never looked back. I love the ease of daily 5 and its predictability. At the point I have only introduced read to self, work on Writing and read to self. 

After reading a couple of blog post this summer I knew I had to make a change in my math block. This year I started guided math. I have to say... It's wonderful!!! My stations are: teacher table, iPads, math journals and tubs. 

 Today was our first day of full rotations and I am so proud of them!! 

Next week I will introduce listening to reading and word work and we will press on with our guided math and math workshop, but for now it's rest and time to catch up on my recorded shows. 😄 

Saturday, August 22, 2015

New school year is here!

Thursday afternoon was our annual Meet The Teacher. This is one of my favorite days. I love meeting all of my new firsties, and seeing their excitement about school starting makes me excited! The afternoon always goes by so fast and when it's over I always feel like I've been hit by a bus. A bus of 22 6 year olds. 😄 It was a great afternoon and my class is just the cutest! 

Friday morning all of the teachers had a work day. We got to work in our rooms, uninterrupted. 🙏  It was so nice because I was knee deep in school supplies and had so much to prep for the first day of school. 

I like to have all of their school supplies ready to go when they walk in on Monday. Just makes the morning go much smoother. 

This is my schedule for this year {as of now}. If I get going next week and notice I need to adjust, I'll do so. 

After organizing school supplies and mapping out my day, I needed to get started on procedures. I gotta let them know how we do things! 😄 

Here are just s few of my anchor charts for the first day of school. 

I love to read the story "Listen Buddy" on the first day. It's about a rabbit who keeps making mistakes because he wasn't being a good listener. After the story we write down things that make a good listener. One of my favorites for sure! 

And we're starting Read to Self day 1!! 

I will be back later, hopefully the first day of school {if I'm not too tired to type and I survive} 😂 with our first day activities! 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

B2S Teacher Gifts {tickled pink}

WHOA!! Is it really the middle of August??? I really love this time of year, even though it is extremely crazy in my neck of the woods.  As many of you know, my husband is a high school football coach and with that brings a crazy fall schedule.  I'm one of those "I never miss a game" and I wouldn't have it any other way! It is so much fun! Last week my little family took football pictures... while waiting for our session I snapped this jewel! :) 

She is soooo ready for football season.  Her happy place is on the sidelines! 
Since the first day of school is a week from tomorrow (August 24th) for me, I thought I would go ahead a prep my back to school teacher gift for Aubree's preschool teacher.  We have been blessed for 3 years now with wonderful, sweet, generous teachers. We are so lucky! I saw this adorable idea on pinterest and decided it would be perfect for Aubree's new teacher! 
I found the cute pink bucket at Hobby Lobby in the summer section and then I just made my way through Walgreens picking up anything I could find that was pink that I thought her teacher would like.  
I placed it all in the bucket, added a tulle bow and a tag! Super simple and I know she'll love it.  As a teacher, I know how much thoughtful gifts are appreciated.  

You can grab your tag HERE! These are 2 to a page and are a PDF file {uneditable}. 

For those of you that have started school already I hope it went great {and you were showered with gifts ;) and to those who start on the 24th like me, Good Luck! Hope it goes great!