Sunday, August 30, 2015

Sequencing, Nursery Rhymes plus Centers- What I am Teaching This Week

 Hey everyone! Week 1 is done..yippeee! We had fun getting to know each other and getting those rules and procedures down. My group this year is ready to learn. I can tell already, which makes my teacher heart so excited to see what we can do this year!

This week in reading we are working on sequencing. We are going to use 2 great school books


To start off the week we will be reading If You Take A Mouse To School. I love this series of books with the circle story format. After reading we are going to take these picture cards and put them in order in a pocket chart.


Once that is complete my students will complete this. I am using it to make sure they understand the sequence of the story.


We are also going to use the same activity for There Was an Old Lady






If you would like to use these activities in your classroom you can grab them
                                                {{HERE}}


With some of my students I will be using Nursery Rhymes to help with sequencing event. We will use these posters to start off:




My student will then take these cards and put them in order. Some students will just use the picture cards and some who can read a little will use the cards with the words



         These activities come from my Nursery Rhyme Sequencing Activities

To go along with each rhyme there is a follow up activity to check for understanding:


This week we are also going to be starting centers! I am going to start off with just one activity that all my students will be working on. My higher students are going to be working on building sentence. Using this back to school set students take the words and create a sentence


There are 6 different sentences in this packet so each small group will get to work with one sentence at a time. All this week students will work on completing a center and practicing how we transition from activity to activity. 

Since it's our first week I am planning on keeping the same activity going all week. If my kids seem like they are ready I will add some extra small group activities to the mix.

It is going to be a fun and exciting week! All these activities are in my store will be 20% off for the week! Just click on any of the covers to check them out.
Hope you all have a great week too!

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Check Out My Classroom!


Hey everyone! Week one is D O N E!! Whew what a week it was! For some reason I can never really remember what the first week of school is like. I NOW exactly remember why!! IT IS SO DARN EXHAUSTING!!! I think I mentally block out the beginning of the year after it is over. Seriously, these students are wide eyed and curious about EVERYTHING!! I forget how much talking, directing, modeling, talking, explaining, talking and redirecting you have to do! Am I right??!! There is NOTHING like that first week of school..especially in Kinder!

So before I begin showing off some pics of my room let me give you a little back story. I teach at a charter school which means every kid that is signed up may or may not show up on the first day of school. Soooo because our numbers are not 100% set we were told by admin that we may be changing rooms after the first week. Yep you read that right! Some teachers would be moving their ENTIRE room! 

Luckily for me with the class I teach most if not all of my students do show up. I knew my classroom spot was probably not going to change but, like the rule follower I am, my set up was just the basics I needed to get through the day. Now I know what you are probably thinking...who would NOT want their room to be perfect, set up and ready to go for that first day. Right?

The past few weeks in my personal life have been the most trying times I have ever had. SOO because of all that stress my new motto for this school year is


Life is too short to get upset and mad over thing I have no control over! While I love my job more that anything, it is not my entire life. It is probably 93.5% of my life but, I have to remember that I have a soo much more to foucs on at times too. This saying has really helped me with this start of the school year. Maybe because all of what was happening to me and my family made me O K with not setting up my classroom 100%. I knew that no  matter what my room looked like my students would walk into a warm, caring and fun environment. 
Would it look like way I wanted it to? No, but over time it will! As this past week went on I started to add more and more to my room. It is looking better and more like my "home".

Alright with that said here are some pics!
 Here is our cubbie area. I have 2 kids per section put their items in those cubbies.
The crates on top will be filled with supplies once they arrive.
 These are the kids mailboxes. I give my kids numbers and that is how they know which one is theirs.
 There were 2 things I HAD to have up and ready to go...#1 my alphabet
#2 my calendar area. With those 2 items I could make anything work! I changed up my whole calendar area this year and I am loving the way it looks! Most of this awesome calendar set came from Wild About Firsties! She has this set as a fan freebie on her fb page! It is AWESOMESAUCE!!

 This is where I keep my literacy centers for the week. Along with some other teacher controlled items to use.
My focus wall which stayed pretty blank this first week. Truth is I am hoping for a new white board so I am not making this are tooo cute just yet.



My teacher area. I use a horseshoe table as my desk. I love it this way! You can also see my toolbox I made this summer and, of course all those Target dollar tree signs I found this summer!


More and more areas for storage. You can never have enough right??!!
                       Another look at how I store some manipulatives


My classroom library. I loved the way it turned out. So colorful and organized! Just like me ;)

Here is what the room looks like from standing in the doorway. It is not what I hoped it to be but, it turned out to be fine! The walls will soon be decorated and my kids work will be displayed with pride!
               Here is another view from the back of the room looking out.


Yesterday as a class we put together this area. They were so excited to "help me" set this up! I do love the POP of color it adds. Of course I forgot to take a pic of what it looks like with the kids birthdays up so I will do that this week.




So there you have it. I will say this is the first time in my 22 years of teaching that my room has ever looked this bare. I know it will get better and more cheerful each day!

I would love to hear what you think about it! Would you freak out if you could not decorate your room the way you envision it to be? Or would you be like
Elsa from Frozen and just " Let It Go"?

Monday, August 24, 2015

Back To School- Survival Kit!

I am so excited to be joining my friends
to share all about the Survival Kit exchange! I was SOO happy and excited to be paired with with Melanie from  Momma with a Teaching Mission! Melanie is super sweet and SUPER talented!! If you have not checked our here TPT store you MUST!! We both teach the same departmentalized subjects and I am always amazed at her creativity!

Now on to the goodies! First off when I opened my package I had the cutest note from her!


How CUTE are those note cards! It was sooo cute how she told me why she picked each of my items :)
                 All my new                     goodies!!
 


               Markers..she                 knows the way                to my heart!
          LOVE those dry          erase labels! I will          be using them tons                 this year!


I have to go out and buy some mason jars now to use these ADORABLE ones!
 How cool is it to have those notcards with a ring attached! LOVE.


 One can NEVER have enough paper clips right??!
These were the most thoughtful! Melanie knows how much I love to stuff my face eat hot dogs when I am back in Chicago! She found the most adorable hot dog earnings from this company. When my kids saw them they thought they were so funny and loved that I had earrings like this now. They are seriously so cute!

Melanie did a great job spoiling me and I am well stocked for this upcoming school year! I can't thank her enough for all these goodies and I am so happy to have made such a wonderful new friend! We have to meet in person some day!!

 Make sure to stop by some of the other blogs and see what they got in their survival kits!!

Hope you all have a wonderful school year!!


Sunday, August 23, 2015

First week of school!-What I'm Teaching This Week





Welcome! Last year I started blogging about what I was doing each week in my classroom and decided to continue it for this upcoming school year! I will be sharing some ideas and activities as well as tips and other goodies through out the year.

It has been a super crazy get ready week. I had to miss the first 3 days of staff development due to a death in our family. That was good and bad. Normally we get 2 days to our rooms ready. Not this year. I had O N E!!

This is part of what my room looked like when I walked back in. UGH! Luckily I was MAJOR focused and got right to work on my library


and my calendar area.


That took a good 3 hours..lol  I will be blogging more about my classroom reveal once it is all complete!


The start of the school year is always so crazy stressful! I have a few activities planned. Since I am realistic I have these same activities all week long. Just in case..ya never know what could come up!

To start off I always begin every year with this story


I know how nervous my little students can be. Everyone handles the first day differently. We talk about our feeling and chart them down on paper. I also love to get an idea of their fine motor skills with some drawing and writing of their name. Everyone gets this worksheet to complete while I run around like a crazy lady work on some things that must get done!



nothing fancy but it gives me an idea of where they are at. Plus I love to keep these sheets all year and then on the last day of school I give it back to my students. BOY do they love to see how much they have grown!

Another option I have and plan to use during the week in my First Day Of School Flip Book


This is a freebie in my TPT shop. If you would like to use it just click {{HERE}}


Classroom Rules and expectations are a HUGE part of my first week. We start off the week with this activity



                                You can see read all about it {{HERE}}


This activity then leads us to creating our classroom rules.



We use each poster to create how we want our classroom to look and feel. We also talk about what we can do if one of our friends breaks a rule. I am not using a clip chart this year. Our school uses a daily behavior chart and point system. If a rule gets broken they will get a warning or lose a point for the day. Those friends who really try hard and earn 25 points for the week will collect a brag tag! What is a brag tag? The amazing Angie from Luck Little Learners has an amazing explanation about them Brag Tags. This is my first time using the tags. I am really excited to see how my friends react to them!


One other story we will be reading during the week will be


LOVE this story as well. We do many name activities after reading this book.
 First Grade Blue Skies has an awesome FREEBIE pack that goes with this book. You can check it out here Chrysanthemum! She has blogged about great ideas and many more resources to go along with this book! You should check it out.

I would love to hear about what you use the first week of school. Comment below and let me know!

Make sure to stop by later in the week for my classroom reveal!