Tuesday, April 24, 2012

think your school has issues? click here for a big sigh of relief... your not the only one!

I know we all have some kind of disfunction at school. We all have some kind of crazy... it is like how there is that one crazy person from your family (you know that long lost cousin you haven't spoken to in years-- some of us are lucky enough to have that person even closer to us- like immediate family!!)
Okay, so here is some kind of crazy that I am not sure anyone else can top:

Look at this picture:

or what about this one:

Can you tell what this is? It is me... a first grade teacher... preparing for TCAP- you know that end of the year test we all take (you may have a different name for it)! Actually, only grades 2-4 take this test and in some schools only 3-4 take this test. But, take a look again- that is my classroom being prepared for the test.

OK... I don't mind helping out... Giving up my room... Letting a sub take my kids into a kindergarten room and letting them learn nothing. or, uh, not very much over the next four days! Forget that part of the crazy- listen to this:

Those pictures aren't exactly of my whole, entire room. See, I am only testing one student in my room while my firsties are taken out. But, my firsties are coming back in my room after lunch and I don't want them to not have access to our classroom library or the pocket charts we use for centers so I decided to make a baricade with butcher paper that can be put up or down when testing is and isn't happening. So, now I have butcher paper hanging from my ceiling and for the next four days I will be climbing to the ceiling every day so my kids can actually do something worthwhile- and not just want movies everyday.

Is that not crazy?!? I think this is crazy and am surprised I am not going crazy! Is anyone else's testing schedule/security measures just absolutely bonkers??

In other news... isn't this adorable?
Chick-fil-a had family night tonight (yay to free kids meals) and it was a princess theme! Addie Mae got to meet "Tangled" (she can't say Rapunzel). She also met Ariel. So sweet!

I am so glad we got to have a family night after the long day of blue butcher paper at school. 
Testing starts tomorrow- so I think I will get some sleep :) Nighty night-


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

Thought the title was fitting to go along with Junie B. (ya know she is afraid of roosters... I know I am cheesy!) Anyway, here are the winners from the giveaway! I have already emailed you your prize!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Happy Hump-Day!

Hey all! This may be hard to believe... but I have finally made it to the 20 DAY COUNTDOWN! I am so excited (duh!) but my kids are even more excited because of this:
You have probably seen this idea on pinterest!
This afternoon my assistant (who I think I won't be able to live without next year!) and I hung these ballooons during specials (which thankfully is at the end of the day!) When our kids cam back in from P.E. they could not contain themselves! The hanging was somewhat bittersweet... after all this is the last thing that will be hanging from my ceiling this year! *tear*
If you are wondering what exactly the significance of the balloons are and haven't seen that wonderful pin on pinterest then let me explain. These balloons don't just represent a 20 day countdown; they also have little notes inside them. Each note has a fun activity to complete the day you pop it. Some of them are simple like: Extra Recess. Others are all day affairs... here is my fav:
LOL! This will be so much fun. After I typed this I went to Dollar Tree today and found this:
Yes! Now they can stay on all day... Ha!

These balloons are going to be so fun to open and they are counting down to the last day of school! Awesome! I know you are wondering what all the fun ideas are...
Click HERE to get all 20 ideas!!

Hopefully your countdown will be as fun-filled as ours! 
In other news, we have been super busy the past couple of weeks. We finished Junie B. today and are starting our projects tomorrow (super excited!!). I am hoping the kids enjoy it as much as I hope they do!  While reading Junie B. we have also been studying Farms and I don't think there is a better way to do this than with Deanna Jump's Fun on the Farm. We had so much fun doing this stuff last week... my absolute favorite was the Cow Glyph. They are super cute (I had to share):

We have also been studying fractions! Every year I do pizza fractions. I usually make the templates and give the kids options for toppings and then we do a whole writing thing with it but I took the easy way out... I bought some recipe cards (and I loved them!). The kids were obsessed with this activity!

Hope everyone has had a Happy Hump-Day! Don't forget to enter my Junie B. giveaway (it ends tonight!)!!!


Sunday, April 15, 2012

Junie B. Jones Giveaway!!!

So... it's done! Junie B. has a Peep in her Pocket: A Novel Study is up for sale on my TPT and TN stores!

It is 40 pages of fun with a huge focus on vocabulary. There are words chosen from each chapter with activities to be completed whole group, individually, and with partners. There is also a synonym/antonym center activity and fraction dominoes with a printable edition. My favorite part of this unit is the culminating activity... it is a tic-tac-toe with a twist. The activities are on printable circles and students will choose from a pocket chart which ones they will complete... Here is an example:
My kids are going to love being able to choose their final project and I can't wait until the end of the week when we have presentations!

How would you like to get a free copy of this awesome novel study?? Well how about a

Thursday, April 12, 2012

MIA... and a Freebie!

I have been MIA this week... been working hard! My firsties (who are really smart!) are bored... yes, they are bored! They are looking at me like I am crazy during phonics lessons- ya know that look? Apparently, they already know these sounds.. hmmm... well, most of them do!

So, we are bumping it up this week and I am loving it! (I still have to fit in a couple boring phonics lessons) but I am making up for it with a novel study on none other than... Junie B. Jones! First graders love reading her books and we have multiple class sets at my school so, on a whim, I picked one out and decided we would do a 2-week study! We are halfway through the book and it is amazing to see how some of them are so ready for 2nd grade [tear] . I mean I want them to be ready but then I won't have them anymore... and this is quite possibly the best first grade class ever! 

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Favorites in Space and Currently

So, I promised some more of my favorite activities from our Space unit and I know I am late but I am here to deliver. I have been kind of MIA lately... kind of feeling the end of the year blues. It is only a month and half away until the end of the year and I am feeling blah...the feeling where I don't wanna go to work tomorrow and I am so unmotivated, and really am not in a "chipper" mood. Anybody else here yet? I absolutely HATE feeling this way! Not only do I hate feeling this way but I am sure my kids hate it and it is so not fair to them! This week we have Friday off, Thursday a full day field trip, and Wednesday I have a PD day, so saying it is a short week is an understatement! Having only 2 real days to plan for makes me even more un-motivated to do some planning... we will be flying by the seat of our first grade pants (also, hoping for excellent weather for a long recess!) Anyway, sorry for the short rant! Here are some things I love this week: We made a fun foldable about the planets in our Solar System (including our little dwarf planet, Pluto...just can't let go). I got the foldable idea from A Teacher's Treasure and it is awesome. Thinking we will do it again sometime before the end of the year. It is called a secret door foldable. (Click the link for a tutorial to make one.) It looks simple enough...from the outside. Here is the cover:
Then you open it and see:
Here is a side view:
If you push together the outside pieces and pull apart the inner flaps like this:
Then you see a secret door with a whole another set of info:
My kids were so excited about this. We read this Gail Gibbons book: We made charts of info we read about on each page. Then cut and paste the facts about the planets into the book. You can get your copy of the facts here! Here are some more pictures of their hard work:
My last love in the space unit we have done were from Mrs. Tabb's freebie Space Unit (found here). We are studying adjectives too. So, first we made our aliens. Then we paired with partners and compared (using adjectives while writing).
Last, but not least, I am linking up with Farley's Currently.
Hope you have a fab week (I know I am going to make mine great...even with parent/teacher conferences)! Photobucket