Veteran's Day 2019

Happy Veteran’s Day from A Proud Military Family

Veteran’s DAY!

We are a military family.

Army & Navy.

We have heard stories from WWII to Korea to today.

Great Grandpa’s, Grandpa’s, Dad’s, cousins, sons, daughter-in-law…

WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE!

In MY classroom

I spend a lot of time discussing MY SON

ACTIVE US NAVY…

and why it is SOOO  important to say

“THANK YOU” for their service.

He is currently on deployment…

He was married to an active military US NAVY  wife,

AND they had …MY GRANDDAUGHTER!

( She is sooooo  cute!)

But he left them behind to live on a ship and PROTECT US!

So how can we say THANK YOU?

We send  letters, pictures, stories, and cutsie art projects.

And this MOMMY sends BOXES of COOKIES! 🙂

I try to send things at least once a month.

This month’s ideas…

( Pinterest is GREAT FOR THIS! )

Let’s Talk Turkey

Next   Month…… DECEMBER CRAFTIVITIES

Just a little something to remind them of

All of us at home who CARE!

When my son is no longer on a ship…

 we send things to friends & family who are

ACTIVE soldiers & sailors.

AND

We send things to the local Veteran’s HOSPITAL.

All who serve and who have served…deserve a THANK YOU!

I searched GOOGLE for a local VA Hospital address…

takes a little searching, but time WELL spent!

ALL  will appreciate it.

 Parents who cannot ( or are not) with their own kids

appreciate a little art project or note from a child, any child.

A little smile, a little laugh, a warm fuzzy from home.

No need to put names on them.

Here are a few addresses …

To those Veteran’s ( active or inactive )

AND THEIR FAMILIES …

THANK  YOU!

Happy Veteran’s Day!

Wendy

What does READ AT HOME really look like?

I am a BLOG STALKER!
I admit it.
 
I am ALWAYS trying to find the BEST, FASTEST, & EASIEST ways
to make my classroom run smoother & more effective while being 
academically successful.
I want my students to continue to practice their reading & writing skills and strategies 
AT HOME!

BUT..What does Read at HOME really look like?

 
Aren’t we ALL?
 
So each year I try to “change” a few things for the better.
NO THROWING THE BABY OUT WITH THE BATHWATER!
 
(  For YOU youngin’s…  Don’t get rid of the good stuff while trying NEW stuff! )
 
So here is something “NEW” ( or New to ME )  that I am doing this year!
 
I am NOT ( Ugh…),
NOT  
choosing the Student’s TAKE HOME BOOKS each week.
( Let it go! Let it go!)
 
I LET THEM!
The power is in the CHOICE. 

I thought if I chose reading books that were ON their reading level

THEY would MAGICALLY fall in LOVE with READING!

NOT!
I have RAH ( Read AT Home ) envelopes…
Purchased at REALLY GREAT STUFF
BUT ANY envelope will do!
 
Each WEDNESDAY and FRIDAY they bring their RAH folder back.
I have them choose 2 books…YES…2 books to put in their folder.
( I place a pile 20 or so, of books at each level …
 
*disclaimer…right now I have 5 Guided Reading groups..I group their 
PILES of books by the Guided Reading group level…
 

So they really are taking home books at THEIR reading level.

Just a little teacher “nudge” in the right direction!

 
They choose two books, put them in their envelopes, and put them in their cubbies.
They keep them for 2 nights..hence bringing them back WED. & FRI. 
We change them for two NEW books … and here we go again!
 

Some nights I add a READING RESPONSE page to their homework.

USE ONE OF YOUR RAH BOOKS!

( Your choice!)

 
You can get my READING RESPONSE Packet HERE  
Some nights I have them do a page or two from my
Book Reports.
Accountability?
I do have a paper…lined…for parents to sign each night.
DO ALL OF THEM SIGN IT?
 NO!
If YOU take a horse to water…Can you FORCE it to drink it?
NO!
Let it go! Let it go!
So then what?
If you have a parent who won’t support reading at home…
 READ, READ, READ at school.
 
YOU may be the ONLY adult who reads with “THAT CHILD”..
We ALL have “that child”.
 
Don’t fight it!
Don’t PUNISH the child.
IF he/she could read it BY THEMSELVES…..THEY WOULD!
 
They can’t.
So
Let it go! Let it go!
BUT…
I do REWARD those who make the continued effort to read at home
EVERY NIGHT!
 
When they bring their envelopes back, I check the paper.
IF the parent HAS NOT SIGNED…I highlight in RED that date.
 
At the end of the MONTH,
I give a reward (and a SPECIAL BRAG TAG ) to those who have read
EVERY NIGHT!
 
I know…NOT fair for “that child”
Fair is NOT Always EQUAL!
 
I want my kiddos who 
DO THE WORK
to know…
I NOTICE!
 
And so my friends…
I keep stalking.
 
LOTS of great ideas out there in 
BLOGGY LAND.
 
And PINTEREST  LAND.
 
AND  INSTAGRAM LAND.
 
If you need some ideas..
 
 
 
 
Happy  Reading my Friends!
 
 
Don't Blink. Thank You Kenny Chesney.

NOVEMBER already? Don’t BLINK!

I just LOVE

Kenny Chesney…

Kenny Chesney

Kenny Chesney

I think he is speaking to ME!

As I  am singing…no…  BELTING OUT.. his song

( in my car of course…windows up..no one wants to hear this voice) 🙂

“DON’T BLINK”

Don’t blink!

Just like that, you’re six years old and you take a nap and you

Wake up and you’re twenty-five and your high school sweetheart becomes your wife

Don’t blink

You just might miss your babies growing like mine did

Turning into moms and dads next thing you know your better half

Of fifty years is there in bed

And you’re praying God takes you instead

Trust me friend a hundred years goes faster than you think

So don’t blink

I can TOTALLY RELATE!

I swear..I just looked at the calendar & it was OCTOBER!

Early OCTOBER!

THEN…WHAM!

Halloween is here..NO..GONE!

and now it is NOVEMBER! 

WHERE DID OCTOBER GO??

As I turn the calendar, I realize 

I need to slow down

and appreciate ALL that I have in the HERE & NOW!

So, my friends..

BEFORE the Holidays come…55 days to be exact!

Christmas Carols EVERYWHERE!

and then BAM! Christmas Carols EVERYWHERE!

Take a few moments to 

STOP! Look around! Remember this MOMENT!

It will be gone in a BLINK!

Enjoy the..

LULL

( Before the RUSH!)

Take a minute, relish in the moment, and ENJOY!

BECAUSE…tomorrow will be here soon enough..

I wonder where I can get a 2019 CALENDAR?

(I better hurry…it will be here SOON!)

HAHAHA

Here are a few 

“helpers” to get you through the

 Nov./Dec.  rush!

DON’T  BLINK!

Let's Talk TURKEY ( TpT 1stgradefireworks)

Let’s Talk TURKEY ( TpT 1stgradefireworks)

Let’s Talk Turkey

November Fact Family Booklets from TpT 1stgradefireworks

November Fact Family Booklets from TpT 1stgradefireworks

Fact  Family

November Adding 3 numbers MATH Booklets from TpT 1stgradefireworks

November Adding 3 numbers MATH Booklets from TpT 1stgradefireworks

Adding 3 numbers

November Vocabulary BANNERS from TpT 1stgradefireworks

November Vocabulary BANNERS from TpT 1stgradefireworks

November Vocabulary Banners

The Elves are Working OVERTIME from TpT 1stgradefireworks

The Elves are Working OVERTIME from TpT 1stgradefireworks

The Elves are Working OVERTIME!

WINTER Vocabulary BANNERS from TpT 1stgradefireworks

WINTER Vocabulary BANNERS from TpT 1stgradefireworks

Winter Vocabulary Banners

So remember:

1. Don’t BLINK!

2. Enjoy each and every moment

3. Tell those you care about, what they mean to YOU!         Kind WORDS COUNT!

4. Take care of yourself. 

5. Live, Laugh, Love!

Primary Teachers are Quirky!

Close Reading

How important is READING?

Enjoy!

ME? Dress up for Halloween?

Do YOU Dress Up for Halloween?

I hate to wear hats when I dress up.

I don’t like things on my head.

I do enjoy a great laugh.

I want to participate with the group.

I am a TEAM PLAYER.

 

BUT… I don’t dress up for Halloween!

Screaming child

Sreaming Child

There!  I said it!

I am the “old teacher” who does NOT dress up for Halloween.

Old Granny

Old Granny

WHY?  I dunno.

Just never got “into it”.

The whole “make-up, costume, prop thing” just doesn’t appeal to me.

I don’t get the whole “dress up as someone else”, thing.

DON’T GET ME WRONG!

I love HALLOWEEN!

I dressed my kids up in HOMEMADE costumes AND store-bought costumes.

They were SO CUTE!

Teachers EVERYWHERE dress up and they are AMAZING!

I just can’t do it at school!

My kiddos are NOT allowed to wear costumes to school.

I will NOT, if they cannot.

I wouldn’t dress up, even if THEY could. Sorry, Not me!

Maybe I’ll dress up at home!

A cute T-SHIRT! YES!

Maybe.  Maybe not.

Maybe??

So for now… I will live in my “COSTUME”

vicariously through all of YOU on PINTEREST!

This post might help me…

My Fall Dilemma 

WOW! CUTE hat!… Maybe…  Gotta go…I think I found a HAT I LIke.

Stay tuned.  Check out my Instagram.

There may be a HALLOWEEN pic.

Maybe.  🙂

Do YOU “dress up” for Halloween?

Help me out…What do YOU dress up for on HALLOWEEN?

Leave me a comment. 🙂

Wendy

 

vowel kids

Welcome the VOWEL KIDS!

I would like you to meet my newest friends!

The vowel kids!

This is KATE. ( long a)

 Her twin sister is Anna. ( Short a )

Anna left us for a short “vacation”

…so I can use her picture for LONG A!

Thank you to Nikki from MELONHEADZ for the cutie pies!

We took each vowel family and did some writing!

We brainstormed words ( see the word box) 

that have our phonics pattern for the week.

 Then we did an interactive writing .

( see my BALANCED LITERACY packet, 

if you haven’t done INTERACTIVE WRITING)

The kids decided on her story. And then…

WE  WROTE!

Meet the vowel kids

Meet the Vowel Kids

They were so cute! Best editors ever! 

 

After we finished…

they critiqued. 

 

They decided yellow was too hard to read.

 

They said that handwriting is very important,

 if you want others to read it.

 

They said spelling is important. It can change the meaning.

 

And lastly, writing large and spacing our words,

makes it easier to read. 

WOW! They were listening! 🙂

And so …each week for the next 4 weeks

I will introduce another friend.

Long e, Long i, Long o, and Long u.

 

We will chat, create, and write!

I Love my JOB!

If you are looking for more

writing ideas..

Stop on by!

Daily Language Practice

Balanced Literacy

Write ON!

1stgradefireworks

Balanced Literacy

Helping kids EDIT their WRITING

Fall Dilemma

My OCTOBER classroom DILEMMA!

 

So my October dilemma.

We have a two-week FALL vacation.

 

(NO COMPLAINING HERE!)

Celebrate!

WAHOO!!!

BUT…

We return on Oct. 14.

 MONDAY

21 days (exactly ) until…

YOU  KNOW  IT

THURSDAY, October 31, 2019

Trick or Treat Kids

Happy Halloween!

HALLOWEEN!

Parties,

CANDY,

Kids who can’t wait to get home ( highly DISTRACTABLE!)

(some schools…not mine….)

COSTUMES!

So … My October dilemma.

When we go back,

Do I put out HALLOWEEN themed centers?

Do I keep it OCTOBERish with Columbus, Halloween, Fall, Pumpkins, etc?

Do I just “touch” on the “HOLIDAY” stuff…and Promote the FALL  stuff?

Do I  add  THANKSGIVING?

Should I keep it ALL going until THANKSGIVING?

What to do?  What to do?????

Fall Leaves

FAll Leaves

BTW…   I  LOVE, LOVE, LOVE   FALL!

I love October!

My favorite season.

Pumpkins

Pumpkins

Starbuck's Pumpkins Spiced Latte

Starbuck’s Pumpkins Spiced Latte

YUMMY!

But…

CONTENT is EVERYTHING!

My students MUST take a BENCHMARK ASSESSMENT in December.

I want them to do well.

( I don’t think there will be a HALLOWEEN question on it.)

Unless it’s about 

HOW MANY CANDIES DID YOU EAT ALL TOGETHER?

So ..what to do?   What to do?

October INTEGRATE!

I must teach SCIENCE and SOCIAL STUDIES!

( Living things…life cycle…Plants/animals…Lifestyles Long Ago..)

So here is MY October plan:

Reading:

  • Nonfiction about pumpkins, apples, plants
  • Biographies about Christopher Columbus, Squanto
  • Fiction about Fall, Halloween, Pilgrims, Thanksgiving

I am checking my district curriculum

( yes, we have one )

for REQUIRED (Tested )  Skills & Strategies for this quarter.

As we delve into our reading…I make SURE to incorporate TESTED strategies.

 

Questioning? Sequencing? Retelling? Etc..etc…

Vocabulary?   Again…check NECESSARY vocabulary for success!

 

I spend A LOT of time on the necessary vocabulary. I have 10-12  English Language Learners.

 

They need visuals, modeling, & practice before they can “TAKE ON” the new information

.

Phonics?   Spelling?   Grammar? 

 Required phonics skills for this quarter.

 

What to use for  Spelling? 

BOTH!

 

  Required spelling skills AND  thematic vocabulary words. 

WHAT?      WHY?

Because…I want them to have some  INTRINSIC vocabulary to use easily in their…

 

WRITING!

 

Bear wrapped as mummy

Bear wrapped as MUMMY

I want MY Mummy!  🙂

Sorry…. couldn’t resist.

October Writing:

  • “How To”..grow..carve…etc… about pumpkins, apples, plants
  • “Informative”  about Christopher Columbus,   Squanto, Pilgrims
  • “Narrative”  about Fall, Halloween, Pilgrims, Thanksgiving
  • Thank You cards, Invitations, Lists, Etc.

Again…I am checking my district curriculum 

for REQUIRED (Tested )  Skills & Strategies for this quarter.

Whatever our REQUIRED writing prompt will be

( I already know mine  is INFORMATIVE)

We will practice, practice, practice!

 

I won’t skip the other genres.

 

Just FOCUS on the INFORMATIVE!

BUT wait!

 

I want crafts! I want CUTSIE! I want products! 

I Love October BOOKS!

And so…we will make CUTSIE lapbooks, paintings, charts, stories & crafts

 

 about???

Fall, Halloween, pumpkins, apples

, plants, Christopher Columbus, 

Squanto, Pilgrims, Thanksgiving

DON’T tell our FIRE MARSHALL.

I might HANG THINGS UP!

Definitely!

I won’t tell if YOU won’t tell.

MATH:

  • addition / subtraction
  • missing addends
  • place value
  • graphing
  • story problems

And October MATH??

Lots of Graphs, addition & subtractionproblem-solving, story problems

 

ALL ABOUT THEMES!

How many apples, pumpkin seeds, candies, turkeys, Indians, etc, etc.

(Math Journals are GREAT for this!)

and, yes..

I will need to keep it going until Thanksgiving.

 

And I will need to use EVERY MINUTE of EVERY DAY!

 

And yes… it will take planning, and prepping…

Bat craft

Bat craftivity

BATS! 

Black Cat watercolor

Black Cat Watercolor

Black  Cats

Pumpkin plants in garden

Pumpkin plant in the garden

Growing  Pumpkins

Crock Pot applesauce

Crock pot applesauce

Making APPLESAUCE!

Happy Birthday Johnny Appleseed!

And YES

I WILL LOVE EVERY MINUTE OF IT!

You see…

FALL IS MY FAVORITE SEASON OF THE YEAR!

Don’t you just LOVE OCTOBER?

To those of you who hung in there to the bottom of this LONG POST…

A FREEBIE FOR YOU!

Happy FALL!

BOO BANG!

Boo Bang

Boo Bang FREEBIE!

Math Baseball in OCTOBER

OCTOBER Baseball! But… MATH BASEBALL?

Yes! It is OCTOBER!

If you don’t follow baseball…

It’s time for the playoffs & CHAMPIONSHIPS!

AND  then… THE WORLD SERIES!

I have 4 kids.

My 3 boys ALL played baseball ( for MANY YEARS).

And my daughter played SOFTBALL for 16 years!  She even played in the Softball World Series! WAHOO!

So, baseball is in our home. A LOT!

Even though MY team, SF Giants are NOT in the playoffs, we still LOVE the game!

SF Giants Logo

My favorite baseball team! Go SF Giants!

 

But, I am teaching first-graders in OCTOBER!

I need academic “FUN”!

And so… we play!  And we play a LOT! 🙂

The expert of anything, was once a beginner!

The expert of anything was once a beginner!

Remember, baseball is about skills, strategies, and hard work.

It is a TEAM sport.

You must work hard, practice, and have the DESIRE to be BETTER!

WOW! It sounds like my classroom MOTTO!

Work Hard, Play hard,

LIFESKILLS!  🙂

Inspire others.

Inspire others.

I have created a Baseball MATH Game for OCTOBER!

WHAT?  A MATH GAME?  YES!

A fast-paced math game for K-3 students!

Math Baseball in OCTOBER

Math Baseball in OCTOBER

Directions for MATH GAME are included!

Easy Prep… lots of giggles!

 

Math Mats for Baseball in OCTOBER

Math Mats for Baseball in OCTOBER

Math Facts Baseballs

Math Facts Baseballs

Math Manipulative BASEBALLS for LITTLE ONES!

Math Manipulative BASEBALLS for LITTLE ONES!

Place the “MITT(s)” in a big circle.

Students take a “baseball” card and QUICKLY, place it in the correct MITT!

HURRY! Then “RUN” to the end of the line. The next “batter” is UP!

They choose the next baseball card & place it in the CORRECT MITT!

Some baseballs have numbers, some have math facts,

some have MANIPULATIVES ( ten frames, dice, dominoes, etc )

to represent the NUMBERS!

The winners are the “players” who get ALL of the baseball cards into the MItts!

Teamwork is REQUIRED!

Can you HEAR the CHEERS??? 🙂

We love to have fun, play games, and practice TEAMWORK!

What more can you ask of First Graders?

Maybe…learn to tie your shoes?   HAHA   HAve fun with this!

Need MORE?

SPORTS BANG! Sight Word GAMES!

5 games in a BUNDLE!  WOW!

Sports BANG! Sight Word GAMES

Sports BANG! Sight Word GAMES

Check it out!

Math Baseball in OCTOBER

Math Baseball in OCTOBER

Math Baseball for OCTOBER

Helping FIRSTIES become Better Writers

Can First Graders become BETTER WRITERS?

Hello everyone!

My name is Wendy McCarty.

I am the creator behind…

1stgradefireworks

I create classroom and homeschool materials

that engage young minds and help the teacher to support instruction.

You can see my products in my TPT Store:

1stgradefireworks

Today’s Topic…

Writing in First Grade

Now… I wish I was PERFECT.

I wish my kiddos were PERFECT.

There are NO Perfect PEOPLE!

NO Perfect KIDDOS.

No  Perfect.

Now that we have gone there…how do we get close?

We get  BETTER!

Better Readers.

Better Speakers.

Better Writers.

Better..Better…Better

( My Mantra )

HOW?

We write EVERY DAY.

Usually..more than once.

We write about our day in school

…things we like

…stories we have read

…new words we have learned

…new thoughts we have had

etc.etc.etc.

I try to do a mini-lesson on a strategy.

I add new vocabulary.  In CONTEXT.

We make connections.

We expand our thinking.

We TALK!

And it can be noisy.

It’s OK.

Sometimes LEARNING is messy.

And loud. And busy.

It’s OK!

We do writer’s workshop.

My kids write.

AND they LOVE IT!

HOW?

Give them paper, pencils, markers, colored pencils, etc…

Give them…TIME!

And … LET THEM TALK!

My classroom is NEVER quiet!

Talking

about writing,

 during writing,

and after writing.

TALK, Write,  Create!

Are they perfect?

NO.

Is that OK?

YES!

*(Update)

I have added new

VOCABULARY BANNERS

to my

Writing Center.

Fall Vocabulary Banners for WRITING

Fall Vocabulary Banners for WRITING

The banners

help my

 beginning writers

( HOW DO YOU SPELL…..??? )

and my

EL students

(LOTS of VISUALS )

See how I use the

VOCABULARY BANNERS

Here.

For WRITER’S WORKSHOP

 If you need a starting point...

Monthly Writing Pages

WITH

VOCABULARY Helpers

at the

bottom of EVERY PAGE!

I LOVE TEACHING!

I am currently headed into my 27th year teaching…ALL of them in first grade!

My kiddos ask me “WHY don’t YOU ever GRADUATE to Second Grade?”

I tell them

“First Grade is IN my HEART!”

You can follow me at:

https://1stgradefireworks.net

https://www.facebook.com/1stgradefireworks

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/1stgradefireworks

https://www.Instagram.com/1stgradefireworks

https://www.pinterest.com/1stgradefirewor

Follow me:   TPT    FB   IG   Pinterest

1stgradefireworks

Are your students ready for CENTERS?

How to add games for independent centers!

We have been in school for 4 weeks. I know…we began JULY 31! I spend 3-4 weeks working on whole class routines & schedules. Then we spend a week or two working on centers ( without me actually taking reading groups) so I can monitor HOW they are doing during independent centers. AND THEN????

We begin INDEPENDENT CENTERS without the teacher!!!  WHAT???  Yes!! 

Release the KRACKEN!

Release the Kracken

Release the Kracken

And yes..we begin small group reading.

I used to call it GUIDED READING.

But I have added Guided Reading Skills & Strategies.

Sometimes, we work on words. Sometimes we work on skills. 

Sometimes we read. Sometimes we write. 

I use my assessments to guide my instruction. 

I know WHO needs WHAT.

So what are the other kids doing?

MUST DO’s & May Do’s.

And this week..enter their FAVORITE CENTER SO FAR!

( Yes…in their WHOLE LIFE…as they say!)

Here is the FUN game for centers!

And they are LEARNING!    WIN!  WIN!

 

 

SHORT VOWEL DOMINOES 

294 CARDS! WOWZA! 

294 domino cards for short vowel practice. Domino games can be differentiated by vowel sounds, picture cards, or word cards. Fun activities for student learning. Games help students stay engaged while practicing short vowel CVC word families.

They LOVE THIS! They beg for more time! Get your WORK done so you can PLAY!

YES!  I love it when a plan works!

And so here we go!

Small groups for me..independent centers for them.

WIN! WIN!  All around. Check out the video!

When is it “officially” FALL?

 

It’s 100 degrees in NorCAL!

My A/C has been on for WEEKS!

I don’t like to sweat. 

My calendar says Fall ‘officially” begins on Monday, September 23?

WHAT? Why so far away?

I think FALL should begin TODAY!

WHEN is it “officially” FALL? 

I am ready for…  FALL!

When is it "Officially" Fall?

When is it “Officially” FALL?

 

I have been looking for FALL-themed resources

to help get my first-graders into the

FALL MODE!

I hope these help YOU too!

(Thank You PINTEREST!)

The Best of Fall Read Alouds

The Best of Fall Read Alouds

Fall themes?  YES! Many to choose from!

What do YOU teach in the FALL?

PUMPKIN EVERYTHING?

When is it "officially" FALL?

When is it “officially” FALL?

 

Need MORE  Fall inspiration?

🙂

Bring on FALL! We are READY!

How Do You Know When It’s Fall?

Fall, Apples, & Johnny Appleseed

And so my friends…as YOU can SEE…FALL is ALMOST here!

Enjoy the changing season! Have fun with your students, hug your family!

Now…where did I put thise leather boots?

Hmmm…I may have to clean out a 

closet or two! 

pumpkin spiced latte

pumpkin spiced latte

Pumpkin Spice LATTE is almost HERE!  WAHOO!!

HAPPY  Fall. ‘yall from NORCAL! 
1stgradefireworks

1stgradefireworks