I love SPRING!
It’s that time of year…
Whatever YOUR site chooses to call it.
The time of year when we color,cut & glue
to show our FRIENDS that WE LOVE THEM!
Pinterest has LOTS ( I mean LOTS )
of Valentine IDEAS!
These are a few from one of my collaborative pinterest boards
WE LOVE VALENTINE’S DAY!
But WHAT TO DO WITH ALL OF THOSE VALENTINE CARDS???
How to MANAGE them ALL?
2 days before our “Friendship Celebration”..
*we are NOT allowed to call it a VALENTINE celebration
(seperation of CHURCH/STATE thing..)
we make our BAGS!
Now I have done LOTS & LOTS & LOTS of different types of card holders…
(Again…THANK YOU PINTEREST!)
But I think the MOST important thing to remember is…
WHERE ARE YOU GOING TO PUT THEM?
If you have 25 students…these take up a LOT of space!
So the choice is yours!
ALWAYS…ALWAYS…make 1 extra!
(That student who was absent on CRAFTY day…will want a bag on PARTY day!)
Have your kiddos write THEIR NAME ONLY on the cards.
One in each bag…PLOP..PLOP…PLOP!
NO need to MATCH their friend’s name to the bag.
One for EVERYONE!
When we open our bags…we say THANK YOU to each person who gave us a card!
So good luck.
Check your CRAFTING SUPPLIES.
Find our where you want them be..they will be there for two whole days.
Don’t forget to make one for yourself!
I am sure your kiddos will have “TREATS” for you too!
Do you NEED a few more Centers for Valentine’s Day?
Happy Friendship Day! Wendy 1stgradefireworks
This week: Classroom Helpers
Each of us is a flower… Growing in Life’s Garden (by Charlotte Diamond)
Can I really GROW A RAINBOW? YES!
This is the entry into a world where ALL students are flowers in the classroom garden. Each is unique, colorful, and needs it’s own nurturing to THRIVE! How to create a classroom environment where each student with different needs and abilities will blossom. When we create our classroom bouquet, we have grown a RAINBOW from the seeds we have planted.
One time per week, I will post a TIP, a TRICK, and/or a HACK to help YOU, the teacher, nurture our students into thriving blossoms of learning! My hope is that through support, trials & tribulations, and time-saving tips, YOU may grow YOUR RAINBOW!
First, My number 1 goal in MY classroom is to make INDEPENDENT LEARNERS!
HOW? Model…TEACH…Model…TEACH…I DO. WE DO. YOU DO! Then, RELEASE THE KRACKEN!
In order to help support the independent learning, I give each child the OPPORTUNITY to be a HELPER.
A Leader. The person “in charge”.
For some this may the first time they have ever been given the WHOLE responsibility of a JOB!
(Think HELICOPTER PARENTS).
For some, it is a responsibility they take on JOYFULLY!
For others, they embrace the position, but NOT the RESPONSIBILITY!
And so, to help nurture the independence of each of my little “seedlings”,
I CHOOSE DAILY Helpers. I know, some classrooms have weekly helpers, some permanent helpers, but for ME? I choose them daily. In my class of 24, each student SHOULD be each of our helpers by the end of the month. I say SHOULD. I make no promises. We are in a continuous state of growing!
WHAT HELPERS DO I NEED?
If you go to pinterest there are thousands of samples of
Classroom helper/job cards
in a MULTITUDE of classroom themes!
These are a few I have found on pinterest….
But…putting up the cards and
USING THEM TO YOUR ADVANTAGE
are two different things.
And that is THE OBJECTIVE…
Helper ( JOB ) Cards are a way for students to take RESPONSIBILITY
HELP THE TEACHER! 🙂
Here is HOW I USE THEM!
Each morning our bell rings at 8:20 AM.
We are working at 8:21.
My students put HW folders in the basket,
backpacks & jackets on the shelves,
and get ready for chromebooks.
(Don’t be tardy…you will miss computer time)
While they are “waiting patiently”..Ie: staring through my back, grinning quietly, hoping I call their name…
I take name cards ( nothing FANCY…3 X 5 cards with THEIR NAME ON IT 🙂 )
change the helpers in a small pocket chart at the front of my room.
My pocket chart came from the $1 section at Target. Nothing FANCY!
MY JOBS are:
Clean Up Crew (2 students)
Ball Handlers ( 2 for recess)
Tech Teachers ( 4 students )
They change daily.
They biggest change I have made is..
YOU MUST BE
“ON TIME AND IN YOUR SEAT” – To be a HELPER!
WOW…no more tardies!
EVERYONE WANTS TO BE A HELPER!
AND after JANUARY… They can choose their job!
(I wait until January because I want to make sure they ALL know EXACTLY what the job is, and may have had a chance to be that “special” helper once before. I want them to see it in action, before they have CHOICE!)
When I turn over the name cards…
(Yesterday’s names to the back of the pile,,)
“Do you want to be a ____ OR _____?”
Whatever the next two jobs available are.
They CHOOSE what they want to do.
That choice allows them to take personal responsibility.
AND THEY DO!
Allow the little ones to be a PART of the classroom!
They LOVE IT!
I hope YOU check out the blogs and pins online to find the HELPERS that fit YOUR classroom and YOUR style! If you need a SPECIAL order HELPERS CARDS SET, email me. I do special orders, too!
Whatever JOBS you choose…let them take RESPONSIBILITY! Don’t do it for them!
NO HELICOPTER TEACHERS! Even when YOUR OCD kicks in!
Come back next week for ANOTHER round of …
HOW TO GROW A RAINBOW IN YOUR CLASSROOM!
Here is a little “HELPER”
to help YOU get started… 🙂
See YOU next week! Wendy 1stgradefireworks
OH, NO YOU DON’T!!!!
So again…WHAT AM I DOING???
REDOING MY CLASSROOM LIBRARY!
WHAT???? AGAIN???? NO!!!!!!!
So, How many times do I have to do it..before I LIKE it??
Here is the BEFORE…
So, why? Oh, why?
Why mess with a GOOD thing? ( Can you hear the shame in my voice?)
BECAUSE. Because I know what wonderful books are in the tubs.
BUT … the kids DON’T!
They know their favorites. They go to the same tub over & over. I LOVE THAT.BUT…
How do you know… there might be a BOOK you would LOVE BETTER!
They don’t search. They just go to what they know.
SO…I am expanding their KNOWLEDGE BASE!
I have decided to TAKE AWAY THE TUBS!
WHAT???? I know…you with OCD will HATE ME!
Because..it’s not MY library…it’s OURS!
I am going to dump EVERY book in a pile in the middle of our carpet area.
AND WE WILL SORT!
Common core says NONFICTION is a PRIORITY!
My kids don’t even know WHAT Nonfiction books we have!
So…we shall sort!
Fiction…Nonfiction…author study…science…etc..etc..etc…NOT ME!
Not my SUMMER! (again )
OURS…ALL OF US!
(Do not do this the day your admin is observing YOU!)
This will take time…time well spent!
My thoughts are to have the kids make labels.
And put them right ON THE SHELF!
YES…ON THE SHELF
They take ownership, so they can put things away !
WOW! A Classroom library that mimics a PUBLIC LIBRARY!???
They will know HOW to USE a PUBLIC
Not “What tub is LIBRARY——- book in?” Hmm…
Food for thought.
So…if you are thinking of RAISING THE BAR in YOUR classroom library…
LET THEM DO IT!
Close your eyes…change your MINDSET..and collaborate WITH YOUR STUDENTS!
They might surprise YOU!
Not, an ELF ON THE SHELF!
A REAL HELPER ELF!
It’s the MOST, WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR!
SANTA CLAUS is COMIN’ TO TOWN!
First of all…
I work at a low socioeconomic, Title 1 school.
This time of year can be very hard for some kids.
Some families DON’T celebrate Christmas.
Some families can’t afford gifts.
Some are VERY proud and won’t accept donations.
This means…Santa & his elves don’t come to EVERY house.
So today..we had THE TALK.
THE talk about what December, Christmas, and Santa
are REALLY about.
GIVING & HELPING!
Today, we became HELPER ELVES!
We talked about
HOW we can HELP at HOME,
and help our FRIENDS!
The kids talked about giving from the “heart”.
Our class meeting was SO enlightening!
My kids were SO engaged.
The conversation was NOT about “ME..ME..ME”.
They were SO excited to brainstorm “What can I do for OTHERS?”
Sniff..sniff..made tears of joy come to my eyes!
IT WAS AWESOME!
Santa, you can come to ROOM 3.
(I have a feeling…he will)
Here are some suggestions for YOU!
But for now..
WE WILL BE HELPING YOU, SANTA!
WE ARE HELPER ELVES!
To help YOU out in this BUSY month..
Here are some
from my TPT store.
Here is a FREEBIE
from my store!
I admit it…I failed..
I tried the ELF thing…FAILED!
I forgot to move it.
I didn’t want to spend the time moving it to who knows where.
My kiddos didn’t find it!
I went to PINTEREST and saw ALL of these AMAZING ELF activities.
I GIVE UP!
And so…I QUIT! I am NOT “ELFABLE!”
Change my mindset. Change is good. Change is necessary!
So maybe I don’t ELF this year. Maybe I focus on a
Sharing ORNAMENTS! Or presents, or smiles! Or handshakes, or time.
So I think I will focus on content.
I will share the GOODWILL of the ELF ideals, through lesson content.
I hope my students’ families will give them the “warm fuzzies” they deserve. I do EVERY DAY.
But for now, we will focus on learning.
( BORING I KNOW…BUT NECESSARY!)
So…next in my list…MATH!
UGH! I know. HOW CAN THE ELF HELP US IN MATH?
1 more..1 less…10 more..10 less
So…to help with my “ELF FAILURE”
to maximize my math time…
This can be made into a booklet, used as math centers, individual practice, assessments…
It may NOT be as EXCITING as finding the ELF each day.
BUT…my students won’t be confused or saddened because they think the ELF doesn’t care.
They know I care. And that’s better than ANY ELF!
And so my friends, I admit it. I am an ELF on the Shelf failure.
But…my student’s did REALLY WELL on their math assessments and we
giggled, grinned, hugged, & gave high-fives all through the year.
Now…where did I leave that ELF? 🙂
Holiday HELPERS for YOU! 🙂
Leave me a comment…help me be an “ELF” convert. How do YOU use the “ELF”??? There must be a support group SOMEWHERE! 🙂 Happy Holidays!
Sometimes I find something ( or do something )
that I think..
WHY HAVEN’T I BEEN DOING THIS FOREVER???”
This is one of those teacher tips…
Have you ever used
REPOSITIONAL VINYL LETTERS??
OMG! I LOVE THEM!
I got mine…at STAPLES
BEFORE…last 23 YEARS…
I would write the numbers & Content areas
( Work SMARTER NOT HARDER!)
NOW…I can just add the words / skills
& the kids ALWAYS know where to look!
You can erase over the letters
when you remove them..
NOT sticky ucky GLUE stuff!
I use multiple sizes for interest…
MY NAME is GIGANTIC!
(Don’t ask me how to spell…MRS. McCARTY!)
Love Love Love this!
WORK SMARTER…NOT HARDER!
So remember… time is IMPORTANT!
Do what YOU need to do to streamline YOUR day!
For more TEACHER TIPS…
So my October dilemma.
We have a two week vacation
from Sept. 29-Oct. 14, 2018.
(NO COMPLAINING HERE!)
We return on Oct. 15.
16 days (exactly ) until…
YOU KNOW IT
WEDNESDAY, October 31, 2018
Kids who can’t wait to get home ( highly DISTRACTABLE!)
(some schools…not mine….)
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 “HOLDIAY” stuff…and Promote the FALL stuff?
Do I add THANKSGIVING?
Should I keep it ALL going until THANKSGIVING?
What to do? What to do?????
BTW… I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE FALL!
I love October!
My favorite season.
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?
I must teach SCIENCE and SOCIAL STUDIES!
( Living things…life cycle…Plants/animals…Lifestyles Long Ago..)
So here is MY October plan:
- 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 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?
Required spelling skills AND thematic vocabulary words.
Because…I want them to have some INTRINSIC vocabulary to use easily in their…
I want MY Mummy! 🙂
Sorry…. couldn’t resist.
- “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!
I want crafts! I want CUTSIE! I want products!
I Love October BOOKS!
And so…we will make CUTSIE lapbooks, paintings, charts, stories & crafts
Fall, Halloween, pumpkins, apples
, plants, Christopher Columbus,
Squanto, Pilgrims, Thanksgiving
DON’T tell our FIRE MARSHALL.
I might HANG THINGS UP!
I won’t tell if YOU won’t tell.
- addition / subtraction
- missing addends
- place value
- story problems
And October MATH??
ALL ABOUT THEMES!
How many apples, pumpkin seeds, candies, turkies, indians, etc, etc.
(Math Journals are GREAT for this!)
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…
Happy Birthday Johnny Appleseed!
I WILL LOVE EVERY MINUTE OF IT!
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!
How do you know when it is FALL??
When STARBUCK’S brings out…
My school district is on a “modified” traditional calendar.
What that really means is…our FALL starts EARLY!
We start school in JULY…go for 9 weeks…
& get a two-week VACATION IN OCTOBER!!!!
YIPPEE! Fall Break!
In approximately 22 days ( and 24 parent conferences)…
I will be on Fall vacation for 2 weeks! YIPPEE!!!
I only have a few things to do…
ELA Benchmark tests to be administered, corrected, & data inputted…
Math benchmark tests to be administered, corrected, & inputted…
report cards to be inputted ( no comments needed…)
& 24 Parent Conferences…
And keep teaching to keep up with the
district pacing guide!
OH, Yeah! Teach FALL theme also!
AND…It’s Johnny Appleseed’s birthday!
WE MUST MAKE APPLESAUCE!
(And after all of that…PLAN FOR the 2 weeks of OCTOBER after we get back!)
So, to help with the October stuff..
A NEW Fall PACKET!
Here are a few more packets to help with …FALL!!!
If you are looking for MORE classroom resources:
This week’s theme…
Student desk plates.
Name tags. Desk Plates. Whatever YOU call them.
Do you have name plates on your student’s desks?
To write their names ON THE DESK!
But…HOW DO I GET Desk Plate OFF???
BLACK EXPO MARKER & a Good eraser
will take off ALL PERMANENT Marker
Oil-based Paint pens!
Now…No papers on their desks.
I LOVE IT!
You can change it whenever you want!
( add cuties for the changing seasons!
And so easy the add or change
when a new student enters your classroom community!
Check out MORE about