What is YOUR favorite time of the day?
My next favorite “accessory”
I put BIG teal dots on my table!
I love it when SOMETHING WORKS!
discovered, learned, and found a BETTER WAY!
So Does PINTEREST!
Different ones for EACH MONTH.
FAST & EASY for me.
High Interest for Kiddos.
I have a
Tie a triple KNOT!
Yes, a TRIPLE KNOT…and staple it to one side of your board ( or window ).
Measure side to side. Add 3-4 inches!
Tie another triple knot and staple it to the other side.
( I measured to make sure both sides were LEVEL.)
I know…those of you who know me… I NEVER MEASURE!
But…I want to do this ONE TIME…not taking down the yarn until the END OF THE YEAR!
Staple BOTH sides of the KNOT!
The Knot will HOLD the yarn. NO SLIDING!
After you have laminated the banner ( OR TAPE THE TOP EDGE BEFORE
you HOLE PUNCH!)
Use a hole punch to make two holes at the top.
I went down about ( No measuring there ) a 1/2″.
SLIT THE HOLE TO THE TOP!
( SEE the PICTURE )
“NO! Then it will fall off!”
No one is pulling on these. They are for
What this does is allows you to
change the BANNER page
without having to
remove & put up a new string!
JUST CHANGE THE BANNERS!
Alternate sides when you add the vocab. cards.
I wanted an ODD number…
so I could have 1 in the middle.
Add another layer.
I cheated in the middle layer.
Stapled the middle card ( so the arch would be close to the others).
for ELs, independent work, & everyday writing!
And I can change them each month…
IN A FLASH!
Here are my
A GAME CHANGER
NIBITS FOR NEWBIES
This week’s theme…
DO YOU SCOOT?
Do… YOU… SCOOT?????
Have you ever PLAYED SCOOT???
My Kiddos LOVE SCOOT games…
Here are the basics:
Game cards, task cards, pictures, flashcards, or multiple pages for review.
A student page for responses.
Each student needs their OWN page.
Can be a pre-printed one, or blank.
The main idea is:
Some teachers use a timer ( 1 minute per “station”) or FREE FOR ALL!
MY KIDDOS LOVE LOVE LOVE this!
Here are some examples…
We used this packet to play.
The CLOCK cards are the packet.
NO laminating is needed!
I just place them in clear report sleeves…or Zip Lock bags when I need more!
Each card has a DIFFERENT LETTER in the Top LEFT corner…
see the “V”????
Students walk around the classroom ( this time with a partner )
to find the cards.
We just used a blank page, folded it into 12 squares, and gave each one a LETTER.
I told them NOT to put their squares in ABC order.
WHY? That way ALL kids are not at the same card at the same time!
Mix it up!
They found the 12 cards matching THEIR CHOSEN LETTERS!
We are working on time to the hour & half hour.
THEY LOVED THIS!
Check out PINTEREST…LOTS OF SCOOT GAMES!
I know you will enjoy it!
I want my kiddos to
I am NOT your MAMA.
I am NOT your Grandma,
I AM NOT YOUR MAID!
We ALL work & play in our classroom.
If you work here… you are a part of our TEAM.
So HOW to
Make it a
Here are my helpers:
I write their names on
a cardstock strip.
I use a 12″ X 36″ pocket chart.
2 Clean-Up Crew members,
2 Ball Handlers ( for recesses ),
2 Tech Teachers ( help with log-in’s )
1 line leader,
1 door holder,
and 1 messenger.
My NUMBER 1 RULE!
If you are NOT quiet and in your seat when the
YOU CANNOT BE A HELPER
( Don’t be Tardy…or NOISY!)
My kiddos LOVE it!
(I’m HERE & I’m QUIET!)
I ask the next person on the card…
“_(susie)___ “, would you like to be _( ball handler)_ or __(tech teacher)_”
( Go straight down the pocket chart…)
Until ALL the jobs are filled for the day!
And…I LOVE THAT!
Leave me a comment.
WAHOO! Summer vacation. The Beach. Family BBQ’s. R&R.
Here is my list:
It’s ALL about ME! What will I need the first week?
My Teacher Editions & Lesson Plan Book. I need them to plan for the first weeks.
Mostly Routines and Daily schedules. (Work on THIS before VACATION!)
Sticky notes inside to remind my “aging” brain…what I INTEND to do!
What MATERIALS will I need to accomplish this? What lesson to focus on those first weeks? What went well? What didn’t?
USE THOSE STICKY NOTES INSIDE YOUR TE!
You will NOT remember months from now… what you are thinking about TODAY!
Use the next few weeks to make your NOTES!
Don’t forget, in your TEACHER DESK…
hide a few water bottles, mints, chocolate, and Tylenol, sanitizer, throat lozenges,
for the first week back…FOR YOU!
Never know how that FIRST WEEK will go!
* “SUGGESTED” teacher MUST HAVES for the first weeks:
Student materials ( packets, papers, journals, etc ).
( Nothing feels better than pulling out MUCH NEEDED things…ALREADY DONE!)
Whew! SO glad I prepped these BEFORE school was out!!
Get some puzzles, games, blocks, etc. out.
THEY WILL NOT BE INDEPENDENT!
Have a few things ready so they can have “downtime”
while YOU are doing ONE-TO-ONE assessing!
You know you will HAVE TO…prepare for IT!
I know you NEED these, BUT
You will “SURVIVE” looking at them LATER!
( YEAH, right!)
Prepare today… after a RELAXING Summer… the thought of coming back
and redoing everything in a day or two is
Breathe…relax…make your lists…stick to them…and PREP AWAY!
The payoff is HUGE!
Now…where did I pack that STAPLER?
These posts might help “ease” the transition Back to School…
* PS…I just found out I have three weeks to pack up
MY ENTIRE CLASSROOM! I am getting NEW Carpet! I am happy…I think!
PACK UP 30 years of stuff? In 3 weeks? EVERYTHING?
Time to PURGE! Who needs the PD resource from 1999???
I think I need a LOT MORE BOXES!
Hi HO…HI HO…It’s off to pack I go!
WENDY – 1stgradefireworks
May begins the RUSH to the Finish Line!
After the calendar changes, I start getting ready for Summer vacation.
Spring Fever is kicking in.
I daydream of the beach, family barbeques, gardening… Ahhh…
STRESS is kicking in! So what? What do I need to do?
All end-of-the-year paperwork for my students needs to be completed. We have to sign off on cum files. Put papers in files. Purge student portfolios so the second-grade teachers only get current information.
Our Open House for parents is in May. The end of the year is a good time for them to visit our classroom, see their child’s projects, and let their child “teach” them. I step back and become the “visitor”. The kids run the show. I teach them how to properly introduce their parent to me. “Mrs. McCarty, I would like to introduce you to my mother, Maria ” and we shake hands. ( Practicing good manners ALL the time!) The kids are the “guides” and they WALK THE ROOM (start at the door & show them ALL the things we do and then to their clean desk ( cleaned that day). EVERYTHING ON their desk goes HOME with them. MAKE SURE NOT TO PUT ANYTHING ON THEIR DESK THAT YOU WANT TO STAY. We have ALL of our end-of-the-year projects completed and ready to go.
Our End of the Year assemblies are WONDERFUL! Our school talent show, sing-alongs, class sharing, etc. happen this month.
At the end of the year, we celebrate our families. We have a LUNCH on the LAWN for our families. They can bring a lunch (McDonald’s is ALWAYS a favorite), a picnic blanket, and have lunch with their child. They can bring Grandparents, siblings, cousins, whomever. It’s at their regular lunchtime, just a fun time for all. ANY student whose parent cannot come, ( like ME..I was always working..dad went) they get to sit on MY picnic blanket and have lunch with ME!
We also have our end-of-the-year BOOK FAIR! Families are encouraged to purchase books for their child to read over the summer. We usually have a good turn out. If you have NOT had a Book Fair at your school, try it!
We are winding down with our books and curriculum. Workbooks are almost empty, journals are full, and the crayons and markers have had it! The end of the year has taken its TOLL on student materials! 🙂 But, I have to get ready for NEXT YEAR!
Before the end of the year…START NOW!
SEND HOME STUDENT MATERIALS
I send ALL workbooks ( with pages we didn’t get to), BRAG TAG necklaces, student-made books, etc. on the last week. If I change the routines, I must deal with behavior problems. AND WE DON’T WANT THAT! We have a game day the last day. They can play our rainy-day classroom games. Then we write a letter to the kindergartners telling them about First Grade.
The end of the year is a fun time, a stressful time, and a time to organize for next year. Don’t “over-do” it. Remember…it’s YOUR vacation TOO!
When you are getting ready for Back To School… check out these HELPFUL resources:
Check out this great BLOG POST from LAURA at www.thecoreinspiration.com on setting UP your classroom library.
My friend, CHRISTINA DECARBO will help YOU get organized for the END of the YEAR!
CAN WORK WITH ANY CURRICULUM
YOUR WHOLE YEAR… DONE!
JOIN THE BOOK CLUB
These posts will help ease your stress:
HUG your kiddos. BREATHE. Think ahead. Enjoy your SUMMER VACATION!
I am a VETERAN teacher.
I have NOT fought in a WAR.
I have taught in GRADE 1
( exclusively )
for over 30 years!
( Never “graduated” to second grade..as my students tell me!) 🙂
We ALL want to be appreciated.
We want to be recognized for
we have done!
things can get a little …
OUT OF HAND!
I believe there are
and those who
WISH THEY WERE!
I will say this ONE TIME…
IT IS NOT ABOUT TEST SCORES!
The teachers with the SUPER highest test scores
are NOT, always,
the teachers who are
APPRECIATED the MOST!
Now…disclaimer…teachers work WAY TOO hard!
I got that!
Some are SOOOOOO focused on the “data”…
they forget, or can’t “document” the traits of the child the “data” came from!
Nowhere is there a box to check that says:
___ Didn’t have breakfast ( or dinner the night before ).
___ Couldn’t sleep because my parents were arguing LOUDLY!
___ No one would help with homework/reading ( for the past two weeks!)
___ not in a good “mindset” today.
these are kids!
This is life!
To attach a “number” to a student,
based on “today’s testing module”
is NOT what teaching is all about!
( Ok sorry…OFF my soapbox!)
Where? How? When?
Please… I don’t need a new pen with my school name on it.
If YOU really want to show me your appreciation…
HAVE MY BACK during an IEP
when ‘the team” says
I NEED TO DO MORE!
By the time I have gotten to his stage…
I HAVE DONE ALL I CAN DO!
Take the stand that I AM DONE!
SEND ME SOME HELP!
Now I have great admin’s…
I know they have my back!
If you want to “give” me something…
…TAKE MY RECESS DUTY!
…Take my class for an hour at the end of the day, if MY child is home sick!
… Come in and do reading groups once in a while
( an extra adult doing centers is ALWAYS appreciated).
You see…it’s NOT about the “things”
it’s about WHAT you DO!
How do you know if your “team” appreciates YOU?
Do you “share”?
Do you “follow through?”
Do you “care” about each other?
My “teaching partner”…
( I said “partner” one time..it took on a WHOLE DIFFERENT meaning!)
and I have taught next to each other
( rooms 3 & 4)
for 24 years!
We are going to retire together
the same year…in 2-3 years.
( We “pinky sweared”…
..as long as nothing catastrophic happens before then).
Her mom works in her room.
I call her MOM!
Our students think we are
See the family “resemblance”?
In my heart…
We run homework for each other.
We share our students.
We laugh, we cry, we CARE about each other!
We are NOT the ONLY grade 1 teachers.
We have 1-2 others who teach with us.
( Depending on the year and student numbers).
We ALWAYS include them!
This is NOT a
CLOSE YOUR DOOR & DO YOUR THING!
Feel appreciated? YEP! Daily.
( I could have transferred to another school in MY district..many times!)
LOVE MY CRAZY TITLE 1 school!
When do they make YOU feel appreciated?
Is it when you are passing out report cards?
Is it when they forgot their homework?
Is it when they have interrupted you for the 1000th time that day?
It’s when that SAME little girl walks in EVERY morning
“Can I have a HUG?”
When the little boy who STUTTERS ( severely )…
asks if he can READ his newest story
TO THE CLASS!
( And EVERYONE cheers for him!)
The “behavior problem” child
who knows ( his MAMA tells him a lot )
that he is a PROBLEM…
and he hands me a heart he made with a picture of me & him!
( Melts my heart..right before he hits another student!)
the “older students” who come back…
just to say HI!
“I got my driver’s license & I promise to be safe..just like you said!”
“I got a full-ride scholarship…to HARVARD!”..yes it did happen!
“I want to be back in first grade so I can PAINT!”
“Thank you , Mrs. McCarty, for listening to me!”
Giggles, Grins, Hugs, & High Fives to
ALL of YOU!
YOU make a difference!
What’s a teacher to do?
REDO IT AGAIN!
Now…I work 3 jobs…
I get up at 5:00 AM and go to bed at 9:00 PM.
I think I deserve some DOWN time!
So every once in a while,
I need someone to give me a little
Time to git ‘er DONE