Monday, December 29, 2014

How the Grinch Stole Christmas- Grinch Day!

When I first started my teaching career I was very fortunate to get a position teaching first grade.  As time went I, I moved to a few different grade levels and positions because of budget cuts.  Eventually, God saw fit to move me back to first grade, which I am ever so grateful for.

This is my second year back in my original grade level and since my first grade teaching partner and I moved to first grade, we decided to coordinate a Grinch Day for the little firsties.  Last year we created a few Grinch themed literacy and math centers.  Since our district transitioned over to common core standards, we adjusted our centers slightly and created a few new standards-based activities.

One of the best things I remember about art activities from my days in elementary school was creating our own ornaments.  I researched a few different methods online and found one that I remember using when I was in elementary school.



At our math center, students used red and green M and Ms and math workmats to solve CCSS word problems that aligned with Engage New York curriculum.  This fun and engaging math center kept students focused and on task.


While searching for a few Grinch related things last year, I stumbled upon a free gameboard for the Grinch.  All it needed were some comprehension questions, so I developed them from the story.  We did a book study a week or so before our Grinch Day and then used a graphic organizer to summarize the story.


My first grade teaching partner is very artistic and created this fantastic retell storyboard in which students organized the pictures from the beginning to the end of the story.  When they finished, they colored the storyboard.  It was so beautiful!


At one center, students decorated their own cookies!  We watched How the Grinch Stole Christmas after literacy and math centers  ended.  Students decorated their cookies during centers and then, after recess, they came back inside the media center where we watched the movie, ate the cookies, and enjoyed hot chocolate!


At one station, a parent read the story to students.  Sometimes making the ornaments runs a little late, so this made a nice little break/ catch up center for students. 

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Spelling Homework!

This is my fourth year teaching first grade and third year using the MMH California Treasures reading curriculum.  I made some spelling homework pages last year using a free program on the Zaner-Bloser website. 

While the program works great, I found that there wasn't enough room for my firsties to practice writing their spelling words on the lines.  The Zaner-Bloser site used to have a different format on there that I really liked, but they changed it up!  So in order to meet the homework needs of my students I decided to create my own spelling worksheets for homework. 

I like these soooo much better because the students have enough room to write and there is a blank template included just in case they need even more room with the longer words in Unit 6 of the MMH program.  Visit my TPT store to grab these up and save yourself some time prepping spelling homework!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Daily Schedule Cards for the Board

This year I created my own daily schedule cards for my classroom. It has saved me a lot of time not having to erase and rewrite the schedule every day before I leave work. After I found some clipart and digital designs that I wanted to use, I created these files with Microsoft Publisher.

  If you haven't used Microsoft Publisher to create files, you are missing out! It's such an easy and wonderful program to use.  I know that many teachers use Microsoft Powerpoint to create their files, however, this integrates the capabilities of Microsoft Word and PowerPoint into one, except Microsoft Publisher isn't presentation software.

 Ahhh, but I digress.... I printed these labels onto white cardstock, trimmed them to size, then laminated them and place magnets on the back. I have a magnetic basket on my classroom board where I store the extras.

If you're interested in these Chevron daily schedule cards, please check out my TPT site. I can also customize these to fit your classroom theme. Click here to download these for FREE on TPT or click on the picture below. They include 16 different tasks for the day as well as a few blank templates to add your own text to them.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Number Bonds!

Our school district adopted Engage New York as our math curriculum.  One of the ways in which we teach addition and subtraction is through the use of number bonds.  In order to assist students in meeting Common Core Math Standards, I developed a Number Bond Math Center.  The center features five and ten frames in a variety of formats, along with number bonds.  The students in my classroom have really enjoyed using this and it has provided them with additional practice putting numbers together and taking them apart. Click on the picture below to see the Number Bonds Center Activity in my TPT store, or click here.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Last year I struggled a lot with trying to find the right word sorts for my students.  I found some on TPT, but they weren't exactly what I was looking for.  So.....I made my own!  I started making these about half way through last school year, so now I am playing catch up with the beginning of the school year phonics skills.

What I like best about these word sorts, as opposed to others, is that they include a word bank, pictures, and a line to practice writing the word.  Many word sorts just offer pictures or just offer words to be sorted by word family.

These sorts  challenge students first to say the word while looking at the picture, then to match the written word to the picture.  Another thing I LOVE about this is that students not only practice spelling, and reading, but also using their fine motor skills through cutting and writing. 

Click on the link to download this freebie or click here.

short a word sort

Saturday, August 16, 2014

TPT Sale Coming August 20th!

August 20th is the start of Back to School season on TPT!  Visit my TPT store for a discount on almost everything.


Welcome to my blog! I'll be posting lots of first grade freebies as well as a lot of ideas and links to my Teacher's Pay Teacher's Store.

To get started I thought I'd share my first freebie!  I created a Read, Make, Write activity for students.  In this activity students will read the word, make the word with Scrabble tiles or magnetic letters, and then practice writing the word on the line.  As an extension, students can take each word and practice it in a sentence.  These can be printed and used as individual work, or printed on card stock, laminated, and used at a center.

Click on the picture to download or click on the link here.