The 100th Day!
















This week we celebrated our 100th day of school! The simple but fun activities we did turned out to be the perfect way to celebrate this exciting milestone.





Before the big day I sent home a piece of card stock with a note asking each student to prepare a display of 100 items.  These are always so creative and cute and I love hanging them up in the hall to share.










As we do each year, my team sent home this letter from Deanna Jump and asked our first graders to dress up like they are 100 years old.  They were darling!  I especially loved this little gal who came in a mu-mu and curlers!








We did some of the fun activities in this free pack from Mrs. Jones' Creation Station and then we began making our annual Fruit Loop necklaces.  We used this tens sorting mat (here) and I had my kids cut out little "10 checkpoints" to mark sections of ten on their necklaces.  You can grab those for free here.








These necklaces are always a hit!  And they look especially cute on first graders dressed up to look much older than they are!








In the afternoon we did seven quick center rotations.  These went over famously!  I used this packet from Cara Carroll for a few of the center ideas. We wrote 100 words...actually we were able to write many more than 100 so this chart paper ended up looking like first grade graffiti!








I put little garage sale label stickers on Starbursts and numbered them to 100.  I mixed them up in a bowl and had my kids sort them out on a Hundreds poster.  They loved this activity!








We built cup structures out of 100 cups!  My kids were very creative with this!
This was probably the most highly anticipated of the centers!








Their little teams of four worked together to complete 100 exercises and check them off as they went.








After all the centers we sat down to enjoy our 100th Day trail mix.  Everyone brought a bag of 100 small snack items and we mixed them all together.  I know it looks disgusting (I think the Cheetos are to blame), but my kids sure enjoyed it!








And that was that!  Overall it was a wonderful day celebrating all that we have accomplished in first grade thus far.  Here's to 80 more days of learning!

To check out last year's 100th Day click here.

Thanks for reading!



The 100th Day!

This week we celebrated our 100th day of school! The simple but fun activities we did turned out to be the perfect way to celebrate this exciting milestone.

Before the big day I sent home a piece of card stock with a note asking each student to prepare a display of 100 items.  These are always so creative and cute and I love hanging them up in the hall to share.


As we do each year, my team sent home this letter from Deanna Jump and asked our first graders to dress up like they are 100 years old.  They were darling!  I especially loved this little gal who came in a mu-mu and curlers!


We did some of the fun activities in this free pack from Mrs. Jones' Creation Station and then we began making our annual Fruit Loop necklaces.  We used this tens sorting mat (here) and I had my kids cut out little "10 checkpoints" to mark sections of ten on their necklaces.  You can grab those for free here.


These necklaces are always a hit!  And they look especially cute on first graders dressed up to look much older than they are!


In the afternoon we did seven quick center rotations.  These went over famously!  I used this packet from Cara Carroll for a few of the center ideas. We wrote 100 words...actually we were able to write many more than 100 so this chart paper ended up looking like first grade graffiti!


I put little garage sale label stickers on Starbursts and numbered them to 100.  I mixed them up in a bowl and had my kids sort them out on a Hundreds poster.  They loved this activity!


We built cup structures out of 100 cups!  My kids were very creative with this!
This was probably the most highly anticipated of the centers!


Their little teams of four worked together to complete 100 exercises and check them off as they went.


After all the centers we sat down to enjoy our 100th Day trail mix.  Everyone brought a bag of 100 small snack items and we mixed them all together.  I know it looks disgusting (I think the Cheetos are to blame), but my kids sure enjoyed it!


And that was that!  Overall it was a wonderful day celebrating all that we have accomplished in first grade thus far.  Here's to 80 more days of learning!

To check out last year's 100th Day click here.

Thanks for reading!

Five for Friday!






































I'm excited today to join in on the Doodle Bugs Five for Friday Linky Party!  It's been a random kind of week around here so this is the perfect opportunity for me to post and share about some random things I'm loving.













Today during calendar we put on our 95th sticker...the 100th day is right around the corner and I am so excited!  I love celebrating all that we have accomplished this year in first grade.





UPDATE: Due to popular request, these ten frames are available as part of a calendar pack here or in a separate ten frame pack with color options here. :)  And for a more detailed look at how I use these during calendar time, check out this post here!












I am loving this big book I found from Scholastic (here)! It provides the perfect introduction to non-fiction text features.  My kids love it and I love the quality examples of each feature that are provided in one book.  Now we can take what we've learned and start hunting for text features in other books and start using some in our own writing.












 This 120 pocket chart had been sitting in my Amazon cart for months before I finally decided to go ahead and buy it.  I'm so glad that I did.  It is from Carson Dellosa (here) and has been such a useful resource for my kids as we enter the realm of place value. We have been using it left and right...and I am currently on the hunt for more 120 chart games!












 This week I used little vertical ten frames and Starburst to practice grouping tens and to really get my kids using the whole "tens and ones" language.  This was probably one of my better ideas...sugar is so engaging!












 I've been working on a vowel team packet and I'm trying out some of the pages on my kids this week.  Hopefully all goes well and I will have this posted to my store soon!





 I love a little bit of random!  Happy Friday, all!















Five for Friday!



I'm excited today to join in on the Doodle Bugs Five for Friday Linky Party!  It's been a random kind of week around here so this is the perfect opportunity for me to post and share about some random things I'm loving.



Today during calendar we put on our 95th sticker...the 100th day is right around the corner and I am so excited!  I love celebrating all that we have accomplished this year in first grade.

UPDATE: Due to popular request, these ten frames are available as part of a calendar pack here or in a separate ten frame pack with color options here. :)  And for a more detailed look at how I use these during calendar time, check out this post here!


I am loving this big book I found from Scholastic (here)! It provides the perfect introduction to non-fiction text features.  My kids love it and I love the quality examples of each feature that are provided in one book.  Now we can take what we've learned and start hunting for text features in other books and start using some in our own writing.


 This 120 pocket chart had been sitting in my Amazon cart for months before I finally decided to go ahead and buy it.  I'm so glad that I did.  It is from Carson Dellosa (here) and has been such a useful resource for my kids as we enter the realm of place value. We have been using it left and right...and I am currently on the hunt for more 120 chart games!


 This week I used little vertical ten frames and Starburst to practice grouping tens and to really get my kids using the whole "tens and ones" language.  This was probably one of my better ideas...sugar is so engaging!


 I've been working on a vowel team packet and I'm trying out some of the pages on my kids this week.  Hopefully all goes well and I will have this posted to my store soon!

 I love a little bit of random!  Happy Friday, all!





Animal Reading Strategies



In my first year of teaching I felt all kinds of inadequacy, especially when it came to teaching readers.  It seemed we had such a long way to go from the beginning of first grade to the end...so many levels to jump!  And more importantly, I wanted my students to have meaningful reading experiences that built confidence and gave them joy.  I LOVE reading and I wanted my kids to have some kind of arsenal of tools that they could turn to as they approach those tricky words rather than feeling frustrated and overwhelmed.

Over the past four years I have fine-tuned the reading strategies that I present to my kids.  The animal reading strategy idea is nothing new, but I have found it to be particularly helpful to my students so I've just tweaked and added to it.  The animals and the names are catchy enough to be remembered so I created a pack of reading strategies resources to be used throughout the year.  I know it may seem a little late in the game to talk about beginning reading strategies, but while I do initially teach them at the beginning of the year, we constantly review them throughout it.  The students apply them in different ways as they progress to more challenging texts.

These decoding and comprehension strategies are each matched up with an animal.  At the beginning of the year I teach one strategy per week and we continue practicing them in guided reading and shared practice.  The posters included in the pack become part of a permanent bulletin board for my kids to refer to throughout the year as needed...and they do every single day!


I'm not sure what it is about puppets and stuffed animals, but there is something engaging about pulling one out at the beginning of a lesson.  My first graders love these guys!  These are just Ty Beanie Babies that I pulled from my childhood (and a few from Amazon!) that help me introduce a new reading strategy to my kids.


I couldn't bear to thumbtack my Beanie Babies to the bulletin board like I've seen other teachers do (maybe I'm just weird), so they sit in a big basket next to the board all year (except when we pull them out to practice, of course!)


The packet also includes these fun little cards that I give to my students to take home when I finish teaching and modeling a strategy.  They are so enthusiastic about these!  The next day I have them report back about their experiences showing off their reading strategies.


I've also included a parent letter that I send home at the beginning of the year or at Back to School Night.  It briefly explains the purpose of the animal reading strategies and gives them something to reference as their children practice these strategies at home.


The packet also has mini versions of the animal posters. I keep these at my guided reading table and pull them out for quick reference or impromptu practice as needed.


These circle versions are a favorite with my kids.  Each has an abridged version of a strategy. My kids can come and borrow a stick during their independent reading time to help them try out a new strategy or simply remind them that they have tools to help out with those tricky parts!


In addition to all of that, I give my kiddos these fun bookmarks.  I don't know what it is about kids and bookmarks, but the enthusiasm it garners for reading is something I wouldn't turn away!


These are included in the packet in a colored format and a black/white format you can have your students color!  I usually opt for this route because colored ink is a bit precious in these parts, but they loved coloring these and making them their own so it is okay! :)


If you are interested in purchasing this packet click here or on the picture below.  It will be discounted until January 17th!  Happy Teaching!