Patriot Day + a FREEBIE

Patriot Day is a special day and I've made a tradition of using it to teach my first graders about national symbols, American heroes, and patriotism.  Here's a look at our day!  And don't forget to scroll all the way down for a  FREE download!

We started by reading as much non-fiction as we could find to help us learn about American symbols.  I just love this set of readers from Scholastic!


When then made our own American Symbols mini-books.  My kids were so excited to be able to take something home that would help them teach their families about these symbols.  I just love when they decide to be little teachers!




In the afternoon we made these simple, but fun tissue paper flags and discussed the meanings of the colors on the flag.  Click here for a link to this FREE template or keep scrolling to the bottom!



While we finished up our flags we had a little red, white, and blue snack.  When students ate a certain color I had them tell their neighbor what it stood for.


I had these American Heroes coloring pages available for a few of the fast finishers and it led to some wonderful class discussion about what defines a hero!


How do you honor Patriot Day in your classroom?


Alphabet Mats

It's been quite a while since I've written a blog post and I actually have a very good reason for that, haha!  Baby number two is well on his way!  Between morning sickness, chasing my toddler, and starting a new school year with a batch of new first graders, life has been crazy!  I'm super excited to share this new product though because I feel it is a powerful tool to help your cute kiddos get a better grasp on their knowledge of the alphabet!

These alphabet mats are available in both colored and black/white, ink-friendly versions.  You can print them out, laminate them if you like, and use them in so many different ways.  Here are a few ideas!


Use mini-erasers (the best ones come from the Target dollar spot!) to help students fill in the letters.  You could also laminate the pages and use a dry erase marker for repeated practice.


Break out the play dough and let students have a blast creating the letters or even making the objects pictured on the side of each mat!


Print out a black/white copy and let students use markers, stickers, etc. to decorate the mat, having so much fun while they add to their alphabet knowledge!


Honestly, the sky is the limit on fun manipulatives you can have children use!  I love these sparkly pom-poms!

Click HERE or on the image below to be taken to my Teachers Pay Teachers shop and grab this packet of alphabet mats for yourself!