Sunday, March 25, 2012

Reading Month Activities and a Few Freebies

This has been a very busy and fun-filled month!
Our reading month theme is famous authors. First graders have chosen Laura Numeroff. Each week our lessons and projects are themed around one of her books. Here are pictures of some of our fun activities! It took a lot of time and plenty of donations and volunteers to plan all of this, but it has been well worth it! These are the special times in school that the kids are sure to remember!

Our First Laura Numeroff story was If You Give a Moose a Muffin. We tasted four different kinds of mini-muffins and then the students decided which muffin flavor was their favorite! The kids just loved this!
Here is our muffin bulletin board and project!

We wrote words to describe our muffins!

These are a few of our shoe box dioramas.

This is our If you Give a Dog a Donut shape book. Every Friday this month is treat day. We ordered sprinkled donuts for the children to enjoy.

Here are some other Dog Donut activities:

 Students wrote their own If you Give a....stories for a different class book. Here are a few of their creative ideas:

If you give a python a stick he'll swallow it.
If you give a unicorn a crown he'll ask for a wand.
If you give a bunny a french fry he'll want some ketchup to go with it.

The kids had a great time at our pajama party pancake pig-out!

These are our pig party decorations. Mrs. G came up with this idea!

We made shape books for If you Give a Mouse a Cookie and compared cookies using a Venn Diagram. We read a cute poem about chocolate chip cookies and did a sequencing and problem-solving activity as well as many other cookie and chocolate-themed activities! It has been a very yummy month!

Mommy and I have so much fun
Baking cookies for everyone!
I love to eat them
They are so yummy!
'Specially the ones
That are in my TUMMY!
 by Valerie Gallup

This poem is part of my Fun Food Poems Collection!

Here's the link if you'd like to see more!
Earlier in the month we celebrated Dr. Seuss Day by reading one of my favorites, Bartholemew and the Oobleck. This is the sequencing activity we did to retell the story.

The best part was when we made our own Oobleck! It was a good and gooey science lesson. We also did a lot of other literacy activities with our Oobleck story!

This literacy unit is available at my shops. Click on the link below to see it:

In keeping with the Dr Seuss theme, we read Oh, the Places You Will Go. We wrote about our favorite books and told about where the setting in that book takes our imaginations!

During March Reading Month, I've invited parents, and other special surprise visitors to be our guest readers. In the invite, I asked that the readers choose props,wear a costume or bring a little something to give to the children that goes along with the story. This has been a blast!

Among our visitors were the Superintendent (who read with a pot on his head) the County Comissioner, grandparents and older siblings.

Our school arranged for several published authors to speak to the children about their books and how they came to create them. The students have the option of purchasing a signed copy. One of my favorite authors from a previous visit is Rhonda Gowler Greene. I love her Barnyard Song Book. It's a great read-aloud! It's about a bunch of farm animals that catch a cold!

Every child loves to tell about their favorite part of the story. I have a freebie printable at my store that you can use with any book. Here's the link:

Our school has some fabulous displays for Reading Month! Check out these great bulletin boards and posters! There are so many to share but these are the only teachers I was able to speak with about posting them here! We are all so busy that we rarely get a chance to see each other!

Each staff member was photographed with their eyes peeking over a book. Students have to guess who each teacher is.

That's it for now. This has a been a long one I know, but I had a lot of catching up to do and some of you were asking to see reading month ideas.

I won't be blogging for a while. Lucky me, I am going to beautiful Holmes Beach on Anna Maria Island for spring break. It's one of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen~ a little slice of Heaven on Earth!

Can't wait! Counting the days!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Groovy! Fifty Followers and Freebies on Teachers Pay Teachers!

Here are a few really groovy freebies just for my hip blog followers! Grab them today at my store! All I ask is that you please rate these and leave a comment! It would be great to have you as one of my followers~The Fabulous 50~ on Teachers Pay Teachers! Feel free to spread the word! Welcome to the club!

Enjoy these!


Saturday, March 17, 2012

Let the Sunshine In...Feeling Groovy and a freebie too!

Wow! The weather here in Michigan is absolutely beautiful here on St. Patty's Day! The high temperature is going to reach 70 degrees! That is really a treat and so I guess I was feeling a little like a summer vacation sun-worshiping girl when I made these latest products. That and the fact that conference week is behind me-whew!I thought they were pretty groovy! I hope you like them too!

I'm also gearing up for a really groovy giveaway so check back soon!

That's all the creating and posting for now. The sunshine is wasting away on the pavement, so I'm off to go sit outside and soak up the sun!

Here's a freebie I posted on TPT!


Sunday, March 11, 2012

My First Blog Award!

What a wonderful surprise to be nominated for the One Lovely Blog Award! Thank you to Lori at Teaching With Love and Laughter for this great honor! I am fairly new to blogging and have a lot to learn yet, so this nomination means a lot!

Here are the rules for this award:

1. Link back to the person who gave it to you-that would be me- Jeannine at First Grade Gallery
2. Pass the award on to five or more very "Lovely" bloggers.
3. Follow the person who sent it to you!

I have even started following their lovely stores and have pinned some of their adorable items! I'd love it if you could do the same for me!

What a wonderful way to support each other and to fill someone's bucket!

And now the really fun hopping for nominees!

I am so impressed with the fantastic blogs that these fabulously creative teachers have worked so hard to create.

You really need to go visit these blogs! Please tell them Jeannine sent you!

A Cupcake for the Teacher

Love her Leprecahun Craftivity! Such a cute blog!

The Adventures of Miss Elisabeth

She has some really adorable Easter crafts!

Aloha Kindergarten

So many really great ideas and fantastic poetry resources!

Sunny Days in Second Grade

I love her TPT story! She has many awards, but not this one!

And last but not least~ a non-teaching but beyond lovely blog by someone very dear to me!

ec campbell photography

These have to be the most beautiful photographs of couples and children ever taken! What talent!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

St. Patty's Day Math for Smartboard

Last week was super busy and lots of time was spent on testing for school improvement goals and report cards. Watching my students take their Star Math test was a real eye-opener. Yikes! I can see we need to spend a lot more time on ordering numbers before the end of the year. Here is something I made for the Smartboard for extra practice during March.

I feel so fortunate to have such wonderful technology in my classroom!

I'm wondering how many of you have Smartboards in your rooms. If so, drop me a line and let me know how you use it for instruction or ideas for Smart lessons you wish were available.

The Smart Exchange has many great lessons available for download, but if you're like me, you probably agree they need some TLC!

Here's another fun activity I was inspired to create after attending a common core in-service training. This is an activity to practice sums to 5, 10 or 20. I found all green :) dark chocolate mint m&m's at the grocery store I thought I would use for this. I'll have to set some aside for myself before the kids play!

 So, you laminate the cute work mat. Then have the students shake and toss the counters over the mat- (I'll have to do some coaching or have the kids just work on the floor). They count and record the number of counters that landed on and off the mat.

 Sounds like good simple fun! I can't wait to try this out. The only problem is, the kids won't be able to eat the m&m's if they are being tossed onto the floor and tables. That would be a true test to the claim, "melts in your mouth not in your hands"! I might have to rethink the candy idea....

 You can play this on-off game with any mat and any type of manipulatives. I am going to work on creating other cute game mats in more holiday themes.

Here's the game in action! The students loved this activity! I ended up using green bingo chips as you can see.

Each student was asked to bring in a green treat to share. We had pickles, cucumbers, green peeps, Jello, candies, cookies, rice crispie treats and much more!

Here's a darling leprechaun craftivity I purchased from A Cupcake for the Teacher! I decided to attach a different writing paper, one that I made and offered as a freebie at my store.

This is one of my little leprechauns striking the peeker pose!

The students are working on writing to tell more and they sure did with this great writing prompt!  I had to shorten the project by skipping the legs and just glued leprechaun shoes to the bottom of the paper.

Here are the leprechaun kisses treat bags I made. The poem is also a freebie.

I have so many ideas for projects but not enough hours in the day to create them or take pictures and post the ones I do! Baby steps....

Have a super weekend everyone!