Sunday, August 31, 2014

First Week Pictures

I survived my first week teaching second grade! I have decided the following things about my 2nd graders:

-they talk A LOT
-they are ready to learn
-they are just like my wonderful first graders I left at the end of the year
-it is going to be a GREAT year and I think I'm in love with 2nd grade already

Here is my first week in pictures! Click to grab the activity.

I added the final touches to my classroom.

I was spoiled on the first day with some yummy treats and bath and body works ( the caramel corn was almost gone by Friday)!!

We made a community bunting. This was their desk activity the first day they arrived.
Grab it here or here.

I decided on a new bathroom procedure (this is the first year I don't have one in my classroom). If they want to use the restroom (when I'm not teaching) they grab a boy or girl cup and put it on their desk. They also sign out. This way I know which student is in the restroom, there is only one boy or girl at a time, and I have a list of students who have used the restroom that day if there is a problem. So far it is working great.

We read the book First Day Jitters during writer's workshop time the first day and I modeled my writing expectations. The second day when they arrived, they completed their project.
Grab this project here.
Translation: "I did not have jitters! I was more than excited than any other person in the universe!"

We started right into our word study curriculum. We reviewed short vowel sounds and we created a graph to remember that every word has at least one vowel.
Grab short vowel activities (including the graphing activity) here.

I also started incorporating some of my mentor texts for upcoming writing and reading workshop lessons. This is a fantastic book to teach responsibility, practice retelling, AND reuse as a mentor text during small moments writing.
We had a busy first week of learning procedures, pre-assessing knowledge, and starting curriculum! I hope everyone else had a wonderful first week.
Happy Labor Day!

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Monday, August 25, 2014

The Weekly Scoop: Back to School!

Hello everyone! Well it turns out I wasn't very good at the back to school countdown posting. I was keeping busy, but wanted to show you the progress that has been made in a few short weeks!

I like to keep my room simple and let my students add their personality to it so in the next few weeks I'll add a tour page to my blog for your enjoyment (or to steal ideas... that is what I like to do ;-))!

So this week is back to school. Here is what my second graders will be learning!

Character Education: Citzenship (I'll be using The First Six Weeks resource I created and the book suggestions).

Word Study: My kiddos will be review short vowels this week using the awesome new resource shown below (click to grab) and I will be giving the primary spelling inventory.

This resource includes posters for all the short vowels with example words. I also included plan posters for students to brainstorm words. There is a fun vowel graphing activity and a word sort for each short vowel.

Reading: I'm launching the Daily 5 tomorrow! You can see I'm also doing CAFE (aren't those posters below cute, you can get them FREE here.) Yes, I laminated them tonight. Haha.

Writing: I'm launching writer's workshop this week using Lucy Calkin's program. The first day we are going to write about our first day jitters using the resource provided here.

Math: This week we are learning our math routines and taking the placement test. I'm also starting to teach math tubs. My first day we are using this fun roll and cover you can grab FREE here.

During science and social studies time, I will be teaching procedures, procedures, procedures and brushing up on my whole brain teaching!! "Class, yes!" (If you haven't heard of whole brain teaching, YouTube it. Seriously, it will change your life.)

Morning Meeting: I use responsive classroom techniques and will be teaching my children a proper handshake for the greeting and we will be playing shape match found here.

Also, all the extra activities I am doing are in this awesome MEGA pack. You can see the banner project I do on day one that can be grabbed here.

Here are some pictures of my classroom and projects I talked about above.

I'm "moo"ving into 2nd with my students this year and I can't wait! Post a link to your back to school post so I can check it out!!
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Thursday, August 7, 2014

Day 18: I've planned my first six weeks! Well sort of!

Hello friends! Thank you for stopping by. Guess what?! Today I was able to plan my first six weeks of character education and classroom community building. This is my best project yet!

Here is a peak!!! (Click the picture to grab one for yourself!!)

So I have a binder that I keep all the activities I use for the first six weeks. It was looking pretty raggedy (as was my planning binder), so I gave them a makeover today (Thank you mom for the color ink!). In the process, I created this product to go along with the two great books pictured below.

Here is a look at my fancy binders.

But the best part isn't the outside of the binder, but all the greatness stored inside. You see, I choose my read alouds for the first six weeks, my character education theme, created a poster for each theme, a writing prompt for each theme, ANDDDDDD (yes there is more) I created morning meeting greeting and activity cards for each week (with needed resources provided in the pack) that can be used all year long!! Needless to say, I'm pretty pumped. On top of that, for the first week, I created a parent survey and child survey as well as a pretty version of the "All About Me" bag.

You can see a sneak peak of the activities above. Click the picture to see more at my TpT store. I hope you check it out! It also aligns nicely with my Back to School Mega Pack and my Mini Character Education Unit If you have a cool way of planning for the first six weeks of school leave a link to your blog in the comments and I'll check it out!

Happy planning and happy almost Friday to those headed to work tomorrow!!

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P.S. I'm headed to a wedding this weekend with the boyfriend so I'll catch you up on Sunday! :)

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Day 19: Long Term Cross-Curricular Pacing Guide...CHECK!

I happen to enjoy writing long term plans and pacing guides. I mean REALLY enjoy it. I love looking at the big picture and seeing how it will come together during the school year.

I told you I would keep you posted on my day to day so here is my latest "back to school" update!

Here is a look at my long term plan!!! Completed!!!! :) :) :) :) :) :) :)

I like a long term plan or pacing guide simple and easy to use. I created mine in excel and used a different sheet for each quarter. I included unit titles for reading, writing, math, science, and social studies. I also included the poem of the week, vocabulary of the week, spelling words of the week, and word study skills.

(If you zoom in you can actually read the print... as you can see one quarter is one page)

Next I warmed up my laminator. I grabbed these awesome word work stations on TpT and can't wait to use them in my classroom this year! (If you created them, post in the comments and I'll link up to your store. I grabbed them free and don't remember).

Tomorrow I'm going to tackle planning my first six weeks! Come back tomorrow to check it out!

Happy planning fellow teachers! Check out my Back to School Mega Pack if you are looking for fun activities.
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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Day 20: Let the unpacking begin!

Please come finish unpacking my room. No really. HELP!

Here is a picture of what I am working with...

That is less than HALF of the boxes. #I'mnevermovingclassroomsagain

I was able to get one bulletin board started and I'm pretty excited with how it looks so far. Here is a sneak peek!

I stuck with my monster/neon colored theme this year and am reusing all my boarders, book boxes, and posters. I was able to go "shopping" in a retiring teacher's classroom who taught 2nd grade so that was super helpful in adding to my GROWING library.

I'll keep you posted on the progress in my classroom. I can't wait to finish my classroom tour page for you to see!

I'm starting an official back to school countdown: 20 days. AHHHAH ?!?!!!

My goal is to give you an update each day so you can see "what I'm working on" to get ready for second grade!

Thanks for reading! If you are getting ready for back to school too, post a link to your blog or let me know what you're up to in the comments below so I (and other readers) can check it out!

P.S. Be sure to check out my Back to School Mega Pack! It would be a great resource for any primary teacher. Click the picture to check it out!!

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