Tuesday, May 30, 2017

It's Summer! Let's Get In Shape!

Hey Friends!  Just stopping by to say hi - in the middle of the day - because I can.....why??? I'm on summer vacation!! Can I get a Whoot! Whoot!  And I know.....some of you are still working and I feel for you.  Seriously....let's take a moment of silence for all those still in the classroom.......

So this post is really sort of non-school related.....which may be how a lot of my posts will be this summer, since we are on VACATION. 🍸🌴 But I have to tell you about a little club I started with some of my friends/co-workers.  I decided I needed to get off the couch and get in shape. .....or somewhat in shape at least.  I have pretty much been in one position - sitting in my comfy chair in my family room.........for about 3 years.  Yea, whatever....don't judge.  LOL  So I asked a few friends if they wanted to start a walking club and they did!  Yea!  Happy Dance!!  We call it WOW (Walk Off Weight) Club.  We started today and it was good!  We are meeting at a local park and soooooo....... I walk in all decked out in my "new workout gear" and they were like "Girl.....what you got going on there???" And I'm like "What??? I have to look the part to feel the part!"  Here we are...babies, dogs...everybody welcome!

So off we go.....two miles today.  Proud of my little stubby legs....they did good! We are meeting 3 days a week, 8:30 AM.  We opened it up to all the staff and are hoping more will join us as the summer progresses.  So...if you know you're going to miss your peeps over the summer this is a great way to get together, chat about real life instead of school life and get to be friends! And be sure to get your "active wear" cause GIRL.....you know you have to look the part! And if you need a little something to get you motivated, take a look at this!

Hey all.....I'm out for today. Stay tuned for more adventures from the WOW Club and have a great week! Be sure to stop by soon cause you know there's always something fun happening in

Friday, May 26, 2017

(Insert Drum Roll).........aaaand "WE'RE OUT!"

Hello Fabulous Teachers!  Time for my Five For Friday weekly gratitude!! Let's Go!

Number one thing to be grateful for this week.....TODAY WAS MY LAST DAY! Summer vacation begins tomorrow!  Now you know I love my job......but I equally love my summers! Let the party begin 🌴🍸

I'll miss the Fab Four the most!  They keep me sane and laughing every day!

We finished up our week with a couple of cute activities.  The fab firsties made "compliment books" for each of their friends.  They really ROCKED this project.  Each student had a compliment book and we rotated around the room, writing a compliment for each of the kids.  They really put a lot of thought into this and surprised me with some of their heartfelt responses.  I loved reading everything they wrote....totes cute!! Thanks to Blair Turner for this adorable FREEBIE....if you want to do this in your room too, you can pick it up here

I got the sweetest note from one of my fab firsties.....that's why we do this job ❤️

What am I looking forward to?  My gardens, porch sitting, working on my newest TPT products (stick around this summer....I've got some fabulous surprises in store for you!!), walking with my friends, flea market shopping, hanging out with my family and just RELAXING!  I already have some yummy strawberries growing in my garden and if the chipmunks will leave them alone, I can have them on my morning cereal!! πŸΉπŸ“. 

 If you haven't seen my post on our strawberry lesson you can check it out here. 

I have a fabulous FREEBIE that I offered with this post that includes all the activities in this lesson.  If you haven't already received this freebie, send an email to firstieland@gmail.com and I will be happy to send it out to you!

Finally, I'm excited about some new products just listed in my store....For my Journeys fans, I finally finished the bundles for my YEAR LONG ASSESSMENT PACK and my YEAR LONG WORD STUDY.  I've put together a little freebie for both of these products so you can check them out before buying!  You are going to want to check them out NOW so that you can get ready for Back to School over the summer! If you use Journeys, you won't want to miss these products.  They have truly saved my first grade team SO MUCH TIME!  

First, my YEAR LONG ASSESSMENT PACK contains weekly pre and post assessments for every lesson in the First Grade Journeys series.  If you use this series, you know that the assessments are super time consuming!  I used to have to start assessing on Wednesday each week just to fit them all in!  I decided I needed something quick and easy, but that still gave me a good assessment of my firsties skills.  So I created the Journeys Mega Bundle Pre & Post Assessments.  There are 60 assessments total....30 Pre Assessments and 30 Post Assessments PLUS Bonus Answer keys!  These tests assess the weekly Spelling, English/Grammar and Sight Word skills.  They are quick and simple  to use - only one page each - and can be given whole group to save time.  You can check out the bundle here

I also recently completed my JOURNEYS YEAR LONG WORD STUDY! This MEGA BUNDLE is packed FULL of lessons to help you along the way every day when you are teaching Spelling, English/Grammar and Sight Words.  Have you found yourself saying "I just can't fit it all in!"?  Well, not any more.  This huge bundle has a 4 lessons for each week - Fridays are reserved for exit tests.  This product is meant to be used on your Interactive Board and every day has a lesson with games, fill in the blanks, missing letters, strategies galore and more.....and the best part?? It only takes about 15-20 minutes to complete each day!  It really gives you a ton of "bang for your buck".  When our first grade team started using this daily we saw our firsties reading levels begin to soar!   I hope you'll take a minute to check it out here.

Would you like to see for yourself a little sample of these products?  Drop me a quick email at firstieland@gmail.com and I will send one right out to you!  You are going to love it! 

Well friends, that's about it for me tonight.  This first grade teacher (on vacation!! woohoo!!) is ready to put her feet up and begin my relaxing and recharging!  This will be my last Five for Friday post for the summer, but I will definitely be checking in over the next couple of months with lots of ideas on how to get ready for back to school, organizational tips, guided reading strategies and more.  Plus I have LOTS of new products in the works and I will be excited to share them with you.  If you are one of my loyal followers, I'll be sharing a few fabulous freebies with you as well....so if you aren't yet on my email list, you will want to sign up today.  I promise I am not a "spammer"!  I just appreciate you all so much for coming by and reading my little blog and visiting my TPT store and I always like to share the love! 

I'll leave you with my Friday Funny.....yea, this was pretty much me today....

Have a great summer everybody and be sure to send me an email to pick up those freebies! Be sure to hop on over to Doodlebugs Teaching to see how some other fantastic teachers are ending their year.  Check back soon, cause you know.....there's always something fun happening in

Friday, May 19, 2017

Happy FriYay!  
Did somebody say "Friday"?  You know what that means...time for my "Five For Friday" gratitude!  So many wonderful things to be grateful for, so let's go!

To tell the truth, the last couple of weeks have been a lot about family and less about school.  We are winding down our year at school and with that comes so many celebrations!  So as usual, being the proud mom that I am, I have to give a shout out to my wonderful son.  He lettered for the third time at the annual Track Banquet, went to his first Prom and volunteered as a counselor this week for Sixth Grade Camp.  Way to go Casey!

We had our annual First Grade Talent Show this week.  I soooo wish I could post the video of the entire show, but of course I can't because of privacy issues for the firsties.  My class had three acts...our first was the incredible "Enlarging Machine"!  The kiddos put in something small.....and it came out huge!  So cute! We also had some dancing cheerleaders and the world famous "Hoopsters" - an amazing hoola hoop act.....along with many other acts from the other first grade classrooms.  It was a super cute show and the parents loved it!

Since I can't post the video of the kiddos, I'll share with you The Fab Four - my first grade team....we are always the last act of the show.  Here we are in all our craziness.....

We celebrated my niece's First Communion this week.....so blessed that my mom is still able to attend these special events at 94 years old!  

It's been a CRAZY BUSY week around school.....extremely HOT weather with no A/C ....packing up my room and trying to keep 19 Firsties occupied!  My sweetie knew it had been a stressful, exhausting week so he took me out for a nice dinner.  Ahhhh.....

Finally, I leave you with my Friday Funny....since most of us our finishing up our school year very soon you can relate.  This pretty much sums up my room:

Well friends......that's it for me this week.  We are almost finished with our year....only 4 days left of school for me.  How about you??? Hang in there...we can do it!  If you need a little more inspiration and encouragement from some other fabulous teachers,  hop on over to Doodlebugs Teaching to check out more Friday posts!  Be sure to stop by again soon because you know......there's always something fun happening in 

Monday, May 8, 2017

I'm Giving Away A TPT GIFT CARD!!

Hello Friends! I have some exciting news! Tomorrow is the HUGE sitewide TPT sale and of course I'm participating!  I hope you'll stop on by and do some shopping over at Firstieland.  But here's the really BIG news....I'm having a $10 TPT gift card giveaway!

 It's really simple to enter.......

just have my blog delivered to your email (up there on the right)

and follow my blog (over there on the left)

That's it!  Super simple - I'll be choosing the winner tomorrow morning at 8AM!  Best of luck!  Happy Teacher Appreciation Week and Happy Shopping!  And as always....stop back soon because there's always something fun happening in.....


Saturday, May 6, 2017

What Can You Make With A... DOT?

Hey friends.... stopping by to tell you about our latest, greatest adventure in Firstieland!  This is seriously one of my favorite weeks in the year because I LOVE the projects I'm about to share with you!  So, if you follow my blog (and I hope you do ❤️) you know that our school uses Journeys as our Reading Series.  We have a story a week that we focus on and this week's  story was "The Dot" by Peter H. Reynolds.  It's a great story that basically teaches kids that even when you think you can't do something....you can do it! In the story, a little girl named Vashti feels frustrated in art class because she thinks she can't draw.  Her teacher encourages her to make a mark on the paper and this begins her journey into discovering that you can make beautiful art with just DOTS.

 After reading the story, we spent the week creating our own art using just dots.  And what FABULOUS, BEAUTIFUL art we created!!  We began by making our "Coffee Filter Mobiles".  We took three dots (coffee filters) and the firsties colored them with markers.  I encouraged them to use LOTS OF COLOR! When they had finished the coloring, we sprayed them with water.  When they were dry we hooked them together with paper clips and hung them in the hall.  The results were AMAZING.  When you walk below these beautiful creations it feels like you are in a wonderland. (The pictures really don't do it justice.....it is gorgeous in person) Check out a video of our mobiles here. 

We also read the story "One Black Dot" by Donald Crews.

The Fab Firsties were challenged to create their own art using only one black dot.  Take a look at their creations....

I thought this week was a great time to pull out one of my favorites - The Day The Crayons Quit.  Have you read this story?  So cute!  It's a story about a little boy who finds a pile of letters from all of his crayons, complaining abut how overworked they are and they are quitting! You can find it on Amazon here. 

The firsties made this cute crayon craft and wrote persuasive letters to their crayon, telling all the reasons why they didn't want this color to quit.  They turned out adorable!

Finally, we ended the week with our Circle Painting project.  This was the most fun!  I put a very large piece of white paper on the floor with various colors of bright paint in cups in the middle.  I have 19 students, so there was enough cups for every child to have a color and a paintbrush.  The task was to paint either a circle or a dot on the paper....then each child moved one spot over and took a different color and painted another circle or dot.  They just kept moving around the paper painting circles and dots.  The result was this absolutely GORGEOUS painting!

When we were all done the firsties wrote their opinion of circle painting.  

If you are looking for a fun way to end the year, here it is!  The kids enjoyed all of these activities so much and the best part....it was FREE! No need to purchase anything....these are all things most of us have in our classroom right now!  So get those creative juices flowing and start creating ART with dots! If you give any of these things a try, I'd LOVE to hear about it.  Post your comments below and email pics to firstieland@gmail.com so I can give you a shout out here on my blog!  

Have a great week everybody....if you haven't this week's Five For Friday post check it out here.  We have baby ducks!  You can see them hatching....it's a miraculous thing and wonderful for the firsties to experience first hand! Be sure to come on by next week....we'll be practicing for our First Grade Talent Show!  See you soon because there's always something fun happening in.....