Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Teacher's Tear for Her Last Year

Yesterday, I walked back into my classroom after a nice summer break as I have done for 38 years in the past.  This year would be different though because this year as I entered I knew it would be my last school year as a public education teacher in this classroom.  
My bag was filled with cleaning supplies and a few new items to set in the classroom. I was excited and had been shopping with a fellow teacher and just purchased an adorable item to hang on my classroom door.  It reminded me of a "home" where there is love, laughter, and support which is what I always try to maintain in my classroom.  This room has always been my "home away from home".
For the last few years people have said to me...Michele, when are you going to retire?...and I would say...When I can no longer walk into my classroom with a SMILE on my face and EXCITMENT in my step about the curriculum I have planned for the upcoming day.  That day never came:)  This is my last year but not because I am ready to leave the classroom.  The 2015 "magic date" has arrived.
As I entered my classroomI observed storage boxes, labeled clearly,  with hundreds of books, stuffed animals, and materials that have been purchased over the years to make my classroom a special place for children to learn and mature.  Every teacher, as you know, puts an enormous amount of time, energy, love, and $$$  into making their classroom an inviting space. 
One specific box is filled with pcitures of kiddos I have taught over the years.  When they go to middle school I always send them a note and a piece of writing they completed in first grade.  As they graduate from high school I send another note and our 1st grade class photo. Amazing enough I can actually recall many, many of the students I have had over the years.  They stop by, share on Facebook, or send emails that touch my soul to think that they remember me and care enough to let me know.  
I moved in and went about the job of preparing my room for this year. Like alway I want it to be inviting. (Pictures to follow next week.)
Well the classroom is set up, bulletin boards posted, there are some new classroom arrangements, and all the boxes have been taken from storage and put in their place.  My September boxes only have what I will use this year.  All other items were sorted into two other piles...and there were a lot...One for "give away" and another for the "needy classroom" which I am thinking may be a room outside my building.  As you know after teaching sooooo many years you collect a great deal despite the fact I am NOT a saver.  What I will do with all the priceless hard cover books I have purchased, resources, and stuffed animals is yet to be decided.  Right now I can only deal with one LAST at a time!

As I left that day I had tears in my eyes to have completed this FINAL ROOM SET UP of my year of LASTS!  
For someone who has a passion for teaching both kiddos and training educators I know there is something waiting me in the field of education after this year... I am just waiting to hear!!
Stay tuned for more in my story about THE FINAL COUNTDOWN....

Monday, July 28, 2014

Updated Calendars for Daily Recording

Just updated these and think they are improved.  Love using these each and every day!
For September the key strategy is counting and reviewing number sense.
The Freebie has anchor charts for even numbers, vocabulary cards for posting, and numbers for praciticng.
October focuses on fact strategies and the freebie for October is 10 anchor charts with fact strategies for posting.  Hope these are helpful!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Communication Tools and Curriculum Management Tools...

Three packets that just may help you start the year organized, prepared, and ready to communicate.  Enjoy!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Christmas in July Sale!

Hope this helps some of you get ready for "back to school".
If you are shoppin be sure to clip on MOST RECENT to see all the new items.
I have been working hard all summer to get things slowly changed to Save My Ink!
I am working through October at the present time so be sure to look carefully and even see if you don't get an updated download if you already purchased the item.
You can also check to the left side of this site for newer or updated items.
Happy Shopping!!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Fall updates...

Trying to stay ahead of the game and switch all my products over to Save My Ink here are the two most recent that I will share Week 2 and 3 in October.  Perfect topics...perfect crafts...!
This first one embeds science into the literacy domain using reading, writing, vocabulary, and word study.  Yes, there is a freebie for you!!

Vocabulary cards are bright for you classroom.

The next one again is science with a literacy theme...
Again bright and cheery vocabulary cards.

 Cute craft to go with writing.


Okay Michele back to basics:
Thirty days has September!!!
If you downloaded this try again with the corrections!
Click here

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Journeys Lesson 7...How Animals Communicate!

Added a mini book with informaitonal text for all of you!

Perfect for inter curriculum connections!!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Journeys Unit Two Lesson Six

Unit two is complete as well as an extension packet on The Three Little Pigs.
As always I thought of you and hope you enjoy the freebies!!

And an all time favorite!!

Enjoy the weekend!  This lady is closing up shop!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Celebration and Attention Chants!

Yesterday on my Facebook page there was a post from Teaching with a Twist on Attention Grabbers used in her classroom.
I thought I would share with you what chants I use for attention and for celebrations.
They are great and can be added to...
Round of applause.
Pat yourself on the back.
Kiss your brain.
Lights out.
Chime rang.
Simon get attention.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Johnny Appleseed..,,,

With the update of this Unit I now have all packets updated, improved, and created for August through September.  I'M SO EXCITED!!
Remember I shared the planners with you?

I made it available to you but if you lost the link here you go...

The final packet is Johnny Appleseed.  It is packed with every subject area.
This unit includes science, math and a complete balanced literacy section all related to Johnny Appleseed and the Apple.
The packet begins with a Johnny Appleseed Craft.
It also has a Johnny Appleseed writing assignment with mini craft to attach.
Suggested Literature...
There are 8 books suggested including informational text as well as fiction. 
Each story includes a story response sheet.
There is a poem with a response sheet.
Included are 2 mini printable books filled with informational text for students to read and take home. (apple/Johnny Appleseed)
Following the mini books are Fact/Opinion and a True/False
A definition activity is included to support the Suggested Literature.
This section focuses on Opinion, Informational and Narratives.
Paragraph practice includes...can/are/will for apples and is/has/can for Johnny Appleseed
There is also prewrite pages for Opening Sentence, Details and Closing Sentence.
Final writing page
This section also includes an Anchor Chart with suggested vocabulary for the writing center as well as vocabulary cards for posting.
Word Work...
ABC Order
Word Search
Making Words
Parts of Speech
Vocabulary (fill in the blank)
These are designed for literacy centers or class work.
Observation page
Life Cycle page
Investigation page
My Apple page
Working with 10
Ten Apples up on Top...Number words and craft
Addition practice

WOW that's a lot of activities for apples and best of all each activity is related to Common Core Standards. 
I hope you will "pick" this packet!

And then of course your freebie.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

The Day the Crayons Quit!

I have been meaning to do something special with this book since it came out last year.
Finally a finished product and I am so excited to use it with my kiddos!!
The packet contains:
Story Recall...
Problem identification/how it was solved
Using text to identify details...letters from crayons are used
8 page interactive mini book using story recall about colors feeling
Text Connections...Crayons in the story to your crayons
Letter Writing...write to Duncan helping him solve the provlem
Self to Text Connections...Your favorite color
Cause and Effect...Why was the crayon upset/What was the solution
Opinion Writing/Graphic Organizer/Final Write Page/Illustration
Data Collection on Class Favorite Color
Word Work...
Word Search
Vocabulary Cards for posting
Vocabulary Cards for studtents to color
Crayon Box with Crayons
Read and Color
The packet ends with a delightful crayon craft that includes writing if you wish.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

First Day Jitters!!

I never get tired of reading this story to my class at the beginning of the year. It is a nice "ice breaker" to let them know that even teachers get a "little" nervous. I also like this story because it leads into talking about emothions. Some students seem leary to say they are nervous or scared but simple things in our life can cause these emotions and that is nothing to be ashamed of!!
So the packet contains:
Craft...My first day jitters!
Poem...Use text to answer questions.
Anchor Chart with poem
Story Recall...wirte about favorite part and include a picture, story elements, beginning/middle/end
Word Work...word search, synonyms/antonyms, word study, word cards accompanied by 4 suggestions of games and uses
Things that give me the Jitters
Poster ...My First Day
I think you will find this packet enjoyable and one that will enhance your first day or week of school.