Friday, October 18, 2013

My first Five for Friday!

I'm so excited to be joining Doodle Bug Teaching's fun Five for Friday linky party for the first time!  I always love reading what everyone is up to be but decided to jump in and join the fun this week!

1. In class we have been working hard for the past two weeks and learning all about the food groups!  This week we finished our final writing pieces and sorted foods to create our own My Plate of healthy eating.  My favorite activity was the food group poem and craft where my kiddos created themselves using food from the 5 food groups.  They turned out so cute!

All the activities we did are all available in my TPT store!  This is my latest product and I am so excited about it!  Please hop over and check it out!  

2.  I got my newest Loreen Leedy book, Jack and the Hungry Giant, in the mail last weekend which was perfect timing for our food group study!  It book has a cute twist on the classic Jack and the Beanstalk, where Jack climbs the beanstalk and meets a giant and learns all about healthy eating and choosing from the five food groups!  It is such a great book and the perfect edition to my classroom library, the kids LOVED it!  If you haven't already, go over the Bunting, Books and Bainbridge's blog to join her giveaway or go to Good Reads for your chance to win this great book!  

3. In math we are getting ready to start our graphing unit so I have been having fun getting all our fun graphing centers and activities together!  I found this cute graphing board that I starting following on pinterest - go check it out!  So many cute ideas!   In case you are looking for a quick and easy center for your graphing unit, check out my Build A Graph center!

4. My son came home from college for his fall break!   Yay!  Having him home was a treat all of it's own, but he surprised me by coming into my classroom to volunteer for the morning!  

He is a freshman at WVU, and is majoring in education!  He is going to be an awesome teacher!!  

5. It's that time of the year, homecoming!  Yet another reason to love the fall!  This picture is actually from last weekend's homecoming dance, but I just had to share this picture of my beautiful daughter all ready to go to homecoming with a big group of her friends!  

Thanks for stopping by and reading my Five for Friday!!   I am off to go and check out what everyone else has been up to!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

TPT Sale & Place Value Fun

Yesterday, TPT hit 100,000 followers on Facebook!  How exciting!  They have decided to celebrate with a site wide flash sale that will last until 10/14!!   Don't forget to enter the code FB100K to get your 10% savings.  I am joining the fun and my entire store is on sale too, so you will actually get 20% anything in my store!! Who doesn't love a sale??  What fun!!

Speaking of fun, in my class we are having so much fun with this new math manipulative and it's all thanks to!

 I just love all the fun things that Mr. Smith does over on his website at! I saw this fun and easy to make math manipulative via his YouTube videos and went right out to the dollar store and made a set for my class! 
I bought 3 green and 1 pink noodle from the Dollar Tree and cut them using a large bread knife.  I cut the green noodles into thirds which made 9 tens, and  then I cut pink noodles which made plenty of ones.

Of course I just had to make a fun center activity to go along with my new place value noodles!  Check out my Build Your Numbers center in my TPT store!  My kiddos have so much fun using the noodles to build the number shown on the cards and then they flip the card over to check their work!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend and don't forget to head over to TPT to check out the super secret flash sale!!!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Managing tablets in classrooms and FREE apps!

Earlier this school year I was lucky enough to have my project funded by!  Great right?  Yes!  I was super excited to have a tablet for my kids to use and when I sent home photo release permissions slips from Donors Choose, I had a parent contact me about donating a another tablet to our classroom!  So cool!  The only problems I had to solved were;  which apps to use and how to manage the use of the tablets in our room.
I did some research in the google store, checked out all the cool ideas on pinterest, and asked anyone I knew who had tablets for ideas.  I found some pretty cool apps for free, but the coolest FREE app I found is called Kids Place.  It is an app launcher, and has easy to use settings that allowed me to put only the apps I want my students to access in the Kids Place app.   The app makes it so simple to use and disables all the other buttons so my kids can't accidentally exit out of Kids Place, or do any damage to the tablet's settings.  Click on the picture below to check the free app out for yourself!

Some of the other educational free apps that I have found are:

Sight Words Games Lite

First Grade Learning Games

First Grade Words Lite

Grade 1 Math Common Core

We use the tablets in word work during our modified daily 5/guided reading rotations, and during math stations.  I am happy to report that after a week of using the tablets, my kiddos are doing a great job!  They are working hard when it is their turn, and they are sharing and helping each other.

I know that I will find new ways to use these tablets during the school year, and will hopefully find a few more apps, but I am happy to have them being used everyday by my cute little kiddos! How do you use technology in your classrooms?  Please leave comments below and share what has worked, and not worked in your class.  Thanks for stopping by!!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Motivate Me Monday - Open Letter to Teachers

It's Monday again and time for another link up with First Grade Buddies and their Motivate Me Monday link party!  Hop over and check out some of the other motivational blog posts!

A friend of mine sent me a link to this blog post and I almost didn't read it because of the title, "Why I Hated Meredith's First Grade Teacher."  Don't let the title fool you, it is a well written letter to teachers from a fellow teacher and mother who writes to us to thank and remind us of the important role we have in our students lives.

Happy Monday everyone!  I hope you have time to read the letter, and that you start your day reminded of what an amazing and important job you have.