Linking up with Latoya again this week.
First the info on last week's two truths and a lie... Wait for it.... They were all truths!
I completely messed up and did that post late at night and made a whoops.
So...My aunt was a rockette, I am the youngest and the only girl in my family and I do have dimples in my shoulders. My oldest and youngest have them too!! Super cute!

This week the assignment is The Noun Game...Here are my most favorite nouns

Favorite Person
This is a plural noun. My family is wonderful. My husband is great. He always knows how to make me laugh. He's a great guy and an awesome dad! My kids are so very cute. We are also so lucky to have grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins close by too.

Place
The beach is my favorite place! I love love love love love it. I spend many a daydream thinking about the smell, toes in the sand, the sound of waves...I could go on all day. I live on Cape Cod so I get a lot of beach in the summer. But, I also went to Hawaii once and I loved the beaches there too. I am a warm weather gal for sure! I wasn't made for this New England climate.

Thing
I wish it was more sentimental than this, but I love my iPhone. I can't leave home without it. And I am so not proud of myself for that!

Animal
I love dogs. Especially my 10 year old black lab Molly. She is honestly the best dog ever. She's getting old and it breaks our hearts. 



Thanks for visiting!
Deirdre
Are you always looking for better ways to do things better in your classroom? I certainly am! This year I have finally overcome the pain in my bottom that is classroom jobs. I have found in first grade the kids can never remember what their job is and I was always saying "Whose in charge of the library? Whose the door holder?" They couldn't remember...I couldn't remember and I looked like a crazy woman.  I was always making up jobs so everyone could have a job. Well here's the fix!- No jobs! Well not totally no jobs, but a lot less jobs. I have only a President and a Vice President. The President gets to do everything for a whole week- line leader, paper passer, pencil sharpener, library cleaner upper, greeting picker, calendar, messenger and so on and so forth. The Vice President is their second in command. If the President needs a helper or is out the Veep get s the job. It is soooo easy and the kids love it. I highly recommend this method!

If your interested I made this FREEBIE little sign for your classroom!


Click here to get it!

What do you do for class jobs?
I'm linking up with Latoya Reed at Flying into First. I heart her blog design. Something about hot air balloons makes me happy! This week she has 2 truths and a lie. So down below are two truths and a lie about me. Can you figure out which is which?
1. My aunt was a Rockette.
2. I am the only girl out of my siblings.
3. I have dimples on my shoulders.


Try to guess the lie in the comments!! I'll let you know later this week.
Deirdre

Two fun math things tonight!
Bad news- I have no pics of either, but will be sure to get some tomorrow (hopefully that's not a lie).
Thing one- A FREEBIE!


I made this little spring themed freebie to celebrate warm weather coming while we do a bit of math. I filled plastic eggs (from the Dollar Tree) with counters. Students pick 3, write in the addends and find the sum. Simple? Yes! But, just a fun seasonal way to practice important skills. I added this to our math workshop and it was well received...one of the best parts of first grade- it takes very little to be well received!
Click here for the Egg-cellent Bunny Worksheet.

Thing Two- Graph and Laugh (hahaha)
To teach graphing in my room I've always had the kids travel around the room with a clipboard and a plain looking worksheet and ask their friends questions to collect data. We keep it pretty simple. "What is your favorite color?" "What is your favorite animal?" Myself and the best teaching neighbor ever (hi Stacy!) have never had fancy looking products for this activity. And with the Common Core the kidlets are asked to extend their thinking even more. And thus the Graph and Laugh pack has been born. There are 4 different interviews and graphing projects for your students to do- animals, colors, food and sports. Each theme has 5 worksheets of graphing activities. Tons of fun for you and them!!

Click here for the Graph and Laugh pack.

All these thoughts of Spring are hard to believe with more snow on the way. I wasn't meant to be born in this climate.

Thanks for stopping in!
Deirdre
Did you ever play 7-up as a kid in school? I loved it. We usually played it during parties or on a Friday afternoon. The basic rules. Seven kids stand up in the front of the room- everyone else puts their head down- The seven kids go tap the the ones with their heads on their desks- once everyone has been tapped the tappers return to the front of the room- all the kids at their desks stand up and try to guess who picked them. Laughter ensues! Hooray!

Fast forward to 2013....In my room we play it just the same way, but the kids who are the tappers have a name change. They hold our weekly sight word cards in front of them and we reintroduce them to the class. "Hi everyone this is no long Kate her new name is colors. This is no longer Joe- his new name is sign." The kids who are tapped and have to do the guessing can't use their friends real names. They have to call them by their new sight word name.




I have played this with my classes for years! It was one of those games I just came up with one day on the spot and the kids LOVED it. I feel like some of my favorite things I've done have happened this way- just in the moment! I often play this right before our spelling test just to get the kids ready and to also loosen them up a bit.

Do you have any games you often play that your class just begs for?

Thanks for stopping over!
Deirdre
This year is the first year I am at peace with my morning work routine. It only took six years, but we have finally managed to get along. This year the kids do two things once they get settled...talk to their friends and act silly. Gotcha! Hehehe...sometimes those things happen, but generally we try to be a bit more civil. Morning time in my school can be a bit long. The students start arriving at 8:45, but not everyone is there until about 9:15 with buses and drop offs. So it's a lot of time to keep the kidlets occupied.

Each morning they have a specific activity to do. They are....
Monday- write your spelling words
Tuesday- write your spelling words in a fun way (swirly, rainbow, block letters, etc...)
Wednesday- review packet of previous week's phonics concepts (from Reading St.) I have a PLC this morning so this packet keeps them busy with the person covering my classroom
Thursday- write each spelling word in a sentence
Friday- math review paper

We made this little chart as a class to help us remember what to do each day. It has been GRREEEAAT (in a Tony the Tiger voice)!
Our Morning Work chart (with our brag tags!)
Once the students finish that part of morning work they write in their rainbow journals. I just started doing this this year and we all love them. Rainbows make me happy!
The rainbow journal idea is recycled from another fabulous teacher (thank you Marianne!) Everyone starts with a red journal in the beginning of school. This journal has a large space for drawing and a small space for writing. Once students finish up that journal they move on to orange, then yellow, green, blue, purple! The drawing space decreases and the writing space increases as the year goes on. As they finish journals I collect them, check them over and add them to their portfolios. At the end of the school year I will give them their rainbow journals for them to see all the awesome progress they made this year! I know they will be so proud of themselves! I LOVE seeing kids faces when they see how far they have come. It is priceless. It might be my most favorite part of teaching! The best part of the journals in the morning is there is no "I'm done!". If they are done they just go to the next page or they add color to their illustration or go back and check a piece you already did. Again....GRREEEAAT!
The journals are made super simply. I staple about 15-20 pages in between a large 12x18 piece of construction paper. DONE!
Journals!
How do you manage morning work? 

Thanks so much for stopping in today!
Deirdre

In my class I do a Math Workshop model where students get to choose what math area they will visit each day- very similar to Daily 5! The choices in my class are Math with Technology, Fun with Numbers, Math Facts and Math Games. The theme of today's post is Math Games. I found this awesome pin where a teacher put all the math games her students were using in page protectors and the put them in a binder. She also gave each student a baggie with all the items they'd need for math games- dice, chips, dry erase markers, eraser. Great idea!!! So I recycled it. Sorry for the lack of credit, but I forgot to repin. You out there know how brilliant you are!! Here are what my Math Notebook materials look like. Putting the games in the protectors is a small pain, but i can reuse them from year to year just like lamination. I got the pages in the Math Notebook from the ahhh-mazing Cara Carroll.


And now to my most exciting news of the day! My very first real TPT item! I am giddy. It's like I've joined a secret society. I have been scrambling here there and everywhere to find math games for my students to use in class and also take home to extend their learning. Well...I decided to look no further than myself. We have curriculum maps this year and I made up some fun little games to align with the maps! I did April since that is right around the corner (can I get an A-MEN for some spring weather?). As soon as my report cards and evaluation evidence (anyone doing that?) are over I'll be working on May.
Here are two cuties playing one of my math games. It was "Think Summer" Day! Just 100 more days!
If you have a minute pop over to TPT to check out my Math Games. I also just uploaded a fun song about the equal sign!

Getting to like you...getting to hope you like me...

I got this little idea from Katie at mind sparks. Here's just a few things about me you may be interested in. And here is my interview with me...

Where do you live? Cape Cod Massachusetts

Where do you teach? I teach first grade in a public school. I have been in this school for 6 years.

What is your favorite subject to teach? Hmmm....that's tricky. I used to always say reading, but now it might be math. I also love teaching History/Social Studies which I feel is embedded in our learning.

Any pets? One dog Molly. She's 10 and her bones are getting old

Kids? Three lovely children who sit quietly on the couch and sing songs from "The Sound of Music". Sorry I must have slipped off to a day dream there. Three kids- Yes! Lovely- sometimes!
One boy who is 5 and two girls ages 3 and 1.

What do you watch on tv? Downton Abbey, Revenge, Grey's, The Office, Modern Family and pretty much everything on HBO and Showtime

Favorite book? Anything by Dr. Seuss. I am so sad to say I haven't read a grown up book in a long time. I did read The Daily Five and CAFE books though.

What is your class like? 20 students. 10 girls/ 10 boys...It's a happy little place!

I'll leave you with a little pic of the fam.

Tell me a little something about you!!

It has been my favorite week of the year!! We read more Dr. Seuss books than one class could muster. On Friday the kids did some awesome opinion writing about their favorite Dr.Seuss book. As us Common Corers know opinion writing is all the rage! I was so proud of them. We started by making a long list of books we read. Then the kids wrote on scrap paper (trying to save a tiny forest) 3 reasons why the book they chose was their favorite. Then I gave them an opening and closing sentence starter. And BAM! take that opinion writing!! I will take some pictures of our work when I am back in school on Monday.

Fuzzy Wuzzy had no hair.
Was Fuzzy Wuzzy Fuzzy?
Was he?

I just love that little poem!
I wrote about behavior management earlier this year in this post. Lately I pretty much have been doing everything Mel D. does over at Seusstastic Classroom Inspirations. The fuzzies rock! The kids basically earn fuzzies for doing the right thing and loose them for doing the wrong thing. Simple? Yes! They love earning them! I start them off with five at the start of the week and then they can add or subtract from their fuzzies from there. At the end of the week I mix things up. Sometimes we put all our fuzzies in a jar and if the jar is full we have free time. Sometimes those who have 10 or more get to choose from the prize box. Sometimes they earn a brag tag for their fuzzies. I like to keep them on their toes!

Aren't they sooo cute??

I continue to do our picture add-ons for a class prize. I've got to get my pot of gold picture up this week!! Any great suggestions on a class prize or activity? We've done jammie day and a movie/popcorn.

Thanks for stopping by!
Deirdre


Do your kids get all mixed up with the vocabulary in math? Mine sure do...especially when we talk about addition and subtraction. It can be so very very confusing for them. I always find a little song can be the trick for helping some students to "get it"(kind of like a spoonful of sugar...thanks Mary Poppins!). We are always trying to reach out to those multiple intelligences! So I created two songs or as I like to call them "Witty Little Ditties" to help my students learn these vocabulary words that trip them up so much. These songs focus on the vocabulary involved in addition and subtraction. I hope to make more songs to help us in our math vocab too!

This is also exciting because it is the first thing I've ever posted in Teachers Pay Teachers. I have moved from long time buyer to first time seller. I'm a bit giddy with excitement (or as giddy as one can be at 10:57 p.m.). Enjoy this free little song!



Click Here to get your freebie!

I was so excited about this blogging thing when I started the school year. And....I failed a bit! Whoops. It was back to school crazies, then I turned around and it was Halloween, then Christmas and then hibernation season when you look back and go "What did I do for the last two months?" and here we are (That sentence had about 100 grammar no-nos in it) . I can taste spring in the distance and I'm ready to get going on the blogging thang!!

My first grade class has been having some fun this year. They are a nice group of kiddos this year. I've been waiting for this kind of year! They'll be a class I'll look back on and go "Remember those kids....That was a good year".

Ok- so report cards to do this week and a couple after school meetings and a doctors appointment and I'm going to become a better blogger. I can do this!!

Be back tomorrow with pictures and real "school stuff"!
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