Friday, 31 August 2012

Sale!! - Labour Day Long Weekend

Labor Day Long Weekend Sale

Well my blogging friends - it is back to school for this Grade 1 teacher this coming Tuesday!  I will busy all this weekend getting ready for the school year.  In honour of this blessed event I am throwing a Labour Day Long Weekend Sale!  Everything in my TpT store is 20% off!  Click on my TpT to take a look at the goods, as well as a ton of great freebies.  Feel free to link up and throw your own Labour Day Long Weekend Sale!  For you Americans here is  a version for you!

grade one blog Canadian

Thursday, 30 August 2012

My Classroom Decorating in Progress...a Tip...AND a Freebie

A big THANK YOU to the hard working teachers who purchased items from my TpT store!  I hope they are useful - any feedback you might have is greatly appreciated!

I have been hard at work in my classroom this week. All the laminating I did at home came to school and went up around the room.  It is really beginning to come together!  I am excited for the big reveal.  I need a couple more days though so be ready:)

Now for your tip!!!  So I was in the process of creating Reagan's freebie Oh Good Graph!

I was searching around my room of a circle large enough to trace to create the pie chart and the Venn diagrams.  All of the sudden it came to me what would be perfect!

Dan, da, da, dah!!  The garbage can worked as a perfect tracer and both graphs were made and up on the wall in no time FLAT!!!  I can't wait to use these activities as getting to know you activities!!

Anywho, as I was putting together my classroom I decided to update and beautify my 5 little Self-Assessment posters I use for my students to compare their work to and decide whether or not it is finished.  I have them bring their work up and compare it to each poster until they find a match.   I ask them to explain their choice to me using a Because Clapper.  

Initially, I guide them through the process I tell them if I agree.  If it is a WOW! (WOW!'s usually receive Super Improver Stars) or a Good! then they are finished! If it is a Working on it!, etc. then they go back at erase or add to it!  It works quite well and it helps to increase the quality of the work that is handed in!

examples of student work

I ended up adding a couple of My Writing and My Colouring/Coloring Stoplight checklists along with a 3 Star Sentence anchor chart.  
Student Self Assessment
I have my students complete these after writing or colouring assignments.  

A Grade One Nut and Her Squirrelly Crew

Students take out a red, green, and a yellow crayon.  For each item on the list they colour in the corresponding circle depending on what level they have reached.  Red = Working on it!  Yellow = Good! and Green = WOW!  Then I come around and if I agree I circle my choice at the bottom of the list.  Once again, if they get a WOW! they may receive a Super Improver Star or whatever reward system you use in your classroom.  I find these little dandies quite effective!  Often I have them glue them to the back of the work for easy access when looking marking their work!  Enjoy and let me know what you think!!!

Student Work, rubrics, checklists

Grade 1 Teaching blog, First Grade Teaching blog

Friday, 24 August 2012

Last Friday Night AND Freebie Friday 3 Sentence Story Writing

I have to tell you that on Friday we traveled to Spences Bridge to see one of my favourite bands  - The Boom Booms!!!  Just saying their name makes my little heart start to go Boom Boom!! Love them!!

Vancouver Band

So we decided to tent in Spences Bridge - my friend booked a camp site - the owner was really sweet and gave us a spot over looking the Thompson river - just gorgeous!!!  We had dinner at the coffee shop/pub/breakfast place - these small towns have multifunctional facilities!!  Then, we made our way over to the festival just in time for the Boom Booms to play the most amazing set.  Best part is that we were right in the front!!  We could see everything easily and there was room to dance like crazy!

Needless to say we had a blast!  We met some Boom Boom groupies and some locals!!  During the concert we began to notice that the train was coming through the town quite a bit to the point that the band even noticed it and commented during their set!  Each time it came through it would blow its whistle 4 times - apparently, according to the locals, they must - legally - just before it reaches a road that crosses the tracks.  Once we made it back to our tent and into bed the train continued...every hour...from both directions...lots of whistle blowing...yup...not a lot of sleep was had by all:)

We still had an amazingly, beautiful weekend with great company, amazing entertainment, and beautiful sunshine!  What is a little sleep lost when I get to hang out with some amazing ladies?

Love you girls!  Thanks for the good times!!!!

On another totally different train of thought!  I got inspired by the Friday Freebie from Scrappin Doodles so I made this little packet to share a fictional story writing technique I find works really well in my classroom!  Do you dread story writing?  Does having your students write stories give you a colossal headache?  Weep no longer!!  3 Sentence Story Writing is here!!  3 Sentence Story Writing is the amazingly simple, and easy to use story writing packet that will have your students writing independently in no time flat!!  Check it out by clicking on the picture below! The first person to comment will get it free!!!

Check out my TpT store for lots more freebies!!

Oh, and before I forget, Ryan has something to say....

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Happy Technology Tip Tuesday!

Technology Tip:  Create your own website for Computer time!!!  I used iWeb and I uploaded it on my free webspace through my internet provider.  Not sure how many companies provide this but if Telus {click on this link if you have Telus internet for information on your personal webspace!} or Shaw provide your internet you have FREE webspace!!!  I'm not kidding!!!

iWeb is SO easy to use and upload to your webspace.  It has cute templates for free!  I have created links to educational sites for my kiddos to easily access at school or at home.  Also, I have Albums of our field trip and special day pictures.  Sometimes, I will direct the kids to a specific site for a must-do activities or I will allow them free choice time.  Click on the picture below to check it out!!!

A shout out to Mrs. Cassidy over at her amazing Grade 1 website Mrs. Cassidy's Class!  You were an inspiration!  Her site has many wonderful links, as well!!

Monday, 20 August 2012

Must-haves Monday!

Oh Blog Hoppin' - how do I love thee - let me count the ways!  I love the little posts you inspire, I love the contests, the freebies, and the great ideas!  Here are my must-haves for back to school.

First up, my trusty little digital Canon Powershot SD630.  It helps me document my week, take picts of my kiddies and video my class!!

Second, the best coffee mug in the world.  One of my teacher buddies gushed about hers - keeps your coffee hot for hours - even into the afternoon.  I got mine from Costco.

I get so dehydrated at the beginning of the school year so water is a must.  This water bottle is also from Costco and works like a charm to keep me nice and hydrated!

SNACKS!!   I need fast, easy snacks.  Sesame snaps are one of my favourites, along with fruit snacks, and carrots!!

My key chain is the best thing that has ever happened to me.  I keep it around my arm and it stays with me always.  It is so easy to just slide it down my arm to open any door I need to during my day.  No neck lanyard for me!!

Link up with Blog Hoppin' and share your Monday must-haves!!!

Saturday, 18 August 2012

My Laminator...Wallis AND a new little packet on making inferences!

Meet my new Scotch Laminator Wallis!!!!   I heart Wallis - he is a smiler, fast, heats up like a darn and plasticizes to my hearts delight!!  Love that guy!  $30 at Walmart in Canada - cannot go wrong!!!  

Whole Brain Teaching

My Whole Brain Teaching Blog

I went to work laminating right away and I can already tell you I made a few of my teacher pals envious:D  But of course they are welcome to use it anytime!  Yes!!  I love visitors!!!

laminations, school, Whole Brain Teaching

I just thought I would show a few picts and gush a little about how easy and efficient Wallis is!!  Definitely better then paying a wack load of money to get laminating done at a store or waiting months for laminating to return from the district office!!  Not me!  I have Wallis now!!

Last, but not least, I was inspired again and glamified My Teacher's Day Away - Working on Inferring activity packet I used this year after I was at a Jolly Phonics conference professional development day.  My kiddos really made their brains sweat trying to figure out what I was up to that day!  Lots of fun!  My favourite part was when one little boy thought that the candy wrapper that was part of the evidence used to infer what I did during the day meant I was searching through the garbage!!:)  LOL!  I wanted him to infer that I ate a piece of candy during my day away.  Even funnier is I may or may not have rescued that candy wrapper from the garbage can my purse!  Anyhow, I hope this is useful!  

printables, literacy, reading skills

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Sneek-a-Peek Linky Party

What am I doing at 1:00 a.m. you ask?  Oh - just linking up with Blog Hoppin' cause its fun and its summer!!  Got to share all the fun stuff I bought during the TpT sale!!!  Click on the pictures to check them out yourself!!

So my first purchase was the Desk Fairy by Rachelle at What the Teacher Wants - this last year was the first time my kiddos had desks.  We always had tables at my school for Grade!  Enter the Desk Fairy!!  Can't wait to try this out!!

Next, I have been eyeing this one for a WHILE - just dying to know the recipe for the lemon body scrub.  Oh momma, the mothers in my classroom are gonna be in HEAVEN!!  Thanks Reagan Tunstall!

And who can resist Pop Rocks!!  Thanks Babbling Abby for this awesome little packet for enhancing descriptive writing.  I believe I will use this when teaching Word Choice!!  Maybe even earlier in the year when I introduce adjectives!!

Yet another one I have been eyeing - every year I say I am going to do a Christmas Around the World unit in December and this year I'm going to do it!!  December 2012 is a winner.  Thanks Amanda!!  

This I could not resist - I was thinking about having a classroom pet and this kind of pet is right up my alley!  The kids will be dying to write about their adventures with our newest class member!!  Yay Reagan!!

I got this last one at the LAST minute - it might have even been 11:59 p.m. and I'm so glad I did!!  I'm going to use this the first week a school for some snacking fun!!  All first graders love a nice treat to get us through that long afternoon and what better way to cover some math too!!! Thanks Tara!!

Head over to Blog Hoppin' and link up!!

First Day Jitters Linky

So I'm linking up with Ms. Jessica over at A Turn to Learn!!  Love these things!!

Back to School Jitters Linky Party

 Red Marker/Green Marker Writing: The Whole Brain Teaching team have come up with this wonderful way of teaching and assessing writing!!  I am super pumped to try it out!!  Check out my previous post to find out more!!!

I am NOT ready to go back yet - I need to really pump myself up and be well rested!  It is going to be an amazing year but it is STILL SUMMER FOR HEAVEN SAKES!!!!:)

I'm loving this summer.  It is the first time I have stuck close to home and really enjoyed the city I live in!! Kelowna is known for its summer season - wine tasting, beaches, festivals, night life!! LOVE it!!

I am missing my friends from Medicine Hat and Alberta in general - I went to school in Lethbridge and I had my first teaching job in Medicine Hat.  I usually go and visit them but this is the first summer I haven't!!  Must e-mail or Skype them soon!!  Love you guys!!

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Teaching Fabulous Firsties Give Away

Well it has been a month of give aways!  I am so excited to be working together with Corinna over at Teaching Fabulous Firsties and a another crew of lovely teachers to help celebrate her 100+ Follower give away!  I have donated my own Bring Your Stuffy to School Packet for the lucky winner.  

fun centers, kids, primary, ideas, measurement, math

So head on over and check out her blog for your chance to walk away with some lovely lessons for your classroom!!!

  link up, contest

Thought I would also throw my first sale along with the Back to School TpT sale.  Better late than never!!