Monday, October 29, 2012

Vote for Somebody!

      It's voting time and I voted early on Saturday!  I loved teaching about the Presidential Election four years ago.  This is the second time in my teaching career that I have been teaching during a Presidential Election.  Last Election I created a lapbook to do with my first graders about voting and the President. Our basic goal is that the students understand what it means to vote and how it is a right as a citizen of the United States. 
      We will read My Teacher for President, Duck for President, and listen online to Arthur Meets the President on KOL JR online.  The students will compare and contrast me to the President of the USA.  (They love doing this!)  The students will write what they would do if they were the President.  (Four years ago, I had a student who told me he plans to be the President some day. He said that he would end the Iraq War and give food to those who were hungry.  I don't doubt that he may just very well be the President!  He said those things as a 6 year old!) They will define key terms and sort between community leaders and words that describe those community leaders. The lapbooks turned out really cute last time!  Here are a few pics of an example of our lapbook.

     We try to make voting relevant to the students by having them vote about items that are interesting to them.  Over the next week, our students will vote on a variety of topics and place their ballots in our ballot box.

Click HERE to get your copy of our ballots!  We vote about things like Oreo cookies, ketchup, and super powers!  This helps each student understand that his/her voice is important!
     About a week or so ago, my Mom emailed me a link to this video.  I absolutely love it!  Not only do I love when kids are singing, but when they are singing about an important message.  Younger students will enjoy it and understand the basic message behind it. Enjoy!

Only a week left until Election Day.  Our students will vote for the President tomorrow.  Remember to get out there and vote!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Pumpkins! Pumpkins!

 We have had a fun time with pumpkins for the past two weeks!  Here are just a few of the wonderful things my kiddos have been doing with pumpkins.  

This is our pumpkin sequencing.  Each student painted two paper plates.  We staple the plates together, leaving a small opening. Then the students color and cut out two green pumpkins, two yellow pumpkin flowers, two vines, and two seeds.  The students glue them around the green yarn in sequential order.  All of the items can fit inside the orange pumpkin!  Then the students pull out each piece in order telling how a pumpkin grows! 
The students chose from four different clip art
pictures of pumpkins.  Then the students deleted the
other pictures, re-sized their own picture and wrote
three sentences about the picture that was
their favorite. 

Our first graders made their own pumpkin patches!  They used hexagons, trapezoids, and triangles to create three different pumpkins.  We haven't taught our geometry unit, but this is a great introduction or review from Kindergarten!
During our Reader's Workshop time, the students chose from different leveled pumpkin books.  The students had to read the story and write about their favorite character from the book.

The students felt the gushy pumpkin guts!  They LOVED this part.  They sorted the pumpkin seeds into groups of tens.  We had over 500 pumpkin seeds!

Click HERE to download our pumpkin Smartboard slides. You have to select to download the file.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Teacher's Pay Teachers

     So, those who know me, know that I am obsessed with finding amazing materials on Teacher's Pay Teachers.  I finally got around to creating something little of my own!  I have been scared that I wouldn't know what to do or how to do it!  It's just a start and I am still learning about graphics and all of the goodies that are out there. 
     I created a Thanksgiving Themed Froggy Fact Family activity.  Our second unit for math this year focuses on addition and subtraction.  This activity will address Common Core Standard 1.OA.3.  There are 8 pages of task cards that can be cut, mounted on construction paper, and laminated.  There is also a recording sheet for students. You can download the activity sheet and student task cards at my new TPT store! 

Friday, October 19, 2012


      This year our school is focusing on independent reading and writing about reading.  At this point the students are reading independently and continuously for about 5-10 minutes with a few reminders about "what good readers look like".  Our fabulous First Graders are doing an amazing job writing about reading, but this is their first real experience writing about their own reading.  The students are writing in response journals at least once a week and we are working towards journal writing every day.  That is our goal by the end of the year. 
      Our students are supposed to list the date and title of the book that they are reading in their journals.  This was somewhat difficult for our students.  They do better when  given guidelines or a template in which to work.  After seeing some great examples of teaching points for older students, on Pinterest, I decided to type the teaching point that we are focusing on, as well as a space for the date and the title of the book.  The students glue in the teaching points and then respond about their independent reading book.  This has helped each student organize his/her reading responses in his/her journal.
      Click below on the picture to download the teaching points that I have created.  Some may need to be altered for your kiddos!  We are using the Scott Foresman Reading Street as a method for teaching the first grade Common Core Standards.  At this point my teaching points are related to and follow the scope and sequence of the Scott Foresman.  My goal is to update these as the year goes on as well as list the Common Core standard that each one addresses. 
      Click HERE to get a copy of the teaching points that have already been created!

Here are a few examples of the teaching points in our journals:

Follow on Bloglovin