Monday, February 28, 2011

Greater than Less Than

I sing everything and all of the time.

Here is the song I sang, but it never had an ending- leave it to the kids!  The rock!!

Greater than less than or equal to
Greater than less than or equal to
Greater than less than or equal to  
That's the end of our song.

Song:1 little 2 little somethings 

There are actions to this as well. I will try to explain this as well as I can. I will see if I can get permission from one of my math students parents to put up a video.

Anyways we use our whole body to do a big alligator arms up on one side for greater than side, then to the other side for less than.  Then we make an equal sign right in front of us. 

Sunday, February 27, 2011


Head over to One Extra Degree for a fabulous giveaway :)

Calendar Club

I posted this a while back about my calendar time. This is the sheet that I have for the students to sign when they complete:
We have been doing Calendar Club for a while now plus we have been writing our names for well ummmmmm... much much longer so I read the names off the list:

We don't have a Gare in our class- the student and I did get a chuckle our of this- I think we did the -are word family that day and I think he was so wrapped up in that- that he changed his mind :)

Saturday, February 26, 2011


I love love love Dr. Seuss!!!!! He is my favorite author. I have MOST, but NOT all of his books.

I have bed sheets, comforter, trashcan, DVD's, clothes, shoes, socks- you name it, I probably have it.  Check out some of my Seuss items.

In January, I found three new Seuss DVD's at Target.

Earlier this summer, I found these Seuss Goodies at Target.

In one of my reading groups we are of course going to do a Seuss Book study.

We will complete a Cat in the Hat glyph from the Virtual Vine.

On March 2nd, we will have a pajama day and spend our time reading Seuss books. In math, we will do Seuss math. We will visit our very own Seussville in the other Mrs. R's room.

We will do Seuss science too in the ASP.

I found this cool app while searching for an unrelated topic lol

I plan to take a photo of every child in the class.

I have some ideas on my On the Loose with Dr. Seuss pages.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Smartie Pants

I have been calling the Firsties "Smarties Pants" for a while now, not sure why.  Then Abby came out with this post.  Scroll all the way down and you can get the printable too :)

I took a Tootsie Roll bank that I recycled from a Christmas present, covered it with black paper, and attached the graphic on the front.

I really didn't want to fill up the whole thing with smarties, so I stuffed our lovely brown paper toweling inside and added a small paper cup. The smarties fit perfectly!!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

A child walks into a teachers office and asks to borrow her 'dinosaur dictionary' when she asked what that was, he said the "thesaurus" brilliant !!!!!!!

word work

One of the word work center choices is Making Words. Although this particular week, we have cute snowmen, I told the kids that they won't always be this cute! I tell the students where I got them. So now Mrs. Perry is part of our class too :) You can get your very own set here.

I have them use their Daily 5 notebooks to make their own lists. As much as I love love love the recording sheet that changes each week, there is a ton of prep and potential waste non-use of the papers.
I set out the letters and if I have a recording sheet I hang it near the letters in a sheet protector.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Function Machines

I call the function machines gumball machines instead. I drew a funny looking gumball machine with lots of lines/tubes going back and forth like those that go round and round. 

The more rows the more the gumballs you get (+) or loose (-). If they loose them (-) I say the gumball machine kept them, if they add (+) they are given more :)  They actually got it. :)

Later, we went to the computer lab and did this function machine from Johnnie's Math Page.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Clip chart

We use the clip chart in our classroom.

We also have a rainbow square carpet in the room.  It has red, green, purple, and blue.

I made a seating chart in Word and hung it on the wall.

Anyways, I try to acknowledge great behavior by calling the children who are on the top of the chart. So I glance at the clip chart and say "If you are on yellow" you may line up. All of the children immediately whip their heads to see who is on yellow. One bright child says we don't have yellow." We all giggle and say "You are ON yellow." She told us she was thinking about the carpet color.  We were all laughing. :) In her defense, She was very close to me, so maybe I was blocking her way :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Art Work

Here are some awesome masterpieces (RDW) that some of the students made at my school:
First Grade:
Made by the upper grades:
 Mouse Paint:
 Second grades:
 First Grade:
Several teachers at my school were fortunate to attend Space Camp in Huntsville Alabama this past summer. One of the teachers that went was the Other R and also one of the art teachers. We are loving all the space ideas she is using. :)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Seriously Seuss

Seriously Seuss is on the loose this year. In the past, I have had my students dress up to celebrate different Seuss books.

I asked the students if they wanted to get the chance and they wanted to. :) Y'all, I am so excited that they want to do this!!!!!!!! As Abby would say, "I am twelve kinds of excited!!"

I picked several books, chose something that would be easy to dress up too. Then I had a wonderful idea to match snacks too. Some were easy ideas like eating goldfish for 1 Fish 2 Fish :) I don't want to use all sugar filled snacks. We did marshmallows and icing last year, but that isn't an option for me this year. I need to really limit the sugar.

Here are the books we will be celebrating this year:
1-Cat in the Hat- wear red and white- red and white stripes cookies
2-PJ's day
3-Crazy socks to go with Fox in Socks
4-Animal Print- If I ran the zoo-  animal crackers
7-flower day- Daisy head Maisy
8- hat day- Batholomew- bugles (looks like hats?)
9-Shape of Me and other Stuff-chex mix?
10-1 Fish 2 Fish- red and blue day- gold fish
11-Funky shoes- FootBook- maybe fruit by the foot- fruit roll-ups??
14-Eye Book- crazy glasses-??
15-My Colored Days- wear all one color
16-ABC book- letters and words- maybe letters and numbers cookies??
17-Green Eggs and Ham- green- green eggs
18- I Wish I had duck feet- animal prints- pringles ( to make duck beaks)
28-On Beyond Zebra- Stripe Day- zebra cakes
29-no book here yet lol
30-Wacky Wednesday
31-okay so I haven't picked this one either lol

I need your ideas please :)

Here is how we have celebrated it in the past:

Seuss Days- explained

Of course I still need to come up with some quick ideas for each day too- there isn't much leeway in my day to do everything I want to do. So between reading the book and an activity, I will only have about 10-15 minutes. Maybe I can squeeze in something during snack time.

So please HELP a Seuss -a-holic out! And send me some ideas for snacks, book activities.

My awesomely-cool followers pointed me in this direction:

Learning with Mrs. Parker

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Stlyish Blogger

I was awarded the stylish blogger award from my friend Donna at Kinderglynn.

1. Thank and link back to the person who awarded you this award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Award 5 recently discovered great bloggers.
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award.

Donna's comments about me brought tears to my eyes. :) I have admired her work for years and feel like I have known her for years :)

Seven things about myself:

1. I tried out and made the singing and preforming group Up With People. It was a group that traveled around the world. I didn't end up going though :(

2. I love to sing everything to the students lol now they help me finish my crazy songs lol

3. I teach school with my mother :)

4. I am an only child and an only grandchild- yes I am still spoiled.

5. I usually eat with my mother and grandmother twice a week. We live in a three block radius from each other.

6. I love to scrapbook and rubber stamp :) I even take my stamps to school for the students to use :)

7. I always have a coffee mug/container in my hand :)

My 5 amazing blogs:

Deanna at Mrs. Jump's Class- I am truly amazed by your teaching and sharing.  I am glad that I can call you my friend. 

Brooke Perry from Primary Perspective-you have become a member of my class and my student's lives.  

Abby- welcome to the {Teacher Blogging} world- I have followed you for a while through Babbling Abby and frequently find myself saying that I am "12 kinds of" anything from you!

Heidi over at Swampfrogfirstgraders always have some many great FROG ideas :)

My polka-dot-princess over at First Grade Teachers was all kinds of wonderful when she told me she followed my original website :)

I know that I gave a shout-out to Donna already, but sometimes you just have to give your friends a little push in the right direction lol

Gold Bar Words- photo

A while back I wrote this post:   Gold Bar Words

Here is how I store them. It is a simple pencil case that holds 8 gold bars, gold pens, and a recording sheet.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Volcanoes- follow up

We wrapped up our volcano unit which was extended due to early release days and snow days lol
The Other R created this chart. She attached packing tape in the boxes for word removal.

 Here is the completed chart:

Our volcano explosion:
I was a little disappointed in the "explosion." I only had apple cider vinegar, so I am not sure if that changed the result.

I wanted to teach all of the children k-5 how to be volcanoes. I made up this action-thing. We talked about what shape a volcano was- a triangle. We put our hands together kind of like low praying hands. Then we weave/wiggle back and forth within our body frame and say magma, magma, magma. Then when we go past our heads, we say "explosion, lava" separate our hands. smoke cloud with our hands apart over our heads. Then we use spirit fingers to say "ashes ashes ashes" as our arms go down.

We talked about how it was magma inside but when it came out it was lava. I just started to show the K-1's but then taught it to them all. The 2nd and 3rd graders loved it too. Oh and they really learned it too!!!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Pampered Chef

I love the Pampered Chef.  That is what we have in our kitchen. :)  However, I use lots of things in the classroom too or getting things ready for the classroom too!

 I put the Vitamin Water caps and gold bars (word work pieces) into the salad spinner to get them clean.
When I take them out, I put them on the microfiber towel. Those towels hold so much water, it is amazing!! 

I put supplies inside mine- pencils, scissors, glue sticks, colored pencils and much more! It has lots of openings, it rotates, and can hold a TON of stuff!! 

Side note: Don't get the old white style, the "lazy Susan" part on  the bottom is smaller than the holder.  On this one, it is the same size as the holder.

I do sell Pampered Chef so I love getting a discount and being able to write it all off on my taxes. :)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Head RIGHT now to

Bottle Tops

In December I hosted a Blog Hop using recycled materials in December.

I wanted to share how I store them.  I got the polka dot shoe box at Target.
I bought three stand-up boxes and one shoe boxes. I decided I should have bought more shoe boxes, so I went back to get more, but they were all gone :(

I put together the box and store all of the bottle caps inside.

After my students put together our star words and then they get to take a photo.  They take their name off the cabinet and take a photo.

Here is the Bottle Caps word work center. So far there are only two sets of words each week.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day

I turned my valentine's cards into a class book.

We began our day using some rhyming and colors.

We did a LOVE bubble map using our Elmo.

We sorted conversation hearts in math and figured out the fractions from
We did a money cube roll.
We played conversation heart battleship.

We filled out "Pieces-of-My-Heart" from Brooke Perry.

We filled out a chart about our friends like to, are, can from Kim Adsit's unit on TPT.

We figured out how many words we could make from valentines also from Kim's unit.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Bucket Fillers

We have this wonderful bulletin board. The book Bucket Fillers has been read. 

Success in the room= none :(

We are going to try it again on Valentine's Day.

Here are some awesome links to check out:

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentine's Day Math

Here are two printables that I made for Monday's Valentine's day. I am not sure if anyone else in my building is doing this or any of the other first grade teachers and I am not trying to buck the system, but we are doing all things about LOVE on Monday.

We have math switch around every Morning. The students are split based on ability between four teachers.

One of our rotations will be for the students to roll two dice, write that two digit number down. Roll the dice again and repeat. Then add them together. For homework, I made one for them to do based on the same thing :)

Center recording sheet

Math Homework

Check back later to see what we did on Monday. :)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Happy Mail day!!!!!!!!!!!!

My mail lady rang the doorbell and says" I figured you'd be home!"  I really like her :)

Anyways this is what I got in the packages:
A sampler of letter Unifix cubes- gave me new ideas for my word work center :) (Upper right hand corner of the photo.)

Then in the long tube witch Tank a.k.a Big Scary had to get in the photo, contained materials for The Very Hungry Caterpillar Classroom art Contest that runs January- March 2011. It included a roll of white paper, stencils for all of the items in the story and all of those AWESOME paper. The paper is a cross between vellum and tissue paper!!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Penguin Greater than and less than

Under the Elmo, I put two penguins the students come up to the board and do the signs with their arms.

When I don't have these adorable Penguin Cards, I just write numbers on a dry erase board instead.

Well once again, there is no website/blog for the creator of the penguin greater than and less than. I have searched for quite some time to find the creator, with no luck. I want you to share in her materials. Her name is on them, but no contact info. :(

Please please please, let me know if they are yous so I can link this post to your blog/website.

WOOHOO!!! The author has been found!!!!  Make sure you check out her site: A Place To Share.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Making Words and Word Work

We do making words each week in the class, but recently, several teachers have been making different activities for the children, so that is a Word Work choice. I made a sign and I will laminate the sheet to use it every week. For the top Word Finder of the Week.

Another teacher was thinking about the same things as me! Check out her post here.

I find that word work is not very exciting for the children- well I think it is exciting, but they are not very interested in going there. When we only have two rotations, I ask my children to choose one reading and one pencil activity (either work with words or writing) Lately, I find that they are "copying" words from a book- I am so confused by this.  Two boys did this last week and then a little girl was doing it again this week. :(

We are still working on building our stamina when doing anything with paper and pencil. I created a grid of writing options for the children.  I haven't given it to the children yet because I have to teach them everything on there first. :)

Here is my recording sheet for word work.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Word Wizards

Starting this week, we are going to be starting a new project in school. Based on our CAFE menu, we will be learning about expanding our vocabulary.

We have this as an addition to our room. There are different levels for the children to climb.

Everyone in my reading groups will now have homework- each and everyday, they will need to find two Razzle Dazzle Words per day.  All of the children need to write down their words in the literacy logs.

We talk all of the time about "new" words instead of  Kindergarten words. For example, instead of using the word "kids" we might say children. I would say that we hear at least one new word a day!! Last week Tuesday, we talked about  3 Razzle Dazzle words!!  Mr. K, a student, came up with two of them!

Each child has a word collector to write down their words. It is one thing to hear the Razzle Dazzle words, it is another to use them in our writing.  I try to make it really exciting when the children use Razzle Dazzle Words in their stories and share them with the group.

We have run out of space in our room, so our chart and our words are behind the door!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Spelling Boxes

We have 19 spelling boxes that go home Monday through Thursday for homework to practice our star words.  We got the spelling cards and printed them on cardstock and taped them in the lids of pencil boxes.

That is our management sheet. We circle the box and then cross it out when it comes back. Sometimes I get frustrated with this system, especially when the boxes don't come back :(

Most of the kids are great about bringing them back to school. One of the problems that  I have with this is, if they took out the box already, I don't know how long it has been since they took it out. Another idea was tried before, but then we tried this way.  What are your thoughts on how to record what box they took?

Get your own spelling cards:

Spelling Task Cards

Spelling Task Cards

Spelling Task Cards

They are all basically the same :) Two have four on a page.

I love that the children are doing these! The ones in the boxes require little of any prep work. Some were not included due to that fact. :) Off the top of my head, we use the scrabble letters, colored pencils, half index cards to play memory, and the one where you write a letter in blue.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Award Winner

I was chosen as a winner by Teaching Heart Mom. Thanks Colleen!!!!

I am truly honored by this award. Something that I love to do- not for the recognition or the pay, but because it matters to all the children that benefit :)

Sunday, February 6, 2011

ASP- Visits local camp

On Friday's we take the ASP to the YMCA. However, this Friday, we headed to a local camp.

Each grade did something different.

K's- studying mammals

Mammal furs. Later on there was even a bear fur, the children got to snuggle on them!  They looked so cute!

1st- snakes

Each first graders colored a paper snake. When they were all done, we laid them on the floor and then we measured how long we were against the snakes.

Here is Ms. S letting the snake check her out! EEEKKKKK

2nd- owls

Each second graders learned about native owls.  They they dissected owl pellets (gross)  After they opened (?) their pellets they used their charts to investigate what was inside.

I was inside with all of the K-2 children, so I don't have photos of the older children but this is what they got to do:

3rd- snow shoeing
4th- snow survival
5th-broom ball

Saturday, February 5, 2011

100th Day of School Feb 4th

Our 100th day of school was yesterday and we had soooooo much fun.

We sent home a bag and a note requesting a snack.  We asked that each family send in 100 pieces of something. One child in another teacher's room, brought 100 chips. This is how they arrived to school.

We combined our 100 pieces for our snack. Mr. B's snack was the heaviest and Mr. G's snack was the lightest. When we weighed them against the other first grade classes, Mr. B was silver medal and Mr. G was bronze medal.

We played at math game- it is the one we sent home for our weekend math game.

We designed a 100 sheet.
We read our 100th day poem.
I gave this to each one of my students- in my math group and then the regular ones too :)

 We did a cube roll. Roll a dice and color, repeat but use another color. I chose to use green and yellow because the Packers are in the Superbowl.
 This is from Kinderglynn on TeachersPayTeachers. I had my firsties write T and H for tails and heads.

 Here is the sheet that the children counted by 2's, 4's, 5,'s, 10's, 25's, and 50's!
 I hid 100 kisses around the room. We "lost" 2 kisses! Seriously, I put them out and no kids went into the room and ate them, but I wrote down the numbers on the "Missing Work" board, so I hope we find them sometime!

 We played this game with a partner. It is supposed to be a "cootie catcher" (Sorry, I don't really know another name.) You fold it and then put them over your finger tips and have the kids pick a number and then they open and close the paper.  I gave them a paper and a paper clip. They spun and played with their partner.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Calendar Club

I started a calendar club with the children.  I wanted the children to be more actively engaged during calendar time, so I created this recording sheet.

Everything that is on the sheet is from our calendar corner. I added reading a graph though. Another thing that I have included, was in one of the boxes, the children do one of five things.

Monday: Write our Star Words for the week.
Tuesday: Write word family words
Wednesday: They write something about our schedule.
Thursday: Use tally marks.
Friday: Rhyming Words

I quickly look at their papers to see if they are in the "Club" then they sign their name to the paper. I display it. I was thinking of laminating it, but then I like the idea of keeping track of who is consistently finishing their work.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Ones and Tens

We are talking about numbers in the ones place and the tens place. We send home math games on Friday's so I came up with this game to send home.

Materials needed:
2 dice
two sided token

Ones and Tens Gameboard

What are your best ideas for teaching ones and tens?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Meet the Teacher

Is having a meet the teacher party, so I am joining in on the fun with my bloggie friends:)

My husband Randy and I have been married for over 8 years. We are both teachers. I work with the elementary students and he gets the high school ones. It weirds me out a little when he gets my students because yeah ummm... I have been teaching for quite a while, 13 years. I have taught children from birth through high school.  I have even taught teachers to make their own websites oh and some blogs too (well maybe it is a gentle push! :)

Here was our family portrait taken two years ago.  Next to me is Tank aka Big Scary. Laying down is CJ (named after my grandmother and me :) and the young puppy, Skylar. Tank is the biggest baby you have ever met. I understand that he is a Rottweiler- but he is the best dog ever! He even rocks children who are in bouncers! :) If you put up a broom across the hallway, he won't pass!! He weighs around 130 pounds and could easily knock it over but not him. Now to our black lab CJ. She is our never ending energy doggy.  She is the brains- she gets Tank to be her muscle!! She hasn't slowed one bit as she has aged. The last one was Skylar. She was the naughtiest dog I have ever met y'all. If you shut your eyes after waking up, she would head-butt you!!! All that spit-fire ended when she was 17 months old and we had to put her down. By far one of the worst days of my life. We still talk about her and how naughty she was- that will last a lifetime. :) The most photogenic dogs I have ever seen!

I grew up outside of Washington DC in Alexandria Virginia. When I get mad, my accent comes out- my husband thinks it is soooooo funny!

I teach with my mother. She is the reading specialist at two schools. She is at my school about 80% of the time, but I rarely see her :) She is Mrs. R. and I am either Little Mrs. R. or Mrs. Little R. I actually love teaching with my mother- I would rather get a critique from someone that is actively teaching and not out of touch with today's students :)

Now for the Q & A

Q: What would you be doing if you weren’t a teacher?                                              
A:  Nothing- I had to stop teaching for a bit and it was the worst time of my life. So teaching is it for me! 

Q: What are your hobbies?                                                                                     
A:   Scrapbooking, singing, and cooking.  I have taken a photo of the day- this is my third year :)                                                               

Q: When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?                      
A:  Teacher. We had photos taken in school with what we wanted to be- I wore a sport coat and held a book. Some day, I will scan the photo :)
Q: What are your guilty pleasures?                                                                    
 A: Starbucks :)  Buying too many things for school :)

Q: What is your biggest fear?!                                                                         
 A: This by far was the hardest question on here :(  Perhaps not being a mom or not being a teacher anymore.

Q: When you’re on vacation, where do you like to go?                                     
 A:  I don't know the last time I was on vacation- but to our condo in Door County, Wisconsin.
Q: What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?                                                   
A:  Believe in yourself. 

Q: What do you value most in others?                                                                    
A:  Them being level headed :)

Q: If you could choose one of your personality traits to pass down to your kids, what would it be?                                                                                                         
A:  I would hope my sense of humor.    

Q: If you could have lunch with anyone in the world….living or dead…who would it be?                                                                                                                 
A: My gamma :) She is 90 and we eat together at least twice a week. My mother, grandmother and I live within 4 blocks of each other :)
A blogging girls weekend would be great, I want more than just lunch! lol 

Now tell us one random thing about yourself:

I auditioned for and got accepted to travel with a singing group Up With People. I wasn't able to go due to school, but I am still proud :)

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


Donna Glynn has graciously given our readers the chance to win her latest unit on Groundhogs!

You have 7 chances to win!!!!!!!!!

1) Follow her blog Kinderglynn post a message under the unit on her page.
2)Follow this blog.
3) "Like" Kinderglynn on Facebook- write on the wall
4)"Like" Kinderpond on Facebook- write on the wall
5) Share the link on Facebook about the unit then leave a message below.
6)Post on your blog or website and leave a comment with your link.
7) Follow Donna on TpT.

This giveaway will end at midnight tonight!!!