The Lorax

We read The Lorax today and the kids LOVED it.  I started off by introducing the book and a little bit about Dr. Seuss.  This is a book that will need a little bit of explaining while you are reading it.  It's a difficult book with lots of tricky words for 1st graders, but with some discussion, they really do get it and this book can lead to wonderful conversation.
After reading, we filled out this chart together.
Then we made environmental posters. {You have to love invented spelling.  Too cute!}

She is watering the trees :)

"Clean water to help animals and trees for people to breath."

"Save trees and the universe."

We filled out a Character, Setting, Problem, and Solution graphic organizer about the story.  Later in the day, we held a Snack and Share.  {This is just my version of the Brown Bag Book Club on The First Grade Parade.}

 I love how interested the students were in this book.  They could not stop talking about it all day and they are so eager to find out which Dr. Seuss books we will read tomorrow.
**Don't forget to check out The First Grade Parade to enter Cara's amazing giveaway. Scroll down to the previous post to check it out.  ALSO, join the Favorite Things Linky Party here at Fun In First.  Scroll down to find it :)



I am SO excited to be teaming up with Cara Carroll at The First Grade ParadeYes, the one and only CARA CARROLL!  She is INCREDIBLE and if for some reason you have never checked out her blog, you MUST drop what you are doing right now and head over there!  We are teaming up to do an awesome giveaway. You can read about all the details at her blog, but let me just tell you, A-MA-ZING. 
Head on over to The First Grade Parade  and get entered in this giveaway of Cara's March Madness Mega Pack (100 pages)  AND my March reading supplement packet!


Favorite Things Linky Party

Over at the awesome blog First Grade Teaching she posted a list of her favorite things and throughout the comments, we were all discussing that we needed a Favorite Things Linky Party.  So here we go!
1.  My Cuisinart Single Cup Coffee Maker

I LOVE this thing!  We got it for Christmas as a present and it is great.  We frequented Starbucks way too often and we haven't gone since.  Just think of the money we've saved!


 We just ordered $50 worth of coffee.  Sounds extreme, however, when you spend over $45, shipping is free.  AND, we got 87 containers which equals out to $.62 per cup.  Definitely cheaper than starbucks!

3.  Coffee Mate Creamer (Seriously the last one about coffee)

 I just cannot drink my coffee black.  Yuck! 

4.  Running
Until last July, I hated it.  However, I stuck with it and became obsessed!  So the next couple of favorite things are all running related.

5.  Asics Gel Kayano Shoes
These are the best running shoes that I have found for my feet.  Everyone is different though in what they prefer.

6.  Balega Running Socks
I have tried a lot of different running socks and these are BY FAR my favorite!  They do not slip down while you are running.  Others would slip down in the back and I'd end up with huge blisters :( 

7. Underarmour ColdGear Shirt
I just about choked when I spent $50 dollars on this shirt before I ran in the half marathon in St. Louis last November.  But, it was well worth it.  The cold weather is no match for this shirt.  You quickly warm up while you're running, even in below freezing temps. 

8.  Underarmour Compression Pants
Another cold weather running must have!

9.  E-Mealz

This is advertised by Dave Ramsey and it's great.  You can check it out at  It gives you recipes for the week along with the grocery list.  It really makes dinner planning simple and so far, the meals have been great!

10.  DVR
We FINALLY jumped on the DVR bandwagon in December.  Up until then, we VCR'ed things.  Yes, that's right.  Some of you may have never even heard of a VCR.  Lol!  I love my DVR.  How did I seriously watch tv without it?

11.  Sharpie Markers
Who doesn't love Sharpies?  Especially all the fun colored ones.

12.  VistaPrint
If you've never heard of it or used it, it's a goldmine for teachers.  Everything is free, but you do pay shipping, which is of course overpriced to make up for the fact that everything else is free.  I have created some great things for my classroom.  I will do a post another time to show off these items.

13.  Grey's Anatomy, How I Met Your Mother, and Rules of Engagement

Love these shows!

14.  Angry Birds
I have had this app on my phone for months and was perfectly happy never playing it.  However, my husband recently started playing it and now I cannot stop.  It is so addicting!  AHHH!

15.  Sonic Care Toothbrush

This toothbrush is great!  My teeth feel "dentist clean" everytime I brush.
SO, now it's your turn!  Just post your favorite things on your blog.  Don't forget to mention the Linky Party here at Fun In First so someone else can come play along.  Then link up below!  Can't wait to see what your favorite things are!


There's a Wocket in my Pocket

Our Dr. Seuss activity today goes along with the book, There's a Wocket in my Pocket.  After reading this book, you can either have students make these pockets or you can make them prior to the lesson.  I just folded a 12x9 piece of light blue construction paper in half and cut out a pocket shape.  Then you staple around the bottom and sides, leaving the top open.

These can be used for numerous things.  You could write a word on a pocket and students have to write rhyming words and place them in the pockets, you could do certain vowel patterns on each pocket and place words inside the pockets, write a number on each pocket and have students find number sentences to place inside the pocket...
I have provided a 5 page download with short & long vowel word cards.  You can make a pocket for each vowel sound and students can place the word cards into the correct pocket.

 I'd love to hear if you have any other great ideas for using these :)

The Sleep Book

After reading The Sleep Book  by Dr. Seuss, have students think about a dream they have had and write about it.  Then they can make these cute sleeping people with a large circle for the head, a small black circle for the yawning mouth, and yarn for the hair.  I saw this cute idea in a book a couple of years ago.


Yertle the Turtle

Here we go with another Dr. Seuss idea.  This time it's for the book, Yertle the Turtle.  This book is about a king, Yertle, who wants to see the land that he is the ruler of, so he makes the other turtles stand on top of each other while he climbs on their backs to see.  After reading the story, you can make these turtles and have students write about why they think Yertle is a bad king.
 Click Here for the download of the writing paper.

Don't forget to check back tomorrow for another Dr. Seuss idea :)

Horton Hears a Who

I love Dr. Seuss!  I think he was so imaginative and his books are one of a kind.  So, to celebrate his birthday on March 2nd, I will be posting a Dr. Seuss activity on my blog every day through next week.  I posted a Dr. Seuss Unit in an earlier post if you're interested.  You will have to scroll down a bit to find it.
So, to start off...we have a project for Horton Hears a Who.  This is such a cute book with a good message about how everyone is important.  1st graders relate well to the message of "A person's a person, no matter how small."  After reading the book, students will think about what they would say to Horton if they were a Who.  Have students write in the speech bubble. 

Next, students will follow the directions to make a Horton.  Each student will need a large gray circle for the body, 3 smaller gray circles for the head and ears, 2 small pink circles for the inside of the ears, 2 gray rectangles for the legs, and a gray J shape for the trunk.
Students will glue the pieces together, draw the eyes, and add the flower for the Who.  Use a strip of brown paper and a pink pom pom to make the flower. {You will probably need hot glue to get the pom pom to stay.} 


And our winner is...

Thank you to everyone and your interest in the fluency passages.  I find them to be really useful in my classroom and I'm so glad so many of you do as well.
And now to the fun part.  Our winner of the full 4 week packet is...

Emily who said, "I would love a chance to win a full packet! I always download your samples and my kids love them!!"

CONGRATULATIONS Emily.  Send me an email and I will get the full packet to you.

March Reading Supplement Packet

Last month, I had created a Reading Supplement Packet that included 3 weeks worth of original fluency passages along with Power words (vocabulary), comprehension questions, a home connection, and some other type of language arts activity for each day.  I have completed my March packet!!  Wahoo!  This time is includes 4 weeks worth of passages (40 pages).  The passages are all original and include a variety of songs, poems, nonfiction and fiction.  Each passage includes Power words, a comprehension section, a home connection, and some other type of language arts activity.  I find these to be extrememly useful.  We do a passage at the end of each day as a whole group.  I have found my students vocabulary to really be improving and the language arts activities are a great review of what we have been working on.  My students LOVE them and I have gotten great feedback from parents when my students bring them home to read. 
The full packet is available on Teachers Pay Teachers ,due to the fact that it is extremely time consuming to create, for $8.00 until March 1st then the price will go back up to the original $10.00 OR each week is sold seperately for $2.50. 

Like last time, here are samples of each week.
Week 1 - Baking
Week 2 - Saint Patrick's Day

Week 3 - Firefighters

Week 4 - Fishing

I would LOVE to give away one of the full packets.  If you are interested, all you have to do is be a follower of my blog, my TpT store, and leave a comment letting me know you are interested.  I will be choosing someone tomorrow night (February 22nd).


Fact Family Fun

We just started introducing Fact Families in Everyday Math last week.  Most of my students caught on pretty quickly, but some needed something hands on that got them physically involved.  So, I came up with this idea.  I used three page protector sheets and put yarn in the holes so they could hang on students necks.  Then I slipped in three numbers to make a fact family.  I wrote a + sign and = sign on the board and had students make an addition fact with their numbers.  Then they had to do a "turn around fact" to make the other addition problem.  I made a huge deal about how the biggest number person did not move, only the two smaller numbers.  Then I put a - sign on the board and had students move to make a subtraction problem. Then they switched to make the other subtraction problem.  We discussed that the biggest number started both subtraction problems.

Here is a Fact Family review sheet for you as well.


We have 2 winners!

Thanks for everyone's interest in the Saint Patrick's Day Unit on TpT.  Here is a winner:
Mrs. Wheeler who said..."I just started following your blog!  Wish me luck on the giveaway!"

And... because I reached 200 followers during this giveaway and I'm feeling generous, here is another winner.  :)
Frady.Brenda who said..."Also a follower.  I would love to be a part of the giveaway!  LOVE, love, love all the ideas I have found here!  Thanks!!"

CONGRATS!  Send me an email and I can get the unit to you!
*I have no idea why the generator is not showing the results.  The numbers were 35 & 8.


Katie from sent me this award.  How fun is that!
Thank you so much! 
The rules...
1. Thank the person who gave it to you.  Check :)
2. Tell 7 things about yourself.
3.  Send the award on to 5 other recently discovered bloggers.
4.  Tell these bloggers about the reward.

Now I have to tell 7 things about myself.
1.  I have two beautiful daughters who are my everything!
2.  I ran in the Chicago Urbanathlon with my husband, my brother, and his fiancee last October.  If you are a runner, DO THIS!  It is awesome! (Heck, even if you aren't a runner...train for it)  It's 9.75 miles with 6 obstacles throughout the course.  So much fun!
3. I have a HUGE fear of snakes.  I can't even look at pictures of them.  I had one hibernating behind my bedroom door when I was in 6th grade.  It scarred me for life.
4.  I would love to write a children's book and have my dad illustrate the pictures.  He's a great artist.  I did not get that talent.
5. I was a gymnast throughout my childhood. I lived and breathed gymnastics until I graduated high school.  In college, I was a cheerleader.
6.  When my husband proposed to me, it was on the front page of our newspaper.  It was on Halloween.  He carved 19 pumpkins.  One for each letter, "Will you marry me, Jodi?"  He even timed how long the candles would stay lit.  It was VERY well planned out.
7.  I'm addicted to blogging and reading blogs.  Aren't we all though :)

Now I have to choose other blogs to give this award to. 


Giveaway Tomorrow

When I put in the date for the Saint Patrick's Day Unit giveaway, I looked at the calendar wrong and posted Saturday, February 20th.  Whoops!  Sunday is the 20th.  So, I will just post the winner tomorrow morning.  So, you still have time if you're interested.  All you have to do is be a follower and leave a comment saying you're interested in being part of the giveaway.

Saint Patrick's Day

I know, I know.  Valentine's Day is barely over :)  But, if you are anything like me, you like to start planning about a month ahead of time just to compile ideas and decide what you want to do, what you have time for, etc.
For this reason, I have completed a Saint Patrick's Day Unit and posted it to TeachersPayTeachers . The unit includes a letter from Lucky the Leprechaun, an original poem written by me with two corresponding activities, Math problems, three center activities, two bulletin board ideas, a grammar activity, a science activity, and a making words sheet. 
If you are interested, the packet is available through the remainder of February for $6.00.  On March 1st, it will go back up to $8.00.
Here is a sample of the packet.

You can visit the TpT site by clicking HERE

**I will be giving away one of these units.  All you have to do is be a follower of my blog and leave a comment letting me know you're interested!  I will choose a winner in the morning on Saturday, February 20th.  :)


President's Day

We started discussing president's this week since President's Day is Monday.  We briefly discussed who the president is now, what they think the president's job is, and if they knew of the names of any other presidents.  We read the books, George Washington, which is a Scholastic Reader and the book A Picture Book of George Washington.  Then we filled out a chart to list facts about George Washington.
Next, the students wrote their own facts about George Washington using the chart as a reference.  After their writing was complete, they made their own George Washington using construction paper, cotton balls, and a coffee filter folded in half.  They are too cute!!

Tomorrow we will be reading about Abraham Lincoln and making a fact chart.

After completing the fact chart together, students will write their own facts in an Abraham Lincoln hat booklet.

We will also be making log cabins out of pretzel sticks.  I will post some pictures when we finish with them on Thursday.  We will also be filling out a Venn Diagram to compare and contrast Washington & Lincoln.

**I am adding our pictures of the pretzel log cabins.  We discussed how Abraham Lincoln was born in a log cabin.  We looked on the Internet at pictures of log cabins and talked about what it would have been like.  Many of them couldn't get over the fact that there were not any bathrooms. :)  Then, the students wrote about what they think it would have been like to live in a log cabin.  After their writing was complete, they made their log cabins out of pretzel sticks.  They were so into it, you could have heard a pin drop. 

He thought he needed a cloud :)


I am just 10 kinds of excited today.  I was the winner over at
for her Abby Giveaway.  I just won Abby's TpT stuff.  If you are not familiar with Abby from her super fun blog Babbling Abby and her newest teacher blog, The Inspired Apple you have GOT to check them out!!  She is amazing!
Also, check out Once Upon a Time in First Grade A.K.A. teachinginhighheels.  You will love her!  Thanks again!!!

Colored Number Grid

I saw this idea at a Math Workshop and loved it.  It's a simple way to help children use the number grid effectively when adding and subtracting.  The numbers in the 10's column are colorcoded to match the number in the 1's column that would come next.  I used markers to outline each number grid that my students have on their desks.  This is a computer version to download.

Here is a second version for people using a Math series that has a number grid in a different direction.

Here is a third version.  This one is a much smaller version so you can print them out and tape them onto student's desks.

Back to Top