Sunday, April 29, 2012

May Poems and Songs

I just finished up my May Poems and Songs Packet.
This packet includes 8 poems/songs on a full page.  Each poem or song includes an Illustrate the Poem page, fluency strips, and word cards.  These are great for poetry centers.  I love using the fluency strips with partner work.  You cut the strips apart and have each partnership work together to figure out the poem.  This is great for increasing fluency because they have to read it over and over again to get it in the right order.




Just a reminder that these are the same poems that I include in my May Fluency Packet, but in a much different format.  The two units supplement each other nicely. 

You can check out the FREE samples of my May Fluency packet from my post last year by clicking HERE.
If you like what you see, you may want to check out the entire fluency packet {20 original fluency passages including comprehension, word work, and a home connection component for each passage.}


Are you counting down the days left of school yet?  We have 20!! 
By the way, I'll give both of these units {May Fluency and May Poems and Songs to the first 2 people that comment below.  Make sure you leave your email address.}


Saturday, April 28, 2012

End of Year Writing and Boggle Board

We are starting to gear up for the end of the year.  Next week is our last five day week.  We don't get out until June 1st, but we didn't use our built in snow days this year, so we have one day off every week during the month of May.  I love 3 day weekends!
Last week, I had my 1st graders write to the Kindergarteners about their 1st grade experiences. 
I will be binding these into a book and letting the Kindergarten teacher's read it to their classes.  You can click on the picture above to download.  I have included a graphic organizer, writing paper, and book cover for Kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade.

We will be writing to the 2nd grade teachers next week.

Just click on the picture above to download.  Once again, I have included organizers, paper, and book covers for Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade students.

Something else I wanted to share was my new Boggle Board.  I'm sure you have seen these all over the place.  I have seen tons on Pinterest, but I had just been drawing a quick one on the board.  My students love doing these!  I try to make a game of it.  I have them try to "Beat the Teacher" where they have to come up with more words than me or they have to think of a word that I didn't come up with.  You could also set a timer and see how many words they can think of in 10 minutes.  Now that I have my board set up in my classroom, I'm just going to have them work on it whenever they finish up work early.
You can click on the picture below to download the letters and recording sheet.

I also created this "number" version that I will use to change it up a little bit.  You can have students try and think of ways to get to a certain number by writing number sentences.

Now I'm off to work on my May Poems and Songs.  I hope to have them posted by the end of the weekend. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What Happened to Mrs. Southard?

We have been learning about the vowel pattern ou and ow this week.  Today, I decided to spice it up a bit and throw in something fun.  I created this quick and fun little unit.
 Before my students came in for the day, I hid these clues around the room.

Then I put a Band-Aid on my forehead.
{You can't see it very well.  I had one of my students take a picture.}

{I think that wrapping a bandage around your head would be even better though.  I will do that next year.}
I told the kids that they needed to use the clues to find out what had happened to me.  I passed out a prediction sheet to each student.
 After we read a clue {all containing ou and ow words} the students made a prediction about what they think happened to me.  Most of them started with "You fell down."  One student thought a pizza man ran me over. {Maybe that was wishful thinking on his part. Lol!}
As we collected each clue, I hung them on the board and wrote the ou and ow words.

After we read all of the clues, the students had to retell the story using as many ou and ow words as they could.
It was a lot of fun.  It allowed us to review our vowel patterns while also giving the students a chance to work on making predictions and retelling.
After the lesson, I gave each student their own Band-Aid to wear that I had written ou and ow with a Sharpie.

You can check out this lesson by clicking below.



Monday, April 16, 2012

My 5 Favorite Things Linky Party

Can you believe we are already halfway through April?!?  This got me thinking, what are some of my favorite things going on in April.  So, this led to a fun Linky Party.
The super cute boarder above is from The 3am Teacher Graphics.

Here are my 5 Things I'm Loving in April:
1.  Disneyland
  I know I've already discussed our trip to Disneyland, but how could I make a list of great things about this April and not include Disneyland.

2.  Thunder Over Louisville
This is one of my favorite weekends of the year and it's coming up this coming weekend!  We have been going for years with my family that lives in Louisville.  We stay with my cousin and his family.  They have a little girl the same age as my oldest and they have SO much fun!  If the weather is nice, we head down to the river early and make a day of it.  If it's not, we wait until fireworks time to head down.  If you have never been to Thunder and you live anywhere close to Louisville, I HIGHLY recommend that you go.  The fireworks are amazing!!!  I will warn you though, it will ruin all 4th of July fireworks for the rest of your life ;)

3. Scandal

Have you seen this show?  It's one of my new favorites.  It's on after Grey's Anatomy on Thursday and it is great!

4.  Draw Something

I am obsessed with this game.  It is so addicting!

5. 29 DAYS!

Graphic by Scrappin Doodles

Not that I'm counting down or anything, but I have 29 more days of school left :)

Now it's your turn to link up!  All you have to do is post the 5 Things You're Loving in April then come back here and link up. {Make sure to link back to your post, not just your blog.}
Don't forget to include the graphic from above and link it back here so others can join in the party!





Saturday, April 14, 2012

What Did We Do Last Week?

I have really been slacking in blog posts this week.  It was the first week back from Spring Break and I was so exhausted every night.  I would turn on the computer, start something, and then stop.  Plus, I am having major computer troubles.  My husband had bought me a laptop for my birthday {last June!} and I was oh, so excited because I was ALWAYS using his.  About a week after using my new computer, it started freezing on me.  Ctrl, Alt, Delete would not work.  Just plain frozen!!  The only thing I could do was turn it off. I dealt with it for awhile but then it started getting really bad and would freeze about every 10 minutes.  I called Sony, they had me try a million different things and it never got better. They sent someone to my house to reformat the hard drive, said it as cured.  About 2 days after that, SAME problem.  Called Sony, they sent a box and had me send it in.  About 2 weeks later, I get it back with one paper that says, "Reformatted Hard Drive."  Again, did not work and continued to freeze.  I have since sent it to Sony 4 more times with the same result.  Well, I just got it back again before we left on vacation.  I turned it on, used it for about an hour, AND IT FROZE!!  I am beyond frustrated and my 1 year warranty is up in June!!  My husband calls my computer a $1,000 paperweight because that is seriously what it is.  Thank God for his computer because I still use it ALL THE TIME!!  Any suggestions anyone has would be greatly appreciated!!  I desperately need Sony to realize that it's simply a broken computer and it needs to be replaced, but I can't seem to get them to understand that :(
Anyways, off of my soap box and on to something school related.  We have been learning about er, ir, and ur this week using my Meet the Bossy R Triplets Unit.
 My students loved the stories about each triplet.  After reading about "Er" the first day, they kept asking to read about the other two :)

You can click below to check out this unit.

 We also have been working on Spring Writing.  You can click on the picture below to download the organizers and writing paper for FREE.
I love seeing 1st graders improvement in writing as the year goes on.  I also think that using graphic organizers is a wonderful way to get amazing writing from your students.


We also made these Math Flowers inspired by Cara from The First Grade Parade.

Now to some exciting news.  Since tomorrow is tax day and it's the 15th, I will be throwing a 15% off Tax Day Sale tomorrow, April 15th at my TpT Store.

Click on the picture to go to my store.
Look for the picture above around "blogland" tonight and tomorrow because I know a lot of fabulous bloggers will also be throwing a sale.  {Also, feel free to steal the picture above and post on your blog if you want to join in on this sale.  You can also leave your store in my comments.}

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Space Math and Literacy Stations

Happy Easter everyone!  We had such a great weekend celebrating Easter with the kids.  Busy, but fun!  Now we're gearing up to go back to school tomorrow :(  That first day back from a break is always hard...and L-O-N-G!  But, I cannot believe how fast the school year has gone and April and May will be over before I know it.
Towards the middle to end of April, I will be teaching about Space.  I decided to create my first Math & Literacy Centers Packet.

The packet includes 6 Math & 6 Literacy Centers.  Each center includes an introduction/instruction sheet, ready to laminate and cut centers, & a recording sheet to keep students accountable.
I am really excited to use this with my students.  I love when I can incorporate a "theme" into all areas of the curriculum.  It makes it so much more memorable for the students.  The centers meet many of the Common Core Standards (which 1st grade will be implementing next year.)
Academic skills included: Digraphs, Making Words, Synonyms, Sentences, Cause & Effect, Nouns, Verbs, & Adjectives, Addition/Subtraction, Equal Equations, Base 10 Blocks, Telling Time to the Hour and Half Hour, and Number Sequence
You can click below to check them out!


I will also be using many of the ideas included in my Space Packet that I posted last year on TpT and Teacher's Notebook.  It's one of my best sellers.
You can check out this unit below.



If you're heading back to school tomorrow after Spring Break, good luck! 
Here is something else that may make your day.  Scrappin Doodles is having a 35% off sale today and tomorrow.  Just click on the picture below to head on over.

Friday, April 6, 2012

I'm Back from Vacation and a Vacation FREEBIE!!

{There is a FREEBIE at the end, so if you don't want to hear about my vacation, feel free to scroll to the bottom.}
Can I just say, I LOVE vacation!!
We took the girls to Disneyland!!  It was awesome.  We had been wanting to plan a trip to Disney World, but my husband had a conference in Anaheim at the Disneyland Resort Hotel for the Friday-Sunday before my Spring Break.  Couldn't have been better timing.  So, Disneyland it was.  Our four year old loved everything about it.  The two year old liked it, but was on edge most of the time just waiting for another character to come up and scare her ;)  We hope to go to Disney World when she is 4 or 5 so she can have the same type of excitement as the oldest. We ate at Goofy's Kitchen one morning {which I highly recommend.}  It was fabulous.  The characters come up and talk with the kids, dance with them, and really interact.  We had also made arrangements to eat with the princesses at Ariel's Grotto.  The girls liked it, but I thought Goofy's Kitchen was much better.

The characters at Goofy's Kitchen really took the time to talk with the kids.

 The girls were able to meet so many characters while we were at Disneyland.  Too bad our youngest wanted nothing to do with them.

Her favorite thing was the slide.  Going all the way to Disneyland for slide ;)
My favorite thing was the parade that they have twice a day.  It is amazing!  Everything is so detailed and perfect.  These reactions are priceless.

On our last day, we met my aunt and cousins from California to go to the aquarium in Long Beach.  We also took the girls to the beach.  They loved it even though the water was freezing cold!!!




Seriously, an amazing trip!!  Now, we are tired and resting up for Easter and back to school on Monday.

Since vacation is on my mind, I created this FREE writing activity packet to use with my students next week.
Click on the picture above to download
Here are some sample pages:




You can also download these for free over at:



If you download it, I'd love to hear what you think.
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