Principal's Pick, Whales, & Sequencing

Does anyone else do this?  

Each month our principal chooses a book, well, this year two books (fiction and nonfiction).  Each teacher then reads the books to her class and completes a reading/writing activity.

  September's nonfiction pick is Big Blue Whale by Nicola Davies.  I must say, I really enjoyed reading this book to my class!  And they loved it too. :)  

In fact, all of the nonfiction picks for this year are by Nicola Davies.  I read her book, One Tiny Turtle, last year and it was a great read.  I can't wait to read the others!

Before reading the book, we did some wondering.  What do you wonder about whales?
They really thought of some good questions!

Then we wrote one thing we learned about whales.

Hehe. :)

If you've never read any of Nicola Davies' books, I suggest you check them out!

In other news, we've also been practicing sequencing and writing stories.
My teammate shared an idea.  She photocopied some sequencing puzzles and had her class use them for writing.  

We tried it and the kids loved it!

I had a couple of volunteers come up and put the pictures in order and tell the story.  Then the class helped me write my sentences and spell some of the harder words. ;)

(Side note:  Please excuse my handwriting...)

Here are a couple of samples.  The kids didn't write as much as I'd hoped, but it was our first time doing this activity.  Hopefully next time they will add more details. :)

The cut the pictures out, glued them in order, and then wrote sentences to match.

"She gets the popcorn seeds and eats."

"The boy got paint.  And he painted his dogs house."

Happy Hump Day!



We will be celebrating Johnny Appleseed's birthday and learning about apples this week.  I have found tons of great activities out there, thanks to all you wonderful bloggers. :)

I decided to share a few apple themed items I created.  Hope you like them and can use them in your classroom this week!

Cut this apart and use in a pocket chart to create a class graph.
Click HERE to download!

Here is a recording sheet for students to complete after creating the class graph.

Click HERE to download!

Here is a poem I found and just made it "cute". :)
Click HERE to download!

Happy fall, y'all! :)

What's In My Bag? {A Linky Party}

Abby, at The Inspired Apple, is hosting a School Bag Linky Party!

How fun! :)

Here's my school bag.  I got it FREE from Vistaprint.

I'm starting to wish I had a different bag.  This one has a problem...it's floppy.  I think I need one of those big, sturdy ones from 31 (that I've been seeing on other teachers blogs)! :)

Here's a top shot.  Yep, it's slam full of stuff!  I usually squeeze my laptop in here, too.  No wonder my shoulder hurts...

Now what is all that stuff?  My cute, matching organizational items. :)  I use the file holder to keep student papers organized, or small items I cut out and need to laminate.  The spiral notebook has about six pages that have pockets on each side.  I labeled each pocket by subject and put papers in those pockets that need to be copied.  Lastly, my planner helps me keep track of all those wonderful meetings and due dates.

 Here are a stack of state standards that I'll need to have displayed this week, markers for various activities, my grade book, and a nursery rhyme CD I "won" at our last faculty meeting.  

My parent-teacher conference notebook.  I've been *trying* to get these done over the past 2 weeks.  So far, I've had 5 out of 19 conferences.  Does anyone else find it difficult to get parents to come in???

Some Really Good Stuff magazines.  I like looking at these and figuring out what I can make myself!  Also, my umbrella and some cough drops.  Not sure why those are still in there since I'm pretty much over my sinus infection.

My super cute pencil bag.  I really LOVE owls!

Inside the owl bag: note pads, pens, pencils, a highlighter, and a stapler.

That's it!  What's in your bag?

Have a happy Sunday and a great week at school!


What I'm Loving Wednesday!

Here's what I'm loving this Wednesday...

I'm loving that I baked and iced this little cake all by myself. :)  Yep, I even made the icing.

I'm loving that my kiddos reached our Read to Self goal today! 20 minutes = :)
(I snapped this pic early...should have got it when it said 20!)

I'm loving writing workshop!  We made our heart maps Monday and the kids really enjoyed using them today!  This was an idea we had at a professional development last year.  However, I totally copied Ms. Carroll's (from The First Grade Parade) cute way of designing hers!  Check hers out HERE!

I'm loving that fall is almost here!  Can't wait to start some Halloween crafts like the ones below.  Pinterest inspired ;)

I'm loving that it's almost the weekend again!  

Happy Wednesday!


I won my first award!!

Wowzers!  I can't believe this!  I've been awarded the Versatile Blogger Award. :)

Many, many thanks to Andi over at Pencils, Glue, & Tying Shoes for thinking of me!

I've seen lots of posts lately about different types of blogging awards, but I never would have dreamed that I would receive one! :)

Now, on to the rules of the award:

{1} Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them in your post.

Thanks again, Andi!  Make sure to visit her blog!!!

{2} Share 7 things about yourself.

1 - I love to read.  I always read a ton of books during the summer, but when school starts I feel like I just don't have the time.  I'm hoping to make this year different.  My parents recently gave me a copy of Betty White's If You Ask Me (And of Course You Won't) for my birthday.   Love Betty White!  So, I'm hoping to get some reading in during my "free time".  Haha! 

2 - I just started a cake decorating class last week.  We learned some of the basics and decorated some cookies.  This week we have to bake, ice, and decorate a small cake!  I'm a little nervous.

3 -  I'm slowly, but surely trying to get back into the habit of eating healthy.  It sure is hard, though!  Especially when the hubs brings home two dozen donuts he bought to support a fundraiser.

4 - I am LOVING my Smartboard.  We've been in school for 5 weeks and have had so much fun using it.  Every time I say, "Go to the carpet and face the Smartboard." they all give a little cheer.  Too cute. 

5 - I'm a neat freak.  I love having everything organized and neatly in its place. :)  

6 - I am super excited for fall.  Seriously, I am loving the temps that are now in the 80's.  After two months of 100+, it's a sweet relief.  Can't wait for cool weather, jackets, and Halloween!

7 - I love teen movies from the 80's!  Haha!  The hubs and I just watched Revenge of the Nerds for the first time.  Some of my favorites include Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Breakfast Club, and Can't Buy Me Love.

{3} Pass this award along to 15 recently discovered blogs.

(1) Mrs. McHaffie at Beg Borrow Steal

(2) Laura Komos at Delightful Daily 5 Cafe

(3) Becky at Dots-n-Spots

(4) Kristen at First Grade Brigade

(5) Gracie at First Grade's a Hoot

(6) Mrs. Hawk at Hawk's Nest

(7) Amy Rider at Literacy and Laughter

(8) Mrs. Lewis at Mrs. Lewis' Learning Library

(9) Mrs. Schmelzer at Mrs. Schmelzer's First Grade Class

(10) Ms. Preppy at Ms. Preppy

(11) Amanda Plum at Plumdoodles

(12) Debbie Candau at Sailing Through First

(13) csturch at Sturch's Second Grade Stars

(14) Anne at The Candy Apple

(15) Ms. Hill at There’s a "1st" For Everything!

Check 'em out! :)


I finally did it...

I went out to my local B&N (That's what the hubs and I call it.  You may know it as Barnes & Noble.) and bought this...

My good friend hooked me up with a gift card for my birthday, so I figured it was as good a time as any to go ahead and purchase The Cafe Book.  

I read The Daily Five last summer and am trying to get it going this year.  So far, we've been building stamina for Read to Self.  We're at 17 minutes!  I'm a little nervous about implementing the rest, but I've been gaining confidence by reading all the great blogs out there!

Happy weekend, everyone! :)


The Bubble Blonde's Halloween Bash!

The Bubbly Blonde is having an awesome giveaway!

It's a "Halloween Bash" to be exact!

Head on over there and enter for your chance to win!

Here's a peek at what she's offering:


Target, Dollar Tree, & Thrifting!

My husband spent the day in Atlanta gearing up for the Georgia game, so naturally my Mom and I did some shopping in hopes of scoring a few a deals.  And we did...

I found these in the Target Dollar Spot.  They are silicone and most likely used for getting hot things out of the oven.  But, I have something a little more fun in mind.

We can use them to compare numbers using greater than and less than!  The kids are going to love these!

Last week we made "math munchers" a.k.a. "pac-men" to practice eating those bigger numbers.

These are at the Dollar Tree!  The pictures are too cute.

I found this treasure while browsing at my most fave thrift store.  It is a floor puzzle of the world and was $4.25 and brand new!  It even came with a CD that has a matching game.

I also got a few books to add to my library.  And I found the game Cranium for $2!  Yes, $2!  And it was brand new, too!

Happy Long Weekend! :)