Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Hurricanes and Halloween in First Grade

Lately, I've been a bad blogger but a super okay mom and teacher. I CAN'T BE EVERYTHING TO EVERYONE ALL THE TIME!!!!!!Okay??! *insert crazy eyed emoji*

Here are my excuses:
1. I moved. (Please see: I guess I'm living in Florida 4EVA because that's never happening again. Girl bye.)

2. I traveled. On a train, to New York, with two kids under five. There were fun parts. I swear.
3. I switched grades. (2nd to 1st and wow what a difference! I miss 2nd grade but I also like 1st a lot it turns out.)
4. I fall asleep dead nightly as soon as my youngest's eyes shut.

I don't know how some of you ladies do this juggling teacher-mom-blogger-etc. act but I'll have whatever you're having with an extra shot.

Nonetheless, we've been pretty busy in our first grade classroom so far this year and we (mostly me) are very excited that this mysterious season called Fall is upon us. I think it's a time of year when the air cools and leaves (not palm frawns) turn brown. Here in South Florida we half-heartedly have ICED pumpkin spice lattes and wait impatiently for January temperatures to make us feel like we get at least one seasonal change. 

We are currently bracing for Hurricane Matthew who should be arriving tomorrow night to my area. Safe wishes to everyone along the treasure coast and the Carolinas too. My students know there is a storm coming so in an effort to make light of the situation we read the classic tale Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs and wrote about what we would want it to rain instead of meatballs (Spoiler Alert: ice cream and cupcakes were the clear winners). Of course I don't have a picture of their writing because BADBLOGGER. (We used this perfect freebie for our writing and cut out pictures of our favorite foods from my unhealthy sized collection of Food Channel magazines.)

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Fall is supposed to mean Halloween not hurricanes! And Halloween math centers are my favorite. Here is a fun way we are practicing our addition facts. I wrote numbers 5-9 on the cauldrons and then number sentences on the sticks for every fact (and tried to reinforce the commutative property). I also created a fact checker page for them to use when they finish sorting. The cauldrons were $1 at Target.
I had a lot of fun making a Halloween themed math and literacy pack to use this month with my first graders too. I love Whimsy Clips Not-So Spooky clipart. So cute! I think my kids are going to especially love the writing centers and the picture prompts! I also wanted to include place value seat work and math centers since we will be focusing on those concepts (oy vey) until November. Click {HERE} to check it out.

{HERE} is a freebie for you from that pack too!

This year I have also been using a self-running PowerPoint presentation I created to run my reading and math groups. The CLEAN UP slide and defining *chime* noise has really helped get my kids better at transitioning to their next center but we are still workin' on it. Click the picture below to see the rotation board options I have listed in my tpt store.
This marks my fourth year teaching and I am starting to feel like I have much more of a handle on a lot of the nuances of running a classroom. I'm excited to see where the year takes me as I am told first graders grow so much in just one short school year! There is tons of foundational learning going on and it's already pretty cool to see how far they've come since day 1. I will post some more from our classroom soon - here's hoping the power isn't out too long. Hurricanes are no fun. Stay safe everyone!!!!

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