Sunday, July 29, 2012

Lesson Plan Template

Weekly Lesson Plan Template
        The number of page views for my original post about my weekly lesson plan template has grown considerably the past few days. In light of this I decided to post the “shell” of my template. If you like the font that I used for the days of the week I downloaded it from I hope you find the template useful and easy to manipulate to fit your needs.  

        As for me, I’ve been busy running in and out of Home Depot to make a few things for my classroom:

1.   Phonics Phones
2.   Bucket Seats

I’ve also been hitting up a few garage sales looking for:

1.   Plastic Eggs
2.   Books
3.   Games
4.   Anything useful
        My next post, or two, will be about making my bucket seats, phonics phones, and center activities with my plastic eggs! {With LOTS of pictures!}

Monday, July 23, 2012

Math Journal Pack FREEBIE

FREEBIE: Math Journal Pack 2

     I finished my second math journal pack and have uploaded it for you! This pack contains a series of shape pattern prompts for students to draw in their journals or on a piece of paper. I left the last page of templates blank (no shapes) so you can create your own patterns. I hope you find this pack useful!

   That's all for me today- short and sweet I know, but I am on 'vacation' after all! 

Friday, July 20, 2012

Home Sweet Home

Home Sweet Home

        WOW- I can’t believe how quickly this week flew by! I had good intentions of posting earlier in the week, but apparently I’ve been enjoying my time home in Michigan too much! In fact, this is the first morning all week that I haven’t had to get up and go. Let me fill you in briefly about the week’s events:
  • · Monday: I was in the car the majority of the day (8 hours) driving myself and our two dogs to Michigan
  • ·Tuesday: I went to the Tigers (baseball) game with my sister, and stayed the night in Ann Arbor at my sister’s apartment

Here's a picture of us at the game

  • · Wednesday: My sister and I met our cousin for breakfast and then ran errands all day. We also visited our Great Uncle George :D
  • · Thursday: I ran errands with my bestie and then met some friends from college for dinner- yesterday was GREAT
  • · Friday: Today will be nice and relaxing, until about 3:00 and then I am helping my mom babysit a family friend’s kids (which will be fun, but tiring)

This week was pretty busy and lots of fun- catching up with friends and family. I am definitely looking forward to next week though when I can work on some craft projects for home and the classroom. Last night I started making “Quiet Critters” for all three first grade classes, I’ve only done about one class worth’s though… check them out:

Aren't they cute?!? 

I also started to read (FINALLY) the book about creating independent writer's in the primary grades. I am only a few chapters in, but I already feel like I have learned so much! I am really looking forward to implementing her ideas into my classroom. Here's a picture of the notes, tabs, and bookmarks I have already inserted:

That's all for today! I will work on finishing up my next math journal pack over the weekend (hopefully) and will be uploading it sometime next week, so be sure to stop by.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Cricut in the Classroom

Cricutting the Classroom

It seems like more and more teachers are cricutting their classrooms. I happen to be one of these teachers. However, I had a Cricut long before I was teaching! I have since upgraded to the Cricut Expression (which I LOVE). I spent the majority of last summer making classroom d├ęcor with my Cricut. I managed to find a few pictures of my work:

This is the birthday board display I made- I cut EVERYTHING out with my Cricut! I glued together the pieces for each month and then laminated them. Then I cut out glued together, and laminated the candles. I write the name of each student on a candle (blue for boys, and pink for girls) and then I write the date they were born on the flame.

These are center icons I made. I made two sets, one goes on the board with students' names, and the other set helps students find the center in the classroom. 

I don't have any pictures of the word wall signs, job board, or star student board- but I'll try to remember to take pictures once my room is set up in August. 

Speaking of classroom set-up, I'm headed to school here in about 30 to meet up with one of my new teaching partners! I'm looking forward to the coming school year- there have been many changes, but I know it will be a GREAT year! I also got an email from MY INTERN for the coming year- I am so excited! And, we're also getting a NEW first grade teacher- I get to meet her today too!

Anyway- back to the topic- do you use a Cricut in your classroom? Leave a comment below to share what you have made. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Math Journal Pack FREEBIE #1


        I have a Math Journal Pack FREEBIE ready earlier than expected! I went to work on a pack this morning, and saw that I already had finished one. I did it so long ago (the beginning of June) that I forgot it was done! This pack was designed for back to school: reviewing numbers 10-20. The pack is simple, but designed to be a quick warm-up or wrap-up activity during your math block. If you think you can use the pack with your kiddos, whether they are in K or 1st, be sure to grab your FREE copy from the link below!

           I think that’s it for today- Please leave a comment about the Math Pack to let you know what you think!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Necessary School Supplies


I have officially completed ALL of my coursework for my two summer classes!! YAHOOOOOO! I have my last classes tonight, but my work is DONE. So- the good news is, I’ll be back to posting regularly. I’m thinking I’ll post every 2-3 days.

Moving on- I am glad to finally start my ‘real’ summer, i.e. do what I want: like craft, read, pin, and take a nice long trip back to Michigan to see my family.

I am currently working on a math journal packet. I’m hoping to have it finished by the end of the week, so keep your eyes peeled for that FREEBIE.

I am also looking forward to doing a little school supply shopping over the next few weeks. I have a Staples gift card ‘burning a hole in my pocket.’ I broke it in over the weekend when I bought two new one-touch staplers. A purchase that my husband scoffed at, but he doesn’t realize how hard it is for 6 year olds to staple together mini-books! I was in the stapler section for a good 10 minutes, trying out as many as I could, and comparing their ‘one-touch’ abilities. I must say I am satisfied with my purchase:

I have been trying to decide how to have my students keep their supplies this year. I have been doing some pinning, in the little free time that I had, and am starting think I may switch from personal supplies to shared table supplies. But, I have always had my kids keep their own supplies… so it’s been a tough call for me (clearly because I have yet to decide!). So here are today’s questions:
·        How do your students keep their supplies (personal in desk, or shared at tables/teams)?
·        What supplies do you ask your kids to bring?
·        What supplies do you purchase for your kids?

Monday, July 2, 2012

Short and Sweet

Inspired to Post

       Again I truly apologize for my absence- the good news is that the semester is almost over! (Sigh of relief)

       I was checking my email this morning and I had an email from Christina DeCarbo (remember the AWESOME How-To Writing Unit I did with my kiddos), well she created it and happened to stumble across one of the posts that I ‘pitched’ her unit in. She left a comment AND she subscribed to my blog! YAHOO!! Sorry- this is exciting for me because I have been neglecting the blog because of my of schoolwork- and this was affirmation that my blog is searchable and can be ‘stumbled upon.’

       Moving forward- I will be present at least every few days after the 10 (last day of classes!). There will be some information on the book No More, “I’m Done!” Fostering Independent Writers in the Primary Grades by Jennifer Jacobson, and there will be LOTS of FREEBIES!!

       If you’re new to Life in First please look over the older posts and pick up the FREEBIES that are already posted. :D
       Finally be sure to follow Miss DeCarbo’s blog: