Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Christmas Party???

I don't know about you but the class Christmas party stresses me out!!!  When I first started teaching, anytime parents would come in for the holiday "parties," the kids would be NUTS!  I couldn't stand it!  After a few years, I stopped inviting the parents in and did the parties myself.  Fast forward to about 11 years in and I decided I was tired of running around like a maniac during the party, so I went back to having parents come in.

Last year, I decided to invite several parents in and set up stations for a party and let me tell you......it was a HIT!!!!!!  I had the following stations going: reindeer food and reindeer craft, holiday BINGO, a Math game, kindness notes, icing a cookie and how-to essay writing, and kindness notes. The kids were placed into small groups and rotated around the room.  Each station had a parent volunteer. Glorious!!!!

The kids, volunteers, and I all had an absolute BLAST!  I will never go back to having the party on my own!  To get the activities shown above, click below!


Monday, December 5, 2016

Christmas Ideas

Hi!  Hope you all are having a great month!  Christmas will be here before we know it, so I wanted to pop in today with some ideas of things I've done in the past.

I'll start out with a fabulous and simple craft project I got from Oriental Trading Company this year! My kids made these adorable tissue paper holiday wreaths last week.  They did so well!  I modeled exactly what they needed to do and they got it!  Can we say holy fine motor practice!? These would make a simple parent gift.  You could place a picture of the child on the bow or the wreath to make it personal.   You can check out all the great Christmas products Oriental Trading Company has to offer by clicking HERE.

Speaking of parent gifts, I also snagged these clear ornaments from Oriental Trading Company.  I'm not sure what I am going to do with them yet, but I like the ideas shown below!

Source: Life Made Simple blog

Source: The Happier Homemaker blog

Every year, I look forward to doing a few of the same Christmas activities.  I never get tired of them! First up is Santa's Stuck.  I love this book, writing, and craft.  You can get the book below and the free writing paper HERE.  The craft is from Crafty Bee Creations on TpT.  Love the simplicity of her crafts!


Next up is The Grinch.  This craft came from a pack from Deanna Jump many years ago.  Seuss Enterprises forbids anyone to sell or give away patterns of their characters.  I still have the pack but it's not available on TpT.  You can freehand your own Grinch head!  I always give my kids a green treat to go with the craft and writing we do.  One year it was green pudding cups and other years it's been green candy canes {found them at Walgreens this year}.  Get a free poem to card to go with the candy canes HERE and a free writing page to go with the craft HERE.  Click below to get the book and DVD.  I always read the book and then we watch the DVD the next day with our treat.


Another favorite thing I do in December as a whole-class reward is this free Santa beard from What the Teacher Wants.  The kids have chances throughout the day to earn a piece of Santa's beard {white pom pom with magnet hot-glued on back}.  Once all pieces are on, we have a class reward of some sort.

I also enjoy teaching my first graders about Holidays Around the World.  To teach these, I use a variety of resources.  My favorite is A Year of Many Firsts' Holidays Around the World with Globe Trot Scott.  I've used this resource and taught my students about a few of the countries' holiday celebrations.

In addition, I use my little pack as a supplement when teaching about Kwanzaa, Las Posados, and Hanukkah.  I really like the mini-books that are included.

The last two weeks of school before winter break, our elf makes an appearance!  He brings with him diaries for us and a treat.  He's always sneaking around the room doing something!!!

For centers in December, we use my Christmas Centers {along with a few from my Elf pack}. There's enough to last us the whole month {with the addition of a computer/Ipad center and a listening center}.  

Hope you got some new ideas!  See you later in the week for a holiday party idea that you won't want to miss!!


Monday, November 28, 2016


Happy Cyber Monday!  Today and tomorrow, TpT is throwing their annual, site-wide sale.  Get 20% off my entire store PLUS save an extra 10% by using code "CYBER2016" at checkout!  This is a fantastic time to stock up on holiday resources!  Speaking of, did you get my newsletter yesterday?  It features my holiday products!

 The Cyber Monday sale is also a great time to snag my best-selling guided reading bundle!  Available for 1st or kinder!  Links below!

Happy Shopping!

Friday, November 25, 2016

5 for Friday

Hi!  I am touching base {finally}with a Five for Friday!  I don't have a whole lot to share, as I've been out of town and don't have many pictures, but nonetheless, here we go!

We had a busy week last week with it being right before our Thanksgiving break.  Our team decided to do Thanksgiving rotations and have different activities for our kids in each of our rooms.  I did the story of the First Thanksgiving.  I made Thanksgiving Story Bracelets from Fluttering Through First Grade {it's a free download}.  The kids LOVED their bracelets!  We were so short on time, I forgot to snap a picture of the finished product but here is the worksheet that they used as a guide.

My teammate had a cute turkey craft in her room!  Look how great these turned out!

In another classroom, the kids played "Pilgrim Games" from my "Pilgrim Day" pack.

In the fourth classroom, the teacher had the kids make a turkey treat with Oreo cookies, much like the one shown below!  Photo from The Jenny Evolution.

We are at my mother-in-laws house and have been helping her prepare for her upcoming move. We've sorted through boxes to help her condense and get rid of things.  We came across my husband's trolls from the 80's!!!!  Perfect timing with the movie just releasing, right?!!?  Love these!

I've shared with you before that I am a Stella and Dot stylist on the side.  I love accessories and it's so much fun styling women!  I wanted to let you know that in honor of Black Friday, we are having a BIG SALE!!!!!!!  If you need a little something for your child's teacher {or yourself!!}, be sure to check out THIS LINK.  There are necklaces for just $16.  Another option is to send/give a gift card!  

This look below is one of my absolute favorites AND the necklace is on sale!!!!!!!!!!  Find the necklace HERE and the scarf  HERE.

In one of my Guided Reading groups, where two of my little ones are just learning to read, we've been practicing cvc words.  We use the strips from my Guided Reading Resources pack and my CvC Flashcards.  It's great practice.  I give them each a different word so they can work side by side without copying one another.  See a video of this in action below!  *I've linked the BINGO chips below in case you want to grab some for your classroom.  They are perfect for all sorts of games!



In another group, we've been working on using our reading strategies.  Each time we complete a book, the kids place it into their book baggie.  At the start of group every day, we warm up with a warm read of a book we've previously read.  The kids get to choose which one they want to read. This helps them practice fluency.  I've linked the bags below in case you want to grab some!!


Check out my Best-Selling, First Grade Guided Reading Bundles below.  *First Grade & Kindergarten available!

And finally I will leave you with a picture of this cute display we saw at an outdoor mall yesterday!

Happy Thanksgiving!