Thursday, August 20, 2015

Tens Frame Flashcards

I'll say it. Back to School is rough. I'm definitely earning my paycheck this year. I have some sweeties though, too. :)

We still use Math in Focus (mostly) to teach math. I've created math journals for the first few units and I still create things from time to time for it. The math program stays the same for a few years but the kids certainly do not! So sometimes we do in fact have to reinvent the wheel. (Or go to Pinterest)

Well, I went to Pinterest looking for number word flashcards. I found some. They were alright. I also wanted a visual to go with them...I found some subitizing flashcards which are neat but I wanted good 'ol tens frames because we often have a difficult time with those in the beginning. Well I thought number words and tens frames together on one card were a perfect way to practice. However....Pinterest let me down folks. Now, I'm not saying they're not out there but I am saying I didn't find what I was looking for. So, I did what any crafty teacher with a few extra minutes (yeah right) and some math clipart would do. I made them! I'm pretty happy with how they turned out.

I made numbers 0-20 with words. I made them with filled tens frames and with blank tens frames.

We cut them out (which took pretty much all of math time, btw) and put them in our baggies. Then when we had a chance we took them out and practiced number order, then we mixed them up and practiced reading number words (I did encourage the kiddos to count the circles when they got stuck) and then we did a lesson on comparing numbers with them. I used them for greater than/less than war.

I had them shuffle their cards and put them face down. Then flip one over and build a tower with linking cubes to match. The greater tower won. (Or conversely the lesser tower or tower with fewer cubes) It took them a while to get into the swing of it but they caught on and enjoyed themselves. I let them keep score. We played until the timer went off. (I used the handy dandy Dojo timer!)

If you'd like to check them out on TpT click here


I added this to the packet in case you don't have ideas for the blank tens frames:

Monday, August 3, 2015

BTS SALE!

I'm joining in on the TpT Back to School sale!!!



It's time for me to go leave all that feedback on the great products I've purchased and loved. THEN time to empty my TpT wish list and use a savings code. Ahh, I love a good sale. :D


Click here to check out my store





(Graphic from First Grade Fever)

Thursday, July 30, 2015

T-T-Teach Me How to Dojo

Okay, I'll say it...sometimes my blog titles make me giggle. I'm not sure any of you get a chuckle but I do. That one is a play on Teach Me How to Dougie...oh....the giggles.

Back to business ::puts on teacher face::

I go back to school in 8 days. Well officially back because I've been going in periodically anyway. But I'm back "on the clock" next Tuesday morning with meetings and what not.

This year my co-teacher and I want to do a new behavior management plan. The things I look for in a good behavior plan are

  • Consistency
  • Ease of use
  • Ease of understanding (for kiddos and parents)
  • Clearly defined
  • Works for me-works for that particular class
  • Practical
  • Inexpensive!
  • Unobtrusive (doesn't take away from classroom decor, teaching, learning, space, instructional time)
When I first started teaching I used good 'ol card flips. It's what my mentor teacher used during student teaching, it's what I saw work (very well). It was easy. I used it for a few years then I was itching for something new. I was introduced to the clip chart. I love it. I created several versions, it was super cute, had room for positives and negatives and gave an overall view of the day. I read many blogs about it and I found some articles. 

Well, I'm still happy with the clip chart. I like that the kindergarten teachers used it so they are already acclimated to it and adjust quickly to my personal variations. HOWEVER, I've been using it for a few years and I WANT A CHANGE. lol Sometimes you change adapt for the kiddos and sometimes you have to make it fresh for yourself. I mean you're the one stuck in {first grade} every year.

Last summer I was introduced to Class Dojo. It's an online behavior management system. You assign each kid an avatar. Then the kids can earn or lose points based onto choices that they make throughout the day. The neat thing is that you get to customize the categories to meet the needs of your specific group of kids and you get to set their point value. 



So if sharing happens to be a big problem in your room you can make it worth more points and that will help to encourage the kiddos to share. I'm still working on my categories and point values. I'm struggling with the part of knowing about how many points I expect them to earn daily so I've had to accept that I'l need to use it for a few weeks and tweak it. 

I've created some things to help make this transition go smoothly for me. I'm going to write their names on varied avatars and when they move to a new reward level I'm going to move their avatar along the way. This will be a cute visual for me. 

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Class-Dojo-Classroom-Resources-1987307
customize your point levels and rewards 
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Class-Dojo-Classroom-Resources-1987307
use mine or use them to help give you some ideas

I've also created some recording sheets to send home to the parents. Starting off I am not going to invite the parents. I just don't want midday emails asking why Susie lost 1pt for a bathroom break. I'm going to have them color how many points they have. I am still thinking of consequences or what to do if they are in the negative. Ideas?

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Class-Dojo-Classroom-Resources-1987307
class dojo will produce reports for this data but I wanted an easy to use recording page
click here or the image to get it for FREE on TpT
Oh and one of my favorite things is that you can use this on a standard PC, cell phone, or tablet. This way I can take my phone or iPad into the hallway, cafeteria, field trips, etc and effectively reinforce behavior. I can also give a code to specials teachers if they would like to use it when they have my kiddos. :D 


different point levels for their avatars to go through
write kiddo names on the blanks



Monday, July 20, 2015

Some of my must haves

I'm almost down to my last free Monday. Let's all take a moment of silence to really consider what this means. **sniffle**

No more late night Sundays in bed reading or watching Netflix
No more sleeping until my body wakes
No more laying in bed and checking every social media app and email half a dozen times before actually getting out of bed
No more leisurely mornings spent in my jammies
No more home cooked breakfasts (because who has time for that on a work day?!)
No more morning workouts when it's way less crowded
No more spur of the moment trips to the movies

Yes I'm excited to meet the kiddos. Yes there are times that I get a bit bored. Yes I miss seeing my coworkers regularly.

Well since I am gearing up back to school I've decided to join the Monday Must Haves.



When going back to school I have touch up my bulletin boards or create new ones. Last year I went with a Lego theme (I may reuse this one, it was too stinkin' cute!)
original post here
Well to get those bulletin boards up and running I love a good palm tacker. I ordered one a few years ago and I haven't looked back. I don't use it often but it's so handy when I'm putting up bulletin boards by myself.

Here is the one I have:

Organizational drawers/baskets/etc



Another must-have for me would be dice. I LOVE dice.
Regular dice, colorful dice, dice with number words, dice with letters, dice with large numbers. I just love dice in general. They're great for activities and the kiddos get a kick out of using them. My letter dice are foam so I don't even have to fret over the noise of 24 firsties rolling dice.



Those are just a few things that I love having. There are a ton more. These just make the beginning of the year a bit easier for me.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Five for Friday


 Out of boredom and actual interest I wanted to practice Spanish again. I took it for quite a few years in school and some in college. I miss speaking it. I was by no means fluent but I could communicate but I never get the opportunity to anymore. Also, my grammar is now awful!

There's an app called Duolingo that is free and you can practice several languages. You choose a language and take a placement test and can go through levels. It's not super gamey in that it's not necessarily directed at the kiddos with cartoons and games. I do think that you could have kids do this though. I thought about loading it to an iPad in the fall and maybe letting it be an enrichment activity.



This was one of the sentences I had to translate. When will I need to say this?! lol
I have a homework club in my room. I needed new number pieces for it...and I like going to Michael's. 
clear glass mosaic pieces, acrylic paint, magnets
I wrote the numbers of my kiddos on the mosaic pieces (backwards--eek!), painted them, then glued magnets
This is my current board (below) and I really like it but my numbers don't all fit and one of them got lost last year. Unfortunately the recycle bin was located right below. Oops.
current board 


Ummm...a bit too early for fall there buddy!!! (@Walgreens) #TooSoon



I live in Indiana and for the first time ever I went downtown for fireworks. I've been recreationally taking pictures and was jazzed to get to do some firework shots. They are NOT as easy as anticipated. Here is my favorite picture. 

I am slowly working on some new things for the upcoming year. I genuinely think I'm in denial for Back to School. Denial or not..it's quickly approaching. I'm switching up my classroom management system and I'm going to give Class Dojo a try! Do you Dojo? I'm working on incentive rewards. How many points do your kiddos usually earn? I don't want to make the levels too hard reach but I don't want to be giving out prizes left and right like crazy. 

Here are some recording sheets I'm working on

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Work it Wednesday...err Thursday

Hey bogland. I'm joining Katie over at Queen of the First Grade Jungle for Work it Wednesday. (Yes, I know it's Thursday...my bad)

 click image to link up


During the winter I'm a weenie. I hate cold weather and the wind hurts me. HURTS. We have had some pretty cold winters these last few years, like so cold school is delayed or cancelled due to temps. Well in January I was visiting my favorite froyo place. (Never too cold for froyo) When I was indulging in some froyo I saw an advertisement for kickboxing fitness. The first session was free. It only takes 30 minutes and there's someone there to guide you. Well I went and did my freebie visit and god my butt kicked!!! About two days later I went and signed up. I've been going 3-4x a week since January. I really haven't lost much weight but I had lost a lot beforehand. I do however notice much more strength in my body. I see it in my legs, my arms, and I feel it in my core. 

Since school has been out I have been going consistently but I get to go earlier which I like because it's usually less crowded. I also will walk, jog, or bike sometimes. 

Here is what it looks like. The objective at each station changes daily. 
I was running late so I had to put on my wraps in the car. Luckily (?) there are two super long stoplights on my way. 
I even have pink boxing gloves that go with it. 

I bought a Polar heart rate monitor. I use it for every workout. On average I burn about 350 calories in my 30 minute workout. 
                                                 
I finally improved my speed bag skills and earned my 300 Hit Club T-Shirt!
How are you staying active this summer?

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

July already! Well...July currently

Hello everyone! Today is July 1st and I think you know what that means. Time for another currently! I still love these things.

Listening-->I just finished an episode of Big Brother. Did you watch it? Is it too early to backdoor? Did Audrey really need to get to everyone in the middle of the night?!

Loveing--> So I mentioned some time last year about my weight loss and fitness journey. I've been on the struggle bus people. I was doing SOOO well but recently I've gained a little weight. I'm hoping some was muscle but I'm betting most of it was not. I didn't gain a ton but I am taking it very badly. I've been great with my kickboxing workouts but I'd be lying if I didn't say I haven't reincorporated some sweets. I mean...c'mon free goodies were everywhere at school in May. EVERYWHERE!

So I'm recently back on the My Fitness Pal and trying to make good choices. That said I still have some sweet tooth cravings. Enter Quest Bars! They're my favorite protein bar (and I've tried quite a few)
My favorite flavor!
I also have to remember that even though I've had a bit of a backslide I'm no where near where I began.
I haven't had the nerve to share a before/after on fb. On the left is a few years ago NYE I think and on the right is the other day after I went jogging. 
Thinking--> I absolutely love having time to myself and to reenergize during the summer. I love it. I know that we all do professional development, Pin a ton of ideas, blog/read blogs, IG or IG stalk, attend meet-ups, take classes and do so much during the summer that most people never consider. But I'd be lying if I didn't throw in as much relaxation and fun as possible. Right?! Saturday I'm hanging with some friends that I haven't seen a while and we'll be doing some day...well...day imbibing, lol. (yeah I get that that is weird after my above comment but I'll be mindful) And then Saturday night I want to go and photograph some fireworks. I've been trying to get better w/ my Nikon skills. I practiced the other night.


Wanting--> Froyo! My true vice. And it's not that froyo is that bad....but I love to load it with melted peanut butter. Just thinking about it made me gain a pound, lol. 

a google image from my favorite local place. Yum
Needing--> A shower! I didn't go to my regular workout class today. I decided to go for a run. (okay I'm slow and can't go too far so maybe a jog) and then I went on a bike ride. I haven't showered yet and needless to say I am not April fresh.

All Star--> I joke around and I talk a lot but I'm actually a pretty good listener. I remember what is said and when wanted I try to offer thoughtful advice. I can also keep a secret. I'm often a sounding board for friends/family. 

Okay. Your turn! Go link up.