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Sunday, August 25, 2013

And So it Begins.....

The  new year....the anticipation, the excitement, the happy feeling you get when you get a new list, the smell of new crayons, the look of your newly decorated classroom......

The reality.....all the above + the aching back, the nerves, the lack of sleep, the headaches, the stress, the SORE FEET---the aching body---you know it's the first week of school when even your HAIR hurts!  ;)  

Why do I forget EVERY year how exhausted I am the first few weeks of school?  I even fell asleep before my own kiddos and slept in this morning.  We won't mention that I was even in my jammies all day yesterday! 

My new group of firsties seem sweet AND chatty.  Sure, I have a few challenges this year--but that goes with the job description right?  

Let's talk about my week! :)

We had meetings and inservices Monday-Wednesday.  
Some of that was room prep time.

We also got to discuss the new OTES and SLOs that is happening in Ohio this year.
EXCITING, huh?  
I have to be honest....I zoned out.  I know this is important for Ohio teachers...but it seems like my state changes things weekly.  I did enjoy this little speech that was shared during one of our meetings.

And then somewhere in the midst of all of this, my own kiddos started school.
They both started at a NEW school this year.  A district I hope to relocate to (and maybe, God willing someday teach at).  It's so pretty and family oriented.  There are only 4 -2nd grade teachers in the district---this is much like my own elementary/high school when I was younger.  I love the small size--seems closer! :)
My daughter is in 6th--I feel old!
My son is now a 2nd grader!
(I miss having them at school with me
but I'm so glad I was able to teach both of them in my classroom though!) 

My son is also kinda rotten!
Not bad rotten---just all boy rotten...you can just see it!
 SOOO--I tried to earn him some Brownie Points with his Teacher!
 I originally saw this idea on Pinterest as a Valentine's Day gift--
I made it for a BTS gift! ;)

You can click on the image below if you want to grab a copy for yourself.
All I did was punch a hole in the corner, thread a ribbon through it, and tied a knot around the note/box.  I then cut the ribbon in a V shape on both ends.  Simple! ;)

Okay, so let's do classroom talk.
My room....I don't do well with taking pictures.
I don't remember...and then when I do, it's a quick snap and it usually turns out blurry.
But here's what I have for now.
1) Our Cupcake Door.  It says "Nothing is Sweeter than a  First Grade Leader"--to go with our district wide Leader in me Program.    Our cupcakes were made with a tracing pattern onto scrapbook paper.  I let the students choose their color/pattern for the cupcake liner.  Then they used the same piece of scrapbook paper for the frosting, flipped it over so the white showed and added sprinkles and a cherry using crayons or markers.  They turned out pretty cute! :)  
You can click my cupcake picture below if you want to grab you a quick craft.

 2) Part of my Calendar Board---I just love the turquoise material and the Dot Pattern!!
3) My lunch board--thanks to Fabulous in First for her pic on Instagram for the idea--I LOVE it.
The bad thing is my board is a chalkboard that I had to make into a bulletin board.  Thank goodness for REALLY good magnets!

4) My clip chart!  Mine is probably longer than most, but I have the room to hang it, and I needed the room for 25 kiddos too! ;)  (Though my class has dwindled since the first class roster)

That's my classroom at a glance.
So what did we do those two days?
RULES RULES RULES and rules some more! ;)

We used my First Grader First Grader pack.
My principal heard us reading from the hallway and popped her head in and read along with us.
The kiddos enjoyed that! :)

Some of the books we read are:


When we  were reviewing our rules, I used part of Lyndsey's pack.

We sorted good choices/bad choices together after a class discussion from a story above.

Then I sent them to their seats to do their own good choices vs. bad choices.
Click the image to get your own.

We also did some Splat the Cat activities.
I HOPE to remember to take pictures later--
but First Grade Blue Skies has a great little pack!
Click the link to see her blog post.

 But that brings me to Sunday planning...and that doesn't always mean lesson plans.
I'm a mom too!
I'm trying to get myself more organized so I'm not so exhausted--and I can still have family time.
I'm trying to even put my LAUNDRY on a schedule---you wear it, you wash it apparently doesn't go over well with an 11 yr old and 7 yr. old. 

My first step is back to menu planning.
 I'm also hoping that this cuts down on the buy it
because I'm hungry grocery shopping I tend to do at times.
I also found that if I use the "Inkpad" app...I can quickly type in my grocery list, and then erase it as I put the items in my cart.  Makes a quick check to see that I have everything that much easier.
Click the image if you want your own--simply print, laminate and hang on your fridge!
This will help me know if I need to lay things out from the freezer the night before too!

Here's a sample of our menu this week---we are a busy family...not a lot of greens AND I have SUPER picky kids....Our suppers are quick and simple.

I hope to be back tomorrow to share some of the things that we are doing in class.
Until then friends!! :)


  1. Great book choices! I bet your students loved having your principal join you all reading!
    Conversations in Literacy

  2. Sounds like you guys got off to a great start! I'm a firm believer in starting a short week with the kids. We had 2 weeks of professional development and now a whole week with the kiddos-it's hard to get back into that schedule.


  3. Love the cupcake craft!! Thanks for the great idea :)
    Curious Firsties


First Grade and Fabulous

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