Monday, February 21, 2011

Mouthful of Math

We have been busy learning about teeth and integrating it with math.  A wonderful dental hygienist brought Alli Alligator to help her tell students about dental care. Our first grade classes made a line plot with the number of teeth lost.  We used the line plot to make an interactive bulletin board. 

Students also did a cute and fun activity using marshmallows.  Before gluing the marshmallows on their self-portraits, the students answered some story problems.  The story problems featured a few of their classmates.  Finally, the students completed story problems and number sentences to go with their self-portraits.  I think we'll finish up with a healthy snack.

Here is the worksheet that students completed before creating the self-portraits. I used my students' names. Feel free to change the names. 

Saturday, February 19, 2011

I'm Honored to be a Stylish Blogger

Thank you Amber ( for awarding me with a Stylish Blogger Award.

Here are the rules for receiving this award:

1. Thank and link back to the person who awarded you this award
2. Share 7 things about yourself
3. Award 5 recently discovered great bloggers
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award

7 Things about me:

1. I am the teacher who lives at school.
2. I am in the process of applying for graduate school.
3. My daughter and I just finished doing a Wedding Show to promote her Massage Therapy career.
4. Two other teachers and I started our school's first Book Club after Christmas.  Our first fundraiser was a Valentine Dance.  It was a huge success.  I was very impressed with the hard work done by the 3-5 graders.
5. I am addicted to blogging.
6. Spring is my favorite season, although that's when my allergies are the worst.
7. I'm a super-model trapped in a frumpy, teacher body.  ROTFL!!!

And the award goes to...

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Happy Valentine

I had already planned to give my students toothpaste and toothbrushes for Valentine's Day.  Then I saw First Grade Teaching's idea. Here is my version of her great idea.  I used a program that I have to cut the tooth out with my Cricut.  I have a small class, so I could have cut them by hand, but I like being able to work on other stuff while the machine cuts.

With snow days and testing, we did not have time to make Valentine holders in class.  As a Family Involvement Project, students made their own holders at home.  I gave them some ideas and even provided some supplies.  The Love Boat idea came from Family Fun Magazine.  My family has been going through orange juice a lot lately.  There was almost enough juice cartons for the whole class. Other recycled materials were cereal boxes, tissue boxes, and shoe boxes.  There was one mailbox kit, and one store bought mailbox.  One student used fun foam to make a bag (the red with the lime green hearts). They did a fantastic job.
Valentine Holders

Thursday, February 10, 2011

100th Day & The Wolf's Chicken Stew

We had a 2-hour delay on the 100th day of school.  We didn't get to do everything I planned, but I did have time to make these chicks to use with a math activity.  The idea was adapted from a Mailbox Magazine (Dec. 2007-08) activity.

I read the story, The Wolf's Chicken Stew by Keiko Kasza.  I divided my class in half (well 5 and 4).  While the other half of my class went with another teacher to do a descriptive writing activity, my group skip counted by 5's.  As the students fed their chicks 5 cookies, the group counted by 5's.  After we counted 100 cookies, the students counted how many cookies each chick had.  I had to participate with the second group.  The second group counted by 10's.  When I did this activity with a team member's class, we counted by 10's.  I asked them, "If all 8 chicks get 10 cookies, how many will be left?"  One student was quick to tell me, "20."  I then asked what we should do with the left-overs.  They said to count by 2's until they were all gone.  When they counted their cookies, they realized that some chicks had more cookies than the others.  We decided that 100 cookies could not be shared equally between 8 chicks.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Meet the Teacher

I am a single mother and grandmother. I have been a 1st grade teacher for 5 years, but I have been in education for 17 years.  I began volunteering when my daughter was in first grade. Later, I became an assistant teacher.  When I realized my destiny was to be a teacher, I enrolled in college and began a long journey.  At times I had to work two part-time jobs in addition to my full-time job as an assistant while taking 1-2 courses per semester.

My 25 year-old daughter is a massage therapist and the mother of my beautiful grand-daughter.  They live with me, so I get to spoil my grand-daughter and my daughter gets to spoil me.  I am the oldest of six children.  Our family loves getting together on Sundays and any other chance we get.  I have been blessed with a loving, caring, and supportive family.
 This was taken as a Mother's Day Gift for my daughter.  The book is "I Say a Little Prayer for You", which I gave to my daughter several years ago.

Q: What would you be doing if you weren’t a teacher?                                             
A:  I would probably be a librarian.  I still have hopes of opening my own small-town bookstore/coffee house, too.
Q: What are your hobbies?                                                                                    
A:  Sewing, scrapbooking, arts and crafts, and photography.                                                                 

Q: When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?                     
A:  I wanted to be a teacher until I started high school.  Then I wanted to be a fashion designer.
Q: What are your guilty pleasures?                                                                 
 A: Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Dr. Pepper, the show; Weeds, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, blogging and blog stalking, my wine of the month club, and Krispy Kreme Doughnuts.

Q: What is your biggest fear?!                                                                      
 A: OMG! Caterpillars, slugs, snails, worms, and driving across long bridges. It's crazy that snakes and flying don't bother me.
Although caterpillars give me the creeps, I couldn't pass up a photo op.

Q: When you’re on vacation, where do you like to go?                                  
 A: Quiet, non-commercialized beaches.  We would go to the Outerbanks 1-2 times a year when my sister lived there. The waves would put me to sleep at night and drown out the rowdy children during the day, so I could read.  I loved watching the dolphins in the mornings, and sitting at the top of the world on Jockey's Ridge.  I also love the beautiful waters of the Bahamas.  One day I would love to go to Italy.
Q: What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?                                                   
A:  Do something nice for yourself.  That's one reason I take off for my birthday every year. 

Q: What do you value most in others?                                                                   
A:  Integrity and a sense of humor.

Q: If you could choose one of your personality traits to pass down to your kids, what would it be?                                                                                                        
A: My optimism. I try to steer clear of negativity.   

Q: If you could have lunch with anyone in the world….living or dead…who would it be?                                                                                                              
A:  I would love to have lunch with Ron Clark, and spend the rest of the day with him at his school. 

I have Ron Clark's book.  I was able to hear him speak last March. His energy is contagious.

Now tell us one random thing about yourself:
I've been hang-gliding, and would like to do it again.  As a matter of fact, I want to learn to fly a plane.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

No Shadow

This is the first year that I've actually done some Groundhog Day activities.  To get things started yesterday, we did a math activity  that a ProTeacher friend created.  The math activity helped students practice their math facts and even/odd concepts. Once the math activity was complete, we had our predictions.  Most of the results said the groundhog would not see his shadow or more sums were even.

We gathered information about groundhogs and Groundhog Day.  We made a graphic organizer, and the students wrote about groundhogs and Groundhog Day.  We also made a mini, accordion book about Groundhog Day.  During computer time, the students played a groundhog game.  We watched a video clip of Punxatawney Phil's appearance.  

The groundhog activities were a welcome break from all the testing we've been doing for the last two weeks.